A Vienna vacation often starts at Vienna International Airport (VIE), the main airport serving Vienna and is the largest and busiest airport in Austria. Austrian Airlines can get you there directly from the USA; otherwise, you may have to connect in Amsterdam or somewhere else. The City Airport Train, known as The CAT, leaves from the airport (and the city center) every half hour and takes you right into the Vienna subway system. The ride is 16 minutes and costs 160 euros. You'll see CAT ticket machines in the airport after you clear customs. Alternatively, you can take a bus into town for a little less cash and a little more time, and a taxi will cost you approximately 30-35 euros.
The main Vienna railway station is the Wien Westbahnhof. Within Austria, you'll want to use the OBB
lines, and from elsewhere in Europe, investigate at Eurail.com
To travel to Vienna from around Europe by bus, visit Eurolines
Perhaps the most exciting way to arrive in Vienna is by boat. You can boat in on the Danube from Bratislava in just 75 minutes on a Twin City Liner
, or come in on your own boat at the Vienna Marina
Vienna taxis are reasonably priced and a good idea if you're in a hurry, lost, or out very late. No haggling is involved; they are all metered—if you don't see a meter or a TX in the license plate of the taxi, don't get in (unless it's a car service you ordered). Here are three taxi numbers you can call:
Vienna public transportation is remarkable. The underground subway is simple and easy to use, and the above-ground trams are so silent and quick you have to take extra care every time you're crossing the tracks. Seriously, you won't hear the trams and they can't stop, so be very careful. It's advisable to purchase a Vienna Card
when visiting Vienna. For just 18.50 euros, the Vienna Card gives you unlimited access to subways, trams and buses in the city for 72 hours. You'll also get discounts at a number of museums and other attractions, as well as the City Airport Train. You can purchase a Vienna Card at tourist information points or order in advance online here
(the 72 hours doesn't start until your first stamp). Alternatively, you can get a single ticket for 1.80 euros (2.20 euros if purchasing onboard a bus or tram) or a 24-hour pass for 5.70 euros. Kids under six ride free.
Don't do it. It's a trap. Renting a car in Vienna is like renting a motorcycle at a baseball stadium. It's just not the best way to get around, and there are a number of places you won't even be able to go. Furthermore, the parking payment system
is complicated. If you're driving around Europe and need a place to stash your car while visiting Vienna, try a Park & Ride Garage
; that's what the Viennese commuters use and they cost just 3 euros per day.