Vienna has a fairly small but useful subway system known as the U-Bahn (an abbreviation of Untergrundbahn, meaning underground railway). There are five lines, somewhat confusingly numbered 1,2,3,4 and 6 – no one seems to know what happened to line 5! Lines 1 and 3 are perhaps most useful to the tourist, as they cross the city centre, but you may also find yourself on 2 or 4, especially as the latter goes to Schönbrunn. Line 6 skirts the edge of the centre and may be of less use to you.
Stations are marked with a large blue U and are easy to spot. You can buy your ticket from the machines inside. A single journey costs 2.10€ (summer 2014 price) and you can also buy tickets for a 24 hour (7.10€), 48 hour (12.40€) or 72 hour (15.40€) period – well worth considering if you expect to use public transport a lot, as these are valid not only on the U-Bahn but also trams and buses. Alternatively, if you have bought a Vienna Card this not only gives you discounts in lots of attractions but also free 48 or 72 hours travel on all public transport. Also note that children up to six years old travel for free, and children up to fifteen do so too on Sundays, holidays and during the Vienna school holidays – what a great idea! If using a ticket (as opposed to your Vienna Card), make sure you validate it as you pass through the electronic gates to the platform area.
Next tip: our hotel, the Marc Aurel
There are 29 tram lines and 90 bus lines in Vienna. On this visit we used one of each. To get to the wedding we attended in Döbling we caught a bus from the city centre to the Schottentor on the north side of the 1st district, which is something of a transport hub. From there we caught tram 37 which goes to Hohe Warte in Döbling. The final stop was just five minutes’ walk from the church and would also be useful for anyone wanting to visit some Heurigen in Grinzing as this is just on the edge of that famous neighbourhood. I noted that tram 38, also from Schottentor, goes to Grinzing too by the way.
A single journey (valid for one ride including transfers) costs 2.10€ (summer 2014 price) and you can also buy tickets for a 24 hour (7.10€), 48 hour (12.40€) or 72 hour (15.40€) period – well worth considering if you expect to use public transport a lot, as these are valid on the U-Bahn as well as the trams and buses. But as we were here mainly to spend time with friends and that mostly in the city centre (with the exception of this one trip out to Döbling) we just bought single tickets for the few journeys we made.
We bought our tickets from a tobacconist – look for the distinctive “Tabac” sign outside. These seem to be pretty numerous and there’s is usually one close to any stop. You can also buy single tickets on bard the trams and buses but this costs more – an extra 2.20€ for adults (1.10€ for children) so is not a good idea unless you’re really stuck.
Be sure to validate your ticket as soon as you board by punching it in the machines. If you’ve bought your ticket from the driver it is already validated, so no need to do this, and likewise if you have a Vienna Card which allows free transport throughout the city.
Next tip: Grinzing and its Heurigen
I usually do these bus tours, but in Vienna I didn't! I just thought I would let you know one is available as I saw the Bus quite a few times around Vienna.
The bus does 4 Routes and includes 37 Stops for getting on and off. As usual with these Buses, audio guides are available in 16 languages. It does the full city tour to all major sightseeing attractions.
The Red Line does the Ring road where there are lots of lovely sights to see.
The Blue Line is the Danube route, so you will see the Hundertwasserhaus, the Prater with its Giant Ferris Wheel and the Danube Tower.
The Yellow Line takes you to Schönbrunn Palace, definitely not to be missed, the Fruit and Flower Market, the Museum of Military History as well as Belvedere Palace.
The Green Line goes to thewine growing village Grinzing, Kahlenberg and the Klosterneuburg Abbey.
TICKETS Hop-on hop-off bus tickets for 24 or 48 hours
PRICES IN 2014
Red Line & Guided Walking Tour
24-hour ticket: Adult: 15 EUR, Child (3-12): 7 EUR
All Lines & Guided Walking Tour
24-hour ticket: Adult: 25 EUR, Child (3-12): 12 EUR
48-hour ticket: Adult: 29 EUR, Child (3-12): 15 EUR
All Lines & Guided Walking Tour & Boat Tour
48-hour ticket: Adult: 39 EUR, Child (3-12): 19 EUR
Guided Walking Tour
Adult: 10 EUR, Child (3-12): 0 EUR
Adult: 19.90 EUR, Child (3-12): 9.90 EUR
The Yellow Tourist Ring Tram is a classic E1 street-car that continuously follows the Ringstrasse loop without needing a line change. There is room on board the Vienna Ring-Tram for 35 passengers (31 seats with headphone connections). In May, the Tram wasn't very full, but I imagine in high season it would be!
