Planes, Trains or Automobiles?

Here at Forbo Flooring Transport HQ, we are immersed in various modes of travel every day, not only through our jobs but in our daily routines. As an international team, we regularly step foot on trains, planes and in cars and buses – but which is the best form of travel? We’ve been discussing the pros and cons of all and here’s what we think…

Planes
Pros
1. It’s quicker for long distance travel – You can get to almost anywhere with an airport in less than 24 hours, the world is your oyster!

Fun Fact: In 2017, Emirates will launch direct flights from Dubai to Auckland, covering a distance of 8,819 miles (14,192.8 km) in 17 hours and 15 minutes.

2. A chance for some quality rest & relaxation – Unlike trains, planes only have one departure and arrival so you don’t have to worry about which stop to get off at. An opportunity to read a book, catch up on some work, watch a film or have a nap (guilty!) without the panic of missing your stop. Even more R&R if you’re traveling first or business class!

3. Spectacular views that you don’t get to see very often – it’s rare we are above ground to see what this magnificent planet looks like from afar. Catch the weather on a good day and you can see some extraordinary landscapes, even the clouds look amazing! Here are three examples that our Marketing Assistant, Chloe took:

Cons
1. Planes are pricey! Flights tend to be a lot more expensive than other modes of transport. Although you can sometimes grab a bargain with budget airlines, once you start adding luggage and pre-booked seating, the cost soon adds up.

Fun fact: In 2014, there were 37.4 million scheduled flights. Here’s a satellite map showing 15,000 flights as they travel across the globe:

The Proba-V satellite has picked up signals from thousands of aircraft. Now, Esa has used these signals to create an incredible flight map showing 15,000 separate aircraft based on 25 million positions

2. Comfort isn’t always a priority – especially if you’re travelling economy! Many planes can be very cramped and uncomfortable, especially for the taller ones among us. It can be difficult to find a comfortable position and there’s not a lot of room to spread out. You can always upgrade, but you pay the price. Hands up who gets excited when they get a fire exit or front row seat?

3. There’s a lot of waiting – Traveling to the airport is one of the great downfalls of flying. Many people have to travel around an hour to get to an airport and then there’s parking or paying for a taxi, not to mention battling with the traffic. Then there’s security – keep your fingers crossed you don’t get stuck behind the person with too many liquids or a lot of electronics!

Trains
Pros
1. Experience amazing views of the countryside – travelling by train means you can sit back, relax and enjoy breathtaking views of the countryside that you probably wouldn’t see by car, bus or plane.

2. Trains are comfier than planes or buses – Typically you get a lot more room on trains, with more space to stretch your legs. The seats are much bigger and usually more comfortable, especially if you’re lucky enough to travel on a luxury rail service like the Belmond Andean Explorer in South America:

Fun Fact: The longest journey travelling solely by train runs from Portugal to South Vietnam totaling a distance of 10,566 miles (17,000km) in 327 hours

3. They’re greener! Trains are the most environmentally friendly form of urban transport according to a European Enviroment Agency 2014 reportco2 emissions modes of transport
Cons
1. Trains can often be delayed – Although rail operators work hard to avoid this, sometimes delays are unavoidable. Make sure you’re armed with a good book and plenty of snacks when you’re travelling by train!

2. Overcrowding – If you’re travelling at peak time, trains can get very busy and often passengers have to stand for the duration of their journey or there is little space to put your luggage. Keep your eyes peeled for a spare seat as people exit the train!

3. The risk of missing your stop – We’ve all been there, getting a little bit too comfortable, falling asleep and waking up somewhere you really didn’t intend to be…

Automobiles
Yes, we know this word means car but for the purpose of this post, we’re using a bit of poetic license and referring to bus travel…

Pros
1. Tech enthusiasts! Bus & coach operators are increasingly installing free wifi and phone charging points, making travelling by bus highly convenient – it’s the little things that make the difference!

2. Bus travel is cheap & convenient – Travelling by bus appeals to every budget, even when travelling long distance you can grab a bargain fare! Buses are also very convenient, especially when you buy an all day fare and can hop on and off when you like!

3. Trend-setting interiors – Buses are becoming way more modern with innovative and inviting interiors, making the journey all the more enjoyable. Whether it be a public bus service or a coach trip, comfort is a rising star.

Fun Fact: 57.9 billion journeys were made on public transport across Europe in 2014, 55.8% of these were by bus.

Cons
1. Traffic! We’re thankful for bus lanes when they’re available but buses still have to contend with traffic, especially in built up areas. If you’re already traveling long distance, traffic jams can spoil the enjoyment.

2. No pre-booked seats – You can’t pre-book seats on buses and it is very rare on longer distance coach journeys. If you’re travelling in a group, keep your fingers crossed for getting some seats together.

3. No bathrooms or food services – Bathrooms are rare on buses and the option to buy refreshments is even more rare. This is where trains and planes win, nothing better than grabbing a coffee for the journey!

So what do you think? Are you team plane, train or automobile?

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