On ArrivalWelcome to the city! If you are travelling by air, you will arrive at the Rajiv Gandhi International Airport, Shamshabad. The airport is situated 40 km from the centre of the city.
If you are travelling by train, you will alight at one of the following railway stations: Secunderabad, Hyderabad (at Nampally), Begumpet or Kachiguda. If you arrive by long distance bus, you will alight at the Jubilee Bus Station, Secunderabad, or at the Hyderabad Bus Terminal at Gowliguda. Buses are actually pretty flexible, and stop at quite a few places along the way.
At the airport, you can take a bus shuttle run by the airport authorities, known as the Aero Express service, or hire prepaid taxis or private cars. Tickets to the bus shuttles cost Rs. 150, and there are buses to four different destinations in the city - Paryatak Bhavan (Somajiguda), Keyes High School (Secunderabad), City College (Koti), Sarojini Devi Eye Hospital (Mehdipatnam) and Shilparamam (Hitech City).
The private cabs will cost upwards of Rs. 300, depending on which part of the city you are hiring transport to. If you have room reservations at one of the bigger hotels, they will send transport to collect you. But if nobody is coming to receive you, remember that if you look new to town, there's a whole lot of chaps out there trying to rip you off. And if you are a foreigner (basically look one), they'll just pounce on you! The general impression is that these people are pretty gullible and loaded, and can pay 10 times the actual fare, if not more.
At the railway stations and bus terminals, you will find private taxis and auto-rickshaws, but, as usual, beware! Please make sure that the meter is showing the minimum fare (Rs. 12 now) when you get in, and that he's set the meter after you've engaged him. Of course, you can always take public transport, the State Transport Corporation (APSRTC) buses, which are pretty inexpensive - you shouldn't mind standing and being crowded in, though, which usually happens! This option is not open if you have a large amount of luggage on you, of course.
For moving around the city, the bigger hotels will arrange for cars / taxis to take you around. However, if you decide to choose the auto-rickshaw as your mode of transport, as many visitors do, you will find that most hotels have an auto-stand outside their premises.
The buses ply almost all the routes in the city. Certain routes are also served by private buses. The Andhra Pradesh Travel & Tourism Development Corporation conducts daily sightseeing tours of the Twin Cities. For information call telephone numbers 23262151/23262152/23262153/23262154/23262457.