Arriving in a foreign country like Argentina can be a pretty daunting experience whether you are familiar with the language or not, and isn’t helped by the fact that your last few days have probably been spent sitting in an aeroplane, making you jet lagged and disorientated to say the least. My first impressions of Buenos Aires....a huge and overwhelming city. But after just a few hours I realised it is actually an incredibly welcoming city, where the locals are friendly and welcome you with open arms.
Transportation in and around Buenos Aires can seem daunting at first. With over 3 million people in the city proper and and about 13 million in the metropolitan area, finding a friend at a bar, or even finding the bar at all, can seem like an impossible task. However, I can assure you that this city is not as difficult to navigate as it first may seem. First things first, you need to buy a Guia T. The Guia T is printed every year and is a pocket sized booklet that serves as a city map and transportation guide. The Guia T should cost no more than Ar$4 depending on where you buy it. The best spots are in small magazine stands and/or kiosks in the subway. There will also be street vendors walking the subway cars selling the Guia T for around 4 pesos, a higher price than you will pay at the kiosks.
The Guia T begins with a listing of streets and corresponding addresses within the Capital Federal. The listing have corresponding page and cell listings that will display your desired destination and your current location. The Matrices on the pages to the left of the maps correspond to individual quadrants. The numbers listed within the boxes are the bus numbers that serve that particular area. The buses run 24 hours, however are less frequent at night.
When the bus approaches the stop, signal the driver that you wish to board by waving your arm. The bus fares begin at AR$.90 and ONLY accept coins, but does give change if you don´t have the exact amount. When you are getting close to your destination you will want to get up and head towards the back doors and signal the driver by pressing the red button next to the exit.
The Subte in Buenos Aires consists of 5 lines and 34 stops mostly all sprawling outward from the City Center.Each Subway track is also represented in the Guia T with a red line; noting stations, est, and the Lines.The Subte starts operating at 5 in the morning and runs until bout 10:30.However, check the times for each line as they vary; The subways system is very efficient and costs AR$.70 per trip and tickets can be bought per Trip, Viaje, or in increments on 2, 5, or 10. If you are planning on staying in the city for an extended period of time you can purchase a rechargeable Subte pass, at Palermo, Tribunales, Retiro, Florida, Plaza Miserere, Peru, Independencia, and Constitution stations. You can only purchase the rechargeable cards at these locations, however you can recharge them at any Subway station.The subway is a very safe and clean way to travel the city, but one should always be mindful of personal possessions.
If you are in a hurry or are not certain as to the route you should take, there are plenty of taxis available in Buenos Aires.A 15 minute cab ride should cost approximately AR$15.Tips are not usually expected, but is customary to leave small change for the driver.