How to get from Madrid Airport to city center best way – You can go by bus, train, metro, taxi and private transfer.
What Is The Distance From Madrid Airport To City Center?
The distance from Barajas airport to Madrid city center is only 13 kilometers. Click here to book online activities in Madrid and day tours
The travel time by taxi from Madrid Barajas airport to city is 20-30 minutes. The taxi fare from Madrid airport to downtown is €30. Read here how to get from Madrid to Madrid airport the reverse way.
If you are coming for the first time to Madrid, the capital of Spain, you will land in Adolfo Suárez Madrid Barajas Airport which is well-connected to the city center. Read here how to get from Madrid airport to Bernabeu Stadium and Madrid airport to Chamartin.
What Is The Cheapest Way From Madrid Airport To City Center?
The cheapest way from Madrid airport to city center is by train Renfe Cercanías for €2.60 and it will take around 30 minutes.
What Is The Best Way From Madrid Airport To City Center?
The best way from Madrid airport to city center if you are getting to Madrid at night time is by Airport Express Bus 24 hours for €5 and it will take 30-40 minutes. If you go by metro you will be able to reach everywhere in Madrid for €8 and 45 minutes travel time.
WHERE TO STAY IN MADRID
There are many budget options in Madrid for accommodation. You can sleep in a dorm or a room from €25-30 and mid-budget starts at €50-80
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How to get from Madrid Airport to City Center
1. Metro from Madrid airport to city center (Easiest Way)
The easiest way from Madrid airport to city center is by metro. There are two ways to go by metro from Madrid airport to city center. One of them is from the airport’s Terminal 1, 2 and 3, and the other option is from Terminal 4.
If you want to use Madrid’s metro, the first thing you have to do is buy a metro card to move around Madrid. The card costs €3 and you can buy them from metro machines with cash or credit card.
Once you buy your card, you then have to add credits to the card to go around the city center or other destinations in Madrid that you are planning to visit. Aside from the initial €3 for the metro card, €3 will be added for your fare from Madrid airport to city center along with the extra €2 to go around Madrid.
If you want to get to Madrid from the airport using the metro, it will cost you €8. But you will be able to use the metro card while visiting Madrid adding more credits. The metro starts at 6 am until 1 30 am.
Madrid city center is well located in metro maps so it would be easy to go there. If you’re headed to Puerta del Sol, the main center of Madrid, you have to transfer in Nuevos Ministerios and get into Line 10 heading to Puerta del Sur. There are other metro stations in the city center apart from Puerta del Sol. You can check the stations and schedules in Metro de Madrid’s website.
The total fare from Madrid airport to city center by metro is €8 for one-way ticket. The travel time from Madrid airport to city center by metro is around 20-40 minutes depending on your final destination.
It will be worth it as I mentioned if you will use the Madrid Metro card in the city next days. Anyway you should purchase €3 metro card and top up. Maybe you can find your Metro Card for free in information if they are promoting Metro campaigns (but don’t trust on this).
2. Madrid Airport Bus -Madrid Airport Express Bus To City Center (Best Way)
The best way from Madrid airport to city center is by bus. The Madrid Airport Express Bus leaves from Terminal 4 and makes stops at Terminal 1, 2 and 3 of Adolfo Suarez Barajas Airport. Buses run every 13-20 minutes during the day and every 35 minutes at night.
Starting in Terminal 4, Terminal 2, Terminal 1, O’Donell (already Madrid city center), Cibeles and Atocha Train Station (only during the day and not stopping at night). Click here to check schedule and prices!
Take note of this from 11:30 PM-6 AM, the bus will make stops in Cibeles instead of the Atocha train station. The bus travel time from Madrid airport to Madrid Cibeles and Atocha is around 30 minutes and costs €5 only payment in cash.
Cibeles is located in the city center and has buses that connect with most of the points of interest in the city. Atocha is the main train station in Madrid and it has great connections for long-distance travel to areas like Toledo and Segovia.
The bus fare from Madrid airport to Madrid city center is €5 and it’s 24 hours available. The buses from Madrid airport to city center are leaving every 20 minutes during the day and every 35 minutes at night from the airport.
Remember you have to pay in cash to the driver. There are ATMs available for this in Barajas Airport.
