The bus network in Madrid, known as EMT (Empresa Municipales de Transportes), has great coverage allowing users to go almost anywhere in the city. Some madrileños prefer the bus system, as busses are usually cleaner and less crowded than the Metro. With nearly 200 different bus routes throughout the city, busses generally service all of the same areas that the metro reaches, as well as the areas not covered by the metro system. Although it may seem overwhelming, most bus stops are well marked and include information about the lines that stop there.
Frequency of busses varies greatly depending on the line, and busses may run anywhere from every 5 to 35 minutes. Busses operate from around 6AM to 11:30PM; however night busses, called buhos, service all areas of the city, but there aren’t as many lines and they do not run as frequently as the day buses. Buhos run from 11:30PM to 5:30AM with a frequency of every half hour on weekends and every hour during the week.
A single trip on Madrid’s municipal buses costs €1 and can be bought upon boarding the bus. For the more frequent user, a 10-trip ticket can be purchased in any of the metro stations for €7.40 and can be used on both the metro and bus. A monthly pass for the metro can also be used to ride the municipal busses. For more information on the monthly transportation passes, refer to the subway section of the guide.
There are also hundreds of suburban busses that travel to various communities surrounding Madrid. All bus routes and schedules are all available on Madrid’s transport information website http://www.ctm-madrid.es/.
Bus transportation is also an inexpensive way to travel around Spain. Prices vary greatly depending on destinations and the company. There are 14 major bus companies that travel to various cities throughout the country:
- Enatcar / Alsa – Alicante, Albacete, Barcelona – http://www.alsa.es/portal/site/Alsa
- Almeraya – Almería – http://www.almeraya.es/
- Larrea – Ávila – http://www.autobuseslarrea.com/
- Avanza Bus / Auto Res – Badajoz, Cáceres, Cuenca, Castellón, Orense, Pontevedra, Salamanca, Zamora – http://www.avanzabus.com/web/
- Continental Auto / Alsa – Burgos, Guadalajara, Pamplona, San Sebastian, Vitoria, Santander, Soria – http://www.alsa.es/portal/site/Alsa
- Secorbus / Socibus – Cádiz, Córdoba, Huelva, Sevilla, Jerez, Cádiz – http://www.socibus.es/index.html
- Autobuses Mad-Gra – Granada – No Web site
- La Sepulvedana – Jaén, Segovia
- Intercar – La Coruña, Lugo – http://www.inter-car.es/
- Fernández-Res – León, Palencia, Valladolid – No Web site
- Daibus – Malaga – No Web site
- Alsa – Oviedo – http://www.alsa.es/portal/site/Alsa
- Autocares Samar – Teruel, Valencia – http://www.samar.es/
- Galiano Continental – Toledo – No Web site
Tickets can be bought at the corresponding company booths at the coach stations and in some cases through the company Web site. There are two coach stations in Madrid, both accessible by metro:
- Estación Sur de Autobuses
C/ Méndez Álvaro 83
Metro: Méndez Álvaro
T: 91 468 42 00
- Intercambiador de Transporte Avenida de América
Avenida América 9
Metro: Avenida América
T: 91 563 57 96