Tag Archives: bus travel

Introducing the Montreal Chapter of Travel Massive

20 Jan


Great news! Busbud’s CEO LP Maurice and friend Lauren McLeod from fellow Montreal travel startup Flightfox are launching the Montreal Chapter of Travel Massive this Tuesday, January 21st!

The free event will be held at The Reservoir bar. Good news, it’s open to anyone wanting to share a beer and talk about travel. We’ll be there, and we’d love to count you in!

Travel Massive is an international meetup for members of the travel industry and travel lovers. It’s mission is to help travel & tourism companies, bloggers, startups, and travel media to connect locally and internationally.

Montreal is the 40th city to join this global community, four meetups are planned for 2014.

For the story, the original Travel Massive event was held 5 years ago in 2009, when Ian Cumming and Alicia Smith, two Sydneysiders, decided to create an event to connect with other people in the Sydney local travel industry.

From a simple casual meetup on a rooftop bar with a few others from the online travel industry, they went to a massive event attracting international guests and travel CEOs to sydney, all this within a few months. Canadian Alicia Taggio then started the first meetup in Toronto and Travel Massive started to spread around the world. You can learn more about the group’s story on the Travel Massive’s Website.

Join the Montreal Travel Massive Facebook group to stay posted on the events!

Our favorite travel and lifestyle bloggers in Berlin (in English)

18 Dec

We’re continuing the series we started with Amsterdam! This week we chose to introduce you to our top lifestyle and expat bloggers in Berlin, for an alternative way to discover the city once you’re there.

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Created by Zoë and James, two expats in Berlin, überlin deals with the city’s culture at large. This blog is actually a great resource to immerse yourself in the unique Berliner identity. There you’ll find insights about the city and it’s inhabitants, nice places to go eat and drink things to see and do, music, street style. Oh, and they wrote this cool list of things to know about Berliners, pretty funny stereotypes!
Read more here

Berlin Reified
Screen Shot 2013-12-18 at 11.05.06 AM
Berlin Reified was founded by the expat Sylee Gore in 2006. This blog is definitely homey, full of beautiful pictures and that’s something we love about it. It’s author takes you to day trips around the city, show you a singular point of view of what’s a perfect day in Berlin and takes you to her favorite food spots and cafes.
Read more here

Stil In Berlin
Screen Shot 2013-12-18 at 11.05.34 AM
Stil in Berlin is an online photography project, in a blog format. If originally focused on street style, the blog now covers various topics like food, style, shopping and life in Berlin.
In addition to presenting loads of beautiful pictures, Stil In Berlin provides a super nice feature: a map that helps you locate the blog’s eating and shopping suggestions
Read more here

Finding Berlin
Screen Shot 2013-12-18 at 11.06.06 AM
Finding Berlin is a visual magazine that celebrates Berlin’s rich and diverse culture through video and photography. What makes the content special is the alternative eye the contributors have on the city. They take you to a tour through places, urban art and anecdotes. Among all the great content, we like the 10 things to do series they did for summer and autumn.
Read more here

Slow Travel Berlin
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Ok, Slow Travel Berlin is more a website than a blog, but it totally had to make our list, for many reasons. The biggest one is because it embraces a totally different point of view of the city, and brings us to consider taking our time to actually discover Berlin beyond the touristic landmarks. We like the variety of information on the site, like jumping from a list for an ethical Christmas shopping in Berlin to a vintage Berlin Guide. Take some time and explore!
Read more here

Q&A with Gary Arndt from Everything Everywhere on Photography and Bus Travel

16 Feb
Gary Arndt from Everything Everywhere

Gary Arndt from Everything Everywhere

As part of our goal to make life easier for bus travelers, we keep in touch with travelers who’ve had firsthand experiences around the world. Last time, we featured Miro & Lainie from Raising Miro. Today, we’re happy to feature Gary Arndt from Everything Everywhere.

Gary Arndt sold his house in 2007 and have been traveling around the world ever since. He’s visited all 7 continents, over 116 countries and territories around the world, all 50 US states, 9/10 Canadian provinces, every Australian state and territory, over 125 US National Park Service sites and over 180 UNESCO World Heritage Sites. In 2010, Time Magazine named Everything Everywhere one of the Top 25 Blogs in the World.

