Some people regard public transport here as one of Brno’s biggest strengths. Once you’ve experienced it (day and night), you might be inclined to agree.
Which ticket to buy
If you use public transport irregularly, buying individual tickets every time is enough. If you are planning to commute, getting a prepaid transport pass is a better idea.
A monthly / quarterly / yearly transport pass (‘šalinkarta’ in local slang) is valid for all city transport (tram, bus, trolleybus) and is considered a very good deal.
How to buy individual tickets
Electronic beep-and-go system
You can use your contactless payment cards, (or smartphones and smartwatches with your bank card upload) in the trams/buses. Just get on and tap your card against the yellow reader inside. You’ll be charged for a basic 60-minute ticket (25 CZK). You won’t get any paper ticket out of the machine. You can take multiple journeys within the allocated time, but always tap the card again when you switch and enter a new vehicle. If you travel longer than 60 minutes, or several times in one day, you’ll be charged for another ticket, but never more than 90 CZK per day.
If your journey’s under 15 minutes, you can check out (by tapping your card against the reader when leaving the vehicle), so you only get charged for a short-time ticket (20 CZK).
When ticket inspectors ask you to show your ticket, just show them your payment card which you used when entering and beeping.
The yellow readers have a menu in English, if you want to select a higher number of passengers on your card. You can also buy tickets for co-riders, your dog, a bike, etc. Read more about the beep-and-go system on the official English-friendly webpage pipniajed.cz.
If card payment isn’t possible, you can buy a paper ticket through vending machines at some stops (not all of them have one, though) or newspaper agents; or you can buy a ticket in advance at the main train station. The ticket is then valid for the time specified on the ticket from the moment you stamp it in the machine on the vehicle right after you enter (yellow machines by the door). All tickets are transferable and you can travel with the 60min paper ticket and switch vehicles without stamping again.
You can also buy an SMS ticket – just send a text to number 90206 and wait for confirmation. BRNO20 will get you 20 minutes for 20 CZK, BRNO will get you 75 minutes for 29 CZK and BRNOD will get you 24 hours for 99 CZK. This is possible only with a Czech phone number.
Or go through the mobile app Sejf, where you can buy tickets in English.
Prepaid pass “šalinkarta”
You can buy a prepaid transport pass in person (at the main city transport office, one of the other city transport offices or the Main Train Station) or online in English to tie your ticket to your bank card (debit or credit). For a transferable ticket nothing but quick and simple registration at BrnoID.cz is enough. You can prepay a pass for a month – three months – a year.
To buy the card in person, you will need an ID and a passport-size photograph (3.5 x 4.5 cm).
However, buying online is not only more comfortable but allows you to reduce the price of your yearly pass by the waste collection fee you’ve paid – read further about that:
How to ask for the transport pass discount, if you paid the waste tax
After you bought the yearly non-transferable transport pass (see above) for the full prize 4 750 CZK,
you prepaid the waste tax until the end of the current year,
you can apply, within 60 days, for the 1 450 CZK refund.
Log in to your account, click on the green button Podat žádost o dotaci (Apply for the refund) on the homepage, and fill in your bank account details. The authorities have up to 180 days to process your request, but usually, they send you the money within a month.
The discount does not apply to students/seniors/handicapped people as they already use a discount on their public transport pass.
Should you have any more questions, feel free to contact the city transport office at email@example.com or call the Environmental Department at 542 174 320 – they do speak English.
What’s the idea behind this?
There are lots of young people (such as students and graduates), and foreigners from EU countries who never registered for a Registration certificate, living in Brno who don’t pay waste collection tax in Brno – they pay the fee in their home villages or towns. The Brno City wants to give these people some incentive to re-register their actual address and pay the fees where they are actually due.
Ticket inspection and fines
Ticket inspectors make frequent spot checks, both day and night. They wear no uniforms but show official badges. If you have doubts about their authenticity, you can ask to see their ID card which has to have the same number as their badge. They have all taken an English-language course so should be able to communicate with you to a certain extent.
The inspectors have the right to see your passport or residence card if you don’t have a ticket.
If you don’t have a valid ticket when checked by an inspector, you’ll get fined.
You can either pay 1 000 CZK on the spot in cash or with a card (in which case you don’t have to show any ID) or 1 500 CZK later. Pay the fine at the central office, Novobranská 18, or online via your BrnoID.cz account.
If you own a valid pass and just don’t have it on you, bring it to the main city transport office within the next 5 workdays and only pay a 100 CZK fine or check on your account on BrnoID and pay a 50 CZK fine.
If you don’t want to pay on the spot and you’re not carrying your passport/ID, ticket inspectors will call the foreign police in order to confirm your identity.
In every case, a ticket inspector is obliged to give you a written record of your fine and payment confirmation with their signature. Make sure you don’t leave any debts unsettled – the main city transport office claims fines even from abroad – and the fees grow exponentially if you force the office to collect the debt.