There are also regular buses from EMT going to the airport from Canillejas and Avenida América de Madrid. Just in case you are visiting these areas or staying in Madrid.
Getting a Go City Travel Pass for Madrid
If you’re looking at making the most out of your Madrid trip, we suggest you check out the Go City sightseeing pass which allows you unlimited access to all the spots you want to visit (that are included in the pass) and other tour perks for a discounted price and without lining up for physical tickets.
3. Madrid Airport To City Center By Taxi
As you guys know, riding a taxi is for sure the most comfortable way to get to Madrid city center from the airport. There is a fixed taxi fare from Madrid airport to city center which is €30.
So it would be best to have someone to share the ride with. It’s fixed price from 2019 (will update for sure when changing) and again is €30 read below I’m taxi driver in Madrid.
Here’s a fun fact: I was actually a taxi driver in Madrid (see the picture above) before I started traveling the world and meeting Rachel. This was my job until we started our travel blog in November 2015. Would you believe that? Cool, right?
Anyway, as I was saying, a taxi ride from Adolfo Suarez Barajas Airport to the city center lasts 20-30 minutes on a taxi. These vehicles are available 24/7 and accept both cash and credit cards. Very convenient, indeed!
The best thing by taxi is so comfortable and you will not have to be worried of anything until you get to your hotel or Airbnb in Madrid. It can be expensive but if there are 2-3 of you totally worth it the comfort. If you are on a budget keep reading the other options which are cheaper.
4. Madrid Airport to Madrid Atocha Train Station (Cheapest Way)
The cheapest way from Madrid airport to city center is by train. (If you want to go from Madrid airport to Atocha) Going by Renfe Cercanías of Madrid is another great choice for you to get Madrid city center from the airport, especially if arriving in Terminal 4 of the airport.
The travel time from Barajas airport to Atocha Train Station and Sol in Madrid city center is 30 minutes by Train Cercanías.
There are also stops in Chanmartin, Nuevos Ministerios, Príncipe Pío and finally heads to the main bus station in Madrid: Méndez Álvaro. This is the ideal place to take a bus to other destinations in Spain like Seville.
The train fare from Madrid airport to city center is €2.60 (last time I did was July 2020 and still same price) to and from the city center and €0.50 cents for the card that you can use in the future if you stay in Madrid.
If you are coming from AVE (High-Speed Train) the train ticket will be free since it’s included in the High-Speed Train. The train runs every 15-20 minutes, with the first train departing at around 6 AM and the last train leaving at 11 PM.
The best thing is that train is really comfortable if you go to Atocha Train Station plus is the cheaper price. Maybe you will catch a train to Valencia, Barcelona, Malaga or Sevilla so can be the best option for you.
But it can be tricky since is only going to Terminal 4 and not to Terminal 2 (mostly domestic and European flights) and Terminal 1 (mostly international flights). There is a Transit Bus for free connecting Terminal 4 (the one is farther) with Terminal 3, 2 and 1 in Barajas Airport.
Best Way From Madrid Airport To Downtown
The best way from Madrid airport to city center if you are getting to Madrid at night time you will have the Airport Express Bus 24 hours for €5 and it will take 30-40 minutes. Read here Madrid Atocha to airport. You can choose the Metro from Madrid airport to city center if you have a Metro Station nearby.
The best way from Madrid Airport to downtown is by train for €3 if you are on a budget and 30 minutes travel time. The train is leaving from Terminal 4 starting from 6 am to 11 pm. Great idea if you are going near Atocha or Chamartin area!
Hope you liked our travel guide how to get from Madrid airport to city center. Which one would you like more? Madrid airport by bus or the easiest by taxi from Madrid airport, metro from Madrid airport to city center? Let us know in the comments below
About the Author: Ruben, co-founder of Gamintraveler.com since 2014, is a seasoned traveler from Spain who has explored over 100 countries since 2009. Known for his extensive travel adventures across South America, Europe, the US, Australia, New Zealand, Asia, and Africa, Ruben combines his passion for adventurous yet sustainable living with his love for cycling, highlighted by his remarkable 5-month bicycle journey from Spain to Norway. He currently resides in Spain, where he continues to share his travel experiences alongside his partner, Rachel, and their son, Han.