Getting to MadridBy Air:
Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas Airport, the third European airport, is just 13 km away from the city, and its connections by public transportation are some of the quickest and easiest to use in the world: besides bus or taxi, travelers may take the Metro, where every five minutes a train to/from Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas Airport leaves from Nuevos Ministerios Station in the City Centre at a cost of 4.5 - 5 €, or take the Suburban where every 30 minutes a train to/from Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas Airport leaves from Chamartín at a cost of 2.55 €. In 2013, the airport handled 39,729,027 passengers, 333,065 operations from all over the world. Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas International Airport receives flights from over 172 destinations, including several low cost airlines, and is the main European air hub for Latin America. more info
International trains arrive at Atocha (France and Portugal) or Chamartín (France) train stations. Atocha is the station located in the south center of the city and Chamartín is in the north. Both stations have access to metro lines. more info
Avenida de América and Méndez Álvaro bus stations are the main ones in the city. Both stations have routes to other Spanish cities and international destinations. Méndez Álvaro is located in the south of the city and Avenida de América is located in the north east.
Getting around MadridBy metro: more info
By bus: more info
By train (Cercanías): more info
Here you will find useful and free Android apps to come to Madrid:
Here you will find useful and free iPhone/iPad apps to come to Madrid:
Museo Nacional del Prado. Guía Oficial / Official Guide
Museo Nacional del Prado Guía
Madrid Guía de Viaje con Mapas Offline
Madrid Guía de Viaje con Mapas Offline
Metro de Madrid Oficial
Guía de Madrid - minube
Madrid App Guía de ciudad
Guía oficial Madrid
Madrid - tu guía de viaje de tripwolf con mapas offline
Guías de viajes mTrip (con mapas offline)
The average maximum temperature in Madrid In November is 57º F/14ºC, and the average minimum temperature is 43º F/6ºC. Although Madrid climate is quite dry, November can bring some occasional rainfall.
CURRENCY AND BANKS
The national currency of Spain is the European euro (€). Exchange facilities are available at Adolfo Suárez Barajas airport, most banks and also along central streets like Gran Vía. Many visitors to Spain have commented on the advantage of bringing debit cards rather than credit cards, since the exchange rate is generally much better and commissions lower. However, it would be prudent to check this with your bank before travelling.
Spain's standard electricity supply is 220 Volts (V), 50 Hertz (Hz) AC. The plugs are round two pin, European standard.
The number 112 can be dialled to reach emergency services - medical, fire and police - from anywhere in Europe. This Pan-European emergency number 112 can be called from any telephone (landline, pay phone or mobile cellular phone). Calls are free. It can be used for any life-threatening situation, including:
- Serious medical problems (accident, unconscious person, severe injuries, chest pain, seizure)
- Any type of fire (house, car)
- Life-threatening situations (crimes)
Most shops open between 09.30 and 13.30h in the morning and 17.00 to 20.00h in the afternoon on weekdays. During the summer months, many establishments will stay open much later in the evening. On Saturday opening hours are restricted to the morning shift and Sunday is literally the day of rest. However there are some department stores that remain open all day long until 22:00h.
The time in Madrid is the Central European Time (Summer Time GMT+2)
TIPPING AND TAXES
At almost all restaurants, service is included, but it is common practice to leave a tip or around 5%, as it is with taxi drivers (depending on how you liked the driving!).
Tipping is not obligatory anywhere, but much less in bars or cafeterias. However, if you leave a small tip it shows your appreciation of the service - a good rule of thumb here is 10 to 20 cents per round of drinks. Never leave tips in pubs or discotheques. A tip of 1 euro may be used in many other occasions, such as with hotel porters.
There are two different tax rates in Spain 8% and 18%. You will pay 8% tax on your hotel and restaurant bills, as well as other items considered "essential". This tax is not refundable.
Most physical items purchased in shops will be taxed at the 21% rate.
