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Albufeira is the gateway to the Algarve in Portugal, a very popular vacation destination. The coastal resort is packed with whitewashed and pastel-colored buildings. It has a bustling marina, lovely beaches, and an oceanfront promenade. 

Faro, meanwhile, is the Algarve area’s capital. It’s also located by the coast, and offers an appealing blend of architectural styles, an old town lined with cobbled streets, and a 13th century cathedral. 

Just a few miles from the city center is Faro Airport. This is the main hub for visitors flying into Portugal to visit Albufeira and the Algarve. So if you’re planning a trip to this part of Portugal, you need to know all about traveling from Faro to Albufeira. 

Faro to Albufeira

Photo by Nick Page on Unsplash

Hence this guide. This article covers all you should know about getting from Faro Airport to Albufeira by taxi, Uber, train, coach, or car, including costs. An overall outline of the area is also included, covering when to go to Albufeira and the Algarve, how long for, and languages spoken locally. 

Read on to discover all you need to know about Faro to Albufeira transfers, so you can enjoy this beautiful part of Europe!

Best Airport for Albufeira

Firstly, let’s take a look at the options. Is Faro the best airport for Albufeira and the Algarve? 

Faro Airport – or Faro – Gago Coutinho International Airport to give it its full name – is situated around 2.5 miles (or 4 kilometers) from downtown Faro. It’s the main hub for the city of Faro, the resort of Albufeira, and the Algarve region, and is the closest to these areas.

The distance between Faro Airport and Albufeira is just under 30 miles – or about 45 kilometers. Faro Airport is served by around 30 carriers, including scheduled airlines like Air France, British Airways, and Lufthansa, plus budget airlines such as Easyjet and Ryanair. Charter flights are also operated by package holiday companies like Tui. 

You can fly direct to Faro from Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Spain, Switzerland, the UK, Canada, and other parts of Portugal. 

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Photo by Yves Cedric Schulze on Unsplash

How to Get From Faro To Albufeira

If you need to travel from Faro Airport to Albufeira, then the options are by rental car, by taxi, by private transfer, by Uber, or by shuttle bus. The latter runs more frequently in summer, and less often during winter. 

As there’s no train station at Faro Airport, you’ll need to take a bus or taxi to reach the city,  before continuing with your journey by train. 

How Much Does it Cost from Faro Airport to Albufeira? 

The cost of getting to Albufeira from Faro Airport by public transport is between around EUR 8 for a bus ticket to EUR 55 (or less) for a taxi. You’ll pay more for the latter after 9 pm on weekdays, or on weekends. Transporting luggage measuring more than 55 x 35 x 20 cm also costs extra. Exact taxi costs also depend on the time taken to complete the journey, and the destination. 

You can pre book a private transfer for around EUR 50. This way it’s all planned to save you time, and you also know precisely what you’ll be paying. 

Uber and car rental costs vary, so check when booking. From Faro city to Albufeira by train costs only around EUR 4, but you would have to find another way to travel between the airport and the city, such as by bus, private transfer or taxi. 

Taxi from Faro to Albufeira

Overview of taxi services at Faro Airport

You can find taxis at Faro Airport close to the arrivals exit. Most are instantly recognizable due to their black bodywork and a green roof, though some are white, cream, or beige in color. 4-seater taxis are the most common, though some can accommodate up to 8. 

How much is a taxi from Faro Airport to Albufeira?

The exact cost of an airport transfer from Faro to Albufeira by taxi depends on your destination, additional luggage charges, the day and time of travel, and how long the trip takes. Around EUR 35 to 55 is a figure you can use for general guidance. 

Average taxi fares and factors that may affect the cost 

Carrying luggage in the baggage compartment or on the roof attracts an additional charge, which is currently under EUR 2, per vehicle rather than per item. No fee is charged for child strollers or wheelchairs. Luggage charges only apply to items exceeding 55 x 35 x 20 cm.

Between 9 pm and 6 am, taxi costs are around 20% higher, and the same applies at weekends. Costs are calculated according to an initial fare, plus driving and idling time (such as when stuck in traffic). 

What you bring, when you travel, and how long the journey takes therefore affect the fare you’ll pay. 

Tips for finding reputable taxi companies

The official Faro airport website recommends four companies – Antral, Faro Central Taxis, Izzy Move, and Rotaxi Faro. Any taxis using the airport ranks should also be reputable, and strict Portuguese rules apply to all taxi services. 

If you’d prefer to have your trip stored before leaving home, you can book a private airport transfer. The taxi comes with air conditioning and free child seats, and carries additional luggage without an extra charge. Up to 8 passengers can be accommodated

Click here to book a private taxi transfer from Faro Airport to Albufeira

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Buses from Faro to Albufeira

Information about coach transfers 

Is there a bus from Albufeira to Faro Airport, and vice versa?

