Be Safe on Budapest's Public Transportation

This article provides some basic advice to those planning on visiting Budapest. In particular, if you plan to use the public transportation service, this article will assist you. There is also some discussion of which locations are safe, and what places you might wish to avoid.


  1. Arm yourself with the right paperwork. Your first priority would be of course to obtain a map, and a tourist's guide. Getting verbal information from people in Budapest is often difficult. Not many of them speak foreign languages or are distrustful towards unknown people. Try getting information near landmarks or more frequented locations.
  2. Understand the geography. Budapest is divided into two halves by the Danube river. The western half is Buda, the eastern is Pest. Buda is peaceful, more conservative, and is safer to travel and to live in. The safest place to take a late night walk, or to hang out in, is right in the middle of Buda, close to the castle. Pest is faster, more crowded, and potentially more unsafe. The safest part of Pest is downtown, close to the Parliament and it is considered safe all along the yellow subway line from Vörösmarty tér to Hősök tere. Subway lines and the HÉV (suburban railway, green and white themed trains) lines are the safest public transportation methods. If you visit Budapest, it is advisable to travel by day, and stay in more safe areas at night. There are still plenty of places you can visit. If you don't have any particular destination you would like to go to, don't take subway line 3 (blue line) and keep your distance from stadiums. Don't travel through the eighth district; not on foot anyway.
  3. Keep away from people who appear untrustworthy. If you reach an area where you see lots of unpleasant looking (and unpleasant-smelling) people getting on the bus/tram you're on, than probably you're not heading the right way in terms of safety.
  4. Look out for fraudulent taxi drivers. Some charge way more than they should, trying to take advantage of the foreigners' lack of knowledge about prices in Hungary.



  • When you're not around landmarks you want to photograph, keep your valuable camera hidden.
  • Don't forget your map, or your GPS system.
  • Budapest is not full of happy people; sometimes they are easy to upset, and are more inpatient. The best way to evade this is to stay of the public transportation during peak hours. 6-8 AM and 3-6 PM. This also saves you from traveling in huge crowds.
  • Try to blend in with the locals. As a tourist, you might attract the unwanted attention of pickpockets.


  • Budapest sadly is not a very safe city. Keep your valuables in your hotel room, and travel by day.

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