Getting There & Around
- Driving license: When operating a motor vehicle, citizens of the European Union and countries that had signed the Vienna Convention on Public Roads can use their national driver's licenses, all others are required to have an international license. Foreign driving licences are valid for one year after entry.
- Liability insurance
(Insurance can be taken out at the appointed insurance companies) and Green card
: Liability insurance is mandatory in Hungary. For vehicles from countries that are members of license plate agreements, the plate and country sticker is acceptable as proof of valid insurance. Citizens of all other countries must present a green card. Without the green card, the owner is required to taken out an insurance at the border before entering the country. Please check the membership of your country when you plan your journey.
- Car registration document
- Country sticker
After the expiry of a residence permit, all vehicles must be taken out of the country!
M1: Budapest - Hegyeshalom
M15: Hegyeshalom - Rajka
M3: Budapest - Nyíregyháza
M5: Budapest - Röszke
M6: Budapest - Pécs
M7: Budapest - Balatonkeresztúr and Sormás - Letenye (15 km section)
Motorways are toll pay motorways and can be used with prepayed vignettes. Vignettes can be purchased at bigger filling stations and at bigger post offices.
Fees for motorcycles, and motor vehicles with a maximum total permissible weight of 3.5 tons, including any trailers : 10-day vignette: 2 975 HUF, 31-day vignette: 4 780 HUF, 1-year vignette: 42 980 HUF
(valid from January, 2012)
Note that vignette today is only the name of the licence of using the motorways. You get an invoice you have to keep for one year. Your car's licence number will be registered in the system and the control on the motorway also goes fully digitally.
Motorways, other fees, toll-free sections, interactive map >>>
Emergency telephone boxes are placed every 2 kilometres on the M1, M5 and M7 motorways and on motor-road '5' where non-stop assistance is available.
The phone number of the Emergency Service is 188 throughout the country.
Police may assess fines from 30 000 HUF up to 300 000 HUF. The fines have got to be paid later by cheque. In the case of major offences, police may revoke driving licences on the spot.
The blood-alcohol level permitted in Hungary is 0.00%.
Pay Car Parks in Budapest
Drivers have got to pay for parking in the inner districts of Budapest. Tickets can be bought for a maximum of 2 hours in the slot-machines (ticket machines) on the streets. Cars aren't guarded in these parking places.
Parking fees: 160-640 HUF/hour (based on the zone). Given that the machines take coins, it is worth keeping 50 and 100 HUF coins for this purpose.
Cars will be clamped if no parking fee has been paid or the period paid for has expired.
During sightseeing excursions, passenger cars and buses are allowed to park free of charge in the major tourist centres (e.g., the Citadel, Heroes Square, Városliget (City Park). There are parking lots for buses at Belgrád rakpart (lower rakpart, wharf), in Duna Street near Erzsébet Square.
If you are not familiar with the city, it is easiest to get around by a taxi cab. In Budapest these vehicles are equipped with yellow number plates and usually have a yellow "TAXI"
sign on the roof. All cabs must be equipped with a meter. The meter should be turned on while travelling and the driver should provide you with a receipt showing the exact fare upon arrival to your destination. Főtaxi
offers transfer services from Budapest Airport on a zone-based fare to the city. +36-1-2-22-2222 Pre-ordered cabs offer lower rates than those hailed on the street. The taxi companies assume full responsibility for their employees. Phone orders are handled 24 hours a day by call-centre attendants speaking foreign languages. Never hail a cab on the street! Call one of the following numbers to order one!
runs on the Danube, connecting Budapest, Bratislava and Vienna in both directions.
Regular lines connect Budapest with resorts along the Danube Bend in northern Hungary.
Schedule and rates >>>
Several companies offer river cruises along various parts of the Danube.
Sightseeing Cruises organised by MAHART Passnave
and Legenda Ltd.
Yacht Harbours on the Danube
Lines on Lake Balaton
Regular lines and ferryboats run on Lake Balaton
where varied and enjoyable programs await visitors.
Sailing Boat Harbours on Lake Balaton
Sailing fans can choose from 10 large harbours.
More information on harbours >>>
All flights depart and arrive at Budapest Airport Terminal 2 from 2012. Terminal 1 only takes in cargo planes.
Connection between Ferihegy and downtown
Buses (service No. 200E
) run from the Kõbánya-Kispest terminus, metro line 3
, to/from Budapest Airport Terminals 2, every 15 minutes during the day.
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. Where possible, always telephone to order a cab and agree a fare for the journey.
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.
Click for rates
Other airports in Hungary
The Hévíz-Balaton Airport
(earlier FlyBalaton) in Sármellék is an airport opened temporarily for international passenger traffic.
