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Transfers - how to get from Athens airport to city center

Transfers - how to get from Athens airport to city center

Airport transfers - if you are coming to Athens by air plane for the first time, you will probably want to know how to get from Athens airport to city center





The new Athens Eleftherios Venizelos International Airport is about 27 km (17 miles) east of the city center, near the suburb of Spáta, opened in 2001 as part of the infrastructure improvements in preparation for the Olympics and is allegedly now one of the more attractive and efficient major European airports, though some old Athenian hands say they miss the messy atmosphere of the old Hellenikon. The airport has excellent public transit connections to the city (see below) and the usual array of food stands, duty-free shops, and other airport services.

There is a Tourist information station in Arrivals that will have the latest literature put out by the Tourist Information Department; this is useful for getting information of arranged local festivities in Athens and Attica. They will also have a printed brochure of Ferry information from Piraeus and other Attica ports.

There is Free WiFi in the Airport, which is limited to one hour, with no promise of security. However when your time is up if you shut down your computer, you can log back in for another hour.

Be aware, recent strike activity has caused mayhem for tourists trying to get from the airport to Athens city centre. Combinations of local trains, buses, taxis and little old walking that take hours have been they way of the strike affected travellers to get to their accommodations in the city. So check before departure to see what the latest situation is. From the airport you can reach the city:

Getting from the Athens airport to the city center by Metro

to the city center for €8 (half price for under 18 or over 65, ticket good for 1.5 hours on other Athens transit); if you leave in less than 48 hours you can get the two-way ticket for €14. Group tickets (2 or 3 persons) are also available and they provide some discount (see By Metro section below in Get Around). To catch the Metro from the airport arrivals hall, go through exit #3, cross the street, escalate to the skybridge, walk to the station to buy tickets, and follow Metro signs down to the platforms.

Don't forget to validate your ticket before going down to the platform and boarding a train (there are validation machines at the top of the escalators in the ticket hall). Failure to validate your ticket at the start of the journey can mean a fine of up to €120. The ticket inspectors are rigorous and won't hesitate to call for police assistance if you start to object.

The airport Metro line is an extension of Line 3 (blue line) which takes you to the downtown Syntagma and Monastiráki stations. Note that at the airport train station, two types of trains - metro trains and suburban trains - arrive at the same platform. If you are travelling into the city centre, you should take the metro trains (2/hour, usually departs at :05 and :35, daily 6:00 to 23:30). From the Airport, the metro (blue) train takes 40 minutes to reach Syntagma and 43 minutes to reach Monastiráki.

(If you are heading into Athens to see the Acropolis, you can use the Metro (blue) line to go from the Airport straight to Monastiráki station near the northern side of the Acropolis. An alternative is to go to Syntagma station, where you change from the blue line to the red line heading south, and get off at the first stop of Acropolis metro station which is at the southern more photogenic side of the Acropolis.)

Those taking the Metro from Athens out to the Airport should note that not all trains on the blue line go all the way to the airport; typically the airport trains run every half hour, while trains in the intervals don't go the whole route. Airport trains are indicated on the schedule and by an airplane logo on the front of the train, they are also announced by the signs on the metro platform. It's useful to go to the Metro station the day before, explain to the agent (most speak English) when you need to be at the airport, and ask what time you should catch the airport train from that station. You can also get this information at the airport metro station, which has a desk staffed most hours by someone who speaks English. It's possible but not necessary to buy your ticket in advance; buying in advance though means you won't risk missing your train if you find at the last minute you don't have change for the ticket machines and have to stand in a line to buy it from the agent.

And of course be aware of pick pockets.

Getting from the Athens airport to the city center by Bus X95

X93 to Kifissos Coach Station, X95 to Syntagma Square (subway Lines 2 and 3), X96 to Piraeus (subway Line 1) and X97 to Dafni metro station (subway Line 2) for €5.00 (€2.50 under 18 or over 65). Bus tickets are sold at the info/ticket-kiosk (located outside the Arrivals between Exits 4 and 5), or onboard (ask operator) at no extra cost. Buses, unlike Metro, operate 24 hours a day. Express bus X95[5] runs 3-5/hour, and takes a little more than an hour depending on traffic to go from the airport to the final stop on Othonos street along the side of Syntagma Square. Boarding is not permitted at intermediate stops on trips from the airport.

Getting from the Athens airport to the city center by taxi

taxis queue outside exit #3. According to a new law, taxis to the city centre cost € 35 during the day (5:00-24:00) and € 50 during the night (0:00-5:00). Be sure to ask if the flat fare includes toll costs and all fees.

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