There is a direct bus service connecting Faro Airport and Albufeira. This is the Aerobus 56 route. It will take you to the Terminal Rodoviário bus station in the resort. This is about a mile (or 1.5 kilometers) north of the Old Town, a little over a mile (about 1.7 kilometers from the Strip.

Buses run 5 to 6 times per day in summer, and twice daily during winter. 

How long is the coach transfer from Faro Airport to Albufeira? 

The trip by coach from Faro Airport to Albufeira takes around 45 minutes. You also need to factor in waiting times, as services aren’t that frequent, particularly in winter. 

Average travel time and factors affecting the duration 

Aerobus 56 operates a limited timetable, especially in winter. There are 5 or 6 buses per day in summer, and 2 in winter, between November and April. How long you wait around for the next service can therefore add a lot of time onto your trip. 

Summer services normally commence at the beginning of May, and end in October. It usually takes between 40 and 45 minutes to travel between Faro Airport and Alufeira, though journey times will be affected by traffic levels. 

Advantages and disadvantages of coach transfers

Coach transfers cost around EUR 8 per person, so they can be cheaper, particularly if there’s only one or two of you traveling. 

Services are infrequent, however, especially in winter, so you might wait around for a long time.  The trip also takes around 40 to 45 minutes. 

Faro to Albufeira by Train

Does Faro Airport have a railway station?

There is no train station at Faro Airport. To travel to Albufeira by train, you need to take a bus or taxi to Faro city center. Trains take between 20 and 40 minutes to travel between the two, with services every hour or two throughout the day. 

How much is the train from Faro to Albufeira?

The train fare from Faro Airport to Albufeira is around EUR 4. Don’t forget to factor in the cost of getting to downtown Faro, too, however. 

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Photo Credit. Train info

Is Uber at Faro Airport? 

Overview of Uber services at Faro Airport 

There is Uber at Faro Airport, and pickup locations can vary. Find the latest information via the Uber app, after requesting a trip.

Availability and convenience of using Uber for transportation

If you want to use Uber to get from Faro Airport to Albufeira, download and open the app. Next, request a ride to suit your group size and amount of luggage. 

You’ll then be advised of the pickup location, before meeting your driver there. The Uber app will tell you what color car to look for, plus the license plate number and your driver’s name. 

You can also find out prices and pick up times when booking an Uber through the app. 

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Photo by Viktor Avdeev on Unsplash

Do You Need a Car in Albufeira?

Whether or not you’ll need a car in Albufeira depends on your plans. If you only need to get to your accommodation, then can walk everywhere such as to the town, local amenities and the beach, then you might not need wheels. 

If you want to explore Portugal further, though, having a vehicle does give you the ultimate in flexibility and freedom. Having a car can also be useful if you stay somewhere more out of the way, such as a private villa. 

Pros and cons of renting a car in Albufeira 

Pros

Car rentals in Albufeira tend to be cheap, especially during the winter months. If you collect a vehicle at the airport, you can also use it to reach the resort. After that, you’ll have the freedom to explore the Algarve as and when you want to. 

The Algarve makes a great road trip destination, too, with stunning views throughout. An International Driving Permit isn’t generally required for Portugal. Learn more about Driving in Portugal.

Cons

People drive on the right in Portugal, overtaking on the left. This is the same as the US and many other European countries. However, it can take some getting used to if you’re from someplace where you drive on the left, such as the UK or Australia. 

Younger people might pay more to hire a car in Portugal. Extra charges may also apply for additional insurance cover. Parking can also be costly, and sometimes difficult to find. If you plan to rent a car, book accommodation with parking if you can!

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Photo by Conor Rees on Unsplash

Alternative transport options in Albufeira 

Walking and cycling

You can walk around Albufeira, though even the Strip is around a kilometer – or two thirds of a mile – long. It’s also possible to rent bikes locally, and there are cycle paths, particularly heading toward Ferreiras.

Taxis

As with services from the airport, you can take taxis. These are black with green roofs, or cream. You can flag one down if the green light is illuminated, or find one at a taxi rank. 

Costs are around 20% higher after 9 pm and on weekends, and luggage charges of around EUR 2 may also apply. 

Buses

The local bus network can also get you from A to B in Albufeira and the Algarve. This Giro bus network is operated by EVA – Empresa de Viacao do Algarve. It’s split into five lines, with the Green and Blue Lines servicing many tourist destinations, including the Strip and the Old Town. 

You can pay fares in cash, or by using a Giro card, and multi-ride passes can be good value. Giro buses run half-hourly on weekdays and at least hourly on weekends, rather than having fixed timetables. Bus services start at 7 am and end at 7 pm, or 9 pm in summer. 

