The trams, buses and trolleybuses (and a few boats) in Brno are run by a city-supported company (so-called ‘DPMB’ – the main city transport office). As such, it is well-connected and reliable.
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 Czech) is valid for all city transport (tram, bus, trolleybus) and is considered a very good deal.
Read more about the various types at the company’s website here.
How to buy a ticket
You can use contactless cards, or smartphones and smartwatches in the trams/buses. Just get on, and swipe your card in front of the yellow machine inside. You’ll be charged for a basic transferable 60-minute ticket, for 25 CZK. You can take multiple journeys within that time. If you travel longer than 60-minutes, or more time in one day, you’ll be charged another ticket, but never more than 90 CZK per day.
You can check out if your journey’s under 15 minutes (swipe your card again), so you get charged only for a short-time ticket (20 CZK).
The yellow machines have a menu in English. You can also buy tickets for co-riders, your dog, a bike, etc. Read more on the very English-friendly webpage pipniajed.cz.
If card payment isn’t possible, you can buy a ticket through vending machines at some stops (not all of them have one, though); or you can buy them 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 (yellow machines by the door). All tickets are transferable.
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.
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 credit card. 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:
Waste collection discount
The price for your yearly transport pass can be reduced to 3,325 CZK if you’ve paid for waste collection in Brno.
You need to register online (available in Czech only), upload your picture and buy the yearly transport pass (it will be then connected to your credit card and you won’t need to carry another pass in your wallet).
Everybody first pays the full prize and later, if applicable, receives the 30% refund.
After filling in the online application you need to have your details verified at the main city transport office – just this once, though, next years this step will be skipped. Then you can log in to your account, click on a 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.
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?
They are lots of students and graduates living in Brno who don’t pay waste collection fee in Brno – they pay the fee in their home villages or towns where their official address still is. 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 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 a 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 800 CZK on the spot in cash or with a card (in which case you don’t have to show any ID).
Or you can pay 800 CZK within the next 5 workdays at the main city transport office (Novobranská 18) or 1500 CZK later. 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 50 CZK fine. In all these cases you have to provide an ID.
If you don’t want to pay on the spot and you’re not carrying your passport, 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.