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Expat Exchange - Public Transportation in Budapest 2024
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Liberty Bridge in Budapest


Public Transportation in Budapest

By Betsy Burlingame

AGS Worldwide Movers
AGS Worldwide Movers

Summary: Learning how to get around using public transportation in Budapest is an important step in adjusting to life in Budapest. In this article, we cover the local public transportation options.

Budapest, the capital city of Hungary, is known for its efficient and diverse public transportation system. The city boasts a comprehensive network of buses, trams, trolleys, metro lines, and even boats that traverse the Danube River. The Budapest Transport Center (BKK) manages these services, making it easy for residents and visitors to navigate the city without the need for a personal vehicle. In fact, many expats living in Budapest find that they can comfortably rely on public transportation and walking to get around.

Metro

The Budapest Metro, operated by the BKK, is the oldest electrified underground railway system on the European continent. It consists of four lines, each identified by a different color. The metro is a safe and efficient way to travel around the city, even at night. It's also a viable option for women traveling alone or children commuting to school. A single ticket costs 350 HUF (about 1 USD), but various passes are available for frequent travelers. The metro lines cover most of the city, connecting major tourist attractions, business districts, and residential areas.

Buses and Trolleys

Budapest's bus and trolley network is extensive, with over 200 routes covering the city and its suburbs. Buses and trolleys are a great way to see the city, as many routes pass by major landmarks. They are safe to use, with regular services running from early morning until midnight, and night buses operating after that. The fare system is the same as the metro, with single tickets costing 350 HUF. For those living in Budapest, monthly and annual passes are also available.

Trams

Trams are an iconic part of Budapest's cityscape. The city's tram network is one of the largest in the world, with 32 lines running across Budapest. Tram Line 2 is particularly popular among tourists, as it offers a scenic route along the Danube River, passing by several historic sites. Trams are safe and reliable, with services running from early morning until late at night. The fare system is the same as for buses and the metro.

Boats

For a unique way to travel, Budapest offers public boat services along the Danube River. These boats provide a picturesque way to commute, offering stunning views of the city's landmarks. Boat services are less frequent than other forms of public transportation, but they are a popular choice during the summer months. A single boat ticket costs 750 HUF (about 2.5 USD).

Bikesharing

Budapest also has a bikesharing system called Bubi (short for Budapest Bicycle), which is a great option for short trips within the city center. There are over 100 Bubi stations across Budapest, making it easy to pick up and drop off bikes. The first 30 minutes of each ride are free, after which a small fee applies.

Conclusion

Overall, Budapest's public transportation system is comprehensive, efficient, and affordable. It's a viable option for anyone living in the city, including expats, and can comfortably replace the need for a personal vehicle. Whether you prefer to travel by metro, bus, tram, boat, or bike, Budapest has you covered.

Expats talk about Public Transportation in Budapest

"Public transportation is excellent in the cities in Hungary. Yes a car is best to purchase in Hungary or rent one. Not advisable to have a car shipped from your country," commented an expat living in Budapest.

About the Author

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder and President of Expat Exchange and is one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Prior to Expat Exchange, Betsy worked at AT&T in International and Mass Market Marketing. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in International Business and German.

Some of Betsy's articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Portugal, 7 Best Places to Live in Panama and 12 Things to Know Before Moving to the Dominican Republic. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.


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Liberty Bridge in Budapest

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