How to Obtain Great Discounts on Local Travel Next Time You Visit Benalmadena (or Málaga)

Benalmadena Travel CardIf you’re a regular visitor to Benalmádena, spend long periods of time here over the winter months and use public transport regularly when you are here, there’s a fantastic way to do so at significantly reduced rates… buy a Travel Card!

Designed for locals and visitors who travel frequently, the cheaper fares available through these Travel Cards and their ease of use make it great companion on your local travels exploring Benalmádena and Málaga. According to one of our guests who recently made use of the Travel Card, a local bus fare which usually costs 1.55€ will only cost you 1.08€… that’s a 44% discount! If you plan on using the bus regularly, the savings can be considerable. 

The travel cards are available at local tobacco shops (the nearest to Sunset Beach Club is just in front of the Bil-Bil Castle, 5 minutes from the hotel) and require leaving a deposit of €1.80 which is refundable when the card is returned. You need to charge the card up with a minimum of €5 as well as configure it for the most frequent type of journey you plan to make (just within Benalmádena or with the option to travel to Málaga).

Where you can use the Travel Card?

The beauty of the travel card is that you can use it on various methods of transport in the Málaga area, for example:

    • On local buses here in Benalmádena.
    • On local buses in Alhaurin de la Torre and Málaga City.
    • On the train that takes you from Benalmádena to Málaga. You can use the card to purchase tickets from the machines located inside the train stations.
    • With Málaga’s public bicycle loan scheme (malagabici). A great way to explore the city and take in its cultural treasures!
    • On underground trains in Málaga – and if you travel to Seville, they work there too (Granada will also be available soon).

Find more options at kensingtontours.com/tours/africa.

So how does the Travel Card work? What do you have to do?

As mentioned above, your card will be configured for the most frequent type of journey you make (0, 1, 2 or 3 fare crossings).

Once you climb onto the bus, you’ll need to tell the driver where you’d like to go before entering your card in front of the electronic reader. Once you’ve swiped your card over the reader it will automatically be charged the price of the fare in accordance with the fare crossings for which it has been configured. The machine will then issue a physical ticket indicating the cost of the fare. Confused yet? Bear with us, it seems a little complicated but it’s worth the hassle as the savings are considerable. 🙂

One of the advantages of the travel card is that you can purchase tickets for up to 15 passengers with the one card, just bear in mind that all tickets must be purchased within a 3 minute window.

The configuration process for the cards is a little complex and they can only be configured for one type of journey at a time. However, you are free to change the configuration every time you top up the travel card.

Let’s take an example. You plan to travel around Benalmádena for a couple of days getting to know our wonderful city and all its fun tourist attractions. In this case you should configure the card for 0 or 1 fare crossing and charge it with enough money to get you around for a couple of days.

After you’ve explored Benalmadena, you decide you’d like to go into Málaga and discover the city’s breathtaking cultural attractions. In this case you’ll configure the card for the appropriate number of fare crossings (we think it’s 3, but ask the attendant just in case) and top it up with enough money to allow you to jump on and off buses and trains.

And if your card doesn’t work?

Technology is unpredictable, even at the best of times. Whilst on your travels, you may encounter problems with your card or, more specifically, with the card readers.

If this were to happen, you should present the card to the bus driver and tell them your destination. You’ll then have to make payment in cash and the driver will register your card number in the chip card machine, handing you a reimbursable ticket containing details of the amount you’ve paid and the type of trip.

A refund for the difference of the amount paid for the reimbursable ticket and the ordinary discounted fare for said trip will be made automatically when you recharge your travel card. Please bear in mind that his refund process could take up to 3 months!

So as you can see, the Travel Card can really come in handy if your planning to use public transport on a regular basis. En better, you can save up to 44% on each fare!

Have you made use of the Travel Cards whilst on holiday in Benalmádena? What did you think, is it worth while using? Let us know in the comments below.

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19 Responses to How to Obtain Great Discounts on Local Travel Next Time You Visit Benalmadena (or Málaga)

  1. MorganO'Witch June 10, 2015 at 6:45 pm #

    Where does one buy this travel card?

