There are no direct flights to the Argentine capital from Russia. The fastest way is through Madrid. Aeroflot and Air Europe flights from Sheremetyevo can take from 20 to 37 hours, and tickets for them cost from 900 USD round trip. It is more expensive to fly from the northern capital: for example, a Lufthansa flight via Frankfurt am Main will cost from 1500 USD and will last at least 23 hours.
Note: according to allcitypopulation, the population of Argentina is 45.81 million (2021).
From airport to city
Flights from Europe arrive at the airport. Minister Pistarini in Buenos Aires. You can get to the city by bus or taxi.
The cheapest option is bus number 8, whose route connects the airport and Plaza de Mayo in the center. The fare is about 35-37 ARS, to pay you need to buy a Sube card at a kiosk at the airport (then it will come in handy for traveling by public transport around the city). You can also pay the driver directly, but they only accept pesos and only coins.
But this route has its drawbacks: it goes all over the city, including disadvantaged neighborhoods, and the journey will take about 3 hours. Be careful with luggage and valuables.
The Manuel Tienda Leon company (off. site in English) transports passengers between the airport and the city center (Terminal Madero bus station) on more comfortable shuttle buses. Tickets for them are sold in the arrivals area and online, the price is 370 ARS. Travel time is about an hour, there is free Wi-Fi on board, however, very slow.
Taxis should be ordered only through the official carrier at the exit of the terminals, as private traders cheat. The trip will take 45 minutes and cost 1500-2000 ARS. You can pay for a taxi in cash (pesos or dollars) or with a bank card, and present the paid receipt to the taxi driver. Tipping is appropriate only if you have a lot of luggage, but in general this is not accepted in Argentina.
The metro in Buenos Aires is not so much a convenient means of transportation as a fun attraction – the oldest carriages in the world run there, produced in 1930. There are only 6 lines, marked with letters from A to H and in different colors. The platforms are narrow, the stations are shallow, hot and not very clean.
The most convenient way to pay for travel on the subway, bus or train is with a Sube card. This is an analogue of the Moscow Troika, it can be bought at newsstands and ticket offices at metro stations. The cost of the card is 65 ARS, one trip is 15.50 ARS. Cards are sold with a zero balance, they are replenished at metro ticket offices, special terminals and tobacco kiosks. If there is not enough money on the card, you can go negative up to 30 ARS. Stations are open from 5:00 to 21:00-23:00, some are closed on weekends.
Buses are the cheapest and most convenient way to get around Buenos Aires and the suburbs. They run around the clock every 5-15 minutes, covering all areas of the city. Stops are never crowded, passengers strictly observe the queue. You can pay for the fare with the same Sube card. The fare depends on the distance and varies from 15 to 17.50 ARS. When boarding the bus, you need to tell the driver the destination, and he will calculate the fare. You can see the routes and timetable at the office. City Hall of Buenos Aires website (in Spanish).
Public transport in Buenos Aires is inexpensive, but fares are constantly rising slightly. For example, if in January the minimum fare is 15 ARS, then in March 2019 it is already 18 ARS.
A metrobus is a bus that runs on a specially designated lane, fenced off (to avoid traffic jams). But only along the largest streets – Avenida 9 de Julio, Santa Fe, etc., you can pay there with the same Sube.
In Buenos Aires, there is a high risk of running into “paseo” – the old taxi driver’s fun, when a tourist who does not speak Spanish is taken along long roads while the meter is ticking, so it is better to call a car by phone through the Remis service. On the street, catch only black and yellow cars with a glowing libre sign.
Payment by the meter, the cost of the trip depends on the time of day and averages 350-400 ARS within the city center.
Bicycles for rent
There is a free bike rental in Buenos Aires organized by Buenos Aires Eco Bici (off. site in Spanish). To rent a bike, you need to install the BA EcoBici app. True, transport is provided only for an hour, after which it must be returned to any of the company’s parking lots for at least 5 minutes, then you can go again for free. There are about 150 km of bike paths in the city.
Car rental in Buenos Aires
On weekdays in the morning and in the evening there are traffic jams in the city, however, they cannot be compared with Moscow ones. Traffic is one-way almost everywhere, the city is divided into “quads”, the direction of movement on the roads is indicated by arrows, so it’s easy to navigate. There are special traffic lights for cyclists, the permission signal for them is green, for pedestrians – white.
You can rent a car right at the airport, the international counters Alamo, Avis, Hertz and Localiza are located in the arrivals area. Rental here will cost about 1200 ARS per day for an economy class car (Ford Ka or Opel Astra) subject to a weekly rental, Renault Logan will cost from 2000 ARS per day for the same period. Another option is to choose a car in advance via the Internet. In international companies Sixt, EasyCar, etc., the cost starts from 1000 ARS per day. The price includes basic insurance (a local analogue of the Russian OSAGO), many companies limit mileage to 200 km per day, and then an additional charge for each kilometer.
Local drivers are not always in trouble with traffic rules, especially motorcyclists who rush about without helmets, ignoring markings, rules and common sense. Before unregulated intersections, you need to honk, and the right of priority movement belongs to the one who pressed the horn first.
There are problems with parking in the city, especially in the center, parking is prohibited near the yellow curbs. Parkings are located in garages between houses, there are underground ones, marked with the letter “E” – estacionamento. The cost is 80-120 ARS for two hours depending on the area, on Sundays you can park for free.
A car left in the wrong place will be immediately taken away by a tow truck, and a note will be left on the sidewalk, at what address to look for it. The fine is 1500 ARS, but the “rescue” process is quite fast. If you find your car in the process of evacuation, it is likely that it will be given away without a fine. The cost of gasoline is about 12 ARS per liter, the wheel will be pumped up for 5 ARS, the interior will be vacuumed for 15 ARS.
Scratches and small dents are not considered damage by local drivers and usually in these cases they do not even get out of the car.