How do I get from the airport to my hotel?

Faro Airport (IATA code FAO), located 2 1/2 miles from Faro city, is the main international airport link North America and Europe has with the Algarve. With over 6 million travelers in 2015, it is the third-busiest airport in Portugal. Ryanair, easyJet, and Monarch Airlines use Faro Airport as a hub.

Proximo, the bus system in Faro, runs a route (#14) from the airport`s arrivals terminal to Faro bus station, the Arco da Vila, and other landmarks in Faro city. The bus ticket will cost under €4 and can be purchased directly from the driver. Buses run between the airport and the city at least three times an hour every day between 7 a.m. and 10 p.m. (longer and more frequent service on weekdays). To learn more, visit www.proximo.pt/en.

A taxi rank is located just outside the arrivals terminal, and you will notice a big sign that quotes taxi prices from Faro Airport to various locations throughout the Algarve. The average fare between Faro Airport and Faro city ranges between €10 and €15. This is one of the few ranks in the Algarve which sees taxis queue 24 hours a day.

How do I get from the train station to my hotel?

Taxis queue outside Faro train station, which is located approximately a half-mile from Faro Cathedral. As long as your hotel is in Faro city, you will pay less than €10 for a taxi regardless of day or time.

Faro`s Proximo city bus terminal is located on Avenida da Republica, less than 1000 feet away from the train station. Buses thoroughly traverse all corners of the city between the hours of 7 a.m. and midnight (longer service during weekdays). Tickets are less than €3 one-way and can be purchased at the terminal or on the bus from the driver.

How do I get around using public transportation?

Bus service in Faro is operated by Proximo, Urban Transport of Faro (www.proximo.pt/en). Six main routes cover the city of Faro, the Ria Formosa Natural Park, Faro Beach, and immediate environs. Six extra routes cover high-traffic areas at particular times of day (e.g. morning rush hour). Buses arrive at most stops every 10-15 minutes; the waiting time will be shorter the closer you are to Faro`s city center, for example. Buses start running throughout the city by 7 a.m. and stop running between midnight and 1 a.m.

One bus route (#14) runs directly from the airport to Faro city, while two others run from Faro city to Faro Beach. Expect to pay approximately €2.50 per ride while visiting most attractions in Faro city, and €3 per ride from the airport or Faro Beach into Faro city. Tickets can be purchased directly from the driver.

How do I call/hail a taxi?

Cabs can be hailed from the street, but it is more common to just call for a cab. Have your hotel call for you, or write down some numbers before you leave on your trip. Make note that licensed cabs are either beige or black and green in color. We do not recommend taking unlicensed cabs as they are not metered, leaving you vulnerable to being overcharged. Meters begin around €4 and charge between €1.50 and €2 per mile, depending on the day or time. Many taxi companies are based in Faro, such as Taxis de Faro (289 804 717) and FPT, the Federation of Portuguese Taxis (289 878 102).

NOTE: While Faro is a tourist area, do not assume your taxi driver will know how to speak English. Write out your destinations on pieces of paper and give the paper applicable to that specific trip to your driver before departing.

Should I rent a car in Faro?

If you only want to explore Faro and the areas immediately surrounding the city, then a car is not needed. If you`d like to explore and visit additional cities in the Algarve, such as Portimao, Lagos, Silves, Loule, and others, then a car may be what you need, although the Algarve is covered quite decently by rail, taxi, and ridesharing services. Since there is a lot of competition out there to snag tourist dollars, you may find some deep discounts are offered online (as low as €5 per day for a rental car). When renting in person, the price will be higher (at €30 and up). Nearly all rental companies operate out of the area in and around Faro Airport.

Is Faro a walking city?

Faro is a great city for walking and exploring, as most sights are packed into an area of just a quarter of a square mile. You may get lost in the winding alleyways of the city center, so keep a map close by. Do remember that the streets in the city center are cobbled, so pay attention to loose or uneven stones and only wear comfortable shoes (save your high heels for arrival at your destination).

Is Faro a dangerous city? Are there any areas I should avoid?

Faro is safer than many cities in Portugal, and definitely safer than most sizable cities in the UK, or in North America. There aren`t any areas of town that need to be avoided. With that said, you will encounter vagrants in Faro, as you will in many towns in the Algarve. They are harmless; simply ignore them and walk away purposefully. Vagrants have also been known to attempt selling drugs to tourists. Just say no and the vagrant will leave you alone.

Faro is safe to walk about at night, but stick to well-lit and well-populated routes, keep your wits about you, and always look like you know where you are going, even when you may not. Be sure to keep your valuables on your person at all times, and never keep all of your money in one place; split up your cash into various pockets in your clothes.

Which areas are the best for shopping?

The area from Rua Dom Francisco Gomes and Rua de Santo Antonio to Praca Ferreira de Almeida is a pedestrian-only shopping district. Lots of boutiques and stores are located down these streets, as are bakeries, cafes and restaurants.

A little more than a mile outside of town is Forum Algarve, the largest shopping center in Faro. Buses run from Faro city center to Forum Algarve at least three times per hour every day. The shopping center is anchored by GMS Store (Faro`s Apple Store reseller), Jumbo (a supermarket) and Zara (Spanish clothing retailer).

Can I pay/tip in US dollars?

The currency of Portugal is the Euro and US dollars are not accepted for payment. Please be sure to have the correct currency on hand or be prepared to exchange your dollars for euros upon arrival. Currency exchange desks and ATMs can be found at the airport and many locations throughout the city.

I do not speak Portuguese. Do many people speak English?

It is more common to find English speakers in Portugal than it is in other southern European countries, such as Spain. A recent European Union language survey found that 32% of Portuguese people over the age of 18 can speak English on a conversational level or better.

With that said, you may encounter some difficulty finding an English speaker away from tourist areas such as hotels, museums, and the local airport. It is recommended to brush up on basic Portuguese phrases before arriving, like basic pleasantries and numbers from 1 to 10. To ask someone if they speak English, say `Fala ingles?`

NOTE: Do not speak in Spanish to a Portuguese person, thinking they will understand you when you do so. Responses will range from stunned silence to outright hostility; the Portuguese people are proud of their culture and heritage, and such an act will cause nearly everyone to take personal offense. On another note, the vocabulary and pronunciation in Portuguese differs from Spanish more than you may realize.

What are the drinking laws in Portugal?

The legal drinking age in Portugal is 18, whether you find yourself in a pub or a nightclub. Asking for proof of age upon ordering an alcoholic beverage or entering a nightclub is becoming more commonplace, especially if you appear younger. Keep your passport with you as it doubles as proof of age and identification.

If you are renting a car, do not drive after consuming alcohol. A blood alcohol content level of 0.05 is considered the legal limit; penalties can range from fines to a jail sentence of up to one year. Save yourself the potential trouble and heartache.

What is nightlife like in Faro?

Faro has lots of nightlife options, considering its status as a tourist center and as a university town. You will find lots of exciting bars and clubs on the Rua do Prior, including some of the hottest nightclubs in the entire country. Considering the student population is so large, parties can be found not just on the cobbles but waterside, at the area around the marina. Thursday nights are the busiest nights in school season because many students don`t have class on Fridays. Fridays and Saturdays are popular party nights in the summer season, but you`ll find places to go every night of the week in the summertime.