The best tips on how to travel to Georgia

Transportation in Tbilisi

Transportation here is somewhat challenging. Major cities like Tbilisi, Batumi, and Kutaisi have a relatively well developed public transportation. In Tbilisi, there’s a subway, buses, and mini-buses locals call Marshrutka. Every means of transport is very affordable compared to European cities. The lowest fare for a 90-minute ticket is 50 tetri ($0.20) for a subway and a bus. Mini-buses are bit expensive and cost 80 tetri.

There’s a card called Metro Money, which you will need to access a subway. It’s also convenient for buses and mini-buses. To purchase the card, you need to go to any subway stop and pay two Lari and top it off with whatever amount you wish to have on it. The card enables you to travel for free during the first 90 minutes with subway and buses, while it reduces the price by 15 tetri when used in a mini-bus for the second time during a day.

Taxis are also a quite affordable means of transport here. It’s so affordable that every second car you see on the streets of Tbilisi has a taxi sign. You can use an app, call a taxi company, or catch it on the roads. However, if you wave for a taxi in the street, you need to negotiate the price in advance, otherwise they will try to rip you off.

Getting around the country

Georgia has a relatively good connection to the regions from the capital. There’s a railway that goes from Tbilisi to Batumi, Zugdidi, Borjomi and other famous tourist destinations. Additionally, mini-buses are going to pretty much every village of Georgia every day. To the western part of the city, you need to go to Didube Bus station, while vehicles to Kakheti go from Samgori (Navtlughi) bus station. At first glance, the bus stations will seem very chaotic and unorganized, which is right to some extent, but they do their best to keep it organized.

Stay connected

There are three mobile operator companies in Georgia: Geocell, Magti, and Beeline. All of them have 4G internet connection, and their packages are quite affordable. The coverage is good in major cities of the country and gets a bit frustrating in the countryside. If you are looking for the best performance and coverage, you need to get a SIM card at Magti. Geocell has an excellent price for internet packages, but the performances are average, while Beeline is the cheapest but has quite poor coverage.

However, if you don’t want to spend money on this, most of the cafes, bars, and restaurants in Tbilisi and major cities have free wi-fi. Some are open, and some are password protected, so you need to ask a waiter. There’s also a city wi-fi available in central parts of Tbilisi, called Tbilisi Loves You, but the performance of it is inferior, so don’t rely on it.