Bus Racing

So – Slovakia, land of beer, charming old cities and the aggressively timed bus ticket. Here we are perched high on a hill over Bratislava with a great view of the Danube, but not much in the way of local facilities. Getting into town requires taking a bus or a trolley bus, and when it comes to purchasing a ticket you have a choice: you can spend 14 crowns on a 10 minute ticket, or 18 crowns on a 30 minute ticket. The girls in reception assured us 10 minutes would be all we needed. It is not quite clear what the penalties are for travelling beyond the time validity of the ticket but if the fierceness of the ladies at breakfast were anything to go by when I asked for yoghurt without muesli, I suspect this is not a culture that takes rule-infringement lightly.

Once on the bus you punch your ticket and the clock starts. A helpful digital clock in the aisle counts down the minutes until sudden death, dismemberment or possibly just life imprisonment. Meanwhile the bus behaves as buses do everywhere. It meanders. It stops for passengers, or traffic lights, or just for a rest. The printed timetable proves to have been optimistic in its seven-minute estimate for our journey time. We made it with a minute to spare, this time. Next time I think we’ll spring the extra 4 crowns (about 10p) and get a 30 minute one and be able to relax and enjoy the ride.

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7 responses to “Bus Racing

  1. have you had a beer yet? also you should take the boat trip down the danube to vienna its great fun.
    cheers john

  2. Don’t they have traffic jams?

  3. So your off on holiday again.

    When are you home, back to the land of normality?

    BTW, do you want to come to my party in November? It’ll mean getting a train in to unchartered area’s… there be monsters!!!!

    Anyhow – email me, and let me kow.

  4. Where’s your sense of adventure! Mind you I don’t blame you seeing as it’s only 10p more.
    Have a good weekend.

  5. 10p! That’s probably a few beers over there, you don’t want to be wasting money on Tram tickets 🙂

  6. Sorry I meant Bus ticket. For me Europe = Trams.

  7. In fact it was a trolley bus which appears to be the bastard love child of a bus and a tram …

    … and yes, plenty of beer was had, although it did cost slightly more than the bus tickets.

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