Getting from the airport to your hotel can be a real pain – especially if you’re in a foreign country, not too hot on the lingo and tired after a few hours cramped into an aeroplane that seems to be populated by 50% screaming babies and 50% lager louts ‘on tour’. But fear not! Here are our tips on getting from Barcelona’s good old El Prat airport to the city centre quicker than you can say ‘tapas‘.
1. Hotel transfers
Check with your hotel when you book – some offer free transfers to and from the airport and might be able to come and meet you there. And there is no better feeling than someone being there to meet you at the arrivals gate, even if it is a sweaty stranger.
2. Take the Aerobus
The Aerobus can get busy but is still one of the best ways to get into town. There are regular buses throughout the day from 0500 to 0030 with stops on Plaza España, the Gran Via and Plaza Catalunya. Tickets cost €5.90 single and €10.20 return, and you can buy them on the bus or online.
3. Take the local bus
If you want to save a few pennies, look out for the #46 bus – at just over €2, this costs a fraction of the price of the Aerobus and also stops on Plaza España – ideal if you are staying nearby. Pay on the bus, or use your T10 (10-journey ticket for use on Barcelona’s metro, buses and some local trains and funiculars) by popping it in the slot for validation. T10s cost €9.95 for 10 journeys.
4. Hop on the train
Barcelona’s airport is well-connected with the city centre – you can get from the terminal to the train station without even setting foot outside. From there, it’s a quick 20 minute ride to the main train station of Sants. A little further down the line, some trains also go on to Passeig de Gracia. There is about one train every half hour from about 0530 to 2330 – but check the timetables as they are subject to change.
Taxis are plentiful and most taxi drivers speak enough English to be able to get by – look out for their distinctive yellow and black cabs. As a rule of thumb, a taxi to Plaza Catalunya will cost about €29 (€32 on weekends, at night and on public holidays), €24 (€26) to Plaza España.
Cover Photo: Flickr / Lali Masriera
Article Photo: Flicke / Camilo Rueda