Hungary - General Information

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Country Name

Hungary (Magyarország)

National Railway System

Magyar Államvasutak Részvénytársaság (Hungarian State Railways) (MÁV Zrt.).

National Railway Operator

In July 2007 most of the passenger operations of MÁV were transferred to a subsidiary company MÁV-Start, although the narrow gauge services remained with the parent company.


Hungarian (Magyar). The Hungarian language is not related to any Western European language (it is a distant relative of Finnish and Estonian, however) and many words will be unfamiliar to visitors, even those with some knowledge of other languages. Many Hungarians speak English or German.



UIC codes

  • numeric: 55; alpha: MAV
  • numeric: 43; alpha: GySEV/ROeEE


Journey Planner

Actual Train Times

Downloadable Timetable

  • Domestic timetables:
    • The Belföldi utazás web page gives access to timetable PDFs: under the Menü tab on the left click Menetrendek and then click on the entry ending évi menetrend for the current timetable including amendments or expand Archívum to select historic timetables.
    • Unhelpfully this downloadable timetable does not decode the general numbered notes indicating which days/dates trains run (or do not run) on, this information is available in a separate PDF utmutato es kozlekedesi naptar a belfoldi menetrendhez. Click yyyy évi menetrend under the Menetrendek tab to obtain the list of PDFs.
  • International timetables: the Nemzetközi utazás web page gives access to the current international timetables; click Menetrendek és vonatösszeállítások under the Menü tab.

Note that all the above pages are in Magyar (Hungarian) only, but Google translate can be used to select the required link and when it complains the PDF page is too large to translate then click the See Original Page link at the bottom of the error screen to download the PDF.

Printed Timetable

Vasúti Menetrend or simply Menetrend, published annually which was still produced for 2015/16. This includes introductory material (including explanation of abbreviations) in English, French, German and Russian, and contains details of all MÁV, MÀV-START, GySEV/Raaberbahn, HÉV and Állami Erdei Vasutak (ÁEV) services, plus shipping services on Lake Balaton and some bus and tram information for Budapest. The timetable is available at ticket offices. A fold-out route map shows principal stations.

Additional Notes on reading the Timetable

Translation of some non-standard timetable symbols, comprising a white symbol in a black square, which appear in both the downloadable and printed timetables.:

  • O = kűlőn rendeletre - when advertised
  • 4 Monday to Thursday working days (not to be confused with a 4 in a circle, which denotes a Thursday)
  • 6 Saturdays and holidays (not to be confused with a 6 in a circle, which denotes a Saturday)
  • 25 Except Fridays
  • 27 Except Sundays

Translation of some timetable notes which may not be obvious:

  • -ig - until or to
  • -től - from
  • kőzlekedik - runs
  • naponta - daily
  • nem kőzlekedik - does not run
  • Az ev vegi... : refers to trains not running at Christmas and New Year.
  • Az iskolai... : refers to trains which run during school terms.
  • A nyari... : refers to dates of summer timetable

Engineering Information

See the MAV website. The page lists engineering information by timetable table number. A useful map giving an overview of engineering work is available at

Bus Information

Timetables are available at Menetrendek

EU residents aged over 65 may travel free on urban and long-distance buses on providing proof of age.


Printed Maps

Web-based Maps


MÁV does not offer any network tickets other than an annual pass for all lines. However, EU residents aged over 65 may travel free in second class on all domestic services, but need to have proof of age and to pay any supplements on IC/EC and fast (szebes or gyors) trains (and equivalent buses); these are distance related.

Railway tickets used to be issued for specified distances, rather than to particular destinations, which gave a certain flexibility. These days all stations with computerised ticket machines, as well as conductors, issue tickets to specific destinations. Only minor stations now issue distance tickets.

Various Budapest Travelcards (network tickets, valid for one or more days) are available, valid on all lines (including MÁV) within the Budapest city boundary.


