As dark falls in Monaco, the Monte Carlo casino comes to life. Beautiful people dressed in designer clothes are pulling up in their spotless Bentley, Porsche or Lamborghini. Gawking tourists huddle en masse in front of the casino, snapping selfies and admiring the luxury of it all.
We decided to have dinner in the midst of the excitement, at Cafe de Paris, right next to the casino. We had a great dinner and loved soaking up the ambiance. But once it was time for us to head back to Nice for the night…we started to question our decision.
The last bus back from Monaco to Nice departs around 8:30, and the last train leaves at 9:20. These times are too early if you’re looking to enjoy an evening in Monaco before returning for the night.
So we knew we couldn’t take the train or bus, but we just figured we would get an Uber back to Nice. What we didn’t find out till the end of our evening is that Uber doesn't work in Monaco.
Um, what do we do now??
I suppose the obvious answer is that we could catch a taxi. However, an Uber gives you a better experience than a taxi (your driver opens your door, he usually has bottles of water for you, the car is really nice, etc.). And we’ve had taxi drivers price gauge us before, whereas the Uber fare is automatically calculated within the app. I've also heard from multiple people that even if the taxi drivers are honest about the fare, it's significantly more expensive than an Uber. So while a taxi was an option, it was a last resort to us.
After several minutes of deliberating, Joshua came up with the solution to our dilemma… we would walk to France!
The Monaco train station sits on the border of France and Monaco, and it was only a 10-minute walk away from the Monte Carlo casino. So we put the girls in the stroller and headed off to cross the border so we could catch an Uber home.
The walk was all uphill but it was quick enough, and soon we were at the Monaco train station. We walked about 10 seconds up the street behind the station, opened the Uber app, dropped a pin on our current location, and it said we were good to get picked up there!
Now since it was later in the evening and we were off the beaten path a bit, it took a few tries playing with the app before it actually said there was a driver available for us. If you ever find yourself in a similar situation, just keep trying every couple minutes to see if a car is available. If you can ‘beat the system' and request a driver before it’s had time to tell you that none are available (when the little wheel is spinning while it’s looking for a driver), you might luck out and get one… which is what finally happened for us. :)
Our driver arrived 10 minutes later, and we rode back home to Nice in a comfortable Uber. We’re staying near the port in Nice, so the ride cost 34 Euros and took about half an hour.
So should you find yourself having a luxurious late night of revelry in Monaco and in need of an Uber back to France... just remember to be a little creative and adventurous, and get walking to the border!
Have you ever had a similar situation while traveling abroad where the public transportation ended and you were stuck? Let me know in the comments how you handled it!
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