Getting around Prague is quite easy thanks to its efficient and reliable public transport. You can easily explore the historical center on foot, but for some more distant locations you can take metro, buses or trams (as well as the Petřín funicular and various ferries along the Vltava river). Buses are mostly used outside of the city center and in the outskirts, while trams and metros run through the city center. Trams are the handiest way to get from one point to another in the Old Town (if you get tired from walking), but for some longer routes, you can always hop on the metro.
Metro has 3 lines – A, B and C, that are marked different colors, and it covers a big part of the city. Of course, it is also the fastest way to get to many locations. It runs from a bit before 5am to midnight, every 2 to 4 minutes during the rush hour, and for the rest of the day and on weekends, every 4 to 10 minutes. After midnight, night trams and buses are the options you can use.
Types of tickets
There are a few types of tickets, both short and long-term.
Short term-tickets are:
- 30 minutes for 30 CZK
- 90 minutes for 40 CZK
- 24h ticket for 120 CZK
-72h ticket for 330 CZK
(currently, 1€ is 26.3 CZK)
There are discounts for children and elderly, so make sure to check the DPP website to get all the information.
Long-term tickets are the best way for you because they pay off a lot if you are staying in Prague for at least a month or longer.
- monthly (30 days) for 550 CZK
- quarterly (90 days) for 1480 CZK
- 5-month one (150 days) for 2450 CZK
- annual (365 days) for 3650 CZK
You can get long-term tickets either as a card or if you have a smartphone, it can serve as an e-card.
Getting the tickets
You can get the tickets at multiple places.
- Trafika or a Newsstand is one of those. You would probably have to use some Czech, so while you still do not know any, maybe it is best to go for other options.
- If you have a Czech simcard, you can buy a ticket via sms. Every bus and tram stop has instructions on how to pay by sms.
- At every metro stop you have ticket vending machines. Besides Czech, you have a few other languages available. It’s an easy way to purchase a ticket, but, they only take coins or bank cards. Using paper bills is not possible.
- In the era of smart phones, it is not unusual that an app for purchasing tickets has been developed. It is called PID Litáčka. There you can type in which stops you want to go from and to, and it will give you the corresponding ticket depending on the length of the journey. You can either get a ticket that is automatically activated or you can choose the time of activation yourself.
If you buy a paper ticket, do not forget to validate it in the stamping machine immediately upon entering the metro station, bus or tram. Once validated, they do not need to be revalidated in case you are switching to another way of transportation.The same ticket is valid on all public transport in the city of Prague.
Make sure you always have a valid ticket, because ticket inspectors can be around the corner asking you to show them your ticket. Currently the fine for not having a valid ticket is 1500 CZK, but it gets reduced to 800 CZK if you pay it on the spot or within 15 days from the day of inspection.
Outside of the city of Prague, there’s another tariff, and here is all the information regarding that.
Useful phrases and words to know
Some of the useful words and phrases for when you’re on the public transport are:
- Vstup = Entrance
- Výstup = Exit
- Stanice metra = Metro station
- Linka A = A line
- Přestup = Transfer
- Příští stanice = Next stop
- Přestup na linku A/B/C = Transfer to line A, B or C
- Ukončete prosím výstup a nástup, dveře se zavírají = Please, finish getting on and off, the doors are about to close. – you will hear this announcement just before the doors of the metro train get closed.