Planning a business trip or a vacation to Barcelona is much easier than it used to be, thanks to the wide variety of flight connections and the internet. However, if you have never been there before, you should know all the routes from Barcelona Airport to the City Centre. This way, you will save a lot of time and enjoy the trip without anxiety.
The French physicist Marie Curie claimed that “nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood.” For this reason, before you lose your bearings in the airport, we recommend you read this article carefully!
Barcelona Airport at a glance
- Barcelona Airport El Prat (IATA code: BCN) is situated 14,7 km (8,8 miles) southwest of the City Centre.
- Passengers can choose among 4 options to get from Barcelona Airport to Downtown.
- There are 2 Terminals (T1 and T2), but they are really far apart if you need to take a shuttle bus.
- Don’t be misled! Barcelona has only 1 airport. Girona and Reus’s airports are 100 kilometers (!) northeast of Barcelona.
- At Barcelona airport, there are 6 car rental companies
- Some of the services offered in the main halls are Free Wi-Fi, a medical centre, a children’s area, and religious spaces.
But let us now begin to describe all possible solutions to reach Barcelona City Centre. First of all, we advise you to choose the transport option, considering where your accommodation is located.
For example, if your Airbnb is close to Plaza de Cataluna, taking Aerobus could be the perfect solution.
From Barcelona Airport to the City Centre by taxi (recommended solution)
Undoubtedly, catching a taxi is the smartest and most comfortable solution to get from Barcelona Airport to Barcelona City Centre, such as Plaza de Catalunya, Plaza de Espana, Sagrada Familia, or Sants station.
You may be wondering how you go about recognizing a Spanish taxi. Well, it is easy! Official taxis in Barcelona are black with yellow doors.
Another obvious way to recognize an approved taxi is to look for long queues!
There are taxicab stands outside both Terminal (T1 and T2).
Barcelona airport taxi: fares and information
Taxis in Barcelona have no flat fee and apply and apply surcharges for travel after 8 pm or on weekends (approx. +€3,10). Before considering renting one of them, you should know that they have a minimum cost of €20, which means that you have to pay it, even if your accommodation is five minutes away from the airport.
For instance, a taxi ride from Barcelona Airport to Plaza Catalunya may cost about 35-40€ and take 30 minutes or more—depending on traffic conditions.
It is possible to book your taxi in advance to avoid potential miscommunication with taxi drivers. In fact, not all taxi drivers in Barcelona speak English or other languages.
Book your taxi in advance.
However, renting a taxi holds many advantages over public transport. In a chaotic city like Barcelona, taxis are the most convenient way to move from the airport to the city centre and back.
Furthermore, taxi drivers can help you load your suitcases into the trunk and give you useful information about the city (e.g., best restaurants, popular attractions, etc.).
During rush hour, taxis will keep you out of hot, crowded trains and buses.
Barcelona Airport to Barcelona City Centre by bus
When you inquire about buses at traditional tourist information desks, you will often be informed about Barcelona airport transfers, such as Aerobus.
However, the Aerobus line is not the only shuttle that can take you from Barcelona Airport to the city centre.
At El Prat, there are regular city buses, such as daily line 46 and night buses N16, N17, and N18.
Barcelona Airport to the city centre: the cheapest solution
Line 46 is far cheaper than the Aerobus, as it costs only €2,40 (one-way).
The downside of this shuttle is that there is less space for your luggage, and it has many stops!
TMB shuttle buses run every 38 minutes and operate from 6:30 am to 11:50 pm.
Although it is a little more expensive than public buses, Aerobus is a much more convenient service. On the bus, there is plenty of space so that you can set your luggage easily! Also, there are no useless intermediate stops (the first stop is Plaza de Espanya), which makes your journey to Barcelona Central much quicker.
Aerobus Line leaves every 25-30 minutes from Terminal 1 (T1) and operates from 7:00 am until 10:15 pm.
You can purchase tickets online directly from €5,90 (one-way ticket; 10.20€ round trip).
Barcelona Airport train
R2 Suburban is the perfect option if heading to Estacio Sants, Passeig de Gracia, or El Clot.
The airport station is located at T1 and is reachable by following the signs you’ll see in the arrivals hall.
Unfortunately, it is impossible to walk from Terminal 2 to the station. The solution is to take a free shuttle bus that leaves every 6-7 minutes. It is easy to recognize an airport shuttle bus because it is colored green and white.
To catch it from T2 and T1, you have to walk to the bus stop underneath the bridge outside the T2B area. From T1 to T2, exit the terminal.
You can find RENFE’s Ticket machines near the train’s platform.
R2 Suburban departs every 30 minutes from 05:42 am to 11:38 pm and costs €4 (one-way ticket).
From Barcelona Airport to the City Center by metro
Good news for those who hate to wait! Barcelona Airport has a direct connection to the city’s metro network.
Unfortunately, if you arrive in town after midnight, you can’t take the subway since it works until midnight from Monday to Thursday.
You can buy tickets from vending machines outside the metro station and take one train that runs every 10 minutes.
L9 tickets are different from daily subway tickets, so make sure you purchase the right one, which costs €4.50 (one-way).
Uber in Barcelona
Unfortunately, there is no Uber in Barcelona, but you can choose among several car rental services and taxis!
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