1. Where are you now, and what’s your next destination?

I am writing this in a bus station in Liberia, Costa Rica. I’ll be heading to San Jose in an hour and tomorrow I hope to visit my 192nd UNESCO World Heritage Site in the Talamanca mountain range.  Next week I’ll be heading to northern Canada to the Yukon.

2. You’ve traveled over 7 continents and visited over 116 countries. How do you keep travel interesting and exciting?

There is always something more to learn. You can spend your entire life traveling and never run out of new things to learn and experience. The Earth is much larger than any human lifetime.

3. You’ve got a great travel photography ebook that everyone should dowload. I was especially touched by the Red Shirt Protester in Bangkok, and the Kids in Canoe at Rennell Island. Can you share your photography process— do you set out to capture moments, or let them come to you spontaneously?

It all depends. Both of those images have interesting stories behind them.

Red Shirt protester in Bangkok

Red Shirt protester in Bangkok

The photo of the red shirt protester took place in Bangkok in 2010. There were huge political protests taking place in Bangkok while I was there. I went down to the main protest area several times to meet and photograph the protesters. One day they were going to hold a rally at the Prime Minister’s home which was only a block from where I was staying. I went down with my camera and was between about 10,000′s protesters and maybe 1,000 police in riot gear. It started to rain and all the other photographers took shelter. I had an umbrella with me, so I stood out in the middle of the street and took the photo of the single man standing in front of the police. It is one of my favorite images.

Kids in Canoe on Rennell Island

Kids in Canoe on Rennell Island

The photo I took on Rennell just happened. The Solomon Islands is a country which gets very few tourists. Rennell Island is off the main archipelago and gets maybe 100 tourists per year. East Rennell is a 20 mile drive from the airstrip (which is just grass) over coral. During that 20 mile trip we had 8 flat tires. At the end of the road is a large lake you then have to cross. I was told they get about 10 tourists a year in this part of the island. One day I visited one of the villages on the lake and the kids in the village had a blast following me around. When I left by boat, they hopped in a canoe to follow me, waving their arms the entire time. The photo I took was my parting shot of the kids as I left.

Great photos can happen at any time. Sometimes you can plan for it and sometimes they happen unexpectedly.

Underwater photography in the Great Barrier Reef

Underwater photography in the Great Barrier Reef

4. In yesterday’s blog post, you mentioned taking the bus in Costa Rica, and how confusing the bus system can be because there is no central bus depot. What do you think of Busbud’s mission, which is to gather the world’s bus travel information? Would this type of information help your readers in their travels?

Absolutely. In many countries such as Costa Rica and the Philippines, the bus system is very distributed. There are many different bus companies which run different routes from different places in each city. There isn’t necessarily a central bus station. There is also seldom any signage to tell you where to go.  The more information you have, the easier your life will be.

Bus in Queensland, Australia

Bus in Queensland, Australia

5. Can you share a memorable bus travel story with us?

I took a bus in Egypt from Luxor to Suez which went up along the Red Sea. The bus was so dilapidated that spent most of it sitting on a spare tire. I’ve never counted the number of countries I’ve traveled by bus in, but it is certainly a big number. Even in some countries with an extensive train system, I often end up taking a bus because it is cheaper and just as fast.

Hammock over water in Caye Caulker, Belize

Hammock over water in Caye Caulker, Belize

6. Finally, there are many random facts about you that people are surprised to discover, like the fact that you are a part owner of an NFL franchise, and you also have a huge collection of magazines and DVDS. For Busbud readers who hesitate to take on a long-term travel trip because they’d be leaving behind so much “stuff”, what advice would you give them?

Stuff can be replaced. The actual act of getting rid of much of your stuff is actually a rather therapeutic experience. Once you spend an extended amount of time living out of a bag, you realize just how little you need to actually get by. Most of what you need can be put into storage and it will be waiting for you when you get back.

Thanks Gary! You can get in touch with him on Twitter and Facebook.  Follow Gary Arndt’s adventures on Everything Everywhere.

