Are you planning a trip to Budapest and this will be your first visit ever? Here are some useful tips on how to use public transport in Budapest with a ticket, a short-term travelcard or a long-term pass.
Passengers wishing to use BKK’s public transport services must be in possession of a valid ticket, pass or travelcard. Very important to validate your ticket before starting your trip or immediately after boarding or after the vehicle has departed. Please read some useful advice below.
When should you validate your ticket?
Tickets (except for boat, ferry and heritage service tickets) need to be validated by stamping or punching.
Tickets must be validated on the metro network before starting your trip, on other vehicles immediately after boarding or after the vehicle has departed.
Boat, ferry and heritage service tickets are validated by the crew.
Please be sure that you have validated your ticket before you started your trip!
How to validate your ticket?
Single tickets have a number grip on one end: you need to insert this end into the machine for validation. Short section metro tickets have no number grids: the empty area next to the text needs to be inserted.
Ticket validation in special cases
A special case is when a vehicle or a whole line needs to be replaced due to a technical or traffic related issue or for any other reason and passengers are required to transfer from the original vehicle to the replacement service or the other way round. If you hold a single ticket (also the type bought on the spot or one from a block of 10) or a transfer ticket consisting of two separate segments, you need to punch/stamp the other end (the one without a number grid) of your original, validated ticket after you have transferred to the replacement service. Transfer tickets of the older variety (purchasable from smaller distributing partners) however have number grids at both ends, so there is no need to revalidate when transferring to replacement services.
Where are the validating machines located?
On the metro network, the rows of validating machines are located at the entrance of metro stations. Please note that the row of machines is also a platform boundary line: if you cross this line without a ticket or a non-validated ticket, you can already be fined! At most stations, a white line is painted to indicate the boundary.
The validating machines stamp the starting time of your trip onto your ticket. Tickets need to be validated by stamping at the start of travel on metro lines M1, M2 M3 and M4. Tickets allow transfers between the metro lines, but return trips (going back in the opposite direction) and interruptions (leaving the metro area) are not permitted with the same ticket! You will need a new ticket in those cases.
On trams, trolleybuses, buses, suburban railway trains the validating machines are by the doors on board.
Tickets need to be validated by stamping or punching immediately after boarding or departure.
You will find two types of validators:
red, manual validators: please insert your ticket into the opening on the top and punch it by pulling the black frame of the slot towards you.
the orange-, or yellow-coloured electronic devices: please insert your ticket into the opening on the front for automatic validation.
What to do if the ticket-validating machine is out of order? If the validator is not working properly, please use a nearby machine on site or on board instead.
Travelling with a ticket
Single tickets (including those from a block of 10 tickets) are valid for a single uninterrupted trip without transfer on the whole length of lines 1-99, 101-299, 900–999, M1, M2, M3, M4 as well as on lines H5, H6, H7, H8, H9 only within the administrative boundaries of Budapest.
On the metro network, single tickets (including those from a block of 10 tickets) are valid for 80 minutes after stamping, while the validity period is 120 minutes on night services. Tickets allow travel on the full length of metro lines M1, M2, M3 and M4 with transfers between those lines during a single trip.
Bus line 100E is to be used only with the airport shuttle bus single ticket. For more information about the airport shuttle, please go to: https://bkk.hu/en/airport-shuttle/
Transfer tickets are valid for a single trip including one transfer on the whole length of lines 1-99, 101-299, 900–999, M1, M2, M3, M4 as well as on lines H5, H6, H7, H8, H9 only within the administrative boundaries of Budapest. Trip interruptions and return trips are not permitted. When validated by a stamping machine, the total validity period is 100 minutes (on night services it is 120 minutes), with an 80-minute validity after the second stamping. When the second validation takes place at the entrance of a metro station, the validity is 80 minutes (during the period of validity transfers are allowed between metro lines M1, M2, M3 and M4) even if the whole trip exceeds 100 minutes. If the second stamped validation takes place on a night service, validity is extended an additional 120 minutes.
Please show and hand over your ticket if requested by the inspector. Thermopaper transfer tickets are valid only if both sections are presented for control at the same time.
