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how do amish travel long distances

How Do the Amish Travel Long Distances?

How do the Amish travel long distances while maintaining their traditional way of life? 

The Amish are known for their commitment to simplicity and modesty, which can make it seem like they’re cut off from the modern world. However, when it comes to transportation, the Amish have a variety of unique and practical methods that allow them to travel long distances without compromising their values.

So, join us as we explore the fascinating world of Amish long-distance travel and discover how this tight-knit community navigates modern transportation challenges while staying true to their way of life.

What this article covers:

How Do the Amish Travel?

When we think of transportation, cars, and airplanes may come to mind. However, for the Amish, the way they get around is quite different. 

They prioritize simplicity, tradition, and community, which is reflected in their long-distance travel methods. From the iconic horse and buggy to hiring drivers from the non-Amish community, the Amish have a range of options available to them.

how do amish travel

Let’s take a closer look at how the Amish travel long distances and how these methods reflect their unique way of life.

Horse And Buggy

The traditional horse and buggy is the most common method of transportation used by the Amish. They use this iconic mode of transport for short and long-distance travel! 

A horse and buggy is a simple yet effective way of transportation that allows the Amish to maintain their traditional way of life.

how do the amish travel

The typical horse-and-buggy is large enough to accommodate a large picnic basket, a small storage basket for shelves and some rustic bread baskets. They can enjoy the scenery and take their time getting to their destination. 

Horse-and-buggies can also be decorated to reflect the family’s unique personality and values. So, you’re always bound to see a different horse and buggy daring the long roads.

Accepting A Ride From A Non-Amish Friend

The next popular long-distance mode of transport familiar to most of us is cars. This begs the question, do the Amish drive cars? The short answer is no. However, the Amish are allowed to ride in cars if they are driven by a non-Amish person. 

If an Amish family needs to travel a long distance, they may ask a non-Amish friend or acquaintance to drive them. In return, they may offer to pay for gas or a gift in appreciation for the help.

how do amish people travel

Hiring A Driver From The Non-Amish Community

Sometimes, the Amish may need to hire a driver to take them long distances. This could be for a medical appointment or if they need to travel for business. It’s not uncommon for the Amish to hire a driver, and they may pay them by the mile or by the hour. 

This method allows them to travel further than they would with a horse and buggy without compromising their values. They’ll often grab an Amish bread box, fill it with snacks, and head off with their hired driver behind the wheel.

Taking The Train

Have you ever wondered, “do the Amish ride trains?” Well, wonder no more! Some Amish communities ride trains as a mode of long-distance transportation.

do amish people travel

While trains may not be as standard as other forms of transportation among the Amish, they are still a viable option for traveling longer distances, especially for those who live further away from major airports or highways. Like other forms of transportation, the Amish follow specific rules and guidelines while riding trains to ensure they maintain their traditional way of life. 

For example, they may choose to avoid trains with dining cars that serve alcohol. Instead, they may bring their own food and drink in a small bread basket. Nonetheless, trains are a practical and efficient way for the Amish to travel long distances. They have been known to use this mode of transportation to visit family or attend special events.

Can the Amish Fly on Planes?

While the Amish typically avoid air travel as part of their commitment to a simple way of life, they can technically fly on commercial airlines. 

Although they cannot pilot their own planes, they can purchase boarding passes and fly on commercial airlines like anyone else.

can amish people travel

However, the major obstacle to air travel for the Amish is typically the need to purchase a boarding pass well in advance. Remember, flights on most airlines are often booked out far in advance. 

This can make air travel impractical for the Amish, who typically prefer to coordinate long-distance travel through more communal and traditional means. Yes, they prefer to show up at the airport and purchase a ticket over the counter. So, can the Amish fly on planes?

Yes, if air travel is the best or only option, the Amish are fully capable of flying across the country or even the world as long as they can secure a boarding pass and coordinate their travel plans accordingly.

Why Don’t All Amish People Fly On Airplanes?

The Amish community as a whole tends to avoid air travel, and this is due to a variety of factors. Firstly, air travel is seen as too worldly and luxurious, which is inconsistent with the Amish values of simplicity and modesty. 

amish people travel

Additionally, air travel can be expensive, which goes against the Amish value of frugality. Another reason the Amish avoid air travel is that it often requires separation from family and community for extended periods, which goes against their close-knit way of life. 

Finally, air travel can be seen as too individualistic, as opposed to the more communal ways the Amish prefer to travel. All these factors combine to make air travel unattractive for most Amish people.


While it may seem like the Amish are stuck in the past when it comes to transportation, they have a variety of unique and practical ways of getting from place to place rooted in their traditions and values. 

Whether it’s a leisurely horse and buggy ride, a quick bicycle jaunt, or even a rare commercial flight, the Amish can travel long distances while staying true to their way of life. 

So the next time you see an Amish person on the road or at the airport, give them a friendly wave and remember that they have their own unique ways of exploring the world around them. If this was a fun read, consider learning more about this question: Do the Amish ride bicycles? It’s a must-read!

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