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Public Transportation in Coban

Learning how to get around using public transportation in Coban is an important step in adjusting to life in Coban. In this article, we cover the local public transportation options.
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Coban, a city nestled in the mountains of central Guatemala, offers a variety of public transportation options for both locals and expats. The city is served by a network of buses, microbuses, and taxis, all of which are affordable and relatively easy to navigate. The bus system, known as the Transurbano, is the most extensive, with routes covering the entire city and surrounding areas. Microbuses, or minivans, are a popular choice for shorter trips within the city, while taxis are readily available for those who prefer a more private mode of transportation. With these options, it’s entirely possible for an expat living in Coban to get by without a car.

Transurbano Buses

The Transurbano bus system is the backbone of public transportation in Coban. These buses are large, colorful, and often decorated with religious or cultural symbols. They run on a regular schedule, with routes covering the entire city and extending into the surrounding rural areas. The fare is typically around 1 Quetzal (about 13 cents in USD), making it an affordable option for daily commuting. However, the buses can get crowded during peak hours, and they don’t always stick to their schedules. While generally safe, it’s advisable to keep an eye on your belongings, especially in crowded conditions.

Microbuses

Microbuses, or minivans, are another common form of public transportation in Coban. These vehicles are smaller and more maneuverable than the Transurbano buses, making them a popular choice for shorter trips within the city. The fare is slightly higher, usually around 2 Quetzals (about 26 cents in USD), but the service is generally faster and less crowded. Microbuses don’t have fixed stops like the buses; instead, passengers can flag them down anywhere along their route. While this can be convenient, it also means that the microbuses can be a bit unpredictable in terms of timing and availability.

Taxis

Taxis in Coban are plentiful and relatively inexpensive. Most taxis are metered, with fares starting at around 10 Quetzals (about $1.30 in USD) and increasing based on distance and time. Taxis can be hailed on the street, or you can call a taxi company to arrange a pickup. While taxis offer a more private and comfortable ride than buses or microbuses, they can also be more expensive, especially for longer trips. As with any city, it’s important to ensure that the taxi is licensed and that the meter is running to avoid being overcharged.

Walking

Finally, walking is a viable option for getting around in Coban, especially within the city center. The city is relatively compact, with many of the main attractions, restaurants, and shops located within walking distance of each other. The streets are generally safe, but it’s always a good idea to stay aware of your surroundings, especially at night. Also, keep in mind that Coban is located in a mountainous region, so some areas may be hilly or steep.

In conclusion, while having a car in Coban could be convenient for longer trips or for those living outside the city center, it’s certainly not a necessity. The city’s public transportation system is robust and affordable, and with a little patience and flexibility, it’s entirely possible to navigate Coban without a car.

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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