The Omio app (formerly GoEuro) makes it possible to explore Spain and the rest of Europe with just a few swipes of your finger, saving you cash and travel time in the process. Vamos!
I’ve always been fascinated with Europe. It amazes me that there are so many beautiful countries and cultures crammed into such a small space.
Apparently there’s a group of people who hold a world record for visiting 19 European countries in just one day (by car), which really puts it all in perspective. Just think how many places you could visit in a week or two!
I remember when I originally moved from the UK to Barcelona that I promised myself I would explore as much of the continent as possible.
Barcelona’s main transport hub (Sants Estacio), is literally a 1-minute walk from my apartment and it fills me with an overwhelming sense of wanderlust to think that I can jump on a bus or train at the end of my street and be in Madrid or Paris in time for an afternoon aperitivo.
Hell, if I got up early enough tomorrow morning, I could get to the airport and fly to Rome in time for brunch.
And I completely understand why travellers flying all the way to Spain from, say, Canada, the US or New Zealand, want to see as much as possible during their visit. I get it – it’s a long way to come.
Every week I receive emails from people asking for advice on where to go in Spain. The most common question being along the lines of: “Hi Ben, we’re coming to Spain in the summer for two weeks. We’re flying into Barcelona but would like to see other parts of Spain – do we have enough time and what do you recommend seeing?”
Well yes, one or two weeks is plenty of time for exploring Spain and other parts of Europe. If you’re adventurous and don’t mind dashing about a bit, you could see most of Spain’s main destinations – Barcelona, Madrid, Valencia, Seville – and even work in a trip to France and Italy.
The Main Challenges of Travelling Around Spain and the Rest of Europe
Let’s face it, Europe isn’t the cheapest part of the world. For me personally, the only reason I don’t travel on a weekly basis is simply because of the cost and also, I must confess, because I’m awful at planning ahead.
It’s not just the cost. It can be stressful working out where and how to travel. It might, for example, be cheaper to take a sleep-over bus to Seville from Barcelona, but for all you know you could get a quick flight or train for a couple more euros and save yourself a ton of time in the process.
Why I Recommend the Omio Travel App
Simplicity is everything to me. I’m incredibly indecisive and I need technology to break things down and help me make quick, well-informed travel decisions.
I need to know that I am paying the best possible price and also what other options I have if I’m willing to pay a little bit more. And I need to know without having to sit down and spend an entire day scouring various websites (this is especially important when I’m travelling and only have a few spare moments to find and book a ticket).
That’s exactly what the Omio app does: it very quickly searches thousands of routes between point A and point B (throughout Europe) and shows you the cheapest prices and fastest routes for buses, trains and flights. Simple.
The layout is clean and user-friendly and you can book tickets with just a few swipes of your phone, safe in the knowledge that you’re paying the best possible rate. It just works.
It’s also incredibly useful that it gives you the “2nd Cheapest” and “Fastest” options in addition to the “Cheapest”. I don’t mind paying an extra €5 or whatever it is to get tickets for a faster train that will give me an extra 3 or 4 hours to play with when I arrive at my destination.
After all, when you’re travelling, it’s important to be economic with your time as well as your money.
How it Works
Step 2 – Select your departure point, destination, desired dates and number of travellers.
Step 3 – Review the cheapest and second cheapest routes (for trains, planes and buses) and decide if you’d like to pay extra to save travel time.
Step 4 – Review your booking and pay securely.
Step 5 – Your paperless e-tickets will be available within the app (even if you don’t have wifi connection) and you can also save them to your phone.
My Personal Experience with the Omio App
Rosana and I recently spent a long weekend in sunny Valencia (check out my post about the trip here).
We’d been talking about going for a year or two but we kept putting it off, mainly because of my work/blog trips getting in the way, but also because I’m so indecisive – “It might be cheaper if we go in the winter. And I need to find out the best way to get there.”
We booked the trip quickly after downloading the app and having a quick look at dates and prices. We went with the “2nd Cheapest and Fastest”, saving us about 2.5 hours of time for an extra €10.
The train hugged the Mediterranean sea for 3.5 glorious hours and we popped out in sunny, orange-blossomed Valencia in time for tapas.
It’s true what they say: rail really is the last bastion of civilised travel. It felt as if the trip began as soon as our train departed the station and the bright blue sea began to flash past our window.
I’m currently using the Omio app to plan a ‘southern sojourn around Andalusia‘. Looks like it’ll make sense to fly to Seville from Barcelona and then travel to places like Granada, Cordoba, Jerez and Ronda. A dream trip if ever there was one!
The Omio app is beautifully simple, a fantastic example of how modern technology can empower us to travel more often and more affordably.
If you’re coming to Spain or anywhere else in Europe, you’d be a fool not to get this on your phone.