What is public transportation like in Santiago?

Answers from Our Experts (1)

Gabriel O’Rorke

There's a good network of public transport in Santiago, ranging from the metro to buses.

The Metro happens to be South America's most extensive, and there are 5 lines to transport you across the city. The service is regular and clean. However, it can be pretty hot - only a few of the trains are air-conditioned. Also, when the crowds return to the city after the summer holidays (December and January) it can be very, very busy and is best avoided during rush hour. In the last census it was found that 2.3 million people ride the metro every day.

There's also a comprehensive bus system known as Transantiago. Linking together local buses with the metro network, these blue buses whizz around the city. One thing worth noting is that there's an integrated fare system which means you can take the metro and bus for the price of just one ticket.

It's also well worth getting a Bip! card. That way you don't have to pay for each ride separately. This is a plastic card (similar to London's Oyster) which you top up and use as you go. One thing it doesn't have yet is automatic top-up linked to your credit card.

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