Getting in and around Barcelona is not as challenging as it may sound! There are several transportation alternatives which can take you wherever you’ll need to go.
BARCELONA AIRPORT TRANSFERS
When flying to Barcelona, it is very likely that you’ll be landing at the El Prat International Airport, just about 12 km / 8 miles southwest of downtown Barcelona. From there, various modes of transport are at your disposal to travel to the city centre.
- Taxi: The fastest but most costly way to get from El Prat airport to the city center of Barcelona; there is a €5 surcharge to/from the airport, further supplements on weekends and holidays, and an extra charge per suitcase. Depending on traffic, taxi fares will cost you between €35 and €45. Like in most airports, taxis are waiting in line at the exit, and you are supposed to take the first one.
Supplements to the final meter price are added due to the following factors.
1. A supplement for each bag or suitcase (€1.00).
2. Supplement for Barcelona airport pick up or drop off (€3.10)
3. Supplement for picking up or dropping off at the Barcelona Cruise terminal (€2.10)
4. Supplement for pickup or drop off at the Fira exhibition centre (€2.10)
If you are uncertain of the price, ask for a written receipt.
“Un recibo, por favor” – “A receipt please”
- Car rental: There are numerous car rental companies at your disposal available when arriving, namely Hertz, Europcar, Argus, AutoEuro and Avis. To cut cost at their minimal, reserve a car in advance.
- Aerobús:These blue shuttle buses are an easy and cheaper way to get from and to the airport’s terminal straight to downtown Barcelona. Aerobus A1 departs from Terminal 1 every 5 to 10 minutes, while Aerobus 2 leaves from Terminal 2 every 10 to 20 minutes. Transport time can vary between 35 to 45 minutes. With a few stops at Plaza España and Plaza Universitat, the bus will halt at Plaza Catalunya. The one-way ticket costs €5,90 and is valid up to one year, for a round trip they charge you €10,20 and should be used within 15 days after the outbound journey. With services starting at 5 in the morning, the last ride is at 1.05 am. For more details: http://www.aerobusbcn.com/
- Train: The RENFE train leaves every half hour and takes you straight to the city centre. It will take approximately 20 minutes from El Prat to Sants Station, and around 30 minutes to get to Passeig de Gracia. Both stations are quite large and easy to get lost in, so when returning you should factor in enough time. A ticket costs 2,20€.
For the full schedule, check out the RENFE official website at: http://www.renfe.com/
- Metro Line 9: The orange line has been recently opened and is active from Zona Universitària to the airport. Notice that the Metro stops at both Terminal 1 and 2 since these are quite far away from each other. For a ticket, they’ll charge you €4,5.
- TMB Bus N46: Another option is the public city bus. Since there is fewer luggage space and more stops on the way, this bus could be seen as uncomfortable. Yet, compared to price of €5,90 for the aerobus, this bus is only €2,15. Or even better, with the metro T10 cart (below), it will only cost you €1,00! After 1am there is still the N16 & N17 night bus that operates until 5 am between Terminal 1 and 2 and Plaza Catalunya.
Airport (T1/2) –> Placa Espanyaà –> Gran Via–Urgell –> Placa Universitat –> Barcelona Placa Catalunya.
Barcelona Placa Catalunya –> Sepulveda –> Urgell –> Placa Espanya –> Airport (Terminal 1/2).
Once in Barcelona, getting around the city is quite easy and relatively fast. Various modes of transport are at your disposal to take you wherever you’ll need to go. Yet, if you have some spare time, you can also choose to rent a bike or stroll around the city. This is how you will best discover the city, its different districts, narrow streets, local colors and flavors.
- Public bus: Barcelona’s bus fleet operates on over 80 routes and connects all the city’s districts and the metropolitan area. Transport passes can be used on the metro, tram, city centre lines of the Ferrocarriles (FGC) and RENFE trains (zone 1 only). Within a period of 1h15 since you first obliterated your ticket, you can obtain free transfer.
