From Budapest to Vienna by Bus: Quick Guide

Traveling by bus from Budapest to Vienna is a no brainer. Here are some frequently asked questions with the answers:

How much does it cost to travel from Budapest to Vienna by bus?

The bus ticket prices vary between 2900 HUF/ 11 euros / 15 USD up to approx. 5900 HUF/ 23 euros / 35 USD (for a single bus trip) or 3900 HUF/ 14 euros / 20 USD up to approx. 8900 HUF/ 34 euros / 51 USD (for a return bus trip). It’s the price of a full adult ticket (occasionally, you can get a return ticket at the same price as a single ticket – limited edition and period). See further deals below!

Is it cheaper if I buy it online?

Buses from Budapest to Vienna Volánbusz services faux image

Yes, it is: you can buy the bus ticket on the internet for only about 2,900 HUF/ 11 euros/ 17 USD (single ticket) and 3900 HUF/ 15 euros/ 22 USD. But be careful as the ticket is only valid on the stated specific day, it cannot be modified or exchanged, and it’s not easy to get as there is a limited offer per bus) and you can buy it here on the official site of the Hungarian bus company, Volán The destination box recognizes both WIEN or VIENNA.

Are there any further deals or reductions?

If you are under 26, you can get bus tickets with a 50% reduction! In addition, if you stay a few days in Vienna, it is worth calculating with a Vienna public transport pass (2-day pass for 10 euros / 15 USD). It means that you may be better off with a train ticket combined with a Viennese public transport pass in the train ticket price. Check the current deals for trains.

Where do buses from Budapest to Vienna leave?

Buses leave from Népliget central bus station. You can easily get there by taking the metro (M3 blue metro line) and getting off at Népliget station (approx. 15-20 min from the city center, Deák tér station). You can also take the bus to Arpad Bridge, i.e. Árpád híd station, but to make sure you have a better seat (if it is not numbered) it’s better to get on the bus at the terminal (Népliget – say: nape-ligh-at).

Hey, where on earth is Népliget bus station?

OK, here’s the Budapest Tourist Map to help you (see the blue bus sign in the middle? You can also click on any of the icons to get more info, or follow the blue link ‘View Larger Map’ under the map to get a larger picture of Budapest.


View Budapest Tourist Map in a larger map

How long does the bus ride take?

Traveling time is about 3-4 hours – depending on which bus you manage to get on.

Are there any delays and inconveniences when the bus crosses the border of Austria and Hungary?

Not any more! Hungary joined the Schengen area December 21, 2007. No more borders to keep buses up for passport check. (likewise, rail passengers enjoy the same smooth crossing between the two countries).

How many buses leave from Budapest to Vienna a day? What about the bus schedule?

Bus rides are quite frequent. For instance, on a Saturday, you could leave from Budapest at 7am, 12pm, 15:30, 5pm and 8 pm. The Budapest-Vienna bus schedule on an average Wed is 7am, 12pm, 15:30, 5pm. But always check the fresh data, please.

Where can I buy Volánbusz bus tickets in Budapest?

Vendors are all over Budapest, so you don’t need to go to Népliget for no reason. Here’s a simple Budapest international bus map customized for the Budapest-Vienna travels:

Are buses comfortable?

Most of them are OK. Not super comfy, but they are OK. Personally, I have alway been favoring trains (to stretch out, to eat, etc.) so it certainly influences my judgment.

Any quick programs at Népliget bus station?

If you are stuck at Népliget and you have a couple of hours to spend, for example you want to eat something in the neighborhood: a, the city center is only 15-20 min by metro (blue metro line). b, you can have a delicious Chinese lunch or dinner at Taiwan Chinese Restaurant in Budapest (Taiwan Étterem). It’s not a budget Chinese restaurant – quite on the contrary.

Take the M3 blue metro line for 1 stop to Nagyvárad tér station (see the knife and fork sign on the map).

Buses or Trains from Budapest to Vienna?

The vast majority of users on travel forums (me added) will say: TRAINS. Here is a quick guide to a train trip: Trains from Budapest to Vienna

Last updated: June 29, 2012

Kádár Étkezde (Kádár Diner) – Simply Authentic Hungarian Lunch in Budapest

Eating at Kadar Etkezde in Budapest is partly dining partly submerging into decades old Hungarian culture: yes, it is a simple eatery with a very diverse clientele all united in the joy of eating something authentic, well-known, made well, without any fuss. As Frommer’s puts it (placing the eatery in the Jewish walking tour) Kádár Étkezde “is a simple local lunchroom serving a regular clientele ranging from young paint-spattered workers to elderly Jews.” The sholet is genuine. The worn-down charm likewise.

If you want to know more about the social phenomenon of Kadar Etkezde, this is a nice description made by Dumneazu. If you are specifically interested in Jewish places and attractions in Budapest, I suggest the Jewish Budapest map.

Kádár Étkezde (Kádár Diner) - Simply Authentic Hungarian Lunch in Budapest

Address: Klauzál tér 9., Budapest, 1072
Phone: 00-36-1-321-3622
Opening hours: Mon-Sat 11:30 – 15:30
Note: No dinner time. Sundays closed.
Getting here: tram/ streetcar 4 or 6, get off at Király utca stop

See the location of Kadar Etkezde on the Budapest Tourist Map (check the knife and fork map icon in the middle, and click on the icons to learn more about the neighboring places of interest or click on the View Larger Map blue link under the map). Notice that Kadar Etkezde is not far from the Grand Synagogue in Dohány street, and the Mai Manó House of Photography.
View Larger Map

photo from Dumneazu

Read more about the Best Restaurants in Budapest.

