The following 8 tips will help you fully enjoy your stay in the Argentinean capital:
1) Be careful with your belongings: Pick pocketing is unfortunately quite prevalent in Buenos Aires. However, by following certain guidelines, you will be able to ensure the safety of your belongings. Don’t wear your backpack on the back when walking around. Try and avoid taking out your wallet on the streets. Don’t carry too much cash in your purse. You can take your phone out to take pictures on the street and purchase items on the open market but do keep an eye on your things. Just be aware of your surroundings and watch over your purse or bag. Having a phone or wallet stolen always puts a damper on the vacation.
2) Try to bring cash with you: The monetary system in Argentina is inefficient and there often are cases of counterfeit bills in circulation. Therefore it is best that you carry your money with you from the home country. And if you are carrying debit or credit cards along, make sure you know where the bank branches or ATM’s are in your area. Also keep in mind that ATM’s have a withdrawal limit and often charge high extraction fees. You can also get your money changed from unofficial shops or people on the street, only if you are daring enough to try of course! But you might get the best rates from these unofficial means.
3) Get a SUBE card: Buenos Aires has a large, efficient public transport network, with almost 30,000 taxis, hop-on, hop-off sightseeing bus tours, and a vast network of cycle lanes. However the best form of transportation is the SUBTE system and