Omio Is a Travel Booking Site with Problems—Here Are Better Alternatives

by  Mose Hayward
LAST UPDATED ON  2023-09-09
PUBLISHED ON  2023-07-05
Me on a TGV INOUI train in France—one of the many trains bookable via Omio—though that’s not how I bought my ticket

A lot of reviews would have you believe that Omio is a great way to book travel. And Omio is certainly an honest booking site (it’s not a scam, your e-tickets from Omio will work just fine), but it’s definitely not the best way to find the trip tickets at the best prices in most cases.

We’ve tested Omio and other booking sites for hundreds of voyages and followed the major players for years. So here’s an in-depth look at Omio (formerly GoEuro), the problems with this train/flight/bus booking site, what it does well, and the sites that we actually use instead when we’re booking our travels.

We encourage low-carbon travel and focus mainly on train travel, especially in Europe, but we’ll also discuss flight and bus booking options—important features of Omio.

Omio Quick Review: Comparisons of Travel Options with Poor Search and Routing

Mose Hayward

Omio is one of several decent train and bus booking websites; it sells tickets for Europe especially (most impressively compared to other options, it sells train tickets for Portugal, Sweden, and all Spain operators), plus a few other places. It also sells flights everywhere.

But unfortunately Omio does not find very good routes, and cannot program complex trips with changes of buses and trains. Other platforms we’ve reviewed do much better at finding cheap train and bus fares from all operators and intelligently saving on trip time and transfers.
Ease of Use
Comprehensiveness
Smart booking and travel hacks (combining operators, etc.)
Customer service reputation
Train search and booking
Flight search and booking
Bus search and booking

In a Nutshell

An easy but rather limited trip booking platform.

Omio is fine at doing what it does. But you may want to compare it to other options to find smarter, cheaper routes.

For trains and buses in Europe we get much better results with Trainline, or, especially in Eastern Europe, national operators’ own booking platforms. (See below for more on other flight/bus/train alternatives.)

2.4

Where Can You Go with Omio?

The Advantages of Booking Travel with Omio

The Main Disadvantages

Alternatives to Omio for Train, Bus, and Flight Booking

The following sites, in our experience, provide better cheaper and better results for train trips:

  • Trainline: This is the website that nearly always finds us the best deals on train tickets in Europe; it has a very smart routing engine and the broadest coverage of train operators. Like Omio, it also shows buses, but—much better than Omio—Trainline can find very useful bus+train combo routes.
  • Rail Europe: This is a similar website that usually comes in second to Trainline in our tests, but once in a while finds us a good deal. Rail Europe can be worth checking and is certainly more useful for most train booking than Omio.
  • Individual train operators: While their websites are at times full of errors, badly translated, and complicated, it is possible forgo these booking platforms and buy train tickets from the national operators individually (such as SNCF Connect (France), Deutsche Bahn (Germany), Trenitalia (Italy), Renfe (Spain), etc.) as well as their competitors for each country (FlixTrain (Germany and Sweden), Italo (Italy), Iryo (Spain), etc.). The problems with these sites is that they don’t generally show competitors, so unless you really know what you’re doing, you miss out on some good train options that Trainline or Rail Europe can point you to (or even Omio for that matter). For the USA, there’s no particular value in using Omio to book Amtrak trains rather than just booking on Amtrak directly.

Omio is actually quite worthwhile if you’re sure you want to take a bus (and not a train) in Europe, but we would also always search these two sites to compare bus deals:

  • Trainline Bus Search: While buses also show up as an option in Trainline’s main searches, with this link you can search specifically for bus tickets only.
  • BusBud: Also very broad coverage of world bus options and a useful website.

Finally, when there’s just no way around it and we have to fly, we prefer to use these flight search options, which tend to deliver much smarter and cheaper options than Omio does:

  • Kiwi: This flight booking platform has an interesting nomad feature that can help you determine the order of your destinations for a multi-leg journey to get the best deals. There’s nothing else quite like it. There are also “travel hacks”, which must be used with care, but can allow you to get cheaper flights through self-transfer (between airlines), throwaway ticketing (not taking a return flight), and hidden cities (using a layover as your destination, traveling without checked baggage).
  • Skyscanner: A classic that searches everywhere and allows multi-city and broad flexible date searching to narrow down when to go where if you’re very flexible.
  • Google Flights: Very broad coverage of the world’s flight options with some good flexible search options.

And Is Omio Right for Booking Your Trip?

A lot of people use Omio and like it just fine. But we think they’re missing out and would often be better served by the alternatives above, especially for trains, which are so lovely, and which Omio could perhaps lead you to believe are not a viable option for certain routes and times when in fact they are cheaper/better.

That said, it’s certainly worth checking various booking websites before dropping money on a specific trip.

If Omio gets you a deal you didn’t get anywhere else, or we’re missing some key aspect of this website’s advantages (or problems), drop a note in our comments and we’ll be delighted to check it out and make updates to this review as warranted.


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