  2. Justin June 11, 2015 at 9:56 am #

    Hi, you can buy them at most local tocacconists… there’s one near the hotel just opposite the Bil-Bil Castle.

  3. vicky February 9, 2016 at 9:19 pm #

    Hi ya is there a bus or any public transport that can take us to la cala from benalmadena? ????

  4. Justin February 10, 2016 at 12:19 pm #

    Hi Vicky, I think you’d have to get the bus from Benalmadena to Fuengirola and then change to jump on the Fuengirola to Marbella bus.

  5. Noreen June 27, 2016 at 11:05 pm #

    Can I get a bus from Fuengirola to Mijas. I’m travelling from the Malaga airport to Fuengirola by train but I need to get to Mijas. The crown resorts club Calahonda. How much would a taxi be? Any advise welcome.

  6. Justin June 28, 2016 at 4:39 pm #

    Hi Noreen, yes there is a bus that goes from Fuengirola to Marbella and stops in Calahonda. A taxi from Fuengirola to crown resorts would probably be about 25 or 30 Euros.

    Regards, Justin

  7. Noreen June 28, 2016 at 7:25 pm #

    Thank you for that info Justin.

  8. Michael Elliott January 17, 2017 at 5:39 am #

    Can i buy a monthly bus bus pass which i im told they are 39 euros as i am here for six weeks

  9. Justin January 17, 2017 at 12:51 pm #

    Hi Michael, I believe the cards you are referring to are for buses within Malaga city and don’t apply to buses in Benalmadena.


  10. DAVID Sparkes January 25, 2017 at 3:21 pm #

    Can i get a bus from Benalmadena to Marbella what number bus where to I get on and off Bus where do I catch return bus

  11. Justin January 25, 2017 at 4:23 pm #

    Hi David, there is no direct bus from Benalmádena to Marbella. You’d have to get the M120 to Fuengirola and then change to get the bus to Marbella (sorry but I don’t know the number)

    regards, Justin

  12. Brad Jerger March 9, 2017 at 9:01 pm #

    I am curious about the configuration of the card. Do this reconfiguration happen when you get on the bus when you tell the driver? Or if I try to go someplace that is in another zone, they will tell me?

    I’m guessing it’s possible that I may travel to someplace close to Benalmadena and then decide to go to central Malaga. How would that interaction work on the bus?

    Also do the bus fares require exact fare or will the bus driver give change?


  13. Justin March 17, 2017 at 9:39 am #

    Hi Brad, I think the bus driver will tell you but am not 100% sure. You really need to ask the bus driver. They usually give change too 🙂

  14. Dave December 4, 2017 at 11:16 pm #

    I am visiting Benalmadena early March for 11 days. My intention is to travel by bus to many destinations.
    Is this travel card similar to the Bono card in Tenerife which I used regularly? Their discounts were based on the distance travelled. ie up to 15 kilometres a discount of 30% over 15 kilometres a discount of 40%. The cost of the Bono card was 15 euros., of which my partner and were regular commuters.

  15. Justin January 3, 2018 at 11:12 am #

    Hi Dave,

    It’s a similar card but I think the discounts are a fixed amount. The card itself is also a little cheaper here.

  16. Nikki Foster January 28, 2018 at 10:24 pm #

    Just to answer Justin’s question, there is a direct bus from Benalmadena to Marbella, times available from Portillo website but weekdays are below:

    Salida desde B. Costa 5:25 7:15 8:50 9:05 9:35 10:20 11:50 13:05 13:45 14:35 15:35 16:50 17:35 19:35 21:05 22:45
    Salida desde Marbella 7:00 7:45 9:45 10:30 10:35 11:15 12:15 14:05 14:15 15:15 16:00 16:45 17:45 19:30 20:45 21:00 22:35

  17. Peter March 19, 2018 at 5:23 pm #

    Travel cards are great shame you can’t buy them at the airport

  18. Grainne Clare July 20, 2018 at 6:23 pm #

    Hi can u let me.know can i use the travel card on the bus 320 that comes through Benalmadena to go to Marbella please

  19. Justin July 23, 2018 at 11:51 am #

    Not too sure about that Grainne. I believe it’s only valid as far as Fuengirola but it’s best you check directly with the bus company.

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