One of the main tourist information offices is the Municipal Office of Tourist Information, which can be found at Plaza Mayor (address: Plaza Mayor, 27). You can reach them on the telephone or fax at: Tel: 91 366 54 77. Fax: 91 588 16 36. If you are planning to see as much as possible on your stay, then this tourist information office should be the first stop on your itinerary.
The city of Madrid counts with excellent means of transport. Its underground network has modern trains and stations and links to most destinations reaching even some of the main towns in the surrounding areas of the city. Using the underground will be the best way to get from one part of the city to another. Here is a useful website for planning your transportation in Madrid: www.ctm-madrid.es, you will find schedules for buses, trains and for the subway lines.
Adolfo Suárez Barajas airport
Madrid has three airports, the main one being Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas Airport. In terms of infrastructure, equipment, resources and air traffic, it is the most important air hub in Spain and the fourth in Europe. It is just 13 km away from the city, and access to it by public transportation is one of the quickest and easiest to use in the world: besides bus or taxi, travelers may take the Metro, where every five minutes a train to Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas Airport leaves from Nuevos Ministerios Station in the City Centre at a cost of 2 euros while you will pay only 1.50 euro for a ticket within the City! In September 2011, the suburban rail network has opened a new service that directly links Principe Pio station to Terminal 4 of Adolfo Suárez Barajas.
In 2007, the airport handled 52,143,275 passengers, 483,284 operations and 322,244 tonnes of cargo. Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas International Airport receives flights from over 166 destinations, including several low cost airlines, and is the main European air hub for Latin America. The inauguration of the new terminal that has set its capacity in 70 million passengers a year took place on 5th of February 2006. The building was designed by Richard Rodgers and Lamela and it has received the Stirling Architecture Award.
The underground (Metro) is the fastest, most efficient and most affordable way to move around Madrid. The city has a vast metropolitan network, one of the most comprehensive in Europe, and covers almost all the points in the capital and many of the neighboring areas.
Currently, there are twelve metro lines and three Metro Ligero (tramway) lines. Out of all these, Line 8 (Nuevos Ministerios – Airport T4) is particularly noteworthy. This modern line connects the capital to Adolfo Suárez Barajas international airport, arriving in only 12 minutes to the rest of terminals, and to Madrid’s Trade Fair grounds (Ifema).
The underground system covers a total of 383.3 km. The price of a single ticket with a validity of 1 hour is 1.50 euro, and can be purchased at all Metro stations.
Bus, metro & train networks
Madrid has an extensive city bus network (215 lines), run by the company Empresa Municipal de Transporte (EMT), which covers the whole city. All the vehicles that make up the EMT fleet, 2,022 in total, are air-conditioned.
Madrid’s buses have special facilities for disabled access. The cost for a single ticket with a validity of 1 hour is 1.50 euro.
There are more than 15,000 taxis in Madrid, so it is not usually difficult to find one available in the city’s main thoroughfares. You can order them by phone or through internet. In the streets, just make a sign and they will be keen to stop! Prices are quite reasonable, considering that a one-way trip from the city centre to the airport costs around 20-25 euros.
TOURIST TRAVEL PASS
The Tourist Travel Pass is the most affordable and practical way to get to know Madrid. It can be used on all public transport in the Region as many times as necessary within the valid dates. There are five passes valid for 1, 2, 3, 5 or 7 days. The Tourist Travel Pass can be purchased at:
- All Metro stations
- Metro Passenger Information Office at Adolfo Suárez Barajas Airport (T1-T2-T3 Metro stations)
- Certain tobacco shops and press kiosks
- Municipal Tourist Office (Plaza Mayor 27)
- Regional Tourist Offices (c/ Duque de Medinaceli 2 and at the Atocha Station
- National and International Tour Operators
- Spanish Travel Agencies and hotels in the city
Children under 11 years old get a 50 per cent discount.
The Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation establishes some requirements for entry into Spain for a stay not exceeding ninety days in any six month period. Further information regarding these requirements and as well as the Visa issues can be found through this link and/or directly through the Spanish Embassies or Consulates whose addresses can be found through this link.