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tram

trams are perhaps the most underrated vehicles; but not in Poland - we're bringing answers to your questions.

- what cities have tram systems?
- how do I buy a ticket?
- how much does it cost?



contents


tram systems


For route planning, go to Jakdojade.pl.

Many Polish cities have tram systems, though some much larger than others. Below is a map of Polish tram systems in which the size of the bubble corresponds to the size of the system.



For the purpose of simplicity, this chapter treats all tram systems as one - this is because all tram systems in Poland work similarly and are of comparable quality.

trams

There are essentially two categories of trams in Poland, as with a lot of other things - new and old. There is a very visible divide between communist-produced vehicles and modern vehicles. Most cities with tram systems currently operate both old and new trams, with new trams comprising about 70% of all trams.

new tram outside

new tram inside

old tram outside

old tram inside

tram stops

Trams go everywhere you will need to go as a tourist. To catch a tram, you simply need to wait for the right tram (tram routes are numbered - look for a tram with the right number) at the right tram stop. This is easier said than done, but, as long as you manage to find your tram stop, you're fine. For finding the right tram stop and tram route, we recommend using Jakdojade.pl.

Tram stops consist of a tram timetable, a roofed glass shelter with a bench, a short platform, and a sign with the tram stop name. They may also include a screen stating when the next tram will come.

Please note that tram stops are often located on islands in the middle of the street.

tram stop

tram timetable

It's important to know that trams do not necessarily stop at all stops along their route. Some stops are so-called "on-demand stops" - for the tram to stop, one of the passengers must press one of the red stop buttons inside the tram or a passenger must be waiting at the stop.

tickets


The prices and types of tickets are different for each city. To read about tickets in a specific city, visit the city's article. However, there are some universal truths about tickets in trams. And here they are:

buying the ticket

There are a few ways of buying a ticket, out of which three are viable for a tourist.

Firstly, you can buy a ticket in a newsstand. This is not a recommended option, but it is sometimes easier to find a newsstand than a ticket machine, which leads to...

pros: works in almost all cities;
cons: big language barrier; must know type of ticket needed beforehand; payment by card may not be possible;

Option number 2, buy a ticket at a ticket machine. This is not possible in every city, but it is in the vast majority. We strongly recommend this option.

pros: can be set to English; very easy to use; can pay by cash or card; all ticket types are presented;
cons: only in largest cities;

Option number 3, buy the ticket in the tram itself, right after you board it. Some (not all!) modern trams have built-in ticket machines. This is a bit risky, however - there might not be one. In larger cities, such as Warsaw, Łódź, Cracow, Gdańsk, Wrocław, and Poznań, you have an approximately 50% chance of being able to buy a ticket inside of the tram. Remember to have cash - not all in-tram machines accept credit card. Please note that the ticket you buy may already be automatically validated - the machine will inform you whether you need to validate the ticket that is printed for you.

pros: can be set to English; very easy to use; all ticket types are presented;

cons: only in largest cities; even in largest cities not possible on all routes; card payment not always available;

ticket machine

in-tram ticket machine

validating your ticket

You may only travel with a validated ticket. This means that if you do not have a validated ticket, you must validate it as soon as you enter the tram using in-tram validating machines. To validate a ticket using those machines, you must enter the ticket into the hole and remove the ticket when it is released (it will be intuitive).

If you aready have a validated ticket when boarding the tram, you do not have to do anything. Most big cities in Poland have integrated public transport systems in which you can freely switch between metro, buses, and trams for the duration of the ticket's validity. This means that if you have any valid ticket and it has not yet expired, you may travel by tram until its expiration.

ticket validation machine

back of validated ticket

Please note that you must have a validated ticket for the entire duration of your journey and have it at your disposal to present to a ticket controller if needed.