Let’s talk about public transport in Buenos Aires. How to get around in the city, where to buy a public transport card and how to use it. We will mention the bus, subway (metro system), and the suburban train in Buenos Aires. Read our other articles about to get around in the city with a bike or electric scooter.
Buenos Aires Public Transport in a nutshell
How to use public transport in Buenos Aires?
- Buy a contactless SUBE-card in a metro station, kiosko or train station. (USD 1,60)
- Top up the card with cash money. This can be done where you bought the card or stores with a sign “Carga SUBE Aqui”.
- Take the bus, subway or suburban train. Say your destination to the bus driver. Not necessary when taking the subway or suburban train.
- Average price per ride: USD 0,35
Why should you use public transport in Buenos Aires?
We are not exaggerating when we say that you can get everywhere with public transport. Buenos Aires has a very extensive bus network supported by the metro. Also, it’s a cheap way to get around in Buenos Aires and you will come into more contact with local life.
Pay all your transfers with the SUBE-card (bus, subway and train)
The SUBE-card: where to buy it?
The SUBE-card is the contactless reload card to use on all buses, trains, and subway in Buenos Aires. It’s not possible to pay cash at the driver!
You need to get a SUBE-card before you want to use the bus or metro. Do you arrive at Ezeiza (EZE) International airport? Great! But first, you will need some cash Argentinian peso. In our article “the best places to change your money in Buenos Aires” we mention were to change it at Ezeiza airport. Afterward, head back to the arrival hall and on your left side, you will see a kiosko were you can buy a SUBE-card. The price is around USD 1,60.
At the same kiosko you will see a yellow machine with a touchscreen. Put your SUBE-card on the reader and insert some peso bills.
Tip: Are you only getting around in Buenos Aires by public transport? Per day in the city, you will use around USD 1,80. So, top up enough for during your stay. It will save you time.
The subway in Buenos Aires
The Buenos Aires underground system has 6 lines. With the metro, you will reach most of the popular attractions in the city. On weekdays the subway is operating from 5:30 in the morning until 23:30 at night. Saturdays the subway is operating 30 min longer until midnight, but on Sundays only from 8:00 until 22:30.
The subway has good connections to Palermo, Recoleta, and Microcentro (Plaza de Mayo-Presidential palace).
Some tips when using the subway in Buenos Aires:
- Carry your bag in front of your body. Be aware of pickpocketers.
- Avoid using the metro between 07:30 – 09:00 and 17:00 – 18:30. (Rush hour)
- There are persons in the subway trains that try to sell small things such as candy. They put in on your leg when seated. If you don’t want to buy it, just leave it. They will pick it up moments later or leave it on your seat. Or kindly say, “no thank you” when you see them coming.
Use the bus in Buenos Aires
Taking a bus in Buenos Aires is not more special than in another city. You will notice, everywhere you go, you will see a bus. The best thing is: you will never need to wait more than 10 minutes for a bus and the buses drive day and night!
First, you need the know bus line drives to your destination. We suggest downloading the “transit” app for your phone: https://transitapp.com. It’s the most complete app with live tracking. Get a local SIM-card in Buenos Aires. Read here where to buy a SIM-card. It’s handy and easy to use.
- Find the correct line to your destination
- Wait in line at the bus stop (a common thing to do in Argentina)
- Say to the bus driver your destination
- Scan your SUBE-card at the card reader terminal
Suburban train in Buenos Aires
In Buenos Aires, there is also the suburban train network. The train is cheap and well maintained.
Going to Tigre
You will need to take a suburban train when you want to go to Tigre. The line is called “Mitre”. It will take you one hour to arrive in Tigre. The train departs in Retiro train station. First
Going to El Palomar airport
Also, the train will bring you to El Palomar airport. The hub for FlyBondi and JetSmart. Take the “San Martin” line up to your destination in around 45-50 minutes. Departing from Retiro train station.