Momotaro Ramen – One of the Best Chinese Restaurants in Budapest

Momotaro Ramen is one of the Best Chinese Restaurant in Budapest, according to Chew.hu, the Hungarian food blog (Top 33 restaurants in Budapest list) as well as several other Chinese food lovers in Hungary. As its name suggests you will also get Japanese dishes here – at reasonable prices.

Address: Széchenyi utca 16, 1065 Budapest
Phone: 00-36-1-269-3802
Opening hours: Mon-Sun 11am – 10 pm
Note: you can get full for 2-3000 HUF/ person. The name of the Asian restaurant features Ramen soup (noodles, meat & vegetables). It’s an ideal quick lunch to gather strength for walking in the historical part of Budapest (see map below).

Momotaro Ramen Chinese and Japanese Restaurant in Budapest
Getting here:

  • metro (red line) Kossuth Lajos tér station
  • tram/ streetcar: number 2 or 2A
  • bus number 15

See the location of Momotaro Ramen Restaurant on the Budapest Tourist Map (check the knife and fork map icon in the middle, and click on the icons to learn more about the neighboring places of interest or click on the View Larger Map blue link under the map). Notice that Momotaro Ramen Budapest is very close to the Parliament, the Basilica and Roosevelt square with the Chain Bridge & the Gresham Palace:


View Larger Map

photo from AmCham made by Bianca Otero

Read more about the Best Restaurants in Budapest.

Dining in Budapest: Lángos, the filling snack

Fresh Hungarian Lángos Fried Dough

Hungarian Snack Langos fried sour dough

Lángos (say lahn-gosh) is a sort of salty fried dough, usually served with sour cream (tejföl in Hungarian) and grated cheese. It was originally a by-product of making bread. There are all sorts of toppings, including cabbage, mushroom, beef, ham, etc.
Tips: put some garlic sauce, or if you are a garlic fan like we are, rub lots of garlic on top of the lángos, before adding the sour cream & cheese toppings, to make it even tastier. Don’t look at the calories, enjoy the little vice of your taste buds! Lángos is especially great as a beer snack, or an afternoon snack. But you will surely enjoy it without a beer too. :)

Warning: if your lángos is not fresh and is too oily, you are at the wrong place! Escape and try one of the following places below (Fény utca should be a good tip).

Price ranges: plain lángos (like the one to the left) is about 140-160 HUF (about half a euro or 0.77 USD) while turbo lángos with extra toppings is about twice as much.

Where can you buy good Lángos in Budapest?

There are not many super-pleasant places in Budapest where you can try lángos, especially not in restaurants and bars – don’t ask why, it would be an excellent idea! Instead, you can try the pleasant market halls in Budapest and some other places. And once you decide to try lángos, don’t start with the plain ones: choose something with loads of toppings. Here’s a photo of the classic Tejfölös-sajtos lángos (lángos with sour cream and grated cheese) made by Eszter:

Tejfölös-sajtos lángos (lángos with sour cream and grated cheese)

Here’s a short list to start your Lángos tour with (not in order of quality):

1, Vásárcsarnok, or Central Market Hall (higher prices , smaller sizes) is always inviting

2, Another great place to try lángos is the Market Hall in Fény utca: it is right behind Mammut Shopping Mall on the Buda side (the name is Fény utcai piac, say approx. ‘faign ootsai pee-ats’). Some say that lángos with cabbage here is a great choice, and lángos is less oily in Fény utcai Market, which is important.

3, A lot less touristy, truly rustic place is the Lehel tér piac, another big market hall very much frequented by locals, especially from the less rich strata (oftentimes cheaper than Vásárcsarnok). Beware, the building of Lehel Market Hall is really tasteless, some say it was the revenge of the architect on Budapest. But the main point is lángos, and you will find it there too.

4, If you happen to be in Budapest during the Christmas holidays, try lángos on Vörösmarty tér: usually there is a beautiful folk market on Vörösmarty square, and also great food and drinks, e.g. lángos and mulled wine.

(from now on, I will mainly rely on a great Lángos test, made by Eszter Fűszeres in November 2007 – in Hungarian)

5, Garay utca piac – temporarily moved to Rottenbiller utca (according to locals, the best version is Hungarian lángos with the Greek tzatziki, but many bought Lángos with ham and ketchup).

6, 58-as Lángoskert (Lángos Garden Buffet): great lángos, spacious place for up to 40 people. Only open from spring to autumn and is operating in an old streetcar named desire Lángos.

See the Lángos Locations on the Budapest Tourist Map (click on the yellow basket signs to see detailed info on the food markets):


View Larger Map

Read more about the Best Restaurants in Budapest or the Best Cafes in Budapest.

Did you know?

Most Hungarians associate Lángos with holidays spent at Lake Balaton (the ‘Hungarian sea’ as we call the great Hungarian fresh-water lake). It is great between two dips, and you will surely find lángos makers in almost every town at Lake Balaton, too.

I think, most people in Hungary think of Lángos as a savoury snack (salty not sweet) and Fánk (another deep fried dough or doughnut) is what is eaten sweet. But some people mention eating lángos sweet with sugar, jam, cinnamon, etc. Apparently, Hungarians living in Transylvania eat lángos with fruit spread, sweet.

Lángos (or lángus), is also sold in other neighboring countries, such as Austria, Romania, Serbia, etc.