21

The magical community has a bunch of ways for traveling anywhere across the world, some of which are Portkeys, Apparation, the Floo network, broomsticks and many others. However, they still picked some Muggle technology to use as a means of transport.

Based on the question here, The Hogwarts' Express is presumably a Muggle train which was stolen by the magical community and used since then as a means of transport every year for Hogwarts' students. Per Pottermore, the train's background is presented as follows:

Where exactly the Hogwarts Express came from has never been conclusively proven, although it is a fact that there are secret records at the Ministry of Magic detailing a mass operation involving one hundred and sixty-seven Memory Charms and the largest ever mass Concealment Charm performed in Britain. The morning after these alleged crimes, a gleaming scarlet steam engine and carriages astounded the villagers of Hogsmeade (who had also not realised they had a railway station), while several bemused Muggle railway workers down in Crewe spent the rest of the year grappling with the uncomfortable feeling that they had mislaid something important.

Secondly, Pottermore has the following information about the Knight Bus:

For witches and wizards who are Floo-sick, whose Apparition is unreliable, who hate heights or who feel frightened or queasy taking Portkeys, there is always the Knight Bus, which appears whenever a witch or wizard in urgent need of transportation sticks out their wand arm at the kerb.

This got me thinking. Apart from the Knight Bus and Hogwarts Express, are there any other means of Muggle transportation (vehicles or otherwise) that were taken by the wizarding world and used specifically as public transport?

PS: I am excluding Arthur Weasley's Ford Anglia and Sirius' flying motorbike.

  • 1
    Plenty of times. Even the subway. If you are that interested in the details of the world, why not read the books? – Raditz_35 Feb 14 '18 at 11:03
  • 10
    Your question seems to be saying, "Apart from all the instances of wizards using Muggle transport, did wizards use Muggle transport?" – The Dark Lord Feb 14 '18 at 11:08
  • 1
    Are you interested only in public transportation, or do means of transport used by groups of private citizens count? – The Dark Lord Feb 14 '18 at 11:37
  • 3
    (Assuming examples exist) do shoes, skates, skateboard, stairs, bicycle, pram, escalators, elevators and the backs of animals count? – Keeta Feb 14 '18 at 15:09
  • 3
    Wizards and muggles use carpets for transportation. Though, for muggles, it is awfully slow. – davidbak Feb 14 '18 at 15:39
24

In Half-Blood Prince the Ministry sends cars and Aurors to secure Harry's protection.

It was an overcast, murky day. One of the special Ministry of Magic cars, in which Harry had ridden once before, was awaiting them in the front yard when they emerged from the house, pulling on their cloaks. “It’s good Dad can get us these again,” said Ron appreciatively, stretching luxuriously as the car moved smoothly away from the Burrow, Bill and Fleur waving from the kitchen window. He, Harry, Hermione, and Ginny were all sitting in roomy comfort in the wide backseat. “Don’t get used to it, it’s only because of Harry,” said Mr. Weasley over his shoulder. He and Mrs. Weasley were in front with the Ministry driver; the front passenger seat had obligingly stretched into what resembled a two-seater sofa. “He’s been given top-grade security status. And we’ll be joining up with additional security at the Leaky Cauldron too.” (Half-Blood Prince, Chapter 6).

“Ah, Harry!” said Mrs. Weasley loudly, cutting across Fleur’s monologue. “Good, I wanted to explain about the security arrangements for the journey to Hogwarts tomorrow. We’ve got Ministry cars again, and there will be Aurors waiting at the station —”
(Half-Blood Prince, Chapter 7).

As it's written it seems that the Ministry has its own cars, which are modified with magic.

