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World Travel Guide > Guides > Europe > Georgia

Getting Around Georgia

Air

Georgian Airways (www.airzena.com) flies between Tbilisi and Batumi.

Road

Poor road conditions and poor driving mean getting behind the wheel in Georgia isn't a relaxing experience. There are some stretches of motorway, but many roads remain unpaved and poorly lit.

Travellers attempting to drive around Georgia independently should be aware that it is difficult to buy fuel without highly specialised local knowledge and that an adequate supply of fuel should be obtained in Tbilisi beforehand.

Reliable road maps or signposts do not exist.

Side of the road

Right

Coach

These are in poor condition. Timetables frequently change and should not be relied upon. Mashrutkas (minibuses) travel to most major destinations and are on a first-come, first-served basis.

Regulations

The speed limit is 60kph (37mph) in built-up areas and 80kph (50mph) elsewhere.

Documentation

It is possible for holders of an EU licence to drive in Georgia but an International Driving Permit is required to hire a vehicle.

Urban travel

Tbilisi is served by buses, trolleybuses, cable cars and a small underground system. It is common practice to flag down official taxis, but fares should always be negotiated in advance, bearing in mind the likelihood that rates set for foreigners will be unreasonably high.

In view of the rising crime rate, foreigners should take precautions before getting into a car. It's generally safer to use officially marked red taxis which should not be shared with strangers. It is inadvisable to take a ride if there is already more than one person in the car.

Rail

In total, Georgia has almost 1,600km (987 miles) of railway. Georgian Railway (www.railway.ge) runs passenger services. 

Rail passengers are advised to store their valuables in the compartment under the seat/bed and not to leave the compartment unattended. It is also a good idea to ensure the compartment door is secure from the inside by tying it closed with wire or strong cord. Reservations are required for all trains. There are two classes of trains, primarily distinguished by the comfort of the seats. Children under five years of age travel free and children from five to nine years of age pay half fare.