How to get to Plovdiv

You may also want to check the Reimbursement guide

Here below are some options

We advise all participants to have a medical insurance.
If you are eligible for EHIC (European Health Insurance Card), make sure you have it ready before your trip.
If you are not eligible for EHIC, make sure you have equivalent travel and medical insurance.
We advise that you take additional insurance in case of lost luggage, documents, etc. – that is not mandatory.

Should you have a question, contact us:

Arriving by plane to Sofia

Option 1.

Arriving at Terminal 2 get you straight to the Metro line to the central train station.
Always have a ticket to avoid fines.


Make sure you have 1 ticket for yourself and an extra ticket for each big suitcase you have with you. Sofia public transport control is strict and there’s a rule that each piece of luggage which has a total length of 140 cm (length+height+width).

1 ticket cost ~2.00 leva (approx. 1.00 EUR) – you can buy it from a ticket machine at the airport, ticket machine at the metro entry or from the clerk at window at the metro entry.

Electronic travel cards & PAY-AS-YOU-GO

Ticket options for Sofia public transport

Check routes and transport numbers here

Option 2.

Arriving at Terminal 1, there is a free shuttle bus every 15 min between T1 and T2.
Shuttle bus between T1 and T2 – check here

If you arrive by bus, the bus station and train station are next to each other.
Use google maps or other map service to orient yourself and get on the right bus, or train, to Plovdiv.

Option 3.

A. At Sofia Central train and bus station, you may want to catch a bus.
Check bus schedule here.
It takes about 2 hours and it costs about 15-16.00 leva.

B. At Sofia Central train and bus station, you may want to catch a train.
Check train schedule here.
It takes about 3 hours and it costs about 9-12 leva.

B.1. If you don’t need to go to Sofia Central train and bus station, Metro line and train track intersect at Iskarsko shose. You get a tickets for Metro from Terminal 2, and get off at Iskarsko shose Metro station and transfer to train station there.
Trains from Iskarsko shose:

Option 4.

Arriving at Plovdiv airport.
Website of the airport here.
There are shuttle options to Plovdiv city, cost 10 leva.

Option 5.

Arriving at Burgas airport.
Website of the airport here.
Get to the bus, or train station and get a suitable option to Plovdiv.

Option 6.
Carpooling is a great way to have a trip and be sustainable, as far as you meet the requirements and you are willing to do the extra work, considering some extra risks.

In order to be eligible for travel reimbursement for carpooling, you need to have:
* preferably 3 people (or 4-5) traveling together in the car.
* have international car insurance
* provide car papers (year, make, model, fuel type, consumption per 100 km.)
* pay as you go your fuel, toll fees and collect every receipt in original hard copy
* shared car ride (carpooling) also hides risks like unexpected car mechanical, or electronics problems that you may need to solve abroad, and pay for that – those are NOT reimbursable expenses
* carpooling is also risk for us as host organisation to ensure your participation and not dropping out, so we will ask you to pay via bank transfer a NON-REIMBURSABLE security deposit of 50 EUR per person traveling by car
* as far as accountancy is concerned, Smokinya Foundation is obliged to follow Bulgarian accountancy and bookkeeping rules and your travel fuel and toll fees reimbursement is subject to evaluation. It might be that you get partial reimbursement up to limits fixed by Bulgarian norms per car make, year, model, fuel.
* subject of evaluation and approval is route, which has to be the shortest, and realistic fuel consumption (if it really incurred).

Should you have a question, contact us:

Green travel
Green travel in general relates to environmental sustainability: the project is designed in an eco-friendly way and incorporates green practices (e.g. green travel). Green travel is the one that use low-emissions means of transport for the main part of the travel, such as bus, train or car-pooling (with 3 or more people on board).

For the green travel in the case of car pooling, look above for details.

For green travel with bus and / or train, you must consider some extra risks.

* unexpected delays and cancellations
* bus and train ticket reservations might be not possible for several weeks before the travel, and that is also a risk for us as host organisation to ensure your participation and not dropping out, so we will ask you to pay via bank transfer a NON-REIMBURSABLE security deposit of 50 EUR per person traveling by bus, or train
* in duly justified cases, there might be extra financial support for up to 6 days if the trip takes that long. In case participants need additional travel in order to reach the location where the activity starts, they are also entitled to travel support, including “green travel” where applicable. Subject to request, justification, and approval.

Should you have a question, contact us:

No matter what transport you take, ALWAYS keep every receipt, tickets, boarding passes you buy and receive – we need them as a proof and to be able to reimburse you.

Taxi is not reimbursable because it is considered a luxury service. Be careful and cautious because taxi scams might still happen in Bulgaria.

Exchange services at the airport are with not so good exchange rate.
Definitely avoid exchange “services” by persons on the street. It might be a scam.
Bulgarian ‘lev’ is tied to EUR and the exchange rate is fixed and only fluctuates between 1,94 – 1,96 leva for 1 EUR.
Exchange at a bank office usually is the safest, but they charge commission. In the Sofia and Plovdiv city centres there are trusted exchange offices.


Bulgaria is an EU country and your mobile service should work in roaming without any problems and extra charges, including data. Maybe check your service provider for extra info.

Can be cold, so pack clothes that will keep you warm. There are also plenty of shops, the big brands, as well as second hand shops which are environmentally friendlier.

We often check flight options here

Should you have a question, contact us: