FAQ's for the OzBus London to New York trip. Please click here to see our standard faqs.

Q. What different sort of transport is used on this trip?

A. We have to use a variety of different transport for this trip, from the traditional OzBus bus to trains and cruise liners. Please see the FAQ's below for more information.

Q. What is the accommodation provided on this trip?

A. There is a variety of accommodation used on this trip as befits the different travelling conditions. In Europe we predominantly use hostels. These are often shared rooms for 4, 6, 8 or sometimes 10 and usually single sex. (It may be possible to upgrade, please contact us). We use the Trans Siberian Railway where we have second class cabins, we stay in a home stay on Olkhon Island, Lake Baikal and in a Ger in Terelj National Park, Mongolia. We use hotels in China and four person cabins on the Diamond Princess Cruise ship. In the America's we use hostels, sleeper bus and camping. Please see below for more details.

 

The Trans Siberian Railway

Q. What are the 2nd class carriages like?

A. The second class cabins sleep 4 people. Sheets are provided, the carriages and toilets are cleaned several times daily.

Q. Can I upgrade to a First Class cabin?

A. Normally yes. Please contact us for more details.  

Q. Can I buy food on the train?

A. Food can be bought in the buffet car and from people on the platforms at each stop. We do however recommend you take your own supply of food as well. Each carriage has a constant supply of boiling water, suitable for making noodles, cups of tea and coffee etc.

Q. What will we stay on Olkhon Island and Terelj National Park?

A. On the island we stay in a home stays with local families. This is an excellent way to really experience the area and to meet the people, plus it helps to put some money back into the local economy. In Treiji National park in Mongolia we stay in a traditional Ger, which is a Mongolian Yurt, the traditional home of the nomadic herders of the region.

 

The Cruise on the Diamond Princess

Q. What cabins will we be in?

A. The cabins will be inside and based on four sharing. Let us know if you wish to upgrade and we will see if it is possible and let you know how much it will cost.

Q. Can I upgrade to a twin cabin?

A. Normally yes. Please contact us for more details.

Q. What's included on the boat?

 

A. All accommodation and three meals a day are included. The meals are at specific restaurants on board. If you wish to splash out and eat at some of the special restaurants this will be an additional cost and certain nights there will be a dress code.
The ship operates a cashless system where by you settle your account for anything you spend on board, extras and staff gratuity before disembarking in Anchorage. The staff gratuity is automatically added to your bill unless to visit the purser to have it reduced or removed as is your choice. All of these are extra costs and not included in the OzBus trip price.

Q. What's not included?

A. Alcoholic beverages, any additional purchases, staff gratuity, shore excursions.

Q. How are tips handled on the cruise?

A. The cruise company have tried to make it easier by adding US$10 per person per day tip to your shipboard account. This is by no means mandatory - you may visit the purser and have it removed, increased or decreased as you wish. It just makes it easier for your budgeting throughout the cruise. This tip covers the service you receive in the restaurants and that of your steward. Please note that drinks' bills will have a 15% automatic gratuity charge added. For guides and/or drivers on shore excursions, we suggest $1 per person for a half-day trip and $2.50 per person for a full day, paid direct at the end of the excursion.

Q. What's the schedule whilst onboard?

A. There is no fixed schedule which allows you ample time to do what you wish, when you wish.

Q. Can I email and send post from the ship?

A. There is an onboard Internet café. Rates are reasonable and charged to your shipboard account by the hour (minimum charge applies). You can send postcards and letters home using the post box located at the purser's desk. Stamps are available for purchase here.

Q. How do I pay for things onboard?

A. The ship operates a 'cashless' system-all your onboard purchases, from the shops, drinks, gifts, shore excursions etc are all charged to your room. You can pay in cash, traveller's cheques or credit card at the end of your cruise.

Q. Is there a dress code on the cruise?

A. In general you will need to be a bit smarter on the cruise than during the rest of the trip. The cruise comopany ask that you plan to dress as if going to a 'nice restaurant' at home. Inappropriate dinner wear such as pool or beach attire, shorts, casual jeans (with fraying and/or holes) are not permitted in the dining rooms and shoes must be worn.

 

North America and the sleeper bus

Q. What is the sleeper bus like?

A. The specially converted sleeper coaches are custom designed, hand-made and comfortable. They have personal reading lights and volume controls for the sound system are located throughout the bus. The coach has the capacity for 36 passengers to sleep lying down, although we will not have that many people on the bus.

Q. Do we always sleep on the bus?

A. No sometimes we stay in hostels and sometimes we camp. As we may drive through the night, because of the vast mileage covered on this trip the bus can be converted into sleeping areas for everyone on board to sleep. You must be prepared to sleep in close proximity to your fellow travellers. On camping nights some people may sleep on the bus and others will camp sharing 6 man tents with three fellow travellers.

Q. Can everyone sleep on the bus lying down?

A. Yes. Sleeping space is not assigned and you should expect to share close quarters with limited privacy.

Q. Do I need to have camping experience?

A. Camping experience is not necessary. The only equipment that is required is a sleeping bag and if you don't take one on the trip you can hire one for this sector. The campsites we visit range from remote and rustic to full service with showers.

Q. Do I have to help out when camping?

A. Yes, when it's time to cook meals or clean up the campsite, everyone is expected to pitch in and do their fair share to help out. This makes it easier on everyone and is usually good fun.

Q. Can I take a shower every day?

A. Showers will be available, but may not always daily. There is no shower on the bus. We'll take no-soap baths (we don't want to pollute the water source with soap!), wherever possible in waterfalls, rivers or lakes when developed camp grounds aren't available.

 

Equipment

Q. Do I need a sleeping bag?

A. Not necessarily. You will be able to hire a sleeping bag for the American section if you don't want to take one with you but it maybe useful on other sections of the trip. We recommend one that will keep you warm down to 0C to -5C, as some nights might be cool to cold in Alaska.

Q. Will I need any other special equipment?

A. No. the packing list will be sent with the Information Pack for general advice but a sleeping bag is all you need to think about as special equipment. (see 'Do I need a sleeping bag?')

 

Visas

Q. What Visas will I need?

A. You will need a visa for the following countries: Russia, China, Mongolia, USA. We send more information on how to get your visas with the Information Pack sent three months before departure.

 

Money

Q. How much extra spending money will I need?

A. Apart from the trip cost, and visas you will need to budget for meals not provided, Optional excursions and general spending money for drinks, souvenirs, tips etc.
For meals we recommend £15 per day averaged over the trip.
On the Diamond Princess there are land excursions that are not included and you may wish to do these.

The World by Oz-Bus