Photos by Gary Arndt at Everything Everywhere

Busbud Joins Smart Move Campaign

25 Jan

Smart Move Campaign

Busbud is happy to announce that we will be joining as a partner Smart Move, a global industry awareness campaign to double the use of buses and coaches and achieve sustainable mobility for all.

Since its launch in 2011, Busbud has been committed to promoting bus travel to its audience of travellers around the world, notably by making it easier than ever before to search and book bus travel online.

The Smart Move campaign is a joint effort by the IRU and Busworld and is endorsed by 85 committed partners around the world. Smart Move’s mission is to promote the bus as a safe, environmentally-friendly, affordable, user-friendly and efficient means of collective passenger transport.

Buses and coaches offer an optimal solution to a range of current mobility challenges facing modern societies, including climate change, road safety, connectivity, social inclusion and congestion, to name but a few.

Smart Move Bus Shot

Source: Smart Move

Smart Move also aims to raise political and media awareness that the sustainable mobility solutions we seek are at our fingertips, simply by doubling the use of bus and coach transport worldwide. In Europe alone, such an increase would have the following impact:

  • A reduction in CO2 emissions by at least 50 million tonnes per year;
  • A reduction in fatalities on roads and streets, by more than 3000 per year;  
  • A significant reduction of congestions in cities at zero cost for taxpayers, as a result of the expected 10-15% reduction in car traffic;
  • The creation of 4 million new jobs.

In fact, buses and coaches are clear environmental champions compared to other modes of mass transport (especially car and air)! The following graph shows the level of CO2 emissions for various modes of transport per passenger/kilometer.

Co2 Emissions Chart

Source: World Tourism Organisation (WTO)’s Conference on environmentally friendly travelling in Europe, 2006 via Smart Move

At Busbud, we think that Smart Move’s mission is so important and so closely interwoven with our values that we simply had to partner up together to help spread the message!

We look forward to working with Smart Move in the future to keep promoting bus and coach travel worldwide as an affordable, efficient and eco-friendly travel option.

To learn about Smart Move, visit their website, or follow them on FacebookTwitter or Youtube today!

Q&A with Dan & Audrey from Uncornered Market: A Husband-And-Wife Team on the Secrets to Long-Term Travel in 70+ Countries

17 Feb

Audrey and Dan on Camel at Giza Pyramids

As part of our goal to make life easier for bus travelers, we contact travelers who’ve had firsthand experiences around the world. Last time, we featured Samuel Jeffery from Nomadic Samuel. Today, we’re happy to share an interview with our first traveling couple, Dan and Audrey from Uncornered Market. Daniel Noll and Audrey Scott are the husband-and-wife team that brings you deep stories from the 70 countries they’ve visited in the past five years.

Like National Geographic’s digital nomad Andrew Evans, Dan and Audrey have braved the cold in Antarctica. They do amazing video recipes. They have the most epic marriage proposal story ever. Through their adventures, they show how you can travel as a couple and have the time of your life.

1) Where are you now, and where are you headed?

Currently in Oaxaca, Mexico for a couple of months to catch up on a couple of projects. After that, we’re still in planning mode. Have a few places like Japan, Israel, South Africa, Australia on the brain for this year.

2) You aim to humanize the places you visit by drawing your readers in through photographs and stories. How successful have you been so far with your blog? And what’s the most rewarding comment you’ve received from your fans?

When we get comments like, “I’ve never thought about X country (or region), but now I want to learn more and maybe visit.” This was a common response to our articles on Bangladesh, Central Asia and Iran. We consider that a success.

As for the most rewarding comment, I can’t choose just one. But, I do know of readers who have taken their first trip because we gave them the inspiration and confidence to do so. And from that trip they have started exploring more in their lives. That means the world to us.

Salkantay Mountain in Peru

3) Since you’re the first featured married travelers on Busbud, I can’t help but ask you about your relationship. Can you share the challenges and the benefits of traveling with your significant other?

There are many of both! Dan and I often observe and process different things, so when we talk about a situation later it’s like we are both learning more from the experience as we have each other’s perspectives on top of our own. And we balance each other out when one of us is feeling sick or down, the other can pick up the slack. Long-term travel and spending so much time with one person does also cause stress where you start having silly fights and picking on stupid things. We wrote about how to balance all this out in an appropriately named piece called: How to Travel the World Together Without Killing Each Other.

