Public transportation in Milan is a little tricky, not only because it’s impossible to buy tickets at most stations. In this guide, we’re explaining what you need to know about transportation in Milan and what options are available.
With two major airports and one of the biggest train stations in Italy, Milan is an important transportation hub in Italy. By train, you may not only reach nearly all important cities in Italy with direct connections, but also several cities in France, Germany, Switzerland and Austria. Additionally, regional trains are getting you basically everywhere from Milan Central Station, including Milan Malpensa Airport (Malpensa Express). Be aware of the extra charge for this train. The suburban railway network is consisting of a total of 13 lines (S1 to S13). If you are exploring the region, you won’t have any problems finding a train to get you to your destination.
The metro in Milan consists of four different lines, which are connecting the city center with the suburbs, but are also a good way to get around in Milan as a tourist. There are metro stations near all major attractions in Milan, making the metro a good option to get around the city. There are several connecting stations, but no actual hub. As of now, the metro lines are not stopping at one of the airports either. However, the currently build (plannend opening in 2020) metro line 4 is supposed to connect Milan Linate Airport with the city center. All tickets bought for transportation in Milan are valid for the metro, the trams, buses as well as the Passante Ferroviario (Urban Rail Network).
The most important means of transportation for tourists in Milan is actually not the metro, but the tram. Milan has one of the most extensive networks in Europe with 19 lines at the moment.
The trams are stopping way more often in the city and are mainly urban (there’s just a single suburban tram line). For getting from A to B quickly, the trams in Milan might be the best options. While there are hardly any trams in the immediate city center, using the trams is great to get to the sights a little further out of the city center. There are several different types of trams in Milan, ranging from very modern ones to historic ones.
Depending on the route, you may luck out and have a very historic ride, while just paying the normal fare, which is valid on all tram lines.
In addition to the tram and metro network, Milan also has an extensive bus and trolleybus network. The buses and trolleybuses are basically supporting the trams and mainly serve less busy routes. Yet, buses are also going to the two airports of the city. Especially Milan Linate Airport is very well connected with the city center by bus. The fare system for all means of transportation in Milan is identical and relatively easily explained.
A single journey of up to 90 minutes is 1.50 Euro, while a 24 hours ticket is 4.50 Euro. There are also a couple of other fare options, but generally transportation in Milan isn’t expensive. Nevertheless, you should be aware that buying tickets is only possible at important stations, metro stations and via the app. You won’t be able to get a ticket at most tram stations, for example.
If you don’t want to use public transportation in Milan, you’ll find taxis throughout the city. Those are available by either hailing them on the street or asking a hotel etc. to call one for you. The base fare usually is 5 Euro, while every kilometer is charged 1.10 Euro. While shorter rides are quite expensive, longer rides are cheaper than in other European metropolises. The taxis are usually comfortable and modern, the drivers drive relatively reasonable (by Italian standards). If you are taking a taxi to or from the airport, the charge is around 30 Euro (Milan Linate) or 75 Euro (Milan Malpensa). Uber is also available in Milan, but only in the luxury version Uber Black, which is a tad more expensive than taxis, but also offers a higher comfort level.
Milan is one of the most touristic cities in Europe. Thus, there are a couple of further means of transportation, including several sightseeing buses with an hop-on-hop-off system.
Additionally, you might either rent a City Car or a City Bike to get around the city.