Ash
Written by Ash

Boss the Barcelona Metro with Discount Tickets and Tips

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Understanding the metro in Barcelona is fundamental to having a good holiday.

The 11 lines (eight classic lines and three overland trains) are as prompt as any metro system in Europe and perhaps more importantly – they’re air conditioned.

The only complaints you hear aside from spoiled locals who have never commuted a day in New York or London are tourists getting ripped off buying €2.40 single tickets.

After reading my Barcelona metro guide you won’t be one of them.

Barcelona Metro Map

Click the button below to enlarge or download your very own Barcelona metro map.

You can also grab these at the Barcelona Tourism Office at the airport or any metro stop.

BARCELONA METRO MAP

Barcelona Metro Hours

Day Hours 2022
 Monday to ThursdayFrom 05:00 to midnight
 FridayFrom 05:00 to 02:00 (Saturday)
 SaturdayFrom 05:00 all night
 SundayFrom midnight to midnight
 Holidays: Jun 23-24, Aug 16-17, Sept 23-24, Dec 31 All day/night

For those not fond of graphs here it is again:

The Barcelona metro opens daily at 5:00 am with the last train departing at 12:00 midnight. On Fridays and holidays trains run until 2:00 am.

There is all night service on Saturday evenings and holiday days of the 23rd of June, 16th of August, 21st and 23rd of September and New Year’s Eve.

Service is limited on Christmas Eve till 11:00 pm.

Frequency

  • During the day trains run every 2-4 minutes
  • At night trains run every 6-10 minutes

Barcelona Metro Tickets

To buy tickets for the Barcelona metro you’ll need to use the machines found at station lobbies. Tickets are valid for the entire Barcelona transport network including metro, bus, tram, and Montjuic funicular lines.

There is a supplemental charge for the Barcelona airport metro to the city centre: €5.15.

Tickets can be purchased using cash or credit/debit card.

All tickets have a 75 minute validity.

Prices

Locals typically buy single zone 1 tickets for €2.40 or the T-Casual card (unipersonal, 10 rides in zone 1) for €11.35.

There’s also the T-Familiar card (interpersonal up to four riders, eight rides in zone 1) for €10.00.

Keep in mind that the fares listed above do not include metro airport transport, which will cost €5.15 per ride.

Tourists usually buy the all-inclusive transport card the Hola Barcelona Card: with unlimited travel on the metro, bus, tram, funicular, and airport transport.

Prices for these passes start around €7.00 a day.

You can save 5% on your Hola Barcelona card buying using the button below.

HOLA BARCELONA CARD
Save 5% on my ticket

Here you get the lowest prices while giving me a small commission to cover server costs and the effort and time I put in… if you would like to help the blog please reserve using the button above.

Add an Unlimited Transport on Top

Looking to combine the Hola Barcelona Card with the city’s best airport transport?

Thanks to Tiqets you now have the option to package a one way or return ticket on the Aerobus (up to a €13.20 value) with the unlimited transport Hola Barcelona Card – you can book the Barcelona Transport Pass clicking the button below:

BARCELONA TRANSPORT PASS
Grab your pass today!

Zones

The Barcelona transport network encompasses 6 zones.

Zone 1 includes the city centre and virtually all of the city’s main attractions and best areas to stay. The odds of you leaving this area are extremely low.

Single ticket prices increase exponentially at €3.40 (Zone 2), €4.50 (Zone 3), €5.75 (Zone 4), €7.35 (Zone 5), €8.55 (Zone 6) respectively.

Here is the Barcelona metro zone map.

Barcelona Metro Passes

You can buy single tickets for €2.40 but the price and ticket machine lines are hardly ideal.

I always suggest tourists pick up a discount transport card that gives you unlimited metro access like the Hola Bcn or Barcelona Card. They save you time and money.

You can always go with the T-Casual but unlike the passes above it’s not valid for the airport.