Infrastructure Authority

MÁV Zrt and GYSEV Zrt have the role of Infrastructure Managers. Because they operate the railway network as integrated, non-independent companies, the Vasúti Pályakapacitáselosztó Korlátolt Felelısségő Társaság (Rail Capacity Allocation Office Limited Liability Company) (VPE) has been set up.

Network Statement

Network Statements can be downloaded from the VPE (Rail Capacity Allocation Office) website, using the drop-down menu or the Related Links. Usually, next year's version is included as well as the current version, also for previous years in the Archive section. Each year's Network Statement is combined into a downloadable ZIP file, containing multiple folders and files. Files of most interest to railway enthusiasts are in the Annexes folder, and there may be separate documents for the two Infrastructure Managers MÁV Zrt and GYSEV Zrt.


Standard. There is one remaining MÁV narrow gauge (760 mm) system: Balatonfenyves - Somogyszentpál plus the 11 km Budapest Children's Railway, of the same gauge. ÁEV and other tourist lines are narrow gauge, most being 760 mm with a few 600 mm gauge. There were two 1520 mm (Russian) gauge lines linking Hungary with Ukraine: Záhony - Eperjeske-Rendező - Batyevo remains in use for freight to substantial Záhony transfer Depots but between Záhony - Chop the broad gauge tracks are disconnected although interlaced rails remain in use by the standard gauge passenger trains.


The main line system is 25 kV 50 Hz. See below for Budapest HÉV local lines.

Tramways are 600 V dc.

Rule of the road

Generally right, although there is much reversible working. Budapest Keleti to Budapest Kelenföld to Budapest Déli and Rákos to Budapest Keleti have left hand running.


No source is known other than the timetables. The Network Statement does not appear to give comprehensive distance information.

Other Railways

Numbers preceding entries refer to timetable numbers.

GYSEV (Györ-Sopron-Ebenfurti Vasút)

Owned jointly by the Hungarian and Austrian governments with a small minority of other shareholders. Raaberbahn in German, as Raab is the German name for Györ.

  • 1 Hegyeshalom - Rajka
  • 8 Győr - Sopron - Ebenfurth (Austria)
  • 9 Fertőszentmiklós - Pamhagen (Austria)
  • 15 Sopron - Szombathely
  • 16 Hegyeshalom - Csorna - Porpác - Szombathely
  • 17 Szombathely - Zalaszentiván
  • 18 Szombathely - Kőszeg
  • 21 Szombathely - Körmend - Szentgotthárd
  • 22 Körmend - Zalalövő (closed to passenger services in 2009)

HÉV (Helyiérdekű Vasút)

Standard-gauge local lines round Budapest, electrified at 1000 V dc overhead. National rail operator MÁV took over operation of these Budapest suburban lines on November 24 2016. MÁV have set up a new subsidiary BHÉV which is responsible for operating all HÉV lines, with funding from central government and Budapest municipality to cover operational expenditure. MÁV has also taken over ownership of the infrastructure from BKV:

  • 250 [Budapest] Batthyány tér - Szentendre
  • 251 [Budapest] Boráros tér - Csepel
  • 252 [Budapest] Vágóhid - Ráckeve
  • 253 [Budapest] Örs vezér tér - Csömör/Gödöllő végállomás

ÁEV (State Forestry Railways)

These lines were all once used for forestry traffic; except where noted, only passenger services now operate. Mostly these are for the benefit of tourists although in a few cases some local traffic is carried. Services run daily or, in most cases, on certain days only during the summer. All are 760 mm gauge, except the one marked § which is 600 mm.