For more information on the different routes and a time schedule, visit: http://www.tmb.cat
- Taxi:Official Barcelona Taxis are black and yellow and a green light on top of the taxi indicates whether or not it is available for hire. You can either hail a taxi in the street, go to one of the numerous places where there are parked such as Plaça Catalunya or call one of the numbers below. Tipping the cab driver is not required but welcome, and is approximately 5 to 10% of the taxi fare.
For more information on the rates, call (+34) 931 138 088 or check out the official Barcelona taxi website at: http://www.taxibarcelonabcn.com
+34 93 433 1020 +34 93 225 0000 +34 93 300 2314
+34 93 357 7755 +34 93 300 1100
- Metro: In addition to the Orange Line N9, Barcelona has a very efficient underground metro system that stretches all across the city; thus making it one of the easiest ways to travel around town. To help you plan your journey, all metro entrances have a wall map. The metro system is composed of TMB (L1, L2, L3, L4, L5, L9, L10, L11) and FGC metro lines (L6, L7, L8). The price of a one-way ticket is €2,20; however, when planning to make more than 5 trips, it is better to buy a T10 ticket. For only €10,20, the T10 will give you 10 journeys on the metro, FGC (FGC run train lines similar to the metro around the city centre) buses, tram and RENFE all Zone 1 areas. Moreover, if your journey is less than 1h15, it will only be counted as a single journey. A T10 is valid indefinitely within a calendar year, and can be shared with other members of your family or group.
The black circles on the map below are departure points on the metro where you can change lines to a different station.You can estimate your journey time by counting the number of metro stops on your route and multiplying this number by 2 minutes. Include waiting time of 5 minutes. If you need to change, add 5 to 10 minutes to your final value for each change.
Validity: 10 intermodal journeys in Barcelona. Passengers have 75 minutes between the first and last validation when changing lines or mode of transport. This time increases by 15 minutes for each zone.
50 journeys in 30 days €43,50 (individual card)
Validity: 50 intermodal journeys in 30 consecutive days from the first validation. Passengers have 75 minutes between the first and last validation when changing lines or mode of transport. This time increases by 15 minutes for each zone.
70 journeys in 30 days €60,90 (multi-person card)
Validity: A multi-person travel card valid for 70 journeys in 30 consecutive days from the first validation. In the case of one-zone cards, passengers have 75 minutes between the first and last validation when changing lines or mode of transport. This time increases by 15 minutes for each zone.
There are also other cards available, for like example 1 or 3 months, where you can drive unlimited.
Hola BCN! Day travel cards
Besides the 1-day travel card, there are more options in this category. These cards can be used unlimited for 1 or more days are valid on the Metro, TMB buses, FGB Urban Line Trains, Tram ánd the Rodaloesde Catalunya Trains within Zone 1 of Barcelona.
2-day travel card €15,00
This is a travel card for an unlimited number of journeys over 2 consecutive days from the first validation.
3-day travel card €22,00
This is a travel card for an unlimited number of journeys over 3 consecutive days from the first validation.
4-day travel card €28,50
This is a travel card for an unlimited number of journeys over 4 consecutive days from the first validation.
5-day travel card €35,00
This is a travel card for an unlimited number of journeys over 5 consecutive days from the first validation.
Integrated Fare System
The Integrated Fare System means that you can use different modes of transport (metro, urban, metropolitan and interurban buses, tram, Ferrocarrils de la Generalitat de Catalunya trains and Rodalies de Catalunya trains) on a single travel card. This means that you don’t need to pay again, when changing from one to another. Under this system you can use four different modes of transport and make three changes within an area and period of time established for the number of zones for which the travel card is valid. For more information about the transportation in Barcelona, click here.
If you feel like leaving the city for a day or 2, you can also easily travel by train. The Rodalies (Renfe) train has several stops in the city center: Arc de Triomf, Passeig de Gracia, Sants Train Station and more. In general, depending where you want to go, tickets are relatively cheap. Barcelona has many popular destinations nearby like Sitges or calmer beaches like Montgàt and Castelldefels. For more information, timetables and prices click here. Yet, some places, like in Costa Brava, are not directly accessible and you need to go to Girona first, and take another bus or train. Therefore, it could be more easy to rent a car instead.