£61 - £160
The best time to travel to Budapest depends on your preferences. If you want the city all to yourself and still enjoy pleasant temperatures, then March to May and September to November will give you just that. Budapest is known for a relatively mild climate, with the higher temperatures seen from July to August, which averages 21 degrees Celsius. The low temperatures in January, however, do fall just below the freezing mark. The summer season brings a flood of tourists into the area, so you will notice that flights to Budapest tend to increase in cost, and hotels book fast. Year-round you will have your choice of fun festivals that give you an authentic Budapest experience. Need an excuse to travel in February? The Carnival in February offers a plethora of donuts and coffee and is the area’s highest consumption period for this popular breakfast treat.
Direct international flights into Budapest include British Airways, Ryanair, Norwegian Air International, Jet2, EasyJet and Wizz Air. Other airlines that offer international flights to Budapest include Swiss Air, Eurowings, Pegasus, Air France, KLM, Lufthansa, Finnair, Brussels Airlines, Flybe, Alitalia, Vueling, and a few other select airlines. Some airlines offer cheap flights to Budapest, but many of these require multiple stops, layovers, or allow limited baggage.
When arriving on a flight to Budapest at Ferenc Liszt International Airport (BUD), you are 25 kilometres away from the city centre.
The Ferihegy Train Station is reached by Bus 200E at the fifth stop, which is approximately 8 minutes away. Take the bus from Airport Terminal 2 to Western Train Station, Nyugati Palyaudvar. The train takes less than 30 minutes. A single ticket usually costs €1.45 but since you will need a transfer, a transfer ticket (for both train and bus) will cost €1.70 Euros.
Bus 200E takes you from Terminal 2 into M3 metro known as Kobanya-Kispest Metro Station. It takes approximately 30 minutes, and you can travel from there into the city centre on the M3 blue line. Bus 200E runs 4:00 am – 11:00 pm every 7 – 8 minutes in the day, and every 15 – 20 minutes at night from 11:00 pm to 12:21 am. Night service goes through the South Pest Bus Garage instead of the metro terminal. Departures from Terminal 2 at night let you change to night Bus 914, 914A, and 950 and 950A to take you to the city centre. Night buses leave every 5 – 15 minutes. Late night services are available on Bus 900, which travels from Terminal 2 into the bus garage. You must get off at the Bajcsy-Zsilinkszky Stop in District V and change to a night Bus 950 or 950A to get to the downtown area.
Taxis are the fastest and easiest way into the city centre, but they are also the most expensive. Taxis are available at Terminal 2 with a Fotaxi logo on them. The trip costs €20 – €22 Euros, and you can share with other travellers.
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Budapest transportation options are quite confusing at first, but there are several ways to get around. Most of the attractions in the city centre are within walking distance, so you will only need public transportation if you are leaving the centre.
The city has 3 subway lines M1-M3, while M4 is currently under construction. All three meet at Deak Ferenc ter in the city centre. Metro services are free for Europeans over the age of 65.
The extensive above-ground trams are helpful for getting around Budapest. The two that most tourists will take are 4 and 6, which loop around the roads of Budapest city centre.
The blue-coloured bus number 5-298 and marked with an E means that it is an end bus, while the shorter lines have an A. Bus 200E connects to the airport, but most tourists prefer 7-7A-107, Bus 86, 16, 16A, and 116, because they stop at most of the tourist destinations.
Electrical lines power the trolleys, and the Trolley 70 departs from the south side of Kossuth Square. It goes through the city centre and stops at the city park.
UK citizens must have a passport, but no visa is required for up to 90 days. Passport endorsed British Citizens, European Communities, British Dependent Territories Citizens or British Subjects only need a passport.
For foreign nationals, please check the Visit Budapest website.
Budapest has plenty of attractions, but if you have a limited itinerary, you must try to include the following first:
Avoid Taxi Scams
New taxi regulations are in effect as of 2013, but there are some taxi cabs trying to charge tariffs. Look for a licensed taxi only, which is yellow with a sign on the roof. Do not take unmarked taxi cabs.
Avoid the Tourist Hotspot Restaurants
Eat locally. Some of the tourist-specific restaurants have overpriced food.
Exchange your currency at an OTP bank or at a local exchange bureau in Budapest.Hungarian Forint converts at approximately 300 for every pound (as of 1st March, 2017). Be cautious when you pay, because you may accidentally mistake a 10,000 note for a 1,000 note.
The safest neighbourhoods to explore at night are Castle District, District V and VI, and some parts of District VII as well as Grand Boulevard.
Know the Local Phone Numbers
To call the police, you must dial 107. You can reach an English hotline for tourists on 438 8080.