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How to use the subway in Milan?

Metro stations in Milan take you to all the main points of the city in a comfortable, fast and inexpensive way. Today we are going to teach you how to use this practical means of transport!


How to use the subway in Milan?

At first sight, Milan may seem very commercial, modern and too convinced – like few Italian cities. It is not a tourist city and is very often visited by the upper class for shopping in the numerous convenience stores or the people who are looking for it as a place to live due to the various opportunities that the city is able to offer. However, Milan’s heart is beating much faster than it looks. A little hidden in the great tourist fervor, we find monuments and attractions so interesting that they are in dispute with cities like Rome, Florence and Venice. For better mobility, shall we learn How to use the subway in Milan? Here at Your Travel to Italy with Ana Patricia you make the trip of your dreams!!! ALSO: see our “Accommodation in Italy – Tips for your holidays!”


Let us then begin our visit to the main sights with one of the fastest and most practical means: the subway, which in Milan is certainly the fastest, most economical, practical and environmentally friendly means of transport. Although not on the level of the London, Paris and Barcelona subways, it is undoubtedly the best in Italy and allows access to almost all regions of Milan.


A little about Milan’s subway…

The subway was opened in 1964, when it was still composed only of the red line. The metro now has four main lines: Line 1 Red, Line 2 Green, Line 3 Yellow, Line 5 Lilac and Line Blue (Circular Bus). Milan’s subway is among the 30 most extensive networks in the world and among the top 10 in Europe. In addition to the number, the four lines are also identified with the color that characterizes the logos of stations and trains. The Metropolitan Network of Milan extends for 75 km – 50 km of them in the municipal territory and 25 km in the greater Milan, with 88 stations. Also read our section on Transport in Italy!

1) How do you use the Metro in Milan? GET TO KNOW THE SUBWAY LINES

At the moment, the metropolitan network is composed of four lines:

  • Line M1, Red, which goes from Sesto 1º Maggio to Rho Fiera or Bisceglie.
  • Line M2, Green, which runs from Abbiategrasso or Assago Forum to Cologno Nord or Gessate.
  • Line M3, Yellow, which runs from San Donato to Comasina.
  • Line M5, Lilac, which goes from San Siro to Bignami.

Line M1

Line 1, or red line, was the first line to be built. Line 1 goes north-east through the Sesto 1 ° Maggio FS terminal, in the Sesto San Giovanni neighborhood. After crossing the center of Milan, passing through Piazza Domo and Sforzesco Castle (at Cairoli station), the line forks and heads northwest (towards the Rho Fiera terminal, next to the new exhibition center in the Rho district) ) and towards the southwest (towards the Bisceglie terminal).

The main stations are: Duomo, Loreto, Lotto Fiera 2 and Cairoli.

Line M2

Line 2, or green line, goes to the eastern outskirts of the city, with two branches at Cascina Gobba station: one goes to the east side (up to the Gessate terminal) and the other takes the northeast direction to the Cologno Monzese neighborhood (at the Cologno Nord terminal). In the other direction, the line goes to the Abbiategrasso terminal (located in the homonymous square, not in the neighborhood). The M2 is integrated with seven city railway stations: Lambrate, Centrale, Porta Garibaldi, Garibaldi Passante, Cadorna, Porta Genova and Romolo.

The main stations are: Loreto, Cadorna, Milano Centrale FS and Porta Genova.

Line M3

Line 3, or yellow line, runs directly north-south. The north terminal is Maciachini, and the south is San Donato, on the border of Milan with San Donato.

The main stations are: Duomo, Montenapoleone, Repubblica and Porta Romana.

Line M5

Line 5, or lilac line, is Milan’s new metro line – almost completely automated. There are 19 stations on the M5 line, connecting Bignami to the San Siro Stadium.

The main stations are: San Siro, Lotto, Portello and Garibaldi.