The clockwise trip starts at the Opera House and does the loop in 24 minutes. It does have audio headphones that can be changed to the language you speak, and LCD screens showing you the highlights as you go around. Instead of a hop/on/off bus tour, it is a hop/on/off Tram tour. If you get off, the wait for another Tram is around 30 minutes.
If your not confident using public transport, then the Vienna Ring tram is a great option as it connects to all the major historical sites and enables you to get on or off just as you wish at a total of 13 stops.
The tram stops at the following stations and getting off and on is possible anywhere:
Opera, Burgring, Dr.K.Renner Ring, Stadiong./Parlament, Rathaus/Burgtheater, Schottentor, Boerse, Schottenring, Salztorbruecke, Schwedenplatz, Stubentor, Weihburggasse, schwarzenbergerplatz
OPERATES DAILY FROM 10 - 5.30PM
Tickets: For a one-time 30 minute continuous loop ride it's 8€ (4€ for children up to15years)
24 hour hop-on/hop-off pass it's 9€ (5€ for children)
2-for-1 pass which includes this Yellow tourist line and all other city tram lines for 24 hours is 14€.
The City Airport Train, abbreviated as CAT, ist the fastest connection vor Vienna Schwechat Airport (VIE) into the city. It takes you straight to Wien Mitte station without any stops on the way in 20 minutes. It is on the one hand convenient, on the other hand rather expensive compared to alternatives. I took it once because I arrived very late in the evening and my accommodation was a few minutes walk from Mitte station.
Fares are 11 € one way at the ticket machine, an Euro or so cheaper when booked online in advance during the CAT website (http://www.cityairporttrain.com/) The CAT need special tickets.
The cheaper but less comfortable alternative is the S-Bahn (S7), which is part of Vienna's public transport network.
- easy: you cannot miss your stop because it is non-stop straight to Mitte
- clean, comfortable, usually empty. The S7 can be full like a can of sardines in peak hours, though (I hardly made it on board in the morning departing from Rennweg station).
- fares: 11 € as opposed to 4.20 € on the S-Bahn. The S7 runs every 30 minutes from the track next door. It needs about 10-15 minutes longer into town than the CAT.
- The S7 has several stops in between, which might be more convenient for you if you are staying in one of the southern districts.
Decide for yourselves whether price or comfort count more for you. Both the CAT and the S7 work perfectly well. The tracks at the airport station are next to each other and well signposted.
Since 1896 two tram lines were circling the whole Ring road: the 1 in clockwise direction and the 2 in counter-clockwise direction. They were useful for getting around as well as for a comfortable tour of the Ring if you needed a rest during sightseeing. They took you around the inner city in a full circle and brought you back to your starting point. They were part of the public transport network and could be used with standard tickets and passes.
In 2008 the lines were reorganized and the two Ring lines have been abandoned. The new lines, including the new 1 and 2, all touch a fraction of the Ring and then continue to outer quarters. Instead of the previous circular lines a tourist tram has been installed as the only line that circles the Ring. This tourist tram, called the Vienna Ring Tram, of course requires special tickets at a higher cost; public transport passes are not valid on it.
If you want my opinion: This qualifies as a tourist trap. Shame on Vienna city and transport network!!!
Vienna tram is definitely the best and most appropriate public transportation in the city. There is "24 Stunden Wien" Karte (24 hours Vienna ticket), which cost 7,10 euros, and for that amount of money one can travel side to side of the city without restraints. Tram connects all parts of the city, connections are frequent and the interior is clean and tidy. Passengers are polite and generally mind their own business, but will politely answer the question and acting friendly.
One night I took a wrong line and went to a final stop somewhere in the suburbs. Night lines are safe and without inconvenience.
Metro is everywhere under Vienna, it comes under Danube river as well. The cost of one ticket is approximately 3 euros and it was too expensive for me, but I have tried the metro in Vienna just to go to Prater funfair.
For my second visit I got 3 days ticket for all transportation, so it was comfortable to navigate from friend flat to center, Schonbunn palace, other nice places.
I knew that to use train instead of bus is better when travelling from Bratislava to Vienna or back. Anyway, I wanted to use bus to Studtiroler platz, as I needed to explore this area (my bus to Warsaw was from this station).
Bus trip took around 1 hour and 20 minutes, the price was quite affordable - around 7-8 euros. The bus goes quite frequently, so no problem about transportation between these two towns, especially if you add also train lines.
After so many travelings by car only, this time I decided to use public transportation to get to Vienna and Prague, and did not regret. The only disadvantage was that I couldn't stop and take a look of some attractive places which I noticed from the window of running train.