Short section metro tickets for up to 3 stops are valid on the metro network (M1, M2, M3 and M4) for a single short trip of up to 3 stops for a period of 30 minutes after validation. Trip interruptions and return trips are not permitted. During the period of validity, transfers are allowed between metro lines M1, M2, M3 and M4 but only for a total of 3 stops.
Keep your ticket until the end of your journey, on the metro network until you have left the station as ticket inspection is done at the exits as well. Please show and hand over your ticket if requested by the inspector.
Travelling with a pass
Budapest-passes are valid within the administrative boundaries of Budapest on lines 1-99, 101-299, 900-999, M1, M2, M3, M4, H5, H6, H7, H8, H9, D14, on commute services of MÁV-Start national railways and VOLÁN regional buses. They are also valid on boat lines D11 and D12, but on workdays only.
Full-price passes are valid only together with one of the following types of photo ID: personal photo ID, passport, card-format driving licence, a valid BKK or Volán-BKSZ pass ID. The number of the selected valid ID must be indicated on the pass upon purchase and that ID must be presented for control along with the pass.
Travelling with a travelcard
Travelcards are valid for 24 hours, 72 hours or 7 days from the indicated date and time (month, day, hour, minute) for an unlimited number of trips within the administrative boundaries of Budapest.
Travelcards require no validation after purchase and allow unlimited trips within the indicated validity period. Advance purchase is possible.
The 5/30 24-hour travelcard is an exception as the passengers must cross out the start of validity (day, hour, minute) with non-removable ink (pencil use is not accepted!) before travel on each individual daily segment of the travelcard. Please check https://bkk.hu/en/tickets-and-passes/prices/530-bkk-24-hour-travelcard/
For more information about travelcard types and prices, please check our page at: https://bkk.hu/en/tickets-and-passes/prices/
Where to get your ticket, pass or travelcard?
Every day, round the clock from BKK ticket vending machines with cash or bankcard.
At Public Transport Customer Service Centres, where maps and other brochures are also available. Both cash and bankcards are accepted for payment.
Single ticket on board the bus for 450 HUF. Please have the exact amount ready as the driver does not have change.
Find your nearest Public Transport Customer Service Centre, ticket vending machine, ticket office or other sellers with the help of the BKK Sales Point Finder: https://bkk.hu/pontkereso/
Watch this video on how to validate your ticket:
Information about penalty fares
If you travel without of a valid ticket, travelcard or pass, the inspectors will issue a penalty fare cheque for 16,000 HUF. This amount is reduced to 8,000 HUF if paid in cash on the spot (only Forints accepted!) in which case, the passenger does not need to present a photo ID, so this is the most convenient way to settle the fare.
The on-the-spot penalty fare (8,000 HUF) can also be settled subsequently via cash or credit card payment at one of the following locations: Penalty Fare Office (Budapest, District 7, Akácfa u. 22), Main Customer Service Centre (Budapest, District 7, Rumbach Sebestyén utca 19–21), Kelenföld vasútállomás Metro Station Customer Service Centre (Budapest, District 11, Kelenföld railway station underpass) or Széll Kálmán tér Customer Service Centre (Buda, District 2) within 2 working days after issue. The sum of the on-the-spot fine will not exceed 8,000 HUF and you must be given a receipt. In case you experience a different procedure, please inform BKK Customer Services without delay either by email to [email protected] or by calling +36 1 3 255 255.
For more information about fines, please check our page at: https://bkk.hu/en/tickets-and-passes/fines/
As we wrote before, barely a year ago, we reported that the introduction of the electronic ticketing system in Budapest is much needed and is expected to be delayed. A couple of days ago, it was revealed that instead of the planned twelve years, the project would be finished in thirteen. Index conducted a short investigation into the matter, contacting BKK. Read more HERE.
Also we wrote: “Living. Moving. Breathing.” This is the title of the new study concluded by Greenpeace. This research analysed the traffic of 13 different cities in Europe from the perspective of sustainability. Turizmus.com drew some conclusions from the (not so favourable) results of the survey. Read more HERE.