Volánbusz operates 500 domestic distance coaches to 100 cities of the country daily, creating a direct link between many European countries and the most important regions and resorts of the country and Budapest. During the day there are coaches in every hour or more often in the direction of Eger, Salgótarján, Gyöngyös, Jászberény, Kecskemét, Székesfehérvár, Veszprém, Tatabánya and Győr, many lines go to the Mátra, the great plain, lake Balaton or other destinations.
Check Volánbusz schedule >>>
The largest transport service provider in Hungary, the MÁV-Start Zrt (MÁV), which has been operating for 160 years already, carries more than 150 million passengers year to year to any destinations chosen by them.
Would you wish to go for a swim in the" Hungarian Sea", Lake Balaton or get the real taste of the life on the Great Plain in Hortobágy, the Puszta, or admire the beauty of the National Historical Memorial Park at Ópusztaszer, where you can observe the legendary panorama painting of Árpád Feszty; we are always there for your service.
Train tickets can be bought
Railway information, schedule >>>
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 Kft.
Scheduled Vintage Trains In Hungary
Trips to the Danube Bend
From 24 April through 2 October, a steam-hauled vintage train departs every Saturday at 9.40 from Budapest's Nyugati Station. Alternate weeks it goes to the picturesque Szob, on the East Bank of the Danube, or to Esztergom, Hungary's capital in early medieval times.
Along the Northern shore of Lake Balaton
From 22 June through 21 August, every day except Sundays and Mondays, a steam-hauled vintage train departs from Keszthely to Badacsony.
A ride in horse-drawn coaches, wine-tasting and lunch in Badacsony.
Information on Scheduled Vintage Trains In Hungary is available at the offices of MÁV Nosztalgia Kft.
Hungarian Railway Museum
The first interactive, partially open-air railway museum of Europe offers visitors a full-day program for all members of the family. The beautifully preserved engines, carriages and other railway equipment are displayed in a former roundhouse and in the surrounding landscaped park.
Besides viewing the permanent exhibitions, visitors can enjoy a ride on a horse-tram, operate the turntable, drive model trains, hand-powered wagons and even a steam or vintage diesel engine under supervision.
The Hungarian Railway Museum
is accessible by car as well as by tram no. 14 (leaves from Lehel tér) until Dolmány utca station, by bus No. 30 (leaves from outside the Keleti (Eastern) Railway Station) until Rokolya utca station or a special vintage train service operates from Nyugati (Western) Railway Station during opening hours. Car parking and bicycle storage are available.
Narrow Gauge Trains
Railway transportation is popular all over the world, and narrow gauge railways have an increasing role to play in many countries. There are several light railway lines in Hungary, chiefly f or the purposes of tourism and hiking.
There are more than 20 small gauge trains, most running from May to September.
For information on narrow gauge trains, please contact TOURINFORM Offices.
MÁV-Start Zrt. Széchenyi-hegyi Children's Train
is very popular among the children of Budapest and those visiting the capital. It is 11.2 kilometres long. What makes it special is that children between the ages of 10 and 14 do all the work except, of course, for the jobs of engineer and stationmaster. There are six stops between the two terminals, each leading to popular hiking destinations in the Buda Hills.
Travel by trains with Eurail
For more possibilities to travel by train in Hungary click here: eurail.com
Get your Eurail Hungary Pass
for non-European passangers or InterRail Hungary Pass
for European passangers to travel without boundaries. Click here for the passes: eurail.com/hungarypass
URBAN PUBLIC TRANSPORT
Budapest takes pride in its well-developed public transportation network
). To get around the city ride a bus, a tram or the subway. Services are reliable and cheap, however, some precautions are recommended if you are travelling on a crowded vehicle, as these are often frequented by pickpockets.
Public transport in the city of Budapest is provided by Budapest Transport Limited (known to all Hungarians simply as BKV). It operates a network of several bus-, tram- and trolleybus routes, as well as three Underground lines. There are also five suburban railway lines (HÉV) serving the outskirts of the city. Most services operate from around 5 o'clock in the morning until about 11 o'clock at night.
Transportation tickets should be purchased before boarding the bus or entering the subway and need to be validated upon entry. Machines either punch the ticket or validate it by cutting the corner and stamping the date and time of travel.
Tickets are often checked while riding the vehicles or at the subway exits by controllers wearing arm-band and a photo-ID. You should always keep your ticket at all times till you exit the station or leave the vehicle.
Those travelling without a valid ticket will need to pay a penalty
It is worth investing in Budapest Card
which offers unlimited travel on all forms of public transports, free or reduced admission to museums and other sights and discounts on organized tours, car rental, at thermal baths and at selected shops and restaurants. It is sold at Tourinform offices, travel agencies, hotels and main metro stations.
In most cities outside Budapest, full fares on public transport cost anywhere approx. 300–400 HUF. For a surcharge, tickets can be purchased from the driver. Miskolc, Debrecen and Szeged have bus, tram and trolley lines, while all other cities offer only local bus services.