  • 305 Lenti - Csömödér - Kistolmács (also has extensive branches which only carry forestry traffic)
  • 307 Szenta - Kaszó
  • 308 Almamellék - Sasrét §
  • 310 Pörböly - Gemenc - Bárányfok (also carries forestry traffic)
  • 321 Felsőtárkány-Fütőház - Stimeczház
  • 323 Szilvásvárad: Szalajka-Fatalep - Szalajka-Fátyolvizesés
  • 324/5 Gyöngyös - Mátrafüred/Lajosháza
  • 330 Miskolc-Dorottya Utca - Papírgyár - Lillafüred - Garadna
  • 331 Miskolc - Papírgyár - Mahóca
  • 332 Pálháza - Rostalló

Tourist lines

Numbers preceding entries refer to timetable numbers.

  • 7 Gyermekvasút (Budapest Children's Railway, formerly a pioneer railway): Széchenyihegy - Hüvösvölgy (760 mm gauge)
  • 8a Nagycenk Steam Centre (GySEV): Fertöboz - Barátság - Kastély (760 mm gauge)
  • 311 Mesztegnyő - Felsőkak (760 mm gauge, formerly an ÁEV line)
  • 317 Kismaros - Királyrét (760 mm gauge, formerly an ÁEV line) [this line also offers rail cycling]
  • 318a Szob - Márianozstra (760 mm gauge, formerly an ÁEV line)
  • 318 Nagyirtás - Nagybőrzsőny (760 mm gauge)
  • 319 Kemence Muzeum - Feketevölgy (600 mm gauge)
  • 333 Debrecen-Fatelep - Hármashegyalja (760 mm gauge, formerly an ÁEV line)
  • Debrecen Vidam Park (760 mm gauge)
  • Pécs Kulturpark (Children's Railway): Állatkert (Zoo) - Dömörkapu (760 mm gauge)
  • Szentendre Open Air Museum (Skanzen Railway) (standard gauge)

Also see ÁEV lines listed in previous section.

The site provides useful information on narrow gauge lines, including some ÁEV lines.



BKV is the Budapest Metro and tramway operator.

A metro track map is available at Popov Metro maps captioned in Cyrillic.


Budapest, Debrecen, Miskolc, Szeged.

The Budapest Rack Cogwheel Railway is fully integrated into the BKV system, operating as tramway line 60.

See also Hungary - Tram services over obscure routes

Recent and Future Changes (Latest First)

The new curve between Erd Also and Erd (on the line to Pusztaszabolcs) is complete but has demountable buffer stops at the southern end. It was expected to open around December 2022 but did not at the timetable change.

77 Galgamácsa - Vácrátót re-opened on 11 December 2022

The Szeged - Hódmezővásárhely Tram-train commenced carrying passengers, initially with an hourly service, on 29 November 2021, increasing to 20 minute intervals in early 2022. It connects onto MAV tracks from the eastern tram terminus at Szeged Rokus until Hódmezővásárhelyi-Népker, then there is some 4 km of new single track tramway through the town centre of Hódmezővásárhely to terminate at the main MAV station. The service is free of charge until at least 15 April 2022. For more details see the Urban Transport Magazine article with a basic line diagram at the UrbanRailNet Site plus a MAV tram-train line diagram.

Electric services between Szabadbattyán and Balatonfüred began on 19 June 2021, the start of the summer timetable. Approval has now been given for electrification of Balatonfüred - Tapolca - Keszthely/Ukk.

Works to rebuild and re-open a second branch of the MAV/BGV Narrow Gauge system from Balatonfenyefes, the 8km from Imremajor to Csiszta gyórgyfürdő [Thermal Baths] commenced in 2020.

A new line between Százhalombatta and a point south of Ercsi, on the line to Pusztaszabolcs, bypassing Dunai Finomito and Ercsi, opened on an unknown date between March and June 2020.

In January 2020, the Hungarian government requested tenders for work on its part of the Szeged - Röszke - Horgoš - Subotica (Serbia) line.

None of the threatened lines closed at the December 2019 timetable change, and there have been no official or unofficial announcements of closures since the original leaked document.

