Poland: Local Travel Info
A country with new world cuisine, a bustling nightlife and a haunting past
Internal Flight and Major International Airports in Poland
Major airlines fly to many of Poland's airports, including British Airways the national Polish carrier, LOT, as well as many budget airlines such as Easyjet, Ryanair and Wizzair. International airports are Warsaw, Krakow; the two most popular, as well as Wroclaw, Katowice, Gdansk, Poznan, Szczecin, Lodz, Rzeszow, and Bydgoszcz. Internal flights are operated by LOT and Jet Air between Warsaw, Krakow, Poznan, Bydgoszcz, Zielona Gora and Lodz.
Getting to and from the Airport in Poland
Transfers from the most popular destinations of Warsaw and Krakow are fairly straight forward.
Warsaw's Frederic Chopin Chopin Airport is located about 10km south west of the city centre. There are several buses that leave form outside the terminal buildings. Tickets should be bought beforehand from one of the kiosks located in the terminal building itself and validated in one of the machines upon boarding. Standard bus ticket price for one journey is around 3zl, the journey to the centre takes around 30minutes. Taxis can also be found waiting outside the terminal building. Although by far the quickest and easiest method of transport between the airport and hotel, travellers should beware that some taxi drivers will try to take advantage of the unknowing tourist. Be sure not to be over-charged, agree a fee with the driver before getting in, asking several drivers will result in several different prices being offered. Be sure to find the best offer. It should cost no more that about 20-30zl to get from the airport to the city centre and take approximately 10-15 minutes.
Krakow airport is located some 15km outside of the city centre. A shuttle services operates between the airport and Krakow's main train station, Krakow Glowny. Trains run about every 30 minutes between 4am and midnight, the journey taking about 20-30 minutes. Tickets cost around 8zl. Taxi's can be a bit more expensive and expect to pay between 50 and 80zl.
Renting Cars in Poland
If you are thinking of travelling around Poland, by far the best way to do this is by car. Rental starts at around 75zl per day for a small car. Most companies require drivers to be over 21 and to have had a full driving licence for at least one year. Almost all major international companies have branches in most of the major cities.
To book car rental in Poland online, view our Car Hire section for Poland . We offer Ok Alpha users the latest special offers and best rates available for car hire in Poland . We advise you book your Poland hire car in advance so you can pick it up and drop it off directly at the airport.
Drivers Licence Requirements in Poland
In order to dive in Poland you must have a full UK driving licence, you must also carry all relevant documents with you whilst driving, including licence, insurance and registration papers. However, do not leave these in the vehicle as there are high instances of car theft in Poland. Traffic drives on the right in Poland, however, drivers should note that some Polish roads are not up to the standard of other western European countries. Although the Polish road network is quite extensive, there are very few motorways and dual carriageways. The result is that roads can become congested especially at the start and end of holidays seasons. Also, ruts and defects in the road are common. Polish drivers tends to assert themselves when driving and can be quite aggressive in doing so. If being overtaken, especially on narrower country roads, it is customary to move over towards side of the road, using the hard shoulder if necessary and present. Drivers should also note that there is no right turn at red lights, traffic to the right has priority at T-junctions and crossroads, and drivers must have their lights on at all time whilst driving. Seat-beats are compulsory and using a mobile phone whilst driving is also forbidden.
Poland by Bus
Travel between major cities is best done by train, which is far quicker, however, any trips to provincial towns and villages should be taken by bus. The Polish national bus company, PKS, has an extensive network operating throughout the country. Tickets are cheap, but there are some disadvantages to this mode of transport. Most of the buses are quite old, and comfort can not be guaranteed; also journey time can be quite long, as the buses stop regularly and rarely get above 30 kmh. There are on the other hand many private small bus companies that operate services between the main cities and other provincial areas. These are generally 16-20 seat minibuses that offer a greater amount of comfort and a limited number of stops. However, it is usually necessary to book a seat in advance.
Poland by Train
Travel between Poland's Major cities is best accomplished by train. Tickets are cheap, especially compared to UK prices. However, as with buses, most of the trains in Poland are several decades old. There are several types of train. Express and Intercity trains are the fastest running between major cities with a very limited number of stops between. Pospiezny trains, are also fast long-distance trains, but stop at most major towns and cities along the way. Osobowy train operate over short and long distances and usually stop at all stations along the route.
Poland by Taxi
Only taxis from reputable taxi companies should be used in Poland. Most of these can be identified by a sign on the roof of the vehicle bearing the company's telephone number. However, be aware that there are some 'fake' look-alike taxis trying to catch out tourists. It is best to ask at the reception of your hotel for a reputable firm and book a taxi over the phone. Some company's in large cities even offer online and text message bookings.