Budapest Airport Train to be built by Chinese company?

A direct speed-train between Budapest Ferenc Liszt International Airport and Budapest city centre had been planned for years, but yet no results have been shown. The Chinese company CRRC has plans on building a train line directly to the Hungarian capital’s airport.

Today there are train lines (Intercity, other lines) and also direct bus lines that are going to Terminal 2 at Budapest Airport, but not yet to Terminal 1. According to’s information, a Chinese state company, CRRC would build the new line, and Bank of China would finance it. A train line on such a route would sound great news, but let’s see what might be the benefits and drawbacks.

Illustration, an overpass train

The Chinese plan for the train:

The idea of a separate train line is a good idea because it can be fast and precisely-scheduled. As far as CRRC’s train plan is concerned, there are concrete ideas about the train’s running time, price and finance plans. The new line would go parallel to current Budapest rails, but on new rails. The majority of these rails would run mostly on overpasses. One third (5.5 km) of the rails would be on overpasses that would require the construction of 13 brand new bridges in Budapest.

A passenger on the train would reach the Airport in 15-18 mins, and the trains would run every 10-12 minutes when peak time and every 30 mins all night long. The planned prices should be net 2500 HUF and 3175 HUF (with value-added tax), approximately 10 EUR. Six trains for 300 passengers would be constructed by CRRC.

About finances:

CRRC would operate the railway for 30 years and five more years to operate indirectly. Investors predict the project’s pay-off in 35 years when the lawn is returned, after which the Chinese company would give the operation’s right to the Hungarian state free of charge. The company would produce the trains on their own; their estimate investment cost is 180 billions of Forint (~566 million Euros).

Other concerning projects:

As in our previous article from the beginning of January, it has reported that we don’t know the future of Budapest Airport yet, concerning which one of the new constructions will the airport take. There were two projects: one is a 6-storey car park in front of Terminal 2, and the other one is the direct train line between Budapest city centre and Ferenc Liszt Airport.

The idea of the huge multiple-storey parking lot was withdrawn recently, in December 2018, by Budapest Government Office due to a missing authority approval. This decision, however, might have made because the planned Chinese-built train’s line could have crossed the new car park’s territory. The Transporting Mass Association claims the development of suburban railways and overall development of Budapest-country cities railway lines was more help to Hungary. A plan is also made about those, so Airport may be accessible without transfer from/to bigger Hungarian cities, like Győr, Székesfehérvár, Nyíregyháza, Debrecen, Szeged or Kecskemét.

To recap: Seemingly, the 6-storey car park at Ferenc Liszt Airport is not in construction, and it is still unknown the Budapest Airport speed-train line is going to be built up by Hungarian State Railway Company (MÁV) or Chinese state-owned CRRC, the decision is yet to be made by the Hungarian Government.

Red line – railways planned by Hungarian MÁV
Blue line – railways planned by Chinese CRRC