The return train ticket, Zagreb-Vienna-Prague and back, cost approx. 140 euros and I find it inexpensive. It is price for the second class compartment with a single seats, table and connection for the electricity, so in case, one can use laptop all the way of traveling or to recharge phone or battery of the camera....
Vienna is one of the safest towns in europe, and public transport is quite save (but after midnight only every 30 minutes, running on a different grid), and tramways and buses go everywhere.
A single ticket is € 2,10 at ticket machines, € 2,20 if you buy in the bus, 24 hours € 7,10, 48 hours € 12,40, 72 hours € 15,20.
Available in the Vienna Transport ticket offices, tabacconists and ticket machines.
Do not forget to validate your ticket in the Subway station or in the bus or tramway.
See Vienna in a completely new and relaxing way with their Hop-on Hop-off bus tour where you can set your own pace. You may get on and off at any of the 15 or more stops, and as often as you want.
The ticket which is valid for one day costs approximately US$26.00 or €20.00 only. If you want a more sophisticated tour of Vienna, you may take the Original Oldtimer Bus that will take you not just the ordinary sightseeing but a nostalgic experience to tourists of any age.
The metro system (or U-Bahn) in Vienna dates back to 1898. It now features 5 lines connecting 101 stations.We only used the metro a few times in Vienna (to travel to and from train stations and to go to Schönbrunn Palace), but each time we did, it worked out really well. It's a cheap, fast and convenient way of getting around. Tickets can be bought from multi-language machines using cash or credit cards at each station. There are different types of multi-day passes available it you plan on using the metro a lot. Single-ticket fare is 2 Euros - don't forget to validate your ticket!
I can only confirm from my various visits that public transport in Vienna is excellent as well as what concerns the Metro U-Bahn U-1, U-2, U-3 and U-4 (I have no experience of the U-6 and the S-Bahn) the trams and the busses. It's well organized, clean and apparently safe.
What I particularly appreciate is:
1° The info web site http://www.wienerlinien.at in German and English. Usually I consult the German pages because they seem more complete than the English but I might be wrong.
I buy the 24, 48 or 72 hours tickets depending on the length of my short stays. They are exactly valid from the time they are punched (Don't forget to punch them!). Prices are reasonable for 24 Hours: € 6.70, 48 Hours: € 11,70 and 72 Hours: € 14,50. These tickets are interesting if you do 3 - 4 trips/24 hour compared to the single ticket at 2,50 €.
After consulting and printing the website Route planner I know exactly what to do to get to my planned destination.
2° The indications found in the metro stations and on the metro, trams or busses.
For example I wanted to visit the Military Museum at Arsenal (outside the centre). Taking the U-3 metro to the Südtiroler Platz I had to take the bus 69 to Arsenal stop. At the metro station signs indicate the way to the exit for trams and busses and the platform where I had to take bus 69.
Inside the metro, bus or tram the stops are mentioned by voice or panels.
In Vienna you can't get lost.
I'm including all the forms of transportation I used in Vienna because most of my time in this city was spent on one form or the other.
First, I arrived early in the morning at the Westbahnhof train station, coming from Danmark.
My goal was to find the way to Bratislava, CzechoSlovakia. Unfortunately, I missed the train to Bratislava so thought to take the bus. In order to get to the bus station I had to take the U-Bahn (Untergrundbahn.)
Vienna’s Subway system was relatively new. The first line, running north/south was opened in 1978. So, since by the time I was there, not all U-Bahn lines were opened yet, I also had to take an above ground bus, this was nice because I was able to see some of the sites in the city.
Found out at the bus station that no one would speak with me in English--too shy--and somehow with made-up sign language, that the bus would leave too late for me to catch my flight from the airport in Bratislava. It was then that I began to feel defeated.
After the good ol' "You can do it!"pep-talk I gave myself, I went back to the Westbahnhof because I remembered that they had shuttles to the airport. I felt certain that, though I knew I couldn't take a flight to the airport in Bratislava, that I'd find my solution at the Vienna airport.
At the Budget car rental company in the airport, I tried to rent a car. I asked, "If I rent the car here, would I be allowed to drop it off at my destination?"
"Yes, of course!" the nice young man said.
"Oh wonderful! Then I'd like to rent a car and drop it off at the airport in Bratislava. Please."
He actually said, "No Way Jose!" Then went on to explain that CzechoSlovakia--at the time, still a closed country--didn't have a contract with them. Or something along those lines.
Truly bummed, I walked out of the airport thinking of a way that I could get someone to drive me a measly, forty miles.
There, in front of my eyes, was the answer. A long line of lovely Mercedes, with Taxi signs blinking on them! I negotiated the price for the ride to the border and help securing a CzechoSlovak taxi to the airport. This was expensive, but well worth the price! I made it to the plane on time.