6 Ways I Prepare For A Coach Trip

13 June 2017


I take the coach a lot. Like, an awful lot. I've written a review about my Megabus Gold experience, and I've travelled frequently with National Express as well. But to be totally honest with you, I can't stand getting on the coach. They're long, they're clammy and they take forever - which isn't fun when you're a person who can't sleep on public transport very easily.

In saying this, however, they can be an amazingly cheap alternative to air or rail travel. I'm currently trying to decide whether I should make most of my European travels by coach in order to save some money, even if that is a daunting idea. Considering I've recently spent 4 hours in a coach after visiting Jasmine, I thought I'd write a little about my routines and how I pack myself before a coach journey. These are all likely to be common sense to you, but I'd like to share them regardless. These are 6 of my little coach tips;

1. Dressing light
I can't wear trousers and a long sleeved top/jumper at the same time on a coach journey. I normally wear a dress, or a tshirt and skirt. Hell, on the last journey I was on, I was wearing a skirt with tights and a jumper, so had to roll my sleeves up! This seems really pernickity, but I get warm really fast, and it's not a feeling that I enjoy. I always find that if I get too cold, then it's a lot easier to add layers rather than remove layers.

2. Packing a bottle of water
Okay, so I've always done this, but lately it's become even more necessary. I've found myself getting severely dehydrated to a point I'm waking up gasping for water, and I'm becoming increasingly certain that it's got a lot to answer for regarding my fatigue. So I've begun to carry around a 1L bottle of tap water everywhere I go. Unless you're on a 'Gold' style service, you're not going to have any snacks to purchase on your journey, which can be a long one (I've been on a coach 10-12 hours before), so always bring a drink of some sort. Your coach may not even stop at a service station!

3. Essentials to the top of your bag
Now, I'm assuming you bring on a carry on bag. What could be worse than needing your phone, water, wallet, snacks etc than having to rumage through all your crap for 5 minutes? Make sure you can easily reach them. Disclaimer that if you're walking around, push them down in your bag, probably towards your back so that it makes it more difficult for potential pick pockets. However, before you board your coach, be sure to move them close to the top for easy access. It saves. So. Much. Time. I normally have my water right at the top, just because it's easier reach.

4. Bring your own entertainment
Again, this goes without saying, but bring something to pass the time. A book, your spotify playlist, a laptop (and headphones). Anything. Some coaches now have entertainment services on board. The last National Express coach I was on offered VUER - an app of theirs that you download to your smartphone and connects via their on board wifi that offers a range of films and tv shoes! I like carrying a book or graphic novel of some sort, but my usual entertainment is my ipod or spotify playlist while looking out the window.

5. Charge your phone
Please, please charge your phone! The second worst feeling in the world is watching your phone's charge quickly drain when you're not even half way into your journey! Now, I don't mean this so that you have access to your social media accounts, but I mean, we're all gonna do that anyway, what I mean is make sure you have some charge remaining just in case something goes wrong. In case your coach breaks down, or re routes, or even, god forbid, there's an accident where you need to call the emergency services.

6. Try to get some rest.
I'm aware that I've stated already that I'm not somebody that can sleep easily on public transport, but coach journeys are exhausting. I always try to at least close my eyes and listen to my music to let myself rest, and in an ideal situation, that'll help me get at least 10 minutes of sleep. It does work on occasion!

Additionally, please, please have all your e-tickets loaded up and ready to show to the driver with enough time before boarding. This makes for speedy boarding for everyone and just makes your journey that little bit easier.

So, there we go! I know this hasn't been the most interesting post I've ever written but I'm travelling by coach a lot as of late, and just thought it might be something I can add to my Travel Tuesday series!

Until next time, be excellent to each other.

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