Madrid-Barajas Airport is situated twelve kilometers to the northeast of the city. It has four terminals (T1, T2, T3 and T4) connected to the city center by metro (line 8). T1, T2 and T3 share the same metro station. T4 (mainly operating Iberia flights) has its own metro station (line 8 as well) and a railway station. Free buses connect T4 with T1, T2 and T3.
You can get downtown Madrid by:
- Suburban local train (only if you are arriving at T4)
Madrid-Barajas Airport public transport map: pdf
Madrid taxis are white with a red stripe, a license number and the coat-of-arms of Madrid City Council on the door. They are parked outside each of the airport terminals. From January 7 there is a flat fare of 30€ on trips with origin or destination between the Airport and the inside of the M-30 beltway (downtown hotels are inside the M-30 beltway). No supplements can be added to this flat fare. Taxi drivers do not expect tips but, if you wish, a small tip (1-1,50€) is appropriate. Further information: here
Línea Exprés (the express bus) runs from Madrid-Barajas Airport to the Atocha-RENFE transport hub in Madrid city center (very near to the well-known Paseo del Arte and the main museums: the Prado, Reina Sofía and Thyssen-Bornemisza) in just 40 minutes in normal traffic conditions.
24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Runs every 15 minutes during the day and every 35 at night.
The stop at Atocha-RENFE is not used from 23:30 to 6:00. During this period the departure point is in Plaza de la Cibeles, where there are connections to all the Municipal Transport (EMT) night buses, known as ‘búhos’ (owls).
A single ticket costs 5€. Luggage is carried free. You can buy tickets (cash only) on board the bus.
Metro Line 8 runs from all the airport terminals to Nuevos Ministerios station in central Madrid in approximately 12-15 minutes.
From 6:05 to 2:00.
One-way ticket: 4.5€ (includes the 3€ airport supplement).
- Metrobus pass:
+ Valid for 10 Metro trips in zone A, in EMT city buses (except the Línea Exprés to and from the airport) and Metro Ligero line 1: 12.20€.
+ Valid for 10 Metro trips and EMT city bus trips (except Línea Exprés) with a single transfer from EMT to EMT in a maximum of 60 minutes from the first validation: 18.30€.
- Tourist pass:
This pass gives you unlimited use of all forms of public transport. There are passes from 1 to 7 days. Children under 11 pay half price. You can choose two zones:
+ Zone A: includes Metro Madrid, Metro Ligero ML1, Cercanías-RENFE (local trains) within the zone, and EMT Madrid buses
+ Zone T: includes all public transport in the Madrid Autonomous Region. It is not valid for the Línea Exprés airport bus or for regional RENFE railway lines.
Check the tariffs here: pdf. The tourist pass is personal and not transferable. When requesting it you must present an official document (ID, Passport, etc.) proving your identity, and note its number on the pass.
You can buy all these tickets at the ticket counters and ticket machines in the lobby of any Metro station.
Metro de Madrid has an official App (available for Android, Blackberry and IPhone/IPad), which might be very useful if you are planning to visit the city.
It includes the updated map of the entire Metro network, the tourist map, information about the metro lines, Metro traffic reports in real time, information (via GPS) on the closest station to your location, etc. Download it here:
Line C1 of Renfe Cercanías runs from terminal T4 of Madrid-Barajas Airport to downtown Madrid.
The approximate frequency is 30 minutes. Check the timetable: here
Approximate journey time from Airport T4 station to:
- Chamartín (connecting to long distance trains): 11 minutes.
- Nuevos Ministerios (financial district): 18 minutes.
- Atocha (connecting to long-distance trains, the Renfe AVE high-speed train, and the Prado, Reina Sofía and Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza museums): 25 minutes.
- Méndez Álvaro (connecting to long-distance buses): 29 minutes.
- *Pirámides* (connecting to Metro Line 5 –the green line–; Pirámides is just two metro stations away from La Latina station and one station away from Puerta de Toledo station, both close to the conference venue): 35 minutes.
- Príncipe Pío (connecting to long-distance buses and transport hub): 38 minutes.
Map of Cercanías Madrid rail network: here
To Airport T4 station: from 6:02 to 23:32.
To Príncipe Pío: from 5:59 to 22:28.
One-way ticket: 2,40€. Valid for one journey in the two hours after it is issued. This service is free for passengers with AVE high-speed train tickets connecting with a flight.
Return ticket: 4,80€. The outbound journey must be made in the two hours after the ticket is issued, and the return can be used at any time the next day.
Be sure not to throw out your train ticket during the journey. Otherwise you won’t be able to go through the turnstiles of the train stations! (it happens)