Transportation

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Intercity transportation means can be found is special bus stations. Seating is by ticket. For shorter journeys, booking tickets a day in advance is rarely necessary. Check the signs above the ticket booths for your required destination. In larger bus stations be prepared to have your papers checked Immigration service. Minibuses soliciting customers outside offer faster, more expensive inter-city travel on major routes.
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Taxis can often be persuaded to do long runs such as Khiva-Bukhara and offer decreased time of travel. Bargain the opening price down to a sensible figure and agree on petrol costs. These taxis/private cars wait outside bus or train stations and depart with a full carload - four people, or at least four fares, so for additional comfort pay for the extra seats. Hitch-hiking is a distinct possibility, but is almost always paid. It is again safer to establish a fare at the beginning of a ride. Potential pit-stops at a relative's house for liquid refreshment are implicit.


City transport is easiest by taxi or metro but, armed with a city map and a smattering of Russian or Uzbek city buses, trolley buses, trams and marshrutnoe taxis (numbered minibuses which follow set routes and guarantee a seat) open up local life and offer a cheap and cheerful way to get around.


Bus

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The main long-distance bus station is the Tashkent Avtovokzal (Tashkent Bus Station), five minutes walk through a bazaar from Olmozor Metro (western terminals of the Chilanzar metro line). The further the destination, the less frequent the buses, so consider buying tickets a day in advance. Particularly for inter-republic travel (e.g. Turkmenistan), the ticket seller may request you first register with the station police upstairs. If you miss the last scheduled bus (usually late afternoon) to popular destination like Samarkand or Andijan, try a night bus from in front of Yuzhni Vokzal (South Train Station).


Air

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Uzbekistan Airways operates regular departures from Tashkent to most international airports around the Worlds and almost all the republic's major cities/tourist destinations: Andijan, Bukhara, Fergana, Karshi, Namangan, Navoi, Nukus, Samarkand, Termez, Urgench, plus regional capitals Almaty (Kazakhstan), Ashgabat (Turkmenistan), Bishkek (Kyrgyzstan) and Dushanbe (Tajikistan). Weekly Andijan-Urgench flights help avoid wasteful backtracking. It is advised to bring sufficient snacks and drinks. When checking in, it is quicker, safer and common practice to carry one's own luggage on board. When fellow passengers ignore their seat numbers, just follow their example.


Rail

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Trains offer interesting routes into Uzbekistan. The provodniks (attendants) can be helpful at any time. Journeys on train are fun as shared melons and non build international friendship to a slowly moving backdrop of deserts and oases. The most reliable and well maintained connections are the popular Tashkent-Bukhara and Tashkent-Samarkand express trains. See trains schedule for details. A major new rail line splices the Kyzyl Kum desert, from Nukus via Beruni and Turtkul to Uchquduq and Navoi, thus avoiding Turkmenistan and any transit visa requirement.


Ticket buying often requires outstanding patience. Check the information on the ticket window to ensure it sells tickets to your destination and that the next office break is a few hours away. First class tickets are for the 'soft' car (myagkiy vagon) lux means a two-berth compartment. Four-berth (kupeyniy) can be soft or second class hard (zhostkiy). Third class (platskartniy), an open carriage with hard seats that change into bunks. Fourth class (obshchiy) offers benches and little else. Tashkent Vokzal, officially the Saevernay (North) Vokzal, is the station for north-bound trains to Russia, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan, plus various departures to Turkmenistan and the Fergana Valley. It is south of the city center (metro stop Tashkent).