Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
- Is there a discount card for tourists?
Budapest Card provides free or discounted entry to museums, galleries, spas, walking tours and free access to all public transport, and can be purchased for one, two or three days. For details on where to purchase your Budapest Card and a full list of venues to which it applies, visit the following site: http://budapest-card.com/
- Are there concessions available on public transport fares?
Concessions are available to groups, students, children and Budapest Card holders. For more information on fares visit http://www.bkk.hu/en/prices/
- Can I download a map of the Budapest underground?
You can download the Budapest underground map in PDF format from http://www.bkk.hu/apps/docs/terkep/metro.pdf.
- Taxi service in Budapest:
Taxi cabs are painted yellow with a taxi sign on the roof. All cabs must be equipped with a meter, which should be turned on while travelling and the driver should provide you with a receipt showing the exact fare upon arrival to your destination. Pre-ordered cabs offer lower rates than those hailed on the street. Some of the main companies are:
Főtaxi +36-1-2-222-222 www.fotaxi.hu
Budapest Taxi +36-1-4-333-333 www.budapesttaxi.hu
City Taxi +36-1-2-111-111 www.citytaxi,hu
6x6 Taxi +36-1-6-666-666 www.6x6taxi.hu
Taxi 2000 +36-1-2-000-000 www.taxi2000.hu
Zóna Taxi +36-1-365-55-55 www.zonataxi.hu
- Where can I park my car? Most street parking spaces are pay and display between the hours of 8am and 6pm. For zones and fares, visit http://www.bkk.hu/parkolas/kozteruleti-parkoloink/varakozasi-hozzajarulasok/
There are several paying multi-storey parking garages throughout the city, there are some recommendations from the available parking garages: http://starpark.hu/en/parking/ , http://www.ezparkbudapest.com/parking , http://www.boe-parking.hu/garazsok.html
Link to airport car parking: http://www.parkoloplaza.hu/en/#
- Where can the tour bus park?
List of tour bus parking options in Budapest: http://www.bkk.hu/apps/docs/terkep/bkk_turistabuszok_parkolo.pdf
- How do I get to the surroundings of Budapest?
Link to downloadable map: http://www.bkk.hu/apps/docs/terkep/vasut_agglo.pdf
- How do I get to the Liszt Ferenc International airport and from the airport to the downtown?
The only international airport in Budapest is the Franz Liszt International Airport. Many big European companies fly to Budapest, but also low-cost airlines like Ryanair, Wizz Air, EasyJet, German Wings, Air Berlin or Jet2.com.
All passenger flights arrive to and depart from Terminal 2. Terminal 1 is only for private jets and cargo planes. Official page of Budapest Airport.
Next step is how to get to and from the airport. There are several options according to your needs and budget.
A public bus service (No. 200E) runs from the Kõbánya-Kispest. This is the terminus of metro line 3 (blue), which you can take to Deák Ferenc tér, junction with metro lines 2 (red) and 1(yellow), trams 47 and 49 and numerous bus lines, to/from Budapest Airport and Terminal 2, every 15 minutes during the day. Buy at least 2 tickets from the BKK stand (Budapest Transport Company) by the exit, because you need to validate one each time you use a new line.
Passengers can reach Budapest Airport Terminal 2 from the Western Railway Station in Budapest. Please note that the rail link was originally constructed to reach as far as the old terminal 1, (and it uses the airports old name -Ferihegy terminal 1.) From there passengers will need to catch a bus service, the very-frequent 200E service that takes them the last few kilometers to terminal 2.
The journey takes between half an hour and an hour by car. The official contractor of the Budapest Airport is the Főtaxi, you can order a cab at their desk in the airport for fixed, reasonable prices. Or if you order a cab by phone, most companies offer a fixed price of around 3 800–6 500 HUF, depending on whether your destination is on the Pest or Buda side of the river. However nowadays it is rare but still be aware that there is a risk of being overcharged by unscrupulous drivers if you simply hail a taxi. Broken meters and a refusal to accept credit cards should be viewed with suspicion. All registered a cabs are now yellow and follow strict rules and rates. Where possible, always telephone to order a cab and agree a fare for the journey.
The Airport Minibus is a shared taxi which takes you to your destination (Wi-Fi included!). If you are travelling on your own, it is cheaper to use the Airport Shuttle service, which has a desk at the airport. Tickets can be purchased at the arrival customs area or at the LRI Airport Passenger Service desk in the waiting area.
- How do I get to Budapest by coach?