Find out which discount card is right for you by clicking the banner below:

a tourist holds 3 barcelona discount passes in front of the arc de triomf in barcelona spain a tourist holds 3 barcelona discount passes in front of the arc de triomf in barcelona spain
Barcelona Pass, Hola Bcn, or Barcelona Card?

Barcelona Metro Lines + Attractions

L9S Metro (Orange Line)

The newest Barcelona metro line connects the city to both terminals of El Prat Airport.

It isn’t the fastest line and won’t take you to many of the main hotel, Airbnb, and hostel neighbourhoods in the city – it is primarily used for residents getting home to the outskirts.

If you want to get super central you’ll need to change lines.

Connections: the orange line meets the red line (L1) at Torrassa station, the blue line (L5) at Collblanc, and the green line (L3) at Zona Universitaria

L1 Metro (Red Line)

My favourite line crosses the city from east to west and stops in some of the city’s great meeting points like Arc de Triomf (Ciutadella Park), Plaça Catalunya, and Plaça d’Espanya.

Finding a holiday apartment along this line is about as convenient as it gets, as you’ll be able to get around with ease.

Connections: the red line meets the yellow line (L4) at Urquinaona, the green line (L3) at Plaça d’Espanya, the purple line (L2) at Plaça Universitat, and the blue line (L5) at Sagrera and Plaça de Sants.

L2 Metro (Purple Line)

This line connects neighbouring city Badalona with Parallel.

The main points of interest along this line are the Sagrada Familia church, Passeig de Gracia and its famous Gaudi buildings La Pedrera and Casa Batllo, and the glitzy neighbourhood of Eixample and the rough and ready Raval.

Connections: the purple line meets the yellow line (L4) and green line (L3) at Passeig de Gracia, the blue line (L5) at Sagrada Familia, and the red line (L1) at Plaça Universitat and Clot.

L3 Metro (Green Line)

This line sort of twists its way around the city in a U-shape and serves quite a few main attractions.

Along the green line you’ll find three stops on the famous La Rambla: Plaça Catalunya, Liceu, and Drassanes. You’ll also get to the main shopping district at Passeig de Gracia and Diagonal. A few stops along you’ll reach Plaça d’Espanya and the Magic Fountain.

You’ll also get to Park Guell (Vallcara), Barcelona FC’s stadium Camp Nou, and Labirinto di Horta Park (Mundet).

Connections: the green line meets the blue line (L5) at Diagonal, the red line (L1) at Catalunya and Espanya, the yellow line (L4) at Passeig de Gracia, and the purple line (L2) at Parallel and Passeig de Gracia.

L4 Metro (Yellow Line)

Arguably the most popular of Barcelona metro lines is most useful serving the city’s best beaches. Be careful! Especially in the summer the line can get quite busy.

Along the yellow line you’ll find the bohemian Gracia neighbourhood, the Gothic Quarter‘s central square and its Barcelona Cathedral, the upper parts of the city and the Bunkers lookout, and the nightclubs and casino of the Port Olimpic.

If you’re looking for a great beach holiday grab your accommodation along the yellow.

Connections: the yellow line meets the red line (L1) at Urquinaona, with the purple line (L2) at Passeig de Gracia, with the green line (L3) at Passeig de Gracia, and with the blue line (L5) at Verdaguer.

L5 Metro (Blue Line)

I would call this one the business line as it takes people from residential areas into the centre.

The main stop here is Barcelona’s biggest train station: Sants. From here you’ll be able to get a train to the airport, Madrid, or even France. You’ll also get to Camp Nou at Badal station and Sagrada Familia is home to Barcelona’s famous church.

Connections: the blue line has connections with the green line (L3) at Diagonal, the yellow (L4) at Verdaguer, and the purple line (L2) at Sagrada Familia.

tourists lining up outside casa batllo in barcelona spain tourists lining up outside casa batllo in barcelona spain
Skip lines and save money buying tickets online!

Barcelona Metro Tips

  • Avoid taking it during rush hour (8:00-9:00 am and 6:00-7:00 pm).
  • Changing lines could leave you a long walk at Plaça Catalunya, Passeig de Gracia and Sants.
  • Always walk further up the platform for more carriage space.
  • Miss the last train? There’s probably a night bus to get you back.
  • A good rule of thumb is to calculate 2 minutes per metro stop to get your travel time

Safety

In general the trains are well kept and quiet.

