Whether its your first time in Budapest or you are a returning visitor, it is very important to be aware about public transportation system of a foreign city. We have gathered the most important information on how to use transportation tickets, what kind of passes you should purchase and where to buy them.
Budapest is provided with excellent infrastructure and extensive public transportation system with 4 metro lines, several bus and tram network. You can access your favourite sight within just a few minutes. The official organisation responsible for Budapest’s public transportation system is BKK which is short for Budapest Közlekedési Központ. They provide all valid information about Budapest’s transportation system. For detailed information on how to use public transportation, download BKK’s Practical Guide to Budapest Transport.
What types of tickets and travelcards are available?
Passengers using BKK’s public transportation are required to travel with valid ticket, pass, or travelcard otherwise you could be fined. For getting around Budapest by public transportation we recommend to use Tickets or Short-term Travelcards.
1. Traveling with tickets
To travel with tickets, you can use a Single ticket which is valid only for a single trip on the whole length of bus – metro-and tram lines. During the period of validity, transfers are allowed between metro lines M1, M2, M3 and M4 only. Transferring between other lines requires another single ticket. In case you are using multiple transportation lines during your day, you might want to consider buying a Block of 10 tickets. The block contains 10 individual single tickets. These are valid for a single trip and the whole length of bus-metro-and tram lines. With the Transfer ticket you can transfer once to another service. With using the Short section metro ticket you can travel for a single short trip up to 3 stops for a period of 30 minutes after validation. The short section metro ticket is only available for metro lines M1, M2, M3 and M4. Please note, that all tickets need to be validated right before boarding a vehicle or when starting your travel. The Airport Shuttlebus Single Ticket is valid only for the 100E bus line departing from Liszt Ferenc Airport.
2. Traveling with Travelcards
Travel cards are available for 24-hours, 72-hours or 7days allowing visitors for an unlimited number of travels and transportations on the whole length of bus-metro-and tram lines in Budapest. Travelcards are valid from the indicated date and time, therefore travelcards do not need validation after purchase or before starting your travel. Advance purchase is possible. Please note, that using the direct shuttlebus from the Airport requires an Airport Shuttlebus single ticket.
Where to buy tickets and travelcards?
You can purchase your tickets or travelcards at Ticket vending machines, BKK customer service centre or On board.
1. Ticket vending machines
The ticket vending machines are a well-programmed computer devices which are located on several spots in Budapest. From these machines you can purchase all kinds of tickets and travelcards for your trip at any time of the day. Vending machines accept cash as well as credit cards. The computer programme will show you the exact steps on how to properly buy your tickets. For further information you can check the instructional video by BKK to see the exact steps of buying your passes.
2. BKK’s customer service
Look for the Customer Service Points of BKK in Budapest where you can also purchase your tickets and travelcards. The customer service points help visitors with providing information about Budapest’s public transportation and provides brochures of public transport. At the customer service points you can purchase any kind of ticket, pass or travelcard. The service points operates at Liszt Ferenc International Airport’s at Terminal 2A on a daily basis from 8:00-22:00 and and at Terminal 2B on a daily basis from 9:00-21:00. English-speaking operations are gladly at your service with useful information and advices on transportation.
3. On board
Only Single tickets are available on spot from the driver at a higher price of 450 HUF.
How to validate your ticket?
Passengers whishing to use public transportation are required to use valid tickets. Always make sure you have validated your ticket before boarding a vehicle, otherwise you could be fined. Please note, that travelcards do not need validation.
1. On Metro
On Metro lines tickets need to be validated with stamping or punching right before you board on the vehicle. Validating machines are located at the entrance of the metro stations. Insert the number grid end to the machine for validation.
2. On Trams & Buses
On Tram and Bus lines tickets need to be validated by stamping or punching them immediately after you board on the vehicle. The validators are located on the kézi kapaszkódokon. Insert the number grid end of your ticket into the opening for validation.
For further information watch this video on how to validate your ticket