Train and Albufeira Tourist Train

If you want to reach destinations further afield, train travel may also be an option. It’s also fun to ride the Albufeira Tourist Train, which runs three times per hour, between 9 am and 11 pm. This toy-style train will take you between the Strip and the Old Town, via the Brisa Sol Hotel.

Tips for driving and parking in Albufeira

As a relatively small Portuguese city, driving in Albufeira isn’t too tricky. Traffic levels tend to be modest, so the roads aren’t usually too busy. In Portugal, you drive on the right. 

Both paid and free parking spots can be found throughout the resort. Always park in marked bays only, avoiding any areas where parking is prohibited. 

What is the Best Month to Go to Albufeira?

Overview of Albufeira’s climate throughout the year 

Albufeira enjoys mild winter temperatures, with lows of around 46°F (8°C) and highs of about 63°F (17°C) between December and February. In spring and fall, temperatures typically range between 50°F (10°C) and 81°F (27°C). Summer lows are around 63°F (17°C), with highs reaching about 84°F (29°C).

So the winter weather in Albufeira is mild, with warm spring and fall weather, and hot summer days. 

You may also like Carvoeiro Boardwalk.

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Photo by Matthew Buchanan on Unsplash

Peak and off-peak tourist season periods

Sun-seekers are best off visiting Albufeira and the Algarve between June and August, which is the peak tourist season. The shoulder season months of May, September, and October are slightly cooler, and less busy. 

The off-peak period is between November and April. Prices are lower and it’s colder then, with fewer tourist services than in summer. Airport bus routes, for example, don’t operate during these months. 

Factors to consider when choosing the best month to visit

The weather, how busy it will be, and the availability of services are what to think about when visiting Albufeira and the Algarve. Summer brings the hottest temperatures – and crowds. May, September, and October are warm rather than hot, with fewer visitors. 

If you’re traveling on a budget, the winter season between November and April is cheaper, and temperatures are mild. Just don’t expect hot, sunny weather – nor everything to be open and operating. 

How Many Days Do You Need in Albufeira? 

If you’re going to Albufeira and the Algarve only, then a week is a nice amount of time to enjoy the area, while doing a little exploring. If you’re including the region as part of a Portugal itinerary, then 4 or 5 days will probably be enough. 

There are lots of things to do in Albufeira. Many people enjoy the beaches by day, before sampling the nightlife scene after dark. So it’s a popular place for those seeking a beach holiday, or who want to party.

You can also take boat trips from the marina in Albufeira, including dolphin-spotting and diving tours, and trips to Benagil Cave. Exploring the Old Town and discovering the local foodie scene are also popular pastimes. 

Using Albufeira as a base for seeing the rest of the Algarve region is also popular. There are plenty of villages, towns, resorts, and other attractions to visit by car or bus. 

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Photo by Mitchell Orr on Unsplash

Tailoring the length of your stay based on personal preferences

How long you stay in Albufeira depends on what you want to do. Some people want to spend a fortnight simply unwinding by the beach, while others want to pack lots into fewer days. 

Deciding what to do, and where to go, in advance can help you plan your itinerary, and therefore your trip. 

Do They Speak English in Albufeira?

Overview of language proficiency in Albufeira

As a tourist town, around a third of adults in Albufeira can speak conversational English, or are even more proficient. 

English-speaking services and establishments in Albufeira

Staff at most cafes, hotels, restaurants, shops, and bars in Albufeira will speak good English, particularly in the areas catering to tourists, such as the Strip. 

Tips for effective communication while in Albufeira

If you’re using taxis to get around, writing down the address for the driver can help to avoid confusion!

Learning a little of the local language can go a long way. Even if it’s only a few words, locals will appreciate you making the effort. Such as please, which is por favor. Thank you is obrigado, hello is olá, goodbye is adeus, and excuse me is com licença.

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Photo by Simon Hermans on Unsplash

Conclusion

If you want to travel from Faro Airport to the Algarve and Albufeira, you can choose between booking a rental car for airport pickup, or taking a taxi, Uber, or pre-arranged private transfer. In summer, there are 5 or 6 shuttle buses per day from the airport to the resort, with only a couple in winter. 

There is no train station at Faro Airport, so you’ll need to get a taxi or bus to the city if you want to travel around by train. 

Choosing which mode of transport to use is a personal choice, depending on your budget, timings, and preferences. A car gives you more flexibility, but you’ll have to consider navigation, driving, and parking. Buses are cheap, and may work well if the schedule matches up with your flight times. 

Pre-arranging a private transfer can be very affordable when you split the cost between a number of people. If you don’t plan in advance, you should be able to book an Uber via the app, or find a taxi, after arrival. 

If you want complete peace of mind, and to budget for your trip ahead of time, then booking a private transfer is the smoothest, most seamless way to travel from Faro Airport to Albufeira and the Algarve. 

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