4) You’ve got an amazing original series of videos available online in which you share what your adventures, the food you eat as well as the people you meet. Which video are you most proud of?

That’s a tough question! Our food videos are the most popular, but the one that we’re most proud of would have to be Battambang on a Bike from Cambodia. We’ve shown this short video to students in Estonia and the United States and we’ve been amazed at the response we’ve gotten from students on this and how it begins to question their assumptions about money, poverty, happiness and life around the world.

5) At Busbud, our mission is to make life easier for bus travelers. You’ve taken the bus in China, Cambodia and Argentina. Which country have you found most bus-friendly, and why?

Argentina has the best buses of the three. If you splurge for the high end service, you get champagne, wine and pretty good food. Often there is free wifi, too. In China, my suggestion is to take the train if you can.

Detaille Island in Antarctica

6. And for a related question, what do you enjoy most about bus travel?

Bus travel is slow travel, meaning that you see the progression and changes in landscape, people and culture go by. This provides understanding of the places you’re visiting. When you travel by plane, it can be a shock to land in such a different place without having the context of building up to it.

7) Finally, my favorite section on your blog is the “Make Me Laugh” section. You’ve got a great sense of humor, and you use your keen sense of observations to give us perspective on our lives through these articles. After all these years on the road, are you still surprised by what you discover on your travels? What keeps you going?

Each time we think we’ve seen it all, something else comes our way that makes us realize we’ve seen nothing. Just the other night, we were at a bar in Oaxaca when when a vendor came around with a little box selling electric shocks. Yes, electric shocks! Not sure why, but supposedly it’s a common game that people think is fun. If you keep your eyes open, you’ll always find something that will surprise you.

What keeps us going with our travels? Curiosity and people.

Thanks Audrey and Scott! I’ve attached one of my favorite video recipes from them below, on how to cook classic Thai dishes. You can find more videos on their Youtube channelYou can get in touch with them on Facebook and Twitter.

Like this interview? Read more awesome Q&A interviews with travel bloggers. Or like us on Facebook!

Photos by Uncornered Market

Happy Holidays from Busbud!

23 Dec

Holiday Bus in Tokyo, Japan!

Although we launched Busbud only a month ago, we’ve been really amazed by your reception. Thank you for sending in your feedback and support— your kind words fuel us every day as we work on making Busbud the best bus travel information source on the web.

Our goal since the beginning has been to make bus travel easier because we believe it’s one of the best ways to experience travel abroad. Traveling in itself is a rich and rewarding experience because you’re immersed in the culture of locals. Traveling by bus brings you closer to the action and puts you front and center into the daily lives of locals. The bus also gets you to some pretty awesome places. In the words of Andrew Evans, digital nomad for National Geographic, “hopping on a bus to a place whose name you can’t even pronounce is one of the greatest adventures out there”.

We’ve got great stuff coming up for the new year, so stay tuned. We look forward to an exciting new year of adventure with you in 2012.

Best wishes from all of us here at Busbud,

The Busbud team

Photo: e_chaya

Q&A with Andrew Evans from National Geographic: An Epic Bus Ride from Washington to Antarctica

7 Dec

Andrew Evans from National Geographic (@WheresAndrew)

As part of our goal to make life easier for bus travelers, we contact travelers who’ve had firsthand experiences around the world. Today we’re happy to feature an interview with Andrew Evans,  digital nomad and correspondent for National Geographic. Andrew is speaking this Wednesday about his adventures at the National Geographic headquarters. For event details, check out: Digital Nomad: Bus to Antarctica and Beyond

In 2010, Andrew embarked on an epic bus journey from the National Geographic headquarters in Washington, D.C. to Antarctica. In total, he traveled 10,000 miles on 40 buses through 9 states and 17 countries. We’re grateful that he took the time for this interview and we’re happy to share his answers with you today.

1) What were your goals, expectations and fears when setting out on this adventure?

My goal was to get to Antarctica traveling as much as possible by bus. I expected that it would take a long time and that I would need to be flexible, but I also expected that I could make it, as long as I kept traveling South. My biggest fear is that I would get to the end of one road and find my way ahead closed, forcing me to backtrack. Luckily, that didn’t happen.

