Buses, trams and trolleybuses in Bucharest
In Bucharest, the ground transportation system consists of buses, trams and trolleybuses operated by the public service company, RATB. The buses, trams and trolleybuses run everyday from 04.30 to 23.00 and after this hour they are replaced by night buses that run once every hour (see RATB website for details).
There are several types of tickets (actually they are magnetic cards) you can use when you are in Bucharest but in this article we will focus on the card you can use as a tourist: Cardul Multiplu (Multiplu Card).
Multiplu Card is intended to be used by casual travelers, it can be purchased from any RATB kiosk, is not nominal, is transferable (several persons can share the same card if you have enough trips on it), is not rechargeable and it can't be used on the Metro System. When you buy this card you have 2 options:
- 2 - 10 trips. For urban lines each trip costs 1.3 lei and for the express buses (lines 780 and 783 from Henri Coanda International Airport to Bucharest city center or Gara de Nord Train Station) each trip costs 3.5 lei. If you already traveled from the airport to the city using an express bus then you are already familiar with this type of card. This option can be shared with your friends.
- Daily Pass. The price is 8 lei and you can use it all day long in any bus, tram or trolleybus. However, you can't use it for express buses (line 780 and 783). This option can't be shared with your friends.
Every time you buy this card there is an extra price for the card itself: 1.6 lei.
- There is no time limit for a trip and there are no zones in Bucharest, the tickets are available for the entire city.
- The cards cannot be purchased from the driver, they can only be purchased from the RATB kiosk in the bus stations so it would be better to buy a card with several trips topped because you will not find ticket kiosks in all bus stations.
- To validate your trip after you get in the vehicle, look for a small orange box with a blue LCD screen on it. Touch the indicated area on the orange box with your card and you will hear a short beep indicating your trip was validated. A long beep means there was an error and you need to try again. If you forget to validate your trip, you can be fined with 50 lei (approx. 11 euros)
- If you share the card with your friends, press before the button with the number 2 and then use the same validation procedure. Daily Pass cannot be shared.
There are some other cards but these are rather intended for local people or for tourists staying a lot longer in Bucharest. The card is called "ACTIV" and you can choose between:
- pass for 1 day (price 8 lei), 7 days (price 17 RON), 15 days (price 25 RON).
- electronic wallet. The prepaid amount can be used for any trip in the ground transportation system.
If you are looking for information about the bus transfer from the airport to Bucharest please visit thsese pages: 783 Express Bus between the airport and Bucharest or 780 Express Bus between the airport and Bucharest North Train Station
For more information about the routes or maps you can visit www.ratb.ro