Coach service: Volánbusz operates 500 domestic distance coaches to 100 cities across the country daily, creating a direct link between many European countries and the most important regions and resorts of the country and Budapest. Check Volánbusz schedule here. Further relevant bus companies operating coaches to Hungary are Eurolines and OrangeWays.
- How do I get by train to Budapest?
The largest transport service provider in Hungary, MÁV-Start Zrt (MÁV), which has been operating for 160 years already. Railyway information, schedule Budapest has 3 main railway stations:
Déli (Southern) Railway Station
Keleti (Eastern) Railway Station
Nyugati (Western) Railway Station.
Please check for requirements (for instance students ID for discounted tickets or MÁV registration ticket for EU citizens over 65, allowing free travel).
Nostalgia trains: nostalgia trips on renovated, old-fashioned trains evoking the atmosphere of the turn of the century can be taken in the Budapest area. Information on nostalgia trips is available at the offices of MÁV Nosztalgia Ltd.
- How do I get Budapest by boat or cruise? How to plan a daytrip in the surroundings of Budapest?
Budapest is among the most fascinating cities of the world both for boat trips and river cruises, as it has matchless views from the Danube on both shores. Unusual for other European cities, it is possible in Budapest to moor in the centre of the city even for large river cruises, making major sights and programmes easily accessible. But just taking a boat trip with a dinner on board will also be a memorable experience.
International lines: a Hydrofoil operated by Mahart Passnave runs on the Danube, connecting Budapest, Bratislava and Vienna in both directions.
Domestic lines: regular lines connect Budapest with resorts along the Danube Bend in northern Hungary. Schedule and rates.
Sightseeing tours are offered not only by MAHART Passnave but also by Legenda Ltd. Allow us to also recommend you the amphibious buses of Riverride which operates bus tours which vehicles splash into the Danube, or Dunarama water limousines for private, luxury (but affordable) sightseeings on the Danube.
Yacht Harbours on the Danube: Neszmély, Esztergom, Nagymaros, Szentendre, Budapest, Budafok-Háros boast a harbour For more information click here.
- Where can I find Tourist Information Points?
There are three BUDAPESTINFO POINTS in downtown Budapest (Deák Ferenc Square, Liszt Ferenc Square, Heroes' Square) and two at Budapest Liszt Ferenc International Airport Terminal. Each Information Point stocks a comprehensive range of free leaflets, maps and listings magazines. You can also buy your Budapest Card there, and book your show, concert and sightseeing tickets.
- How can I buy tickets for events and performances?
In most cases you can reserve or buy tickets either directly from the venue, or on the phone or online. Independent ticket agents also offer tickets to events, plays and concerts at their box office and online.
- What festivals and events will be taking place in Budapest during my visit?
To find out what's on during your visit use our website.
- What free programmes are available in Budapest?
Parks, national monuments and some churches are free to visit. Several major museums are free to visit on certain days of the months. During national holidays there are free events held throughout the city, the most spectacular being the 20 August fireworks. There are free events for families and many Christmas markets present free concerts and activities.
- What is the national currency? Where do I exchange foreign money?
Currency: Hungarian Forint (HUF), internal sign: Ft
Coins: 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200 HUF
Bank notes: 500, 1,000, 2,000, 5,000, 10,000, 20,000 HUF.
Banks are usually open between 8.00 - 16.00 on weekdays. Some banks are open on Saturday, but all are closed on Sunday. ATM and currency exchange offices are available throughout the country. There is usually a commission of 1% for cashing travelers cheques at banks. Please note that most stores will not accept travelers checks.
Major credit cards (AmEx, Visa, Mastercard, Diners, Cirrus) can be used in the member shops and businesses. Look for the logo displayed at the entrance. ATMs operate 24 hours a day. Major credit cards and banking cards are accepted.
You can use your bank or credit card to get cash at post offices throughout Hungary. More than 3200 post offices nation-wide provide this service.
What are the tipping habits in Hungary?
Restaurant prices in Hungary generally do not include a service charge and it is therefore customary to give a tip, generally equivalent to 10-15% of the bill.
- What can I do in case I get ill or have an accident?
The European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) card enables you to access reduced-cost, and sometimes free, state-provided healthcare that may become necessary during your trip due to illness or accident.
There are several private clinics where English speaking health care GPs and specialists are available to tourists.
- Can I attend foreign language religious services available in Budapest?
There are Protestant, Catholic and Evangelical churches where you can worship in English, German, French, Italian, Slovakian and Romanian.