Father-and-son Darron and Alex Speck-Zolte hitchhike in Cambodia

The problem:

  • The Europa League ultimate – Arsenal v Chelsea – in Baku, Azerbaijan, distance to trip 4,000km (about 2,500 miles)
  • No direct scheduled flights between London and Baku within the week of the overall
  • Get there by way of 23:00 native time on Wednesday, 29 Might, by means of the most affordable conceivable approach


The challenger:

Step ahead Alex Speck-Zolte – the 20-year-old superstar of BBC’s Race around the Global.

Alex and his dad Darron made it from the United Kingdom to Singapore the great distance spherical, 12,00zero miles over land and with out taking a unmarried flight, on a strict price range of £1,329 – and just a paper map for instructions. They have been competing towards different groups to check out to win the race and declare the £20,00zero prize.

So plotting the cheap path from London to Baku will have to be a doddle, proper?

Under, Alex – who was once a digital travelling newbie earlier than his commute around the globe – gives his recommendation to fanatics travelling from England to Baku for the overall on 29 Might.

No smartphones or Google Maps to look right here…

The first step – London to Dusseldorf… activate on 24 Might!

“Fanatics will have to activate on 24 Might to make it to Baku on time, in order that’s 5 days earlier than the sport. Sure – it is going to take THAT lengthy.

“An in a single day bus will prevent money on lodging.

“The sport is not scheduled to complete till long past middle of the night Azerbaijan-time, so it can be highest to discover a position to leisure your head after drowning your sorrows/celebrating a Ecu trophy win.”

Estimated value thus far: £30 (now not together with food and drinks)

Estimated trip time thus far: 11 hours

Estimated arrival time: 10:00 native time, Saturday, 25 Might

Step two – Dusseldorf to Budapest

“This level all is determined by what your price range is and what sort of time you might have. It is way more expensive to trip by way of teach, however it is a lot faster.

“Whichever approach you select, it may not be at ease… however no less than you have got a soccer ultimate on the finish of it, proper?”

Estimated value thus far: £68 by means of bus (now not together with food and drinks)

Estimated trip time thus far: 30 hours

Estimated arrival time: Sunday, 26 Might (time depending on departure time from Dusseldorf)

Step 3 – Budapest to Thessaloniki

“OK, so any fanatics who’re dreadful at time-keeping will want to make an additional effort to catch this bus, as there’s best ONE consistent with day – pass over it, then you might be in a pickle.

“This adventure takes you from Hungary to Greece. On a daily basis of the week the bus units off at 11:00, except for for Saturdays, when it departs at 16:00 native time.”

Estimated value thus far: £143 (now not together with food and drinks)

Estimated trip time thus far: 46 hours

Estimated arrival time: 03:00, Monday, 27 Might

Step 4 – Thessaloniki to Istanbul

“There is not any time to leisure or sightsee whilst you get to Greece as you can want to hop at the 10:00 bus to Turkey.

“If you do not catch this bus, you might be in for a protracted wait till 22:00 for the following one.

“However the excellent news is, this connection is reasonably brief in comparison to the others.”

Estimated value thus far: £183 (now not together with food and drinks)

Estimated trip time thus far: 54 hours

Estimated arrival time: 18:00, Monday, 27 Might

Step 5 – Istanbul to Tbilisi

“This phase of the adventure is just a little of a killer and can take about an afternoon on a bus, however it is affordable and features a stop-off in Ankara, the capital of Turkey.

“We did an afternoon’s paintings at an artwork store right here to earn some much-needed money for the remainder of the adventure – it was once an enchanting position.

“Time for a refuel? Maximum puts in Turkey give out their model of tea referred to as cay at no cost. And head to the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul like our Race Around the Global competitors Natalie and Shameema did. As a Liverpool fan I sought after to visit Istanbul with it being such an iconic position from our well-known Champions League victory in 2005.

Estimated value thus far: £212 (now not together with food and drinks)

Estimated trip time thus far: 78 hours

Estimated arrival time: Tuesday, 28 Might (time depending on departure time from Istanbul and stop-offs)

Step six – Tbilisi to Baku

“The teach takes longer and is dearer, and best runs as soon as an afternoon – at 20:30. You’ve got two possibilities to catch the bus – 21:00 and 23:00.

“We have been traumatic by the point we made it to Tbilisi as have been have been not sure whether or not we’d break out removing within the race (the closing group to reach at a vacation spot in this leg of the problem have been despatched house).

“However Arsenal and Chelsea fanatics almost certainly may not be competing in a race, so confidently they may not be as wired as we have been!”

Estimated general value: £217.40 (now not together with food and drinks)

Estimated general trip time: 86 hours

Estimated arrival time: 05:00, Wednesday, 29 Might

Step seven – Baku

Alex loved the luxurious of the Fairmont Flaming Towers however warns that the futuristic lodge is costly

“We already had a spot to stick organized in Baku, as it was once probably the most checkpoints at the path.

“We stayed within the Fairmont Flaming Towers which was once an actual deal with as we might been so used to sweaty, darkish, uncomfortable buses, so it was once great to have some luxurious – but it surely was once expensive.

“We visited the Heydar Aliyev Centre in Baku, an abnormal development that seemed like a spaceship to me – fanatics will have to take a look at that out.

“It took us 14 days to achieve Baku, however that is best because of the truth we needed to earn cash alongside the best way and stopped to have a look at surroundings.

“I am a Liverpool fan and despite the fact that I am gutted we overlooked out at the Premier League identify to Manchester Town, I am hoping we will be able to pass one higher within the Champions League ultimate.

“However I will be looking at from my settee – not more consuming crickets and drowsing at the ground of a teach for me.”

Alex’s most sensible trip pointers

  • Commute all over the evening.
  • By no means suppose the rest – double take a look at the whole thing.
  • Clutch meals from native stores and markets – in Thailand a $1 bag of crickets was once crunchy, gave us an power spice up and was once nice for the price range.
  • Simply pack necessities – I packed a heavy bottle of aftershave and regretted it.
  • Attempt to mix in with the locals – so no soccer shirts, flags, banners or chanting.

Please word: All costs and adventure occasions are estimated on the time of e-newsletter.

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