The only thing you’ll need to worry about, as mentioned before, are the petty thieves operating in tourist areas – mainly in and around the stations at Liceu, Drassanes, Placa Catalunya, Passeig de Gracia, and Sants.

Use common sense and you’ll be fine.

Get On Board in the Comments Below

Bum steer on your Barcelona metro pass?

Not sure which Canadian-Ethiopian fusion restaurant within 3 minutes walking from the northern beaches would suit your vegetarian celiac boyfriend on crutches? I’m here 😉

Drop me a line any time.

63 comments
  • September 12, 2022 at 7:28 am
    Krystal
    Hello, can you tell me the best way to get to Sitges from Barcelona? I am staying near El Maresme-Fòrum. Thank you!
    • September 12, 2022 at 6:47 pm
      ashley
      Team Member
      Ash
      Hi Krystal, From El Maresme-Fòrum grab the yellow line of the metro to Barceloneta. Get out here, walk the 200 meters to Estación de Francia and then from here you can grab the train to Sitges. Cheers,
      • September 12, 2022 at 7:24 pm
        Krystal
        Thank you so much Ash! This is the best site I've found that has really helpful information! :)
        • September 12, 2022 at 7:28 pm
          ashley
          Team Member
          Ash
          So great to hear Krystal! You're welcome -if you have any more questions you know where to ask :)
  • August 31, 2022 at 12:38 pm
    Tujan
    Thanks Ash for this detailed blog! I just want to make sure if I understand the correct usage of the T-familia card: lets say if i want to use this card for one trip then pass it along to my friend who is joining me in the same transporation, will this be considered 2 trips (becaise me and my friend have used the card) or only one? Thanks
    • August 31, 2022 at 1:37 pm
      ashley
      Team Member
      Ash
      Hi Tujan, Unfortunately each time the ticket is passed through the machines to open the gates it counts as another ride. Would be a great loophole if not!
  • June 28, 2022 at 7:35 am
    Amir
    Hi Ash. Thank you for putting this together. Me and my daughter will be flying into BCN in a few days and aware staying at Hilton Diagonal. What’s our best option for transport to and from the hotel? Thanks!
    • June 29, 2022 at 11:06 am
      ashley
      Team Member
      Ash
      Hi Amir, Thanks for the kind words :) Honestly, there's no easy way to do this as this hotel is about as far from Barcelona airport as possible - it's inevitable to have to take two means of transport or more unless you get a taxi (which will likely be around 45 euros). I would take the Aerobus to the terminus stop at Placa Catalunya... then walk the 100 meters to Urquinaona metro station. From here you can grab the yellow line all the way to El Maresme Form. From here it's just a short walk. Cheers,
  • May 18, 2022 at 11:53 am
    Rose
    Hi, have bought Tfamiliar online. We are staying near San boi del Llobrigade, where is there a ticket machine so we can travel into Barca. I thought we would of got E tickets on the App
    • May 18, 2022 at 6:31 pm
      ashley
      Team Member
      Ash
      Hi Rose, From Sant Boi de Llobregat you can go to the Sant Boi train station (quite central) and some there you can claim your tickets. They've got lots of machines there and even a ticket window with attendants should you need it. Cheers,
  • December 7, 2021 at 10:29 pm
    Dave Wade
    Hey Ash! I've just booked a cruise for August 2023 from Barcelona and having done my research, I just wanted to check with you the cheapest option for 5 of us from airport to Drassanes.... so, because there is 5 of us, I can buy the t-familiar card, 4 of us use it for our integrated journey from bus 46 to espanya metro then on to drassanes - but the 5th person will have to purchase a single bus ticket to espanya and then another single bus ticket from the espanya metro to drassanes - then the same on the reverse journey - is this correct? Thanks!!
    • December 8, 2021 at 10:31 am
      ashley
      Team Member
      Ash
