Getting Around - Internal Travel
Currently there are no scheduled internal air services in Hungary,
but they are planned for the near future.
There are regular services on the Danube and Lake
Balaton from spring to late autumn. MAHART and the Budapest
Travel Company (BKV) also operate ferries within the city centre,
the Roman Embankment (Római Part) and at
some crossing points.
Due to the opening of the bridge between Esztergom and Párkány
(Sturovo) during 2001, the former ferry service on the Danube
is no longer available. On Lake Balaton, a ferry
operates during the summer at 40-minute intervals daily between
Tihanyrév and Szántódrév,
and between Révfülöp and Balatonboglér
0620-0000 hrs, at other times of the year the service runs 0630-1930
hrs. Contact MAHART for further details (see Travel
– International section for contact details).
Services are operated by MÁV. All main cities
are linked by efficient services but the facilities are often inadequate.
Supplements are payable on the IC and express trains. Reservations
are compulsory for IC trains and recommended for the express
trains, particularly during the summer.
Tickets can be bought 60 days in advance on domestic railway lines,
as can the seat reservations.
The most popular tourist rail routes are:
Budapest–Kecskemet–Szeged– Budapest and
Rail-bus services are available between the main railway stations
within Budapest at fixed rates (telephone number: (1) 353 2722,
fax number: (1) 353 2187, website: www.mav.hu).
Narrow-gauge railways are in operation in many parts of the country.
Concessions are available for groups, minimum of 10 persons, children,
families and pensioners. Children under 6 years travel free. Children
aged 6 to 12 pay approximately a third of the full fare.
Balaton and Tourist Season Tickets
(7 to 10 days) are also available. Contact MÁV
for details (see Travel – International section for contact
The Hungarian Flexipass, sold by travel agents
worldwide and by Rail Europe, offers unlimited first-class train
travel for 5 days in a 15-day period or for 10 days in a 30-day
period. The Hungarian Tourist Card offers discounts
on rail, bus, taxi and ship services, as well as accommodation,
restaurants and museums. The Hungarian National Tourist
Office can provide further information.
Traffic drives on the right hand side.
There are 8 arterial roads in the country, all but the M8 start
from the centre of Budapest. Tolls are payable on some roads and
all the motorways. Season tickets can also be purchased.
From Budapest the 2 main highways are the M1 from Györ to Vienna
and the M7 along Lake Balaton. The M3 connects Budapest with eastern
Generally the road system is quite good.
Budapest is linked with the major provincial towns. Tickets
are available from Volán long-distance bus
terminal, Budapest, and at Volán
offices throughout the country. A bus season ticket is also available.
Available at Ferihegy Airport or at Volán
and Budapest tourist offices as well as at major hotels.
Speed limits are 50kph (31mph) in the built-up areas, 90kph (50mph)
on main roads, 110kph (62mph) on highways and 130kph (75mph) on
Seat belts are compulsory. Petrol stations are frequent and there
are no special tourist petrol coupons. There is a total alcohol
ban when driving; severe fines are imposed for any infringements.
It is obligatory to keep headlights dipped at all times when on
the open/main road. Mobile phones are allowed only with headsets
and child seats are compulsory.
The Hungarian Automobile Club operates a breakdown
service on main roads at weekends and a 24-hour service on motorways.
For further details contact the Hungarian
Automobile Club, Rómer Flóris utca 4/A, H-1024
Budapest (telephone number: (1) 345 1800 or 345 1755 (24-hour emergency
helpline); e-mail: email@example.com).
Pink format EU licence accepted but International Driving
Permit required if green licence held.
There is good public transport in all main towns. Budapest has bus,
trolleybus, tramway, suburban railway (HEV), a 3-line metro and
The metro has ticket barriers at all stations. The bus–trolleybus–tramway
system has pre-purchase flat fares with ticket puncher on board.
Day passes are available for all the transport
modes in the city. Trams and buses generally run from about 0430-2300
hrs. Some night services also operate. The metro runs from 0430-2310
hrs and stations can be identified by a large ‘M’. There
is also a cogwheel railway (Városmajor–Széchenyi
Hill), a Childrens’ Railway (Hüvösvölgy–Széchenyi
Hill), a chairlift and a funicular. Day passes and season
tickets are available to purchase in Budapest.
The following chart gives approximate travel times from Budapest
to other major cities/towns in Hungary.