The following lines are reported as being threatened with closure in December 2019:

  • 4 Esztergom - Almásfüzitő
  • 14 Pápa - Csorna
  • 23 Zalaegerszeg - Rédics
  • 38 Somogyszob - Nagyatád
  • 47 Godisa - Komló
  • 61 Szentlőrinc - Sellye
  • 66 Mohács-Villány
  • 85 Gyöngyös-Vámosgyörk
  • 89 Nyékládháza - Tiszaújváros
  • 98 Szerencs - Hidasnémeti
  • 103 Karcag - Tiszafüred
  • 125 Mezőtúr - Orosháza - Mezőhegyes - Battonya
  • 113 Nyíregyháza - Nyírbátor
  • 114 Kocsord alsó - Csenger

Electric services between Szerencs and Sátoraljaújhely began on 2 July 2019 but note electrification does not include the cross border link to Slovakia. Work is under way on underway on route 101 Püspökladány - Biharkeresztes [unknown completion date].

The Hegyeshalom - Rajka - Rusovce - Bratislava-Petržalka cross border line reopened to passengers from the December 2017 timetable change with a five pair passenger service operated by GYSEV, after no service since 30 September 2010 and the last running of the overnight 'Amicus' service between Budapest and Prague.

Szombathely - Zalaszentiván electrification was completed on 7 December 2016 and onwards to Nagykanizsa is planned with EU funding approved.

Budapest to Esztergom is now electrified, changeover to electric traction was from 9 April 2018.

A major rebuilding of the Budapest - Beograd (Serbia) main line was completed in 2017.

The cross border service from Szeged via Röszke to Subotica (Serbia) was suspended due to the Refugee situation from 27 October 2015 and formally withdrawn with the December 2016 Timetable date.

The cross border service from Magyarboly - Beli Manastir (Croatia) suspended in January 2016 owing to the migrant crisis and withdrawn at the December 2016 Timetable change was reinstated in the December 2018 timetable change.

The end section of table 89, Tiszaújváros – Tiszapalkonya-Erőmű, closed at the timetable change in December 2013.

With effect from 16 April 2012 around 400 trains were cancelled, which resulted in a number of lightly used lines having their services reduced to 2 round trips per day. For details see the Sparse Services section.

In May 2010 a general election resulted in a change of government. One of the new ruling party's pledges was to re-open lines closed in December 2009 by the previous administration where it was practical to do so, given that in some cases infrastructure had already been removed or disabled. The first batch of re-openings occurred on 5 July 2010, the lines concerned being:

  • 5 Komárom - Széksefehérvár (official opening with special train was on 4 July)
  • 14 Pápa - Csorna
  • 103 Karcag - Tiszafüred
  • 142 Kecskemét - Lajosmizse

It should be noted that Line 14 had been closed in March 2007.

A further 6 lines re-opened on 12 December 2010

  • 4 Esztergom - Almásfüzitő
  • 45 Börgönd - Sárbogárd
  • 47 Godisa - Komló
  • 98 Abaújszántó-Hidasnémeti
  • 113 Fehérgyarmat - Zajta
  • 114 Kocsord alsó - Csenger

In April 2009 it was reported that MÀV-START would have to reduce the number of passenger trains operated by 50%, and that many secondary lines could, as a result, suffer, with changes being implemented in August or December 2009. In August it was announced that up to 1,874 km of lines could close in December 2009. After a number of different lists were published, in the event the following standard gauge lines closed on 12 December 2009:

  • 4 Esztergom - Almásfüzitő
  • 5 Skékesfehérvár - Komárom
  • 22 Körmend - Zalalövő
  • 37 Somogyszob - Balatonszentgyörgy
  • 42 Mezöfalva - Paks
  • 45 Börgönd - Sárbogárd
  • 47 Godisa - Komló
  • 64 Pécs - Pécsvárad
  • 77 Galgamácsa - Vácrátót
  • 87 Szilvásvárad - Putnok
  • 98 Abaújszántó-Hidasnémeti
  • 103 Karcag - Tiszafüred
  • 107 Sárand - Létavértes
  • 113 Fehérgyarmat - Zajta
  • 114 Kocsord alsó - Csenger
  • 117 Ohat-Pusztakócs - Tiszalök
  • 126 Kisszénás-Kondoros
  • 127 Vésztő-Körösnagyharsány
  • 130 Makó-Hódmezővásárhely
  • 142 Lajosmizse - Kecskemét

