I went to Exeter to see a friend today and it involves three lengthy coach journeys:
- Reading -> Exeter
- Exeter -> Heathrow
- Heathrow -> Reading
I left Reading this morning at 9.20am and won’t be back until 11.00pm. Most of that time is spent on travelling – nine hours stuck on coaches! (Let’s not mention the fact that the bus connection in Reading means I’ll just miss one and will have to walk into town..
Anyways, as people who know me on Twitter will be able to attest, I often travel on coaches. In the past four years I have gone to the following on a coach:
- Hamburg, Germany
- Frankfurt, Germany [x3]
- Yes, I thought there were more, too!
So why do I choose to travel on a coach? Price! All of the above were planned just days or hours beforehand making planes and trains a too expensive option. I also think I like travelling by coach. I can sleep on the coach and it’s mostly convenient, except having had to spend fast too much time of my life at London Victoria Coach Station.
As a coach is a very confined space with no escape and often at at least 75% capacity I always hope that other travellers show at least common courtesy, however, I’ve always had done problems on national journeys.
In case you are confused or have never travelled by coach, the following are some good guidelines to start off with. You might think they are all common sense, but they were all violated on today’s bus journeys:
- Use headphones to listen to music.
- Make sure that the music you’re listening to has an acceptable volume. Thank you guy four rows behind me listening to the Spice Girls.
- Keep your phone conversations short and quiet. I particularly want to thank the guy describing Beth’s best ‘features’ to his mate.
- Have quiet conversations with people. I’m sure you don’t want the rest of the coach to know more about it anyway!
- Don’t let your kid run up and down the corridor. Do you have no idea how dangerous coaches are?
- Smelly food? No.
- Painting your fingernails? No.
- Turn off your phone’s sound when you’re in a text conversation. Trust me everyone will thank you.
- Don’t play games with sound. Especially when you’re rubbish at Fruit Ninja.
- Don’t ask the driver every ten minutes if we can make a stop so you can smoke. It’s only a four hour journey fro crying out loud.
Alas I have survived yet another coach trip. Here’s to the next one!*
*Not yet planned or booked!