Most people who travel to the Caucasus start and end their journey in Georgia. Most cheap flights land in Kutaisi, but many airlines fly to the capital Tbilisi.
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What to do after arriving in Tbilisi Airport
Tbilisi Airport is the main airport in Georgia. It is located 17 kilometers southeast of the city center. Traveling to and from the airport by public transportation is easy, and there are multiple bus lines leading to the city.
There is a terminal that can handle both international and domestic flights. Tbilisi Airport is small and easy to navigate. In terms of convenience, it is very convenient. But there are not many ways to eat or drink, and there are few stores. In any case, this is not the kind of airport you want to stay for a long time.
Withdrawing local currency at Tbilisi Airport
Once you land in Tbilisi, your first priority can be to exchange some local currency. If you plan to take the bus to the city, you need Georgian coins tetri to pay for the ticket.
Most ATMs in Georgia accept foreign cards. There are several ATMs in the arrival hall of the airport for tourists to withdraw cash.
In addition to any tariffs that your bank or credit card company may issue, some ATMs also charge a small amount of withdrawal fees. The withdrawal fee for local banks is usually 2 GEL.
Georgian SIM cards are very cheap and provide excellent coverage even in the mountains. I always recommend buying one on the first day of arrival. This way you can use Google Maps to navigate Tbilisi ’s public transportation system.
Buying a sim card at Tbilisi Airport
There are several companies that provide services in the arrival hall of Tbilisi Airport, including two brands that Beeline and Magti are the most popular brands used by linear tourists and foreign tourists. When I was in Georgia, I always chose Magti.
When you enter the arrival lobby, you will see a red Magti desk. If you only need Internet access instead of calling, the most cost-effective option is to purchase a data package. The minimum you can get is 1 GB (5 GEL). I usually buy 20 GB (valid for 30 days) for 20 GEL. The SIM card itself requires an additional 2 GEL. If you are only transferring, or staying for only 1 day. Then please buy 1GB.
Present your passport, select the package, and the staff will set up a SIM card for you. You can pay in cash (local currency GEL) or credit card.
Hiring a car at Tbilisi Airport
Avis, Budget, Hertz and other well-known companies all have desks at Tbilisi Airport.
Note: Georgia has a small territory, and driving in Tbilisi is not suitable for backpackers! It is much easier to travel around the city by bus / metro.
If you have many companions and a lot of luggage, this is another situation.
Airport to the city centre
There are many options for travelling from Tbilisi Airport to Tbilisi city centre. When going to and from the airport, I usually choose a public bus. It is both reliable and affordable.
When leaving the exit, please turn right and walk about 200m to the end of the next building. You ’ll see a board with times lit up, and hopefully a blue and black bus idling .. There is only one bus at the airport, so you wo n’t be wrong.
Public bus No. 37 runs between the Tbilisi airport and the station square 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Only 50 tetri per person, which is the cheapest way to travel. The bus departs from the airport departure hall every 30 minutes.
There is also a train from the airport to the station square, but since it only runs twice a day, I find it very troublesome and I do not recommend this method.
TaxiOnn is an excellent service that can organize a private transfer service before you land. They charge a fixed price of 25 GEL to the city center. If you have a lot of luggage, I suggest you use a taxi.