The Community of Madrid has a wide range of transport options, linking all the places and areas of the city. The main means of transport are underground trains, buses, commuter trains, bicycles and taxis. The main interchanges are Avenida de América, Méndez Álvaro Estación Sur, Plaza Elíptica, Moncloa and Príncipe Pío, where the regional public transport system and the long-distance national bus service converge. In addition, the main long-distance and commuter railway stations are Puerta de Atocha and Chamartín. There is also the Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas Airport, run by AENA and located in the district of Barajas in the north-east of Madrid, 12 kilometres from the city centre. It has four terminals (T1, T2, T3 and T4) and the IATA code it uses is MAD.
The Madrid Underground is open every day of the year, on both working days and holidays, from 6:00 am to 2:00 am. The prices of the tickets vary, depending on the line and the number of stations you need to travel through. On the website you can view the Map of the underground system to see exactly which lines you have to use and the changes to be made to reach your place of destination, as well as obtaining more information on fares and prices.
The underground has a pass (bonobús) entitling you to 10 journeys, or you can buy a single ticket for just one journey. You can also use the Public Transport Travel Card, which lasts for 30 days.
The stations providing commuter trains usually open at 6:00 am, although there are services which begin at 4:30 am and last until around midnight. On Renfe’s website on Madrid commuter trains you can find the timetables for each station and you can also check the prices, fares and maps of the lines and zones with which Renfe’s commuter trains operate. The Community has ten lines connecting the capital with the outlying towns. Commuter train tickets do not have a single fare. They depend on the zone and the stations you wish to travel to. There is a pass entitling you to 10 journeys and you can also use the Public Transport Travel Card.
Madrid has a large urban bus network, consisting of more than 203 lines and run by the EMT (Municipal Transport Company). It provides a daytime service (from 6:00 am to 23:30 pm) as well as night buses. The latter are also known as búhos (owls). The Madrid EMT website and that of the Madrid Transport Consortium both provide information on maps, lines, timetables and fares. It has a pass (metrobús) entitling you to ten journeys, but you can also buy a ticket for a single journey on the bus itself or use the Public Transport Travel Card. If you wish to check information on lines and waiting times, you can do so on the following app: EMT-App.
The public transport travel card or pass is a personal and non-transferable ticket allowing you, for a single payment, to go on an unlimited number of journeys by underground, bus or commuter train for a period of 30 days. The price depends on the number of zones you pay for when you buy the card.
According to the official website of theMadrid Regional Transport Consortium (CRTM):
- You can arrange a time and choose an office to pick up your card from on the website at www.tarjetatransportepublico.es
- At any CRTM office
- Tobacconists’ shops (estancos)
You need the following documentation:
- A photocopy of your ID, passport or residence permit.
- An application form
- A recent passport-size photograph (unless you apply at the office, where your photo will be taken on the spot).
Madrid has a bicycle service covering a large part of the city centre. You can use it with the public transport travel card to obtain a discount. If you have a monthly ticket it will cost 15 Euros. Without it the price will be 25 Euros. You can view other rates, discounts and ways of using it and obtain further information on the BiciMadwebsite.