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Transportation in Ecuador

| Introduction | Urban Buses | Trolley | Taxis |
| Buses | Airplanes | Trains | Boats |

Transportation in Ecuador

Getting around Ecuador and its cities is pretty easy, however, you should know some tips for traveling in a fast and safe way.

Urban Buses

You may get anywhere in a big city by just taking a bus. It’s a really cheap service (USD 0.20) and there are a lot of “only seated” units. Buses begin to circulate early in the morning (06 a.m.) but they do not stay in the streets too late (9 p.m.). Even though it’s a popular way of moving around, it has some negative aspects. Bus drivers, not always respect the bus stops and sometimes they stop anywhere, which means you will be late. But some other times they are in a big rush so you should request them to make a full stop. There are many new buses, and there are another many that aren’t so new which means comfort is not always guaranteed.

The Trolley and the Ecoway

It’s the most modern and efficient urban transport in the country. Big articulate buses run through exclusive ways and still bus stops. The service is cheap (USD 0.20) and it runs along the city from one side to the other. You can use also the integrated bus service (units that work exclusively for the trolley and the ecoway). Buses are new and the bus stops are well distributed in the city. You may be a little bit tight in the rush hours. This service exists only in Quito from 6 a.m. to 12 p.m.



Cabs are also a very popular way to move around in big cities. In a general way, the service is good, cars are new and drivers are pleased to help tourists. The cost depends on the taximeter, but an average ride will be between USD 1.50 to USD 2. At night will be hard to find a taxi driver using the taximeter, even though it’s illegal, but they would not charge more than USD 2 to USD 3. If you come from or go to the airport, they will charge some extra money. (Between USD 3 to USD 5). It’s safer to use a radio taxi at night. This units work with radios and you must call them from a telephone. The cab will be there in no more than 5 minutes with no extra charge. Taxis work 24 hours.


Buses for provinces

The easiest and cheapest way to travel inside Ecuador is in a bus. You may get anywhere in the Country just by taking one or two buses. Costs may vary due to distance and the quality of service. There are some express buses which means that they would not stop in any town until you get to your destination. Many transport companies have new units, with bathroom, TV and comfortable chairs. Some even serve some snacks during your travel.

If you want to take one of these buses, you should locate the ground terminals in each city. There you will find a huge offer of companies for any destination in the Country.

Some transportation companies have their own ground terminal. Frequency of the trips are wide and they work 24 hours.

If you want more information on ground transport companies and terminals make a click in Ground Terminals



Ecuador has one of the best domestic air transportation system in the region. Twelve cities have their airports and are served by local air companies. Costs vary depending in distance and service. The longest flight inside Ecuador may take 45 minutes, with the exception of the Galapagos Islands which may take like an hour and a half.

For more information on Airlines, Domestic Flights in Ecuador, and International Flights to Ecuador, check out our Airlines' page.



There is a train system in Ecuador but it is much used as tourist attraction rather than a transport system. This train was known as one of the hardest in the whole world because it runs through the Andes between huge cliffs, canyons and rivers. If you are in a hurry don’t count on it because it is too old and slow, but is one of the greatest ways to know Ecuador. It’s hard to know the departure and arriving schedules of the train and you must inform yourself about which lines are working. In any travel agency will help you in this adventure over rails.


Boats, motor boats and canoes

There are many places in Ecuador that can only be reached in a boat, by the sea or by the river. In all these towns or destinies you will find people with motor boats or canoes which offer transportation. Costs vary depending distance and the destiny, in some cases, inhabitants will be happy to take you for free so you can show your gratefulness with a tip. If it has a cost, you may discuss it with the owner before you get inside the boat.


| Introduction | Urban Buses | Trolley | Taxis |
| Buses | Airplanes | Trains | Boats |

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