  • 8
    Yes, and cars that somehow jump ahead in traffic too... – BMWurm Feb 14 '18 at 11:23
  • 2
    @BMWurm they probably just imperius all the muggles. I would. – Wayne Werner Feb 14 '18 at 16:51
  • 5
    @WayneWerner So you're the one responsible for all those drivers that behave just like mindless drones ;) – BMWurm Feb 14 '18 at 16:53
  • 2
    @BMWurm yeah - but only those ones. I had nothing to do with all the crazies who drive like they've never heard of "physics" and "not running other people off the road". – Wayne Werner Feb 14 '18 at 17:51
  • 2
    Wouldn't it make more sense to quote the first time they used them? – ibid Feb 14 '18 at 18:16
20

Cars

From the Pottermore article "Technology" by J.K. Rowling

There is one major exception to the general magical aversion to Muggle technology, and that is the car (and, to a lesser extent, motorbikes and trains). Prior to the introduction of the International Statute of Secrecy, wizards and Muggles used the same kind of everyday transport: horse-drawn carts and sailing ships among them. The magical community was forced to abandon horse-drawn vehicles when they became glaringly outmoded. It is pointless to deny that wizardkind looked with great envy upon the speedy and comfortable automobiles that began filling the roads in the twentieth century, and eventually even the Ministry of Magic bought a fleet of cars, modifying them with various useful charms and enjoying them very much indeed. Many wizards love cars with a child-like passion, and there have been cases of pure-bloods who claim never to touch a Muggle artefact, and yet are discovered to have a flying Rolls Royce in their garage. However, the most extreme anti-Muggles eschew all motorised transport; Sirius Black’s love of motorbikes incensed his hard-line parents.

We do see that fleet of Ministry cars in use as previously pointed out. What is more interesting is that it seems Mr. Weasley was not the only one to enchant cars. Other private wizards did the same, and it has me wondering if one of the "useful" charms the Ministry used was similar.

Carriages*

*But not really anymore. As shown by the above quote, the switch to cars was made because horse-drawn vehicles were no longer cutting it.

Beauxbatons uses horses Abraxan to pull a (magical) carriage.

Ships

In the film Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them it is shown that wizards also use passenger ships to cross the Atlantic (most likely the only reliable way).

ship in fantastic beasts

Another example (albeit magically enhanced) example is the ship used by Durmstrang during the Tri-Wizard Torment in Goblet of Fire.

Hagrid also uses (small) ships to transport the first years across the lake when they arrive at Hogwarts.

  • 2
    Worth pointing out that your quote also includes horse-drawn vehicles as another form of transport that was once used. – TheLethalCarrot Feb 14 '18 at 13:31
  • 4
    There's also the magically-self-propelling little boats that Hagrid uses to take the 1st years to the castle from the train. – davidbak Feb 14 '18 at 15:52
  • I'm wondering how uncomfortable a portkey trip across the Atlantic would be – Wayne Werner Feb 14 '18 at 16:52
  • 2
    Rowling has said the ship Newt used was completely muggle. Newt used it to skip wizard customs. – ibid Feb 14 '18 at 18:18
  • 1
    "during the Tri-Wizard Torment in Order of the Phoenix" looks like a typo. Goblet of Fire? – Arthur Feb 15 '18 at 8:41
2

Ships

Already mentioned but there is another case where Ships are used. Durmstrang students arrive Hogwarts with a ship and they live in it during their time at Hogwarts. This is a private magical ship , unlike to one in Fantastic Beasts. Sea travel from Bulgaria to England is possible and I assume they did some wand waving to Hogwarts lake from the English shore.

Carriages

Not a modern way of transportation but both Beauxbatons and non-first year students of Hogwarts use carriages for transportation with thestrals.( Beauxbaton was using hipoggriff I guess). The only difference with the muggle mediaval transportation is that now horses are flying.

  • Carriages aren't just medieval - according to Wikipedia "hansom cabs were widely used until 1908" (which is after my grandparents were born) and the last license for a horse drawn cab in London wasn't relinquished until 1947 (which is after my parents were born). – Martin Bonner Feb 15 '18 at 9:46

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.