This is a key area. How can travel between the stars be really interesting? You either have to make up a "warp factor" of some kind, a wormhole, or another way to go much faster than light. I guess we could all become FTL particles, but travel that way seems unlikely.
My bet and plan if I ever really write in this universe is in the teleport chamber type idea. I think the book was _A Step Farther Out_. It would be a real pain to get one of these connection points there, but once they are there, travel is instantaneous.
That still has a credibility jump, but it is more believable, at least now, than "Warp 9" or "Hyperspace". :)