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Guadalajara Transportation

Bus sign
Credit: Jostein Hauge | Thinkstock

Guadalajara is a sprawling metropolis of 4.4 million people but has a well-developed Guadalajara transportation system to move residents and visitors around the city by bus, light rail and taxi.

The Guadalajara Macrobus is a Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system that uses dedicated lanes specifically set aside for BRT on Calzada Independencia, a main thoroughfare. BRT serves 27 stations. The Guadalajara electric trolley bus system has two lines that connect the area west of the city with the eastern part.

Several private companies operate regular city buses throughout Guadalajara. On major routes, buses are scheduled to run every five minutes from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily. The bus network is quite extensive, covering all areas of the city. You will need to know the bus number to get where you want to go. Prices vary based on where you are going. Quite a few buses are routed through city center. You should know, though, that city buses could be very crowded, especially during rush hours.

TUR buses have air conditioning and plush seats, but cost more. Unfortunately, they are often full and will not make stops when they are at capacity.

The Guadalajara light rail system (SITEUR) provides electric rail service within Guadalajara, Zapopan and Tlaquepaque. Line one runs north to south and has 19 stations. Line 2 provides rail service between city center and the eastside and has 10 stations. A third line is under construction and will link Zapopan in the northwest to Tlaquepaque and Tonala in the southeast.

Taxis are also plentiful and relatively inexpensive compared with U.S. taxi fares. They do not use meters, instead charging per ride based on zones. Fares differ depending on distance travelled.

Guadalajara also has become the third city in Mexico to offer a comprehensive bike-sharing system. MIBICI is a public bike-sharing program to provide transportation options for short trips in 14 districts of the city. Currently the program has nearly 1,200 bikes and 116 stations located in the center of Guadalajara and Zapopan areas, You can subscribe yearly or purchase a temporary pass for a little over US$4 per day. Machines at docking stations will allow you to pay with a credit card.