Before leaving for our travels we didn’t look much into how we were planning to get from Rajasthan to the south of India, particularly Goa.
When we were in Rajasthan, transport was so easy, that we were able to take local busses between cities relatively easily.
Getting from Rajasthan to Goa can be simple if you have the budget for it. It could consist of two flights, one to Mumbai, and then another to Goa. At the time we were travelling, this option would have cost us 6000-7000 IRN (not inc. luggage costs) per person!
However, we did not have the budget for that, so we had to look into other possibilities.
We opted to book our transport with redbus. Which was a super easy process. The sleeper busses are relatively comfortable and the ones we booked all had A/C. The journey can be B U M P Y, and expect to be thrown around a hefty amount when you’re trying to sleep, but you get from A-B in one piece.
When booking your ticket you get the option to select your preferred seat. Remember when booking you should avoid the back of the bus where the suspension is located. On our first ever sleeper bus journey from Jaisalmer to Udaipur, we made the mistake of booking the back of the bus which was an unforgettable experience – we spent the majority of the time in the air! We learned from our mistake and on this journey to Goa, we booked our sleeper seats which were located in the middle of the bus!
This bus journey cost us 1200 INR per person.
If you also intend to do a back-to-back journey, remember to check the bus stand of where the second bus leaves from. Mumbai is a very large city and if you have a small window of time to your next bus, try and arrive at the bus stop of where your second bus leaves to avoid disappointment. We had a 5 hour window which gave us plenty of time for any unexpected delays – also as the bus left from the same stop we arrived at, we could put our feet up and enjoy the comforts of McDonalds!
Similarly to a flight, our bus journey consisted of two journeys. The first bus journey was from Udaipur to Mumbai with Laxchmi Travels which was a 15 hour bus journey. The roads leading up to Mumbai are well established, so the route the journey is smooth. The bus also has a number of designated stops which allows you to make use of the toilet and/or buy snacks for the long trip! Although our bus journey was supposed to take 15 hours, but the journey including all the stops and traffic leading up to Mumbai took 16.5 hours. Despite the slight delay, the toilet breaks were essential!
When we finally arrived to Mumbai, Summer conveniently selected the stop near McDonalds. We spent the full 5 hours relaxing and enjoying the A/C. This particular McDonalds stop was not in the heart of the city, so we did not have enough time to venture into the city without fear of missing our bus!
Summer went for a classic chicken burger, similar to the McDonalds chicken sandwich back in London and Ed went for the Indian inspired Maharaja Mac.
Our second journey from Mumbai to Goa, was not as comfortable as the bus journey from Udaipur to Mumbai. Although Goa appears to be close to Mumbai on the map, this journey took us 18 hours! Despite the duration, the scenic route the bus takes is incredible – you will come across mountain areas full of palm trees.
Sleeping on the second bus journey also proved difficult as the route is full of winding roads with pot holes! You will find yourself being thrown left to right, up and then down! As the second bus journey was mostly overnight, we persevered and forced ourselves to sleep.
This journey cost us 1050 INR per person. Together, both bus journeys cost 2250 INR per person, thereby saving us 7000 INR (not accounting for the additional charges for baggage per person)!
Final top tips:
1. Pack plenty of toilet roll as you’ll find the local restaurants will not provide you with any during the toilet breaks;
2. Don’t drink too much water as you won’t know where or how long the next toilet break will be;
3. Do not book your seats at the back of the bus, as the suspension will give you a bumpy ride;
4. If you are looking to do a back-to-back journey make sure you check the arrival destination bus stand and the departure bus stand for the second journey. Give yourself plenty of time in case of delays; and
5. If you are not getting off at the final stop, set an alarm to make sure you wake up before your final destination.