Utilizing public transportation when studying abroad can be so useful. It is something I think everyone should try to take advantage of if they have it in your city!

I am studying in Barcelona, Spain and they have a vast network of public transportation here. They have buses, metros, and trains available! The public transportation can seem daunting at first, but once you start using it and figuring it out you pick it up quickly. When studying abroad it is likely that you won’t have a car. You can take taxis or Ubers everywhere but that will get very expensive.

I recommend getting a public transportation card. In Barcelona there are different types of passes you can get. I got a month long unlimited ride pass, and I purchased mine at a metro stop. It allowed me to use all the public transportation in Barcelona (metros, buses, trains) for one month. It was around 20 euros, and I think it was one of the best things I spent my money on! I rode different metro lines every day and rode the bus and train a few times. If you want to go further on a longer train trip you will have to buy a separate ticket, but I only did this once throughout my trip.

The first step is getting your pass to use the public transportation, but the next part is actually learning and using public transportation. You can use Apple or Google Maps and it will show you what number lines to take and how to get to the bus or metro stop. But I recommend getting the app called City Mapper! This app saved me throughout my time in Barcelona, I wouldn’t have gotten around so well without it. You type in the destination that you are going to and it shows you all the different ways to get to you final destination. It will show different metro options, walking, biking, car, and buses. You choose which route you want, then it will show you exactly which direction to go to get you started. When on the metro it will show you how many stops to take, which door is the best to exit from, and whether to sit on the front or back of the metro. This is an extremely thorough app that I will be recommending to anyone when studying abroad or traveling to any big city that they don’t know that well!

This is what the app will look like when you go to download it from the app store!