The other day I had a thought.
What if, instead of my regularly scheduled trip to Copenhagen and Cologne, I took some sort of transportation to Rotterdam to see my friend, Gabie? Not a bad idea at all because that’s like picking between being lonely and not being lonely.
Then I had a further thought. What if I took a bus to Rotterdam from Copenhagen? It can’t be that bad right?
Today was a travel day, so it started with me rushing out of the hostel, jumping onto the tram, and running into the station because honestly, it’s difficult to make trains in the morning. My train from Gothenburg was heading to Malmö where I was going to have lunch and then I was going to take a bus to Copenhagen and then another bus from there to Rotterdam.
The train was per usual (I mean there’s very little variance in terms of trains). Malmö was actually a very nice city and I wish I didn’t have luggage with me because I would’ve liked to explore it. It seemed to have a lot of older looking buildings and areas. Malmö is apparently known for its falafel, but I decided to not have falafel today because it’s not really my favorite food. Instead I went to a place in the station called Smorrebrod by Freda49 which basically had different variations of toppings on toast. It was pretty good.
The bus came right on time to the stop at Malmö which is apparently pretty normal as far as buses in Europe are concerned. The ride to Copenhagen was quick. We got dropped off at the bus area and I wandered my way into the central station. Not much was open in the station and while it seems like there’s a ton of free wifi almost none of it worked for me because they all used some “mycloud” service that didn’t want to connect. McDonalds wifi worked though (as it is wont to do).
I’m not a coffee person but I wanted something warm and was tired of hot chocolate so I had a cookie latte from Baresso. It didn’t really taste like cookies to be honest so I was a bit disappointed there. The latte did its job though of keeping me warm while waiting for my bus.
So my bus from Copenhagen to Rotterdam was operated by FlixBus. The idea is that I would get on the bus, ride overnight, and in the morning I’d wake up and be in Rotterdam. Sounds easy peasy except first the bus was late by 30 minutes and I only found out because I was talking to someone who had service at the time (who was also riding the same bus).
Ok so 30 minutes late…not too big of a deal. Except the driver has a terrible time driving and hard stops a bunch of times. It makes me wonder if it’s just the bus itself because there’s a lot of movement on the bus that I haven’t found with other buses. And then, just as most of us have drifted into sleep, suddenly we hear: “Hamburg, this is Hamburg.” at 4 in the morning. I guess they can’t help it, since it is one of their stops but it definitely didn’t add anything good to the overall experience.
I feel like this is a combination of the bus being late, the driver being bad, and my thought that I could tough out a 13-14 hour bus ride because it couldn’t be that bad (spoiler: it is that bad). The company itself is probably not inherently at fault although I’m not a big fan of their employees and customer service (the girls in front of me lost a phone and they weren’t helpful at all…but that’s a different story). Needless to say, I will probably never take FlixBus ever again.
Maybe I’ll look back on this tomorrow as a “fond memory of that time I took a 13 hour bus ride to Rotterdam and it sucked but I got there”. Maybe.