The following narrow gauge lines also closed:

  • 118 Nyiregyháza - Balsa-Tiszaport (see also note below)
  • 119 Herminatanya - Dombrád (see also note below)
  • 148 Kecskemét KK - Kiskörös KK
  • 149 Kecskemét KK - Törökfái Kiskunmajsa KK

Line 39, Balatonfenyves GV.-Somogyszentpál, was also on the list but was reprieved because the local authority expressed interest in taking it over.

The cross-border route from Bánréve to Lenartovce in Slovakia closed to passenger services on 12 December 2009.

On 17 September 2009 narrow gauge services over part of 118 and the whole of 119 were replaced by buses, leaving trains operating only between Nyíregyháza and Herminatanya and even these ceased later that year [see above].

The limited cross border service from Komárom to Komarno in Slovakia closed in December 2008. It had previously closed in 2004, and had only re-opened in December 2007.

The cross border service from Sátoraljaújhely to Slovenské Nové Mesto in Slovakia also closed in December 2008.

In previous years, although the future of branch and rural lines had been increasingly uncertain over the decade since the Communist political and economic era of central control was replaced by democratic governments, there had been few passenger service closures. Mátramindszent to Mátranovák Homoktereneye (table 83) closed about 1993, the remaining section of table 49, from Lepsény to Mezőhídvég, lost its passenger service officially from 28 May 2000, the section of table 12 from Tatabánya to Felsögalla closed in June 2001.

Bus substitution due to a combination of neglected track maintenance, circuitous routes and poorly located stations closed Keszőhidegkút-Gyönk - Tamási (48) and Tamási - Dombóvár (southern part of 49) by 1991; extended to the remainder of 49 (Mezőhídvég – Tamási) by 1995, then Lepsény - Mezőhídvég following storm damage on 22 July 1999, between Pécsvárad - Palotabozsok (central section of 64) from 1 June 1997, followed by the northern section onwards to Bátaszék where trains did not resume after bus substitution in Spring/Summer 2003 due to axle problems on BzMot railbuses. In 2006, there have been two condition of track closures, Nógrádszakál to Ipolytamóc (Part 78) for a few months from 1 July 2006 following flood damage (now resumed but one of the threatened 28 lines) and Sellye and Középrigóc (part 62) which was bus substituted from 8 May 2006.

An unexpected closure at the 2005 December timetable change was the terminal station Budapest Józsefváros, with local services diverted to Keleti and the few long distance services from Kelebia re-routed via curve HU07/2 to Köbánya-Kispest.

At its session on 5 July 2006, the Hungarian parliament committed to a thorough reform of national passenger transport, affecting both MÁV and the bus operator Volán (to the extent that competition between the two will be replaced by an integrated policy). A budget of HUF 50-80 Bn was to be made available each year for modernisation of the rail network, including network upgrading, development of suburban rail, station reconstruction, passenger coach refurbishment etc and MÁV Cargo was to be sold off. As part of this package it was announced that passenger traffic would be withdrawn on 28 lines, totalling 942 km or 12.2% of the network as they apparently account for just 1% of passenger revenues. Officially the traffic was to be suspended, but in fact the lines were put up for closure.

