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New Taipei City


How is public transportation in Beijing? Is it easy for tourist?

Hi everyone,

I may stay at Beijing for couple days. Is it easy to take public transport as a tourist?


15 Answers

top answer by
Ed from San Francisco

Beijing has one of the most extensive mass transit systems in the world. There are many subway lines and they are relatively new. 

For a tourist, I would recommend checking subway maps ahead of time and seeing if there are stops near where you'll be staying and where you want to go. While there are many subway stops, Beijing is a HUGE city and so depending where you're going it can be a bit of a walk to get from the stop to your final destination. Subway stations have English options I believe, and rides are relatively cheap, so subway is a pretty viable option generally. Avoid at rush hour if possible when it can be unbearably crowded

There are tons of buses as well, but the system is likely harder to understand without knowing Chinese. 

Generally, if you're not on a very tight budget, I would recommend sticking with subways and taxis. Taxis are relatively affordable in Beijing and all are metered at official rates. Traffic can get quite bad at rush hour, however

5 thanks

answered by
Hervé from Ho Chi Minh City
  • Metro is quite modern and easy to use. Directions are clearly indicated and it's obvious to know where you are and where the train is going. 
  • Bus is not as clearly indicated and less obvious to use (much like bus VS metro in the western world): stops are unclear, bus direction is unclear. They are usable but require some effort.
  • Taxis are somewhat easy: have your address in Pinyin (latin transliteration) and Chinese Pictogram. Cross street and nearby landmark is helpful as well. In the evening, it may be difficult to find one (because of scarcity and end of shift). The legit taxis are metered.
  • Tuk tuks (scooters with chariot): similar to taxis. They are less popular than taxis with customers so they are more likely to take you on. For some reason, the fare is the same as taxis, sometimes slightly more expensive. You can negotiate fares.

Regarding the metro:

There are ticket vending machines in all the stations I have been to (you can't miss them). The ticketing machines feature an English mode and sells single ride tickets. I don't speak a word of Mandarin and was able to get a ticket quite easily from those machines: all you need is the metro line number (or color) and then the name of your final stop. It's easy to get lost in the Chinese pictogram, I recommend you have those two information before you leave; also, have your final stop in Pinyin (latin transliteration) and Chinese Pictogram (eg: line 10, Hujialou Station 呼家楼站)

The metro stops are further apart that in most American or European cities I have been to. If you miss your stop, you will have a bit more walking in order to backtrack.

Metro maps come in handy for line transfer: they are available as mobile apps (, as well as picture (

Hope this helps!

4 thankscomments (1)

answered first by

Hi, transportation is quite convenience and cheap in Beijing. You can rent a bus card, would be nicer. On the metro, they speak English.Public transportation is also something you cannot miss in China. enjoy your stay..

3 thanks

answered by
Gina from Beijing

Sure, if you stay within 4th ring road in Beijing, there are subway goes to most places with ticket price of RMB2 per ticket.  Most places are covered by subway or buses.

We are also a member of Airbnb, check it out

We are happy to answer your questions if any.  Welcome to Beijing.

2 thanks

answered by

By subway.

No matter by air plane or by train to come Beijing, you could take the subway to your destination.

The subway of Beijing can cover most of all tourist attraction. eg. the Forbidden City Imperial Palace, The Yonghegong Lama Temple……

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Forbidden City Imperial Palace (attraction)
  2. Yonghegong Lama Temple (attraction)
1 thanks

answered by
Dan from P.R.China


The Public transportation in Beijing is really good. You can take the underground system which cover most of the city sites. You may visit the beijing subway website

Other systems such as taxi, car renting, bus etc are also considered to take. 

1 thanks

answered by
zhao from Beijing

Very simple, very convenient subway and bus, basically Beijing is a well-known tourist destination so transportation is very good

answered by
Bruce from Beijing

 pretty easy, except buses!

answered by
Ryne from Beijing

Hi there,

Well it depends on how you define "easy" : ) I noticed that you are from Taipei so I assume you can speak Chinese/Mandarin, so I would say it wouldn't be too hard for you to travel in Beijing . You can always take:

1) cab/taxi: if you speak Chinese, it should be easy. If you cannot, try write down the place in Chinese on your phone and show it to the driver, it should be fine too.

Fee: i think US$4-8 should do if you don't go too far, always tell the driver to use meter (95% of them do, and don't get on any car that doesn't).

2) subway/metro: Rmb 2 yuan fixed price (or US$ 30 cents, yea pretty cheap!) You can download a map and  use your phone to locate your destination then see which station is the closest. You might need to change some lines (e.g. there are line 1, 2, 4, 6, 10, 13...) to get there but it shouldn't bee too hard. Mark your transition station in case you miss it, esp. when you don't speak Chinese. 

3)bus: I don't take bus too often so I'm in no position to tell, but generally I would take cab or subway.

And the above is more for travelling "inside the city", if you want to go further areas such as the Great Wall, it is a different story. Usually there are some buses for tourists that you can try or you can alway rent a car/cab with or without driver.

Traffic can be pretty bad in Beijing some time...but most people here are nice and hospitable, though not everyone here can speak English or other foreign languages as you can imagine.

Hope this helps.

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Beijing (city)

answered by
Iscca from Kunming

Beijing's buses and subway are developed, it is entirely possible as tourist transport. But becareful to avoid the work during the peakhours,when manypeople on the subway and buses.

answered by

It's easy if you don't mind it's extremely crowded.

answered by
Weifeng from Beijing

Transportation at Beijing is bad especially when you drive.But When it talks about public transportation, it is fast but busy.

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Beijing (city)

answered by
jerry from Beijing

Yeah, Subway line is very convenient

answered by
Zuoning from New Haven

Subway is very convenient. Taxi is also OK.

answered by
deng from China

The public transportation is very convinient, You can go to anywhere by subway, it's convinience and cheap, but if you want to go to The Great Wall, You need to take the bus.

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