Getting There & Around – Azerbaijan Grand Prix

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How to get to Baku for the Azerbaijan Formula 1 Grand Prix, plus advice on getting around in the city. This year’s race takes place on June 23-25, 2017.

Much like the other most recent addition to the F1 calendar (Sochi in Russia), it’s not actually that easy for most international fans to get to Baku for the Azerbaijan Grand Prix. The city is well connected with ex-Soviet states, but not so well serviced by flights from Western Europe or the USA. Once on the ground however, it’s much easier! As the name suggests, the Baku City Circuit is centrally located and easy to reach from most parts of the city. We recommend staying downtown within walking distance if possible.

Baku’s main airport – Heydar Aliyev International Airport (GYD) – is 20 km from Baku city center and served by major airlines including flag carrier Azerbaijan Airlines (or AZAL), Aeroflot, Turkish Airlines, Lufthansa and Qatar. Aeroflot is probably the best option for getting to Baku from Europe, with cheap and plentiful flights transferring through Moscow every day. Discount airline Wizz Air also has direct flights from Budapest, but they are not so frequent.

Flights from Europe

Expect to pay from 300-600 return with flight times averaging 3-6 hours. Direct routes include Wizz Air from Budapest, Lufthansa from Frankfurt, Aeroflot from Moscow-Sheremetyevo and Azerbaijan Airlines from Berlin, London, Paris & Prague.

Flights from USA

Expect to pay from $800-1500 USD with flight times from 11 hours (direct) up to more than 24 hours (2 stops). Direct flights with Azerbaijan Airlines from New York or cheaper deals with Turkish Airlines (via Istanbul) and Aeroflot (via Moscow).

Other Baku flights

Other notable connections to Baku include Dubai (flydubai, 3 hours), Qatar (Qatar Airways, also 3 hours), Tbilisi in Georgia (Azerbaijan Airlines, 1 hour) and many other cities in the region.

Getting from the airport to the city

Public transport is very good in Baku so you can avoid taxi travel altogether if you so wish. An express minibus shuttles tourists from the airport to the city every half hour and costs just pennies, though taxi drivers will insist that the service no longer runs (it does – just ask airport staff if you’re where to catch the bus from.) Alternatively, head for Koroglu station which is the closest metro stop to the airport. You may need to hop in a taxi to Koroglu station but there is no need to take a taxi all the way to your hotel as the metro system is clean, modern and efficient. If you do opt to take a taxi all the way, haggle (politely) for your price before you ride, as the first price quotes will undoubtedly be inflated several times over…

Out and about in Baku

Baku’s F1 race track is a street circuit in the city center, so you’ll likely travel to and from your grandstands on foot, by metro or by bus. Last year, public transport was stepped up in Baku for the Grand Prix weekend to operate 20 hours per day, with buses running as frequently as every three minutes to certain points on the circuit. Metro stations 28th May, Sahil and Icheri Sheher are all within walking distance of the track. Metro and bus tickets cost just .20 AZN per journey in Baku. For the metro, you must get yourself a Bakı Metropiliten Kart (2AZN refundable deposit, available at metro stations) and load it with credit like a normal metro pass or Oyster card. Click here for more information.

Have you been to Baku? Leave a comment and tell us your tips on getting around in the city.

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About the Author ()

Andrew Balfour is the Founder and Editor of F1Destinations.com. He originally hails from Adelaide, where he went to his first F1 race way back in 1987. He's been resident in Europe for almost 15 years and travels regularly to F1 races around the world.

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