If you’ve ever braved the Christmas train schedule in, for example, the UK, you may worry about travel around Vienna during the Christmas market season.
- Public transport continues throughout the Christmas period, but with some longer intervals, particularly on December 25th and 26th
- You can access all the Christmas markets easily on foot or using buses, subways and trams – the D tram line takes in four of the biggest, for example
- See also:
Christmas travel services
Trains, buses and trams run normally until the school Christmas holidays officially begin, then switch to a slightly reduced timetable until those school holidays end in early January.
Of course, the Viennese version of a reduced timetable is still mightily impressive.
“Reduced” largely means slightly longer intervals during early weekday mornings – when kids would otherwise be travelling to school. On timetables, look for the “Ferien” (school holidays) entries for Montag – Freitag (Monday to Friday).
Those same timetables also have entries for Samstag (Saturdays), and Sonntag/Feiertage (Sundays and Public Holidays), when intervals also increase. That last one is the one to watch over Christmas, given that the 25th and 26th are both public holidays.
Again, intervals might be longer than during normal weekdays, but still better than many other cities’ normal timetables.
December 24th is an exception to the rule. Although not formally a public holiday, the subway, bus and tram lines traditionally reduce their frequency and switch to longer intervals after 6.30pm (this is because Austrian families tend to celebrate Christmas in the early evening of the 24th).
A handful of bus lines typically provide a reduced service during the day of the 24th as well. Three of these exceptions are usually the 1A, 2A, and 3A buses that traverse the old town. These tend to cease operation from around 2pm.
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Getting to the Christmas markets
Find travel advice for each market on their individual pages. But here some general tips for 2022:
- Many markets are close together and easily reached on foot if you’re in the centre of Vienna (see map below). For example:
- All markets are well served by public transport. A good tip is tram line D, which takes you past four biggies: the Rathaus, Maria-Theresien-Platz, Karlsplatz and Belvedere