The original intention was for the closures to occur by the December 2006 timetable change, but the well publicised Political disputes contributed towards delays. An official list was then announced on 8 December 2006 of 14 lines where passenger services were to be suspended by the end of February 2007. In the event the following lines closed on 3 March 2007:-

  • 13 Környe - Pápa
  • 14 Pápa - Csorna
  • 24 Zalabér-Batyk - Zalaszentgrót
  • 27 Lepsény - Hajmáskér
  • 62 Sellye - Villány
  • 76 Diósjenő - Romhány
  • 84 Kisterenye - Kál-Kápolna
  • 88 Mezőcsát - Nyékládháza
  • 95 Kazincbarcika - Rudabánya
  • 112 Nagykálló - Nyíradony
  • 129 Murony - Békés
  • 151 Kunszentmiklós-Tass - Dunapataj
  • 152 Fülöpszállás - Kecskemát alsó
  • 153 Kiskőrös - Kalocsa

Lines 88, 112 and 129 closed completely, and the other remained partially or fully open for freight. The 8 December 2006 announcement originally included line 22, but one day later it was announced this was subject to further review.

Several short curves have also ceased to see passenger use: the Bánréve avoiding curve [now lifted], the Hatvan avoiding curve (Tura - Jászfényszaru, was used only for one year), the Szolnok avoiding curve to the Hatvan line [later resumed] and the Dorog - Tokod link avoiding Esztergom-Kertváros which was used for two years until 1 June 1997 by certain Budapest - Bratislava services to reduce pressure on main lines being upgraded.

After a slow-down, work resumed on several electrification projects with completed routes Felsözsolca - Hidasnémeti - Čaňa (Slovakia) [25 February 1998], Balatonszentgyörgy - Nagykanizsa - Murakeresztúr [27 September 1998], Rákospalota - Vácrátót [January 1999], Gyékényes - Koprivnica (Croatia), Székesfehérvár - Várpalota [26 September 1999 and onwards to Szombathely by the end of September 2000] and Sopron to Szombathely by GySEV after they took over operations in 2002. Electrification of Boba to Hodos was completed in 2010, and GySEV is also electrifying Szombathely to Szentgotthárd.

Longer term electrification plans have been identified by MÁV as follows: Györ - Celldömölk (10); Szerencs – Sátoraljaújhely (80); Püspükladány - Biharkereszles - (Romania) (101); Kőbánya-Kispest - Lajosmizse (142).

GySEV intends to take over several lines from MÁV, which might bring more electrification, such as Hegyeshalom – Nagykanizsa.

The project to electrify at 25kV 50Hz to Deutschkreutz ÖBB, whilst mainly to benefit ÖBB and GySEV, involves MÁV-owned track between Sopron and the Austrian border via Harka, and was completed in the summer of 2000.

The Magyarbóly - Beli Manastir (Croatia) - Osijek cross-border line reopened 3 September 1997.

The cross-border link to Slovenia avoiding transit through Croatia from Zalalövö via Hodoš to Murska Sobota was reported to have been completed in December 2000, but opened officially on 2 March 2001. This route now carries international services and is upgraded on the Hungarian side so from Zalalövő to Zalaegerzeg-Ola is now an almost completely new parallel and straighter alignment. Near to Zalalövő opened some time in 2005/06 with further significant cut-offs nearer to Zalaegerzeg opening in mid-2009.

There have been a number of improvements to cross border services with Austria after joining the European Union, for example Wien to Pécs via Sopron, Gyékényes and Dombóvár Alsó and through trains from Szombathely to Graz.

In late 2010 GySEV announced plans for a large scale development of Gyor - Sopron, apparently the most heavily used line in Hungary. The intention is to double the line and, more significantly, divert lines either side of Sopron. East of Sopron, the line will be moved alongside the Szombathely line north of Harka (Kophaza) to free up land and ease curves. West of Sopron, the plan is to move the Ebenfurth line alongside the Wiener Neustadt line as far as Sopron Deli, mainly to allow closure of some busy level crossings.

The Tiszakecse Gyermekvasút: Sportliget - Tiszapark (760 mm gauge) railway closed 'temporarily' in 2008 but is reported as unlikely to re-open

Special notes

See also