Getting Around in Bucharest

With an extensive public transport system, getting around Bucharest is easy. As with anywhere else, a map is essential for new arrivals, and can be bought at bus ticket booths and newsagents.

The centre of town is small enough to travel around by foot – but watch out for potholes, broken paving and cars squeezed into wherever they can find a space. For longer trips, the metro, tram, bus and trolley bus are all viable options.
 

Public transport in Bucharest

 

Metro

Public transport makes getting around Bucharest easyBucharest’s metro system is clean and affordable; the only problem is that new lines haven't been added since the fall of communism in 1989. Construction on new lines started in 2011, but is only expected to be finished around 2020. However, if someone needs to get somewhere close to a metro stop, it is the quickest and easiest system to use. Tickets can be purchased at metro stations, with different multiple-journey options available.
 

Buses, trolley buses and trams

The city is covered with bus and tram stops, making it easier to get around in Bucharest. Buses, trolley buses and trams are all run by RATB, the local public transport operator, and use the same ticketing system.

Tickets can be bought at booths around town, which are generally found next to bus stops. Most ticket issuers do not speak English, however. The word for ticket in Romanian is "bilet". It might be easier to purchase tickets on the RATB website. Being caught travelling without one will result in a hefty fine.
 
The quality of vehicles varies but, if a commute is crowded, expats should take care of their personal belongings. Bucharest is generally safe but pickpockets are known to operate on public transport. 
 

Taxis in Bucharest


Taxi services in Bucharest vary, as do their driving standards. They can be a very quick way of getting around, but this depends on traffic. A taxi is a good option once the daily bus service has stopped, but when using one, always check the price on the side of the vehicle. Once in, check that the meter is showing the same rate and ensure the driver has switched it on. Expats unsure of how to pronounce their destination should have it written on a piece of paper.
 

Driving in Bucharest


Driving in Bucharest is not recommend unless an expat wants to travel around Romania for sightseeing or to travel to northeastern Bucharest, where public transport is almost non-existent and getting back to the centre by taxi can be difficult. 
 
Bucharest’s road infrastructure was created for 300,000 cars and now there are more than a million. While it may be quicker to drive, finding parking in Bucharest can be challenging and drivers often park where they like with little intervention by the police.

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Our Bucharest Expert

DeanEdgar's picture
Manchester, England. Bucharest, Romania
Moorcroft was set up in 2006 after I recognised the need to offer complete investment and relocation services, having spent... more

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