Surviving a 24 hour bus ride!

Being a penny-pincher, I’ve found myself on long-distance bus rides all over the world over the past few years. But none can quite rival the experience I had taking a sleeper bus from Goa to Mumbai. I hadn’t planned ahead, which unfortunately meant the trains were booked and the airfare was quite expensive, so I thought why not take a sleeper bus? As well as being cheap, I knew from my previous travels abroad that sleeper buses are usually a smart move because they save you the cost of booking a hotel room for an additional night.


What Could Go Wrong?

I didn’t end up getting a long of sleep on that 14-hour journey. For one thing, Indian drivers are notorious for going warp speeds along bumpy roadways, causing me to bounce up and down on my bunk throughout the course of the ride. For another, loud music was playing from the time we boarded to the time we got off the bus in the wee hours of the morning, and halfway through the trip, a bunch of drunk guys boarded the bus, talking loudly to one another and showing no regard for other passengers as they clamoured around the top floor. I hadn’t brought my iPod with me to block out the noise, so I was stuck listening to their conversations as I willed myself to sleep. And while I originally thought that a sleeper bus with AC would be a godsend in the daytime Goan heat, come nightfall, the bus got so cold that I could never get comfortable again—even with a jumper and a blanket!

I tend to get motion sickness when I travel, so I had eaten relatively little for breakfast and lunch that day so that I wouldn’t fall ill during the trip. While I’m happy to report that I didn’t feel sick at any point, I spent most of the trip absolutely starved. Rest stops are infrequent on Indian buses, and no food is served on-board, which means that since I hadn’t brought my own snacks, my stomach was growling for the majority of the trip. But, I’m almost glad I didn’t have anything to eat or drink with me anyway, since there were no bathrooms on board the bus!

Preparing for the Ride

My recommendation would be that if you’re planning to travel India by bus, make sure you have everything you might possibly need in advance. Definitely bring along ear plugs and/or music as well as snacks. Prepare for fluctuating temperatures by buying new blankets, jumpers, leggings, and trousers using this voucher code from NetVoucherCodes. Keep in mind that the beds on sleeper buses accommodate two people, so if you’re not comfortable sleeping next to a stranger, reserve a seat instead! You never know what you’ll encounter along the ride, so it’s best to be prepared for the worst case scenario.

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