Bus in a salt flat in Bolivia
Photo by Andrew Evans for National Geographic

2) How did taking the bus change your perspective on the countries you visited? (as compared to taking the plane for example?)

Traveling overland by bus shows you the heart of a country and the breadth of its physical landscapes. Winding up and down the mountains of Guatemala and crossing the vast deserts of Peru offered me much more vivid experience of their unique geographies than even a small plane flying overhead. I now appreciate the size of each of these countries so much more. For example, Colombia is a huge country while Argentina is simply endless.

Passing by wonderful swirled sandstone hills in Argentina
Photo by Andrew Evans (@Bus2Antarctica)

3) Bus travel across of South and Central America can be very different from country to country. How would you contrast the different types of bus experiences you had across the 40+ buses you took in 17 countries?

I think I had the best of the best and the very worst, too. I rode “chicken buses” where I literally had chicken sitting on my feet. Then I rode first class buses where I had my own flat screen TV to watch whatever movies I wanted. Greyhound in America fell somewhere between those two extremes. Across my travels, some buses were too hot, some were far too cold, some were very bumpy and some allowed me to sleep all through the night. Honestly, I liked the diversity of it all. Each time I boarded a new bus, I new I was embarking on a totally new adventure.

Photos by Andrew Evans (@Bus2Antarctica)

4) Finally, what’s the most rewarding thing you experienced from your travels? And if you have one piece of advice for people considering traveling by bus rather than the train or plane, what would it be?

Traveling by bus drops you into the arms of the locals–the people I met on the bus made my journey so much richer. You can meet people on a plane, too, but it’s not the same as traveling with someone for 30 hours where you form a bond of trust and help one another out along the way. My advice is TAKE THE BUS! No other form of transportation offers such an intimate view of the destination you’re visiting. Find out which buses and routes the locals take, and follow suit. But don’t be afraid to be spontaneous–hopping on a bus to a place whose name you can’t even pronounce is one of the greatest adventures out there.

Thanks Andrew!

You can follow Andrew Evans’s travels on his blog, National Geographic’s Digital Nomad, as well as on Twitter and Facebook. If you have suggestions for bus travelers you’d like us to interview, please contact us.

Finally, check out this Bus2Antarctica video: Riding Guatemala’s Colorful Buses

And we’re off! Welcome onboard and thanks for an awesome first week

27 Nov

Open road on Route 89 in Teton Valley, Wyoming, USA

There was much to be thankful for during this Thanksgiving weekend. On behalf of my co-founders Michael and Fred and the whole team at Busbud, we’d like to thank you for your wonderful response to the site during our first week.

We’ve received hundreds of emails with kind words, feature requests, new routes to add, and ideas for the blog. We thought we’d be launching the site to an audience of a few friends this week, but we’ve received feedback from new users halfway around the world in Costa Rica, Switzerland, Brazil, Israel, Spain, Mexico, UK, Australia, France, Italy and Turkey. Thanks for visiting the site and taking the time to write in.

I also wanted to thank the travel bloggers who’ve submitted feedback this week, it’s been nice to hear from you. Special thanks goes to Wandering Earl, who kicked off our Q&A series with a great message about the power of independent travel. Check out that post and stay tuned for more inspiring interviews on the blog with nomads, adventurers and travelers. In addition, many of you liked our site on Facebook, followed us on Twitter and shared the posts that we published this week. Thanks for that!

We are building the site in the hope that it can become a useful resource for independent travelers around the world. In fact, we envisioned from the start that this would be a community built for travelers by travelers. After almost one week, I can already say: it’s been great meeting you so far, community!

Keep the feedback coming, we love hearing from you!

You can email us at info@busbud.com. If you have a suggestion to share, you can also consider using the blue Feedback tab directly on the bottom right of the Busbud site.

Photo by: Daniel A D’Auria (Dr Dad)

Bus Around The World: Reykjavik, Iceland

26 Nov

Icelandic Bus Route: Can you spot the bus?!

Photo by Canadian Veggie - Christopher Porter

If you have interesting bus photos you’d like to submit, please contact us.


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