Menu
101 Holidays

• Join the 4 million people that use our sites to find trusted travel recommendations.

recommended

Survey: Cost of European airport transfers

25153147234_40464f4cbc

* Prices range from €0.50 to €129

* Sofia, Vilnius and Bucharest are best value

* Oslo and London airports most expensive

By Mike Winnington and Mark Hodson

If you’re taking a European city break, getting from the airport to the city centre could cost as little as 50 cents and as much as €129 each way, according to new research by 101 Holidays.

Many travellers closely monitor air fares and accommodation prices, but pay little attention to airport transfers. Our research into the cost of taxis, trains, metros and buses in 36 European capitals shows that transfer costs should play a key factor in choosing city break destinations.

The cheapest transfers are all in East or Central Europe, where a metro or bus to the centre of Sofia, the Bulgarian capital, costs just €0.50. Other cities that can be reached on public transport for less than €1 are Vilnius in Lithuania, Bucharest in Romania, Prague and Bratislava.

The cheapest capital to reach by taxi from the airport is Sofia at around €7.67 on the meter. At the other end of the scale, Oslo’s Rygge airport topped the list at around €129.30 on the meter. However, four of the five most expensive taxi journeys were from London airports to the city centre, with Stansted being the most pricey of the four at £116 (€128.85) with the airport’s recommended taxi provider. Both of the main airports in Paris are expensive by taxi: up to €70 from Charles de Gaulle and up to €55 from Orly, both on the meter.

The cheapest European capital offering a shared taxi or minibus service is Vilnius, at just €3 per person. It is operated by a private company.

Cheapest transfers

There are several airports where you can get to the city centre for around €1.

= 1. Sofia – €0.50 (metro)
= 1. Sofia – €0.50 (public bus)
3. Vilnius – €0.66 (train)
4. Bucharest – €0.79 (public bus)
5. Prague – €0.89 (public bus)
6. Bratislava – €0.90 (public bus)
7. Vilnius – €1.00 (public bus)
= 8. Warsaw Chopin – €1 (public bus)
= 8. Warsaw Chopin – €1 (train)
10. Budapest – €1.13 (public bus)

Cheapest taxi transfers

There are a number of airports where it is possible to catch a taxi for less than €5 per person (based on four people sharing). However, we found no airports where it is cheaper for four people to travel by taxi rather than public transport.

1. Sofia – €7.67
2. Warsaw Chopin – €9.19
3. Vilnius – €10
4. Bratislava – €15
5. Prague – €15
6. Bucharest – €15.70
7. Lisbon – €20
8. Budapest – €20.98
= 9. Luxembourg – €30
= 9. Madrid – €30
= 9. Rome Ciampino – €30

Cheapest shared taxi transfers

A number of airports offer shared taxi transfers. The following prices are per person.

1. Vilnius – €3
2. Prague – €5.55
3. Lisbon – €6
4. Budapest – €6.13
5. Ljubljana – €7

2937885061_f8130e7f08NQ9Z1659

Most expensive transfers

Unsurprisingly, the most expensive way to travel between the airport and a city centre is by taxi.

1. Oslo Rygge – €129.30 (taxi)
2. London Stansted – €128.85 (taxi)
3. London Gatwick – €122.75 (taxi)
4. London Luton – €85.53 (taxi)
5. London Heathrow – up to €77.76 (taxi)
6. Oslo Gardermoen – €75.42 (taxi)
7. Paris Charles de Gaulle – up to €70 (taxi)
8. Paris Orly – up to €55 (taxi)
9. Stockholm Arlanda – up to €52.42 (taxi)
= 10. Amsterdam – €45 (taxi)
= 10. Berlin Schönefeld – up to €45 (taxi)
= 10. Brussels – €45 (taxi)
= 10. Rome Fiumicino – €45 (taxi)

Most expensive public transport transfers

Opting for public transport will cut down costs if you are travelling alone, or there are two of you. Scandinavian destinations proved the most expensive, along with London.

1. Oslo Rygge – €19.39 (public bus)
2. Oslo Rygge – €17.67 (train)
3. London Luton – €17.22 (train)
4. Stockholm Arlanda – €14.15 (train)
5. London Gatwick – €11.44 (train)
6. London Heathrow – €11.33 (train)
7. Stockholm Arlanda – €10.38 (public bus)
= 8. Athens – €10 (metro)
= 8. Athens – €10 (train)
= 10. Oslo Gardermoen – €9.91 (public bus)
= 10. Oslo Gardermoen – €9.91 (train)

Closest airports

There are a number of airports within 10 kilometres of the city centre, which usually means faster transfer times to the city centre.

1. Tallinn (4km)
2. Luxembourg (6km)
= 3. Lisbon (7km)
= 3. Vilnius (7km)
5. Copenhagen (8km)
6. Bratislava (9km)
= 7. Berlin Tegel (10km)
= 7. Bern (10km)
= 7. Dublin (10km)
= 7. Riga (10km)
= 7. Sofia (10km)
= 7. Warsaw Chopin (10km)

Farthest airports

An important consideration could be the distance from the airport to the city centre, especially when there is more than one airport serving the capital city. For example, Warsaw Modlin is 35km from the city centre but Warsaw Chopin is only 10km.

1. Oslo Rygge (66km)
2. London Stansted (56km)
3. London Luton (50km)
4. Oslo Gardermoen (47km)
5. London Gatwick (45km)
6. Stockholm Arlanda (40km)
7. Warsaw Modlin (35km)
8. Athens (33km)
= 9. Rome Fiumicino (26km)
= 9. Ljubljana (26km)

Airports worst served by public transport

There are seven airports where you can only get a public bus or taxi to the city centre. However, six (Berlin Tegel, Bratislava, Dublin, Luxembourg, Riga and Tallinn) of these airports are among the closest airports to the city centre. It is also only possible to travel by public bus and taxi from Zagreb airport, which is 17 kilometres from the city centre.

Cab Queue, Madrid Airport3653872751_75561b444a_z

About the survey

Our research was carried out in summer 2016, using official sources of information, including tourist offices and official transport providers and airport websites. We focused on five types of transfer: public bus, taxi, shared taxi or minibus, metro and train, all based upon daytime arrivals. Distances are in kilometres and prices converted at a rate of £1 = €1.11.

Transfer costs in full

Public Bus Taxi Shared Taxi/Minibus Metro Train
Amsterdam Airport Schiphol (AMS) €5 €45 €17 €11.33
Athens (ATH) €6 €35 €10 €10
Berlin Schönefeld (SXF) €3 €39-45 €3.30
Berlin Tegel (TXL) €2.70 €23-29
Bern (BRN) €5.84 €36.50
Bratislava (BTS) €0.90 €15
Brussels (BRU) €3 €45 €8.50
Bucharest (OTP) €0.79 €15.70 €15 €1.53
Budapest (BUD) €1.13 €20.98 €6.13 €2.16
Copenhagen (CPH) €4.84 €33.59-40.31 €4.84 €4.84
Dublin (DUB) €6 €25-30
Frankfurt (FRA) €4.65 €35-40 €4.65
Frankfurt Hahn (HHN) €15 €200
Helsinki (HEL) €5.50 €40-45 €5.50
Lisbon (LIS) €1.40 €20 €6 €1.40
Ljubljana (LJU) €4.10 €40 €7
London City Airport (LCY) €1.67 €27.77-55.54 €3.31
London Gatwick (LGW) €8.89 €122.75 €11.44
London Heathrow (LHR) €7.33 €49.99-77.76 €6.66 €11.33
London Luton (LTN) €2.22 €85.53 €17.22
London Stansted (STN) €5.55 €128.85 €13.33 €8.89
Luxembourg (LUX) €2 €30
Madrid (MAD) €5.00 €30 €4.50 €2.60
Oslo Gardermoen (OSL) €9.91 €75.42 €9.91
Oslo Rygge (RYG) €19.39 €129.30 €17.67
Paris Beauvais–Tillé Airport (BVA) €17 €140-160 €32
Paris Charles de Gaulle (CDG) €6 €50-70 €9.75
Paris Orly (ORY) €2 €40-55 €1.80 €6.15
Prague (PRG) €0.89 €15.54 €5.55
Riga (RIX) €1.15 €10-13
Rome Ciampino (CIA) €1.20 €30 €2.30
Rome Fiumicino (RCO) €4 €45 €8
Sofia (SOF) €0.51 €7.67 €0.51
Stockholm Arlanda (ARN) €10.38 €52.42 €14.15
Tallinn (TLL) €1.60 €5-10
Vienna (VIE) €3 €36 €2.40
Vilnius (VNO) €1 €10 €3 €0.66
Warsaw Chopin (WAW) €1.01 €9.19 €1.01
Warsaw Modlin (WMI) €7.58 €36.54 €3.91
Zagreb (ZAG) €4.01 €20.06-26.74

 

Photos by Van KatzLondon Stansted AirportPhillip CapperDarren HallSharon MollerusFrancesc_2000

« Return to homepage