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Algiers

Getting around

Public transport

Buses serve most parts of the city, leaving from several main points around the centre: place des Martyrs, place Grande Poste, place Audin, Bab el-Oued and place 1 Mai, south of Agha train station. Destinations are marked at each stop, although increasingly these are in Arabic only. Entry is through the back door, where you pay the conductor.

An underground system has been under construction for some years – you could be fooled into thinking there is one already by the subway entrances near the Grande Poste. Work seems to have stalled, but the first line, running near the coast from Bab el-Oued to Hussein Dey (for the Tarfoura gare routiére), is due to be completed this year.

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Car & motorcycle

Driving in Algiers is a frustrating experience, for much of the day traffic is bumper to bumper. And when you get where you are going, there is always a shortage of parking spaces. Happily this has created work for space minders (official or otherwise), people who will usher you into a space and watch your car, for a fee. However, it is not worth renting a car while staying in the city as there are plenty of taxis and much of the centre is easier to walk than drive around, while the Casbah is mostly pedestrian-only.

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Local transport

Taxi

There are plenty of taxis cruising the streets of the centre and although they can be in short supply during rush hours, at other times it is usually possible to hail one in the street. Taxis should be equipped with meters, but especially after dark and when taking a taxi from a hotel, expect to haggle. Local taxis collectifs (share taxis) run along some of the main streets of the city, their destination written on a board in the window or on the roof. Flag one down, if it is heading in your direction and get out when you like. DA20 per ride.

If you need to be sure of a service – useful to get around, essential if you are not being met on arrival at the airport – call Taxi Yacine (071 170026) or Taxis Minutes (021 666666).

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