2013-07-03

Orange Busses-away from Budapest, direction Belgrade Serbia

I am writing this blog post because I was not able to get any information about the Orange Ways [http://www.orangeways.com/en] busses or the Fudeks bus company about the way from Budapest, Hungary  to Belgrade, Beograd Serbia. In the beginning I tried to find out the information from the internet and found only scattered informaton and I hope this post now serves people who are facing the same problems I was, please send me a message if this was any help or the info has changed. This post is written in July 2013.

When I was still back in Finland, I took the effort to look for both bus and train from Budapest to Belgrade. The convenient night train was not an option for us this time and I continued search for the bus travel. 

Orange Ways is a low cost Hungarian bus company, that has multiple destinations in Europe, but is is separated from the other bus companies in Hungary and information is hard to find. At the main bus terminal Nepliget in Budapest (serving international routes), the information lady told me sadly that Orange Ways has been a big problem, since they know nothing about Orange Ways and therefore cannot help the passengers. Orange Ways is a competitor for Volanbusz [http://www.volanbusz.hu/en/], which also serves international routes. 

The Orange Ways tickets can be bought through internet and I also found many reclamations about their services. This route, however, was not oringinally Orange Ways route, it was served by a partner company Fudeks from Serbia [http://www.fudeks.rs/]

The route was Vienna (Wien) -Budapest-Belgrade (Beograd), the bus left from Vienna at 09.00 in the morning, reached Budapest at 12.00 noon and arrived in Belgrade around 18.30. Orange Ways web page had this info wrong, it informed the bus to be in Budapest at 13.00. I knew this because I contacted Fudeks directly [http://www.fudeks.rs/kontakt/] and asked to make reservation for us. I got a reply that told me the departure time was wrong (12.00 instead of 13.00) and I should give them the names, passport numbers and contact phone numbers of the passengers, which I did, but never recieved a confirmation e-mail. I had my doubts. It was no use asking anything from Orange Ways since it was not their bus. 

The next problem was to find the stop where the bus left. After using Google maps unsuccessfully I found a map by a taxi company about the bus stop. Eurolines and Volanbusz stop in the picture is the Nepliget main bus terminal. The picture is somewhat right, the Orange Ways bus stop is right opposite to Nepliget main bus terminal, so, in this picture it is placed a bit wrong to the long side of the FTC Stadion. The whole area is in construction and the football stadium is at the time of writing surrounded by a black wooden fence. Orange ways ticket office is located on the opposite side of the road, where there is no red dot. Of course our bus departed on Sunday and the office was closed. 

Thank you Taxi Cab of Budapest for this info. 

When you arrive to the Nepliget metro station the view is not too nice. You follow the exit signs up from the tunnel and see many stickers on the ground and on the walls that direct you to the "Orange Ways Bus Terminal"... And tadaa, this is what you will find. 

Orange Ways Bus Terminal 
A very nice and cosy bus terminal indeed. Ventilation works, but it also rains in. There is no place to wait in, no matter what Orange Ways info says. At first there was absolutely no one at the bus stop. After our round trip to main bus station and back there was a travel companion at the stop. We asked, and we were told to be at the right place. The guy was from Belgrade and visiting his brother. Also he told us that he had hid a stash of weed under the bus seat on his way to Budapest (at the border)  and he was hoping that to be the same bus and to find it on the way back... Good to know that as well. The bus arrived in time, but it did not stop. Our new companion was able to stop the bus and there was only one seat left (the bus had been almost full from Vienna already)...and no one knew about our reservations. Our new companion translated the bus men our situation and we actually got in. The personnel were great, I got the personnel seat next to the driver, the other man sat on the floor and J was taken to the back seat. The journey cost 25€ each and we paid cash in Euros.
Later in the bus I was told by an Australian that he had stepped to bus in Budapest at Kalvin Ter. Now I am still not sure if that is the right stop for Fudeks busses from Vienna to Belgrade, I hope someone could one day give me right info on that. 

The formalities at the border were easy, but took appr. 45 min on both border stops, one and a half hours all together. Leaving EU was easy on us and our passports were not collected. In Serbia the authorities collected passports from everyone and the bus man gave them back after the border. Our travel companion was lucky and he found his hash stash under the seat on our first stop after Budapest and spent the rest of the trip eyes glowing. 

The bus stopped for breaks 2 times, once right after Budapest on a gas station for 15 min toilet break. Toilet costs 0,50€ or 100HUF. The bus honks the horn when leaving and the driver asks the toilet lady if any our passengers are still in. Second stop was in Serbia before Novi Sad on another gas station for 30min. There we were able to pay our food and coffees with a credit card, because it is not really possible to change Serbian money over the border. 

When arriving in Belgrade, there are a lot of taxi drivers offering their services and the public transportation is very near. The Belgrade bus terminal (for international bus tickets) is across a park from the bus arrival platforms and next to railway station and tourist information office. Just ask people, they were a lot of help. Fudeks ticket sales office stanpoint is strange to me, I do not know where it lays, since the company itself does not have a head office in Belgrade according to the info on their web page. Info page is unfortunately in Serbian. 





1 comment:

Noelfy said...

I did Bratislava- Budapest several times with them...Only for 300ft for 3 hours!!
Once, coming back from London and moving permanently to Budapest, I asked one of my Hungarian friends to meet me in Bratislava bus station to give me a hand with the bags and I will reimburse her the travel expenses. She did not believe that it will cost 300ft, she though I forgot one 0 and the price has to be 3000ft for sure :P