Public transport in the city
Public transport in towns
In the larger towns the system of communication, public transport, is very well organised. Buses and trams have access to most parts of the urban built up areas. In the capital city there is also the Metro and in Gdynia, Lublin and Tychy there are trolley buses. In smaller towns there are good town and local bus services.
It would be difficult to describe each model within the public transport system in each town in Poland because each town has its own type of organisation. However, within the different ways of organizing the diverse systems the central model remains the same.
To use the town’s transport system passengers have to be in possession of a ticket or form of transport pass. Traveling without these validated tickets can lead to a fine.
Tickets (the same for trams, buses and Metro) can be bought at ‘Ruch’ kiosks or in grocery shops in all towns. They can also be bought from the bus and tram driver.
Ticket prices vary with each town, but are mainly in the same price range.
In many towns tickets are available for different time periods. For example: one hour, 24 hours, 3 days, week, and monthly with other special tickets available also.
Tourists can also obtain special tourist cards in many towns which gives them access to the public transport system in a particular town. For more information please ask at a Tourist Information Office in any town.
A ticket has to be bought when carrying extra baggage, bicycles or if you are with a dog. It is worth noting that some time tickets allow for the carriage of extra baggage.
Passengers using a tram, bus, Metro are obliged to show their validated ticket to a City Public Transport ticket inspector who has identified himself to the passengers in the tram, bus or Metro.
City and town public transport systems and the handicapped
In many small towns the public transport situation for the handicapped, though necessary, is still rather deficient. Fortunately, thanks to EU regulations, things are changing slowly for the better. In the larger towns the older buses are being replaced by new ones with special ramps for wheelchair access and special seating arrangements for the handicapped. New trams are also equipped to facilitate handicapped access. In Warsaw handicapped users can travel on the Metro by first descending in the lifts to the platforms then to the special places on the trains for the handicapped.
Visit the town … seated
In some towns and cities it is possible to visit the more interesting parts in a small electric car, a Melex, with a few other passengers. This a very good idea for those who are perhaps weary of walking around the town and for those who do not have much time to spare and would like to see more. Many of these electric cars have ‘automatic guides’. Passengers can sit comfortably with a commentary watching the city pass by. Different languages can be chosen. This has been a great success with foreign tourists.
Horse drawn carriages and rickshaws
Those amateurs of relaxing afternoons in the old parts of the cities in Poland should try a ride in one of the traditional horse drawn carriages pulled by one or two horses. Some towns have circuits around the older parts of the town or down more popular streets in a rickshaw
Taxis and private unlicensed transporters (usually cheaper)
There are taxis available in all the cities and towns in Poland. Taxi fares are in general not high. However, it is important to remember some basic rules so as not to run into any problems. Weekend and night tariffs (22.00 – 0600) and zones outside of the town or city are higher. The rate for the first kilometer is in the region of 4 – 5 zl and the kilometers after are cheaper (around 2 zl). In the larger towns taxis leaving from central stations might be more expensive.
If you decide to take a taxi remember to take only officially registered ones with a visible registration or company number and the fare per km clearly shown on the passenger side rear window. Make sure the fare counter is visible and switched on. Ask the driver which route he will be taking, if it is the correct one to your destination.