      Hi Dave, First of all... 2023? ;) I hope you mean 2022 otherwise this might be the record for advanced planning advice given haha. Hell, it's still super early but we love the enthusiasm! Anyway, keep in mind that with TMB fare integration your Familiar fares from the airport will be valid for 75 minutes and allow for up to 3 transfers in this window. Provided the journeys are in the same zone (they are in this case) you'll be able to use them for the Espanya-Drassanes metro journey as long as the bus doesn't lag behind and get you there beyond 75 minutes. In other words, you'll only need 5 of the 8 journeys on the Familiar to get there. If the bus takes a bit longer than anticipated you will have to use 3 of the remaining Familiar journeys from Espanya and then buy two single tickets for the other travellers. This is definitely the cheapest way to get there and would naturally work in reverse as well. If you're willing to sacrifice a bit of time to save the money this is a great option :) Cheers,
  • February 17, 2020 at 4:37 pm
    john
    Hi Ash, We will be in Barcelona for 3 days as our first leg of our 12 days in Europe. I have been contacting the transportation people in Barcelona and they told me that the Hola Barcelona Travel card does not includes airport blue bus A1 and A2 routes. It covers metro, bus, and tram lines except airport bus transfer. Since we are staying at carrer del comte borrell, we will hop on line 9 sud then transfer at Torrassa then take line 1 to Urgell. Can you please recommend us any tapa bars or Catalonia restaurants around that area. Any informations will be greatly appreciated. Thanks a lot. John
  • February 6, 2020 at 2:15 pm
    Elizabeth
    Hi Ash, We are thinking of purchasing the t-casual while in town for 5 days. Not sure if we will use all the available trips on the ticket, and I was wondering if they had an expiration date. We would like to give the remainder (if any) to my cousin (living in Madrid) so she could give them to some of their many visitors. Cheers Elizabeth
    • February 6, 2020 at 2:51 pm
      ashley
      Team Member
      Ash
      Hi Elizabeth, No worries then... these tickets are valid until the end of February of the year after the ticket was bought. She may have to hurry a bit, but if she visits this year it'll be fine! Cheers, Ash
  • February 5, 2020 at 4:09 pm
    Andrea
    Hi Ash! I just checked official fares for metro and it is written that a T-familiar multi-person ticket for 8 journeys in 30 days will be available from 1 March 2020. T-10 card is not sold anymore. So, which multi-person card is possible to purchase for period 06.02.-10.02.2020. Thank you in advance, Andrea
    • February 6, 2020 at 10:09 am
      ashley
      Team Member
      Ash
      Hola Andrea, Unfortunately until the launch of the T-Familiar there will be no interpersonal cards on the market. You'll have to get a T-Casual which is singular :( Cheers, Ash
  • January 22, 2020 at 11:35 pm
    Kyle
    Hi, I’ll be arriving in Barcelona on the 9th February and my hotel is closest to Bogatell, how would you reccomebd getting to there from the airport? Thank you
    • January 24, 2020 at 5:22 pm
      ashley
      Team Member
      Ash
      Hi Kyle, I'd grab the Aerobus to Plaça Catalunya, walk the 200 m over to Urquinaona metro station, and then take the yellow line of the metro to Bogatell. Cheers, Ash
  • January 17, 2020 at 11:54 pm
    Jennifer
    Can the T-casual card be used for multiple people or is it just 1 person per card? Trying to decide between getting hola Barcelona or just doing T-Casual cards for our trip in April (family of 4).
    • January 18, 2020 at 9:15 pm
      ashley
      Team Member
      Ash
      Hi Jennifer, The T-Casual is not interpersonal but there's the T-Familiar which will give you 8 trips (interpersonal) for just over €10.00. If you're doing a standard sightseeing holiday I always recommend the Hola Barcelona because it'll cover airport transport and eliminate a lot of the hassle with buying tickets etc. That said, if you're just going to see a couple things here and there the T-Familiar is more than fine. Cheers, Ash
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