Travel and Transit Information for Buenos Aires
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Buenos Aires travel and transit information.
If you are descending into Buenos Aires from outside Argentina, you will touch down at Ministro Pistarini International Airport, more commonly know as the Ezeiza Airport, which resides 34 kilometers (21 miles) from the city center. All domestic flights fly into Aeroparque Metropolitano Jorge Newbery (AEP), but unless you are coming to Buenos Aires from another Argentinean city by air, you will never see this place. The relatively small Ezeira Airport has three terminals, although Aerolíneas Argentinas (the national airline) takes up one (B) and the other is private (C). Thus, all international airlines taxi up to Terminal A. The selection of retail outlets, including duty free shops, and restaurants and cafes is modest, but you won't go hungry and will be able to take home plenty of last minute impulse buy souvenirs. A post office, ATMs and a currency exchange bank are also in terminal A.
Ministro Pistarini International Airport (EZE)
+54 11 5480 6111
Major airlines at EZE include:
Air France (+1 800 237 2747 / http://www.airfrance.com/)
Alitalia (+1 800 223 5730 / http://www.alitalia.com/)
American Airlines (+1 800 433 7300 / http://www.aa.com/)
British Airways (+1 800 217 9297 / http://www.ba.com/)
Lufthansa (+1 800 803 5838 / http://www.lufthansa.com/)
United (+1 800 864 8331 / http://www.ual.com/)
From the Airport
Taxi: You will quickly know all about the taxi services at the airport as droves of anxious drivers beg for fares inside the arrivals area, especially in Terminal A, where international flights pull in. Haggling is an art form with these guys and you might just get a cheap fare into town or you might end up mugged. If you would rather do things by the book (the wise choice), find a taxi desk (+54 11 4295 5760) and book an official cab there. Most rides take 45 minutes and fares start at USD30.
Bus: You can catch a bus with Manuel Tinadal Leon (+54 11 5480 0374 / http://www.tiendaleon.com.ar/) every 30 minutes from 6a-1:30a. A single one way fare into downtown costs USD18-USD32. The company also has a fleet of remise (town cars, minicabs and limos) to get you to the Capital Federal in style. Prices start at USD48. Transfer Express (+54 11 4852 6776) and VIP Car (+54 11 5480 4590) also have remise service.
Car Rentals: Car hire companies have desks in Terminal A on the ground level. For the drive into town take the General Ricchieri Expressway northeast and exit at Avenida 9 de Julio. Turn north from there to hit downtown. Car rental companies include:
Localzia (+54 11 4480 0431 / http://www.localiza.com.ar/)
Dollar (+54 11 4315 8800 / http://www.dollarcar.com/)
Annie Millet/Hertz (+54 11 4480 0054 / http://www.milletrentacar.com.ar/)
Avis (+54 11 4480 9387 / http://www.avis.com/)
Close to 100 companies covering all of Argentina and most of the other countries on the continent compete for business at the city's massive bus station, Estación Terminal de Omnibus. Make sure you book on a "diferencial" bus, which is usually a comfortable double decker, with cushy seats that recline, an onboard restroom, snack service and the all important bar for the long distances in between destinations. Fares are a bit more than on "comun" buses (which translates to miserable trip on a bus with no shocks and seats that make school buses seem cozy), but the extra cost if more than worth it, especially if the trip is lengthy.
Several cruise lines navigate the Rio de la Plata from the Atlantic Ocean and call at the Puerto Buenos Aries (+54 11 4342 1727 / http://www.puertobuenosaires.gov.ar/). The port is literally the gateway to the central city, so tourists have minimal ground to cover. Ferries and hydrofoils managed by Ferrylineas(+54 11 4314 4580 / http://www.ferryturismo.com.uy/) and Buquebus (+54 11 4316 6500 / http://www.buquebus.com/) link the port with various cities in Uruguay.
The Subte (subway/underground) (+54 11 4959 6800 / http://www.metrovias.com.ar/) is the oldest in Latin America dating back to 1913, and most of the five lines have not been extended an inch since. But the system is still safe, cheap and efficient and stops near most tourist happy areas.
The colectivos (a.k.a. city buses) (www.loscolectivos.com.ar) make up a hodgepodge of buses traversing to all points of the city. Generally the system is a positive and inexpensive complement to the Subte, but before you jump in head first, make sure you pick up a network map. Routes can be bewildering and it doesn't take much to end up someplace you never intended to visit. Many buses operate 24 hours.
Driving around the city is the last thing you want to do if enjoying your stay in Buenos Aries is the ultimate goal. Roads can be baffling and the drivers seem to make up the rules on the fly, but if you happen to have a vehicle to investigate the outer regions of the country, then seek out a car park while you are in town and take to the streets on foot or utilize public transportation. Herds of taxis rove the streets searching for fares and for the most part hailing one is safe, but there are always stories here or there about the tourist who was stiffed or the taxi that was jacked. Basically, if you have a bad feeling, just do not get in the cab, or call to have one pick you up from the likes of City Taxi (+54 11 4585 5544) or Radio Taxi Pidalo (+54 11 4956 1200).
If you are hankering to explore the suburbs, six private commuter rail lines managed by various companies including Trenes Buenos Aires (+54 11 4317 4400 / http://www.tbanet.com.ar/) will give you a taste of residential life in the city.
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