South America Living

Cheapest Way to Travel from Buenos Aires to Salta & Jujuy, Argentina

by Molly McHugh, Former Editor/Publisher of South America Living.     About the Author

If Retiro station is a bit overwhelming for you, or the bus companies who depart from there a little too pricey… you have another option in Buenos Aires to get to Northwest Argentina. There are a few low-key, non-deluxe (some have heating and show movies, some are very run-down and do not) empressas (businesses) that are half the price of busses from Retiro station. Travel Guide to Buenos Aires

Get in a taxi by 12:00 p.m. at the latest and head to Misiones 32 (is near Plaza 25 de Mayo). On this street are a few companies that regularily transport locals – sometimes smart budget-oriented tourists – from Buenos Aires to Salta or Jujuy. One company – Balderrama – also goes to Tucuman.

Busses depart daily at 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. – you just need to check with each for the departure time to your location for that day. If arriving by noon with cash on-hand to buy your ticket it is highly unlikely you won’t get a seat for that day.

Get excited about the cost, not about your means of transport. You will not have live chickens sitting next to you but this is budget travel… that will get you where you want to go but in a very basic mode. The folks who travel on these busses are working class Argentinians with very little money. Bags upon bags of items (you name it) are smashed in the luggage compartment and overhead bins, transporting goods from one area to the other.

When you arrive in JuJuy the bus drops you off four blocks or so from the bus station yet private minivans are often (not always) there to meet the busses and transfer passangers to the border at La Quicaca as well as towns of the Quebrada de Humahuaca such as Purmamarca and Tilcara. If not, it is simple to flag a taxi to take you to the main bus terminal.  Travel Guide to Purmamarca.

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