The Buenos Aires Subte was the first underground metro system in South America. Although often hot, crowded, and without air conditioning, the Subte is the fastest way to travel through Buenos Aires. It is not as expansive as the bus system, but it will usually get you fairly close to where you need to go. There are five different lines: A, B, C, D, and E. There is also a line called the “pre-metro,” but you will probably never need to ride it. You will probably using Line D if you are staying in Palermo, Recoleta, Belgrano, or Microcentro. All of the lines are denoted by a different color, and the stops are approximately 5 blocks away from one another. Here is a link to the official Subte map: http://tinyurl.com/yhufcqn . The official Subte website can be accessed at http://www.subte.com.ar .
Here’s how you take the Subte.
First, you need to figure out where you are, where you are going, and where the nearest station is. One option is to look at the Subte map linked to above. The map shows what street the line travels under, and the cross streets near all the stops. An easier way is to use the Guia T. The Guia T shows ALL streets and has markings for each Subte station.
Once you’ve found your station, you will need to pay . One ride (viaje) costs AR$1.10. I would recommend buying multiple viajes at once as the line to buy tickets is long during peak hours. Find the ticket window. It will be labeled “boleteria.” Go up to the window and say dos viajes, por favor (two rides please). Replace dos with the number of viajes that you would like. Another faster, easier, and more efficient way to ride is to use the magnetic Monedero card . These are free cards that you can put money on and use like a debit card. Go to the boleteria and say una tarjeta monedero, por favor (a Monedero card, please) Place the card near the card reader and say Carga diez (or whatever amount) pesos, por favor (put ten pesos on it, please).
If you bought the physical ticket, put it through the little slot in the molinete (ticket gate). It will pop up once it has registered. Be sure to take the ticket, especially if it one with multiple viajes. If you choose to use the Monedero, all you have to do is place the Monedero close to the pad on the molinete. It will beep and say on the screen how much you have left. Check the map in the Subte station and make sure that you are going in the right direction!
Unless there is a Subte break-down, delay, or strike, you do not usually have to wait longer than 5 minutes for the next train to come. The train will eventually come (maybe), and you will get on and look for a seat. Like the bus, pregnant women and the elderly are given preference to the seats close to the doors. If you do not find a seat, hold onto the nearest railing and make sure you look out for your stop.
Although normally safe, be aware of pickpockets and purse snatchers on the Subte.
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