2) How do you use the Metro in Milan? GET TO KNOW THE ACCESS TO THE ATTRACTIONS

It is possible to access the main points of historical and cultural interest of the city, taking the center – which basically means reaching zero ground: the Piazza Duomo (Duomo Square – which crosses two subway lines and still has several trams that stop right next to the square ).

The only train station located within the historic center is Milano Cadorna, which is on the west side of the city. To get to this region, you need to take Line 1 of the metro and get off at Duomo or Piazza San Babila (an alternative to get off at Duomo is to take

Line 3 of the metro). Once in Piazza Duomo, it is possible to easily access all the other main attractions, such as the Royal Palace and the Museo del Novecento (“Museum of the Twenthieth Century”) – which are exactly around the square. Also, the Scala Theater, the Marino Palace, the Museo del Settecento (“Museum of the Eighteenth Century”) and Museo dell’Ottocento (“Museum of the Nineteenth Century”) – which are on the other side of the Vittorio Emanuele Gallery (enter the gallery and go straight to the other exit).

See Milan’s Subway Timetable and Frequency now. The Milan Metro opens at 06:00 in the morning and closes thirty minutes after midnight (00:30). The only exceptions are on May 1st and December 25th, which opens at 07:00 a.m. and closes around 07:30 p.m.

How often do trains pass?

ATM (Azienda Trasporti Milanesi – “Milanese Transport Company”) stipulates the frequency depending on the time range and the period of the year (whether it is winter or summer). They are: peak hours, from 7:00 am to 9:00 am and from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. (at other times the lines remain unchanged).

Purchase of Tickets

The terminals for purchasing tickets are in all stations and operate 24 hours a day. If you have problems with the machines, you can also buy a single ticket at newsstands. Once the ticket has been purchased, just go to the subway station, go to the turnstiles with the green arrows, insert the ticket and cross the roulette towards the trains. There will be signs indicating the metro line you should take. The lines are colored and the colors correspond to the itineraries as shown on the metro map. The lines go in two directions, signaled at the stop after that station.


  • Milan’s Subway offers guides on the ground to identify the platforms, just follow the colored strips. For example, if you want to take the yellow line, just follow the yellow strip on the platform floor.

Let’s go to Rates?

In Milan, the common subway ticket costs € 1.50. The trip is valid for ninety minutes after the ticket has been validated. You can also use the same ticket on trams and circulars through transfers (but only with one access at a time – and you need to validate the ticket on all of them). So, for example, we can take the subway and then the tram with the same ticket (authenticating the ticket on all of them, otherwise we take the risk of getting a ticket), but we cannot continue taking the subway again.

Other Options

Let’s see other options for those who are not Milanese and should use the means of transport:

  • Booklet with 10 single tickets: € 13.80 – it is possible to make 10 common trips, but cannot be used by more than one person at the same time.
  • BI4 Integrated ticket for four trips: € 6.00 – for € 6.00 it is possible to make 4 trips.
  • Daily ticket: € 4.50 – unlimited travel for twenty-four hours after validating the ticket.
  • Double daily ticket: € 8.25 – unlimited travel for forty-eight hours after validating the ticket.
  • Night ticket: € 3.00 – valid from 20: 00h until the end of the daily service on the validation date (without travel limit in the entire ATM network, both urban and long distance).

Good to know

  • All subway stations are equipped with elevators for the disabled.
  • Children, both on the subway and other means of transport, up to 10 years old do not pay. It is only necessary to respect the following rules: children must be accompanied by paying adults and present a document that proves their age (maximum 2 children between 6 and 10 years old, there is no limit for children under 5).

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How to use the subway in Milan? Certainly, the cheapest and most environmentally friendly means of transport in Milan is the subway. The use of public means of transport contributes to reducing the emission of carbon dioxide, which increases air pollution. With the subway, it is possible to access the regions of greatest interest, in addition it is comfortable, practical and trains circulate with great frequency from 06:00 until 01:00 in the morning.

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