Students have already started purchasing tickets, since new academic year starts in the beginning of September and a lot of them will have to travel from Prague Airport or railway station to their dormitory in Poděbrady. Naturally, there are options of transfer or a taxi service. But we are going to consider the least expensive (though as fast as the mentioned options). We are going to deal with public transport. There are plenty of options, but the most convenient one is, in my opinion, to take a bus from the airport to railway station (a ticket costs 60 CZK), and change to a train to Poděbrady later (86 CZK).

Пражский аэропорт Вацлава Гавла

So, we are at Terminal 1 of Vaclav Havel airport in Prague now (all flights from the countries outside Schengen area get to this terminal). For a start, you should go and find an ATM of a Czech bank in the terminal’s arrival area. I would recommend KB bank for the foreign currency transactions, since you will need to withdraw approximately 10 thousand CZK from your card (Visa/MasterCard). If you’re from a country where euro is not an official currency, I do not recommend you to bring euro banknotes to the Czech Republic. It is much easier to pay a fee for carrying out a transaction once when you withdraw a large amount of money than to dawdle with a currency exchange office with their (most probably) rapacious rates.


There are several places where you can eat for fair prices at the airport (for instance, McDonald’s) and free WiFi to call home using Skype. You also can send few text messages using the websites of the mobile operators. If you want to buy a SIM card immediately, you can head right to a sale room of Vodafone, which is located in Terminal 2 (go to the right from arrival hall and you will get to the Terminal). Vodafone’s sale room is hard to miss:

Водафон в пражском аэропорту (Рузине, Вацлава Гавла), Терминал 2

If you did not go for a hunt for a SIM card right now, then get your luggage and leave the terminal 1 through the exit marked with “D” letter. If you did, then you can leave the terminal 2 through the exit “A”. One way or another, you will end up on a bus stop. In the airport area buses stop both next to Terminal 1 and 2.


You find yourself on the square next to the “D” exit. Cross the road to get to a bus terminal, and leave the exit behind your back.


You will stumble upon a bus schedule:

You will need the bus AE (meaning Aero Express). It goes right to the Prague main railway station (Czech: Hlavní nádraží). Look at the placard with a schedule and go about 10 meters to the right of the platform:
Go to the end and you will find a stop with “AE” sign:


For those who are curious – a timetable of the bus:


Wait for it. All the AE buses have a relevant sign, most of these are in a blue brand color:


Go through a front door and purchase a ticket (60 CZK, you don’t have to pay for your luggage). You can mime to order a necesessary number of the tickets, but you can also ask in English.


With only a few stops, the bus quickly gets to Prague railway station, to a platform next to a historical building of the station.


Go inside and head in the direction of the opposite platform.


You will end up on the first platform.


Go downstairs to the underpass which leads to the platforms. While going to the railway station, you can watch interiors of the station’s old building:


Enter a departure lounge.


You can take a look at the schedule of the departures.


This year, the trains to Poděbrady depart every hour daily (except 10 pm/22:00), most of these depart from the platform 6. The timetable might not contain Poděbrady, then look for the trains to Lysá nad Labem, Nymburk hl.n. and find out departure time and the platform in case the train is on the station.

Now, time to purchase a ticket. Right in the lounge there’s an escalator (to the left from “Burger King”). Go downstairs.


Make a hundred and eighty degree turn, go downstairs again and you will see the ticket offices České drahy, where you’re supposed to buy the ticket on the train to Poděbrady.


Go to a salesperson in the left part of the hall and say “Poděbrady tom” (which means “one-way ticket to Poděbrady”.


Get your requested ticket for 86 CZK:

Билет на Чешские железные дороги

Go back to the departure lounge, check the schedule again. When it’s about 10 minutes before the train departs, go to the respective platform through the same underpass. The tables next to the exits will tell you which side you should exit to:


Go to the platform, orient yourself with the signs which side of the platform you need:


Those of you who are particularly concious, can check the plates in order to make sure that this train will definitely go to Poděbrady:


Look for any carriage with a big number “2”. These are the 2nd class carriages, the one used by us, the proletarians 🙂 You can risk and take a seat in the 1st class carriage, but an attendant will chuck you out anyways.


Go inside. It might be an ordinary wagon:

Чешский поезд

Or it might be a couchette:

Купе в поезде в Чехии

The train makes 3 stops: Praha Vysočany, Lysá nad Labem hl.n., Nymburk hl.n. Despite the fact that some trains are quite old, they’re still pretty fast.

After the stop in Nymburk get ready to exit the train and once the latter stops in Poděbrady, go out very fast, because the stop is only few minutes long.


Through the building of the station go to the station square which abuts on a park:


Run down the park, approx. 500 meters.


Turn to the left on the crossroad with a clock.


Get to the street with Letní lázně.


Go till the end of the street and face a small square with a bus stop and a few banks.


Cross a road to the side with a post office and a hospital:


After you pass by the post office, you’ll see a small park. Turn to the right run down it.


In 100 meters you’ll notice a guesthouse in a testaceous building. On the right sifde of it there’s a small parking lot. Go to this direction.


Get it round from the right side and you’ll see a dormitory.


At the entrance you’ll give your passport to a receptionist and start to get used to the difficulties of the intercultural communication 🙂

The route I’ve describes is one of the several options and does not aspire to completeness. To orient yourself in Poděbrady, I recommend you to use Google Street View. But, for example, there’s no park depicted in that, because technically the park is a pedestrian area.

I think, this article will calm the students down and let you save loads of money. You can print the article out and take it with you, thus you’ll avoid problems on your way to Poděbrady. A taxi from the airport to the city will cost you at least 1.5-2 thousand CZK, although the way will be way longer.

You should also install Google Maps on your smartphone, if you have already bought the SIM card at the railway station. I recommend you to install a set of applications on your cell phone (Google Maps is among them).