Getting around Madrid is easy with our snappy Madrid transportation guide. We'll brief you on the metro system, the bus system and taxis
Getting Around Madrid
The Madrid Metro System
Madrid's Metro is comprised of 12 incredibly efficient and user-friendly lines. Because Madrid is very spread out, the Metro is a necessary part of any Madridenian's life. Trains run frequently and metro signs are numerous and well situated. The fare for one ride within Madrid proper is €2. Routes beyond the city itself cost €1.90. A 10-trip ticket called a bonotransporte, which costs €7.40, is a great money-saving deal.
The Metro operates from 6 a.m. to 2 a.m., and rush hours can be especially busy. Crime in metro stations is rare in Madrid. For more information on the Madrid Metro, call 90 244 44 03 or go online.
The Madrid Bus System
While the Metro is your best bet for inter-city traveling, buses are both extremely efficient and great for seeing areas on the outskirts or for traveling across Madrid. The bus fare is the same as the Metro, and the tickets can be used interchangeably.
Normal bus service runs from 6 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. The Buho (owl) runs every 35 minutes between 12 a.m. and 3 a.m. and every hour between 3 a.m. and 6 a.m. On weekends, the Buho runs every twenty minutes. For more information, visit the Empresa Municipal de Transportes site (in Spanish).
Taxis in Madrid
Taxis are fairly reasonable and easy to hail. A green "libre" sign indicates availability. Meters start at €1.95 between 6 a.m. and 10 p.m. On weekdays, taxi fares charge between €.92 and €1.06. for every kilometer driven during the day, and between €1.06 and €1.10 for every kilometer driven between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. At all times on public holidays, taxis charge between €1.06 and €1.10 per kilometer. Additional supplement charges are applied to trips to or from the airport (€5.25), trips that originate at railway and bus stations (€2.75), trips to or from the Parque Ferial Juan Carlos I (€2.75). Trips taken between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. start with a €2.15 base charge. On Christmas Eve and early (before 6 a.m.) on Christmas day as well as late (after 10 p.m.) on New Year's Eve and early (before 6 a.m.) on New Year's Day trips will cost an additional €6.50.
Make sure that the taxi's meter is turned on when you enter the car, and stick to legit taxis, which are always black with horizontal red bands or white with diagonal red bands. Stow your luggage in the trunk, or you'll be charged an additional fee. If you take a taxi outside of city limits, the driver can legitimately charge twice the rate shown.
To call a taxi, dial 91 547 82 00, 91 547 85 00, or 91 547 86 00. For lost and found, visit Negociado de Objetos Perdidos at Plaza Legazpi 7 or call 91 588 43 46 or 91 588 43 48.
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From our Madrid blog
Welcome to EuroCheapo, a guide to cheap hotels in Madrid and throughout Europe.
Since 2002, our editors have been visiting, inspecting and photographing budget hotels in the best neighborhoods of Madrid. The places we've chosen as "Editor’s Picks" have certain qualities in common: They're all clean, central, cheap and, if we're lucky, have a touch of personality unique to the city.
Find the perfect budget hotel
Madrid is a feast for budget travelers, and not just because sightseeing, eating and drinking tend to be less expensive here than in other European capitals. Sleeping, too, comes affordably, as the city’s hotels, hostals, and hostels are cheaper than in many other popular Spanish destinations.
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Our guide to Madrid on a budget
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