With over 47 million passengers in 2017, Barcelona Airport is the second busiest airport in Spain after Madrid Barajas Airport. El Prat has two terminals: T1, which is very modern and was inaugurated in 2009 and T2, which includes the old A, B and C terminals.
How to get from the Airport to the city centre?
Airport transfer service
The most comfortable and hassle-free way of getting from the Airport to the city centre is by booking a private airport transfer service. The chauffeur will be waiting for you at the arrival terminal with a sign with your name on it. The fare costs € 49 (US$ 55.20) for a standard sized vehicle. By booking an Airport transfer service you’ll avoid any language barrier.
Aerobús is a bus company that connects El Prat Airport with the city center. The journey takes approximately 35 minutes.
Aerobús has two separate lines that connect the Airport’s two terminals with Plaça de Catalunya. The bus stops at other locations in the city: Plaça de la Universitat, Sepúlveda Urgell, Gran Vía-Urgell and Plaça d’Espanya.
The Terminal 1 line runs every 5 to 10 minutes, while the Terminal 2 line runs every 10 to 20 minutes. The first departure is between 5:30 am and 6 am and the buses run until 12:30 am (midnight) - 1 am.
A one-way ticket costs € 5.90 (US$ 6.70) and a return ticket costs € 10.20 (US$ 11.50) (you can use the return ticket up to 15 days after the outbound journey). Children less than 4 years old do not need a ticket.
You can buy your Aerobús ticket either online, in the specific vending machines at the Airport or directly from the bus driver.
Although this is the slowest option, the urban buses are the cheapest option to get to the city center from the Airport. During the day, the bus is number 46. After 11 pm, you can take the N17.
Note that if you take the bus from Plaça de Catalunya to the Airport, it stops in numerous occasions and the journey can take up to an hour, although the normal duration is between 30 and 50 minutes. The bus nº 46 leaves approximately every 20 minutes.
A single ticket costs € 2 (US$ 2.30), but you can use a TMB transport ticket or travel card.
If you land or depart from Terminal 2, you can catch the L2 train that connects the Airport to the city center. The train departs from Terminal 2 and stops at Passeig de Gràcia or Barcelona Sants Railway Station every 30 minutes. The first train departs at 5:40 am and the last departs at 11:25 pm. The journey to Passeig de Gràcia takes approximately 25 minutes, stopping along the way.
If you wish to take the train but you land in Terminal 1, there is a free bus that connects both terminals.
Although it is the most expensive option, a taxi is also an easy and pleasant way to get to your hotel, especially if you are traveling with your family or a group of friends and have quite a lot of suitcases.
It takes between 20 and 30 minutes and costs around € 25 (US$ 28.10) – € 30 (US$ 33.80). Note that if you are carrying a large suitcase, you will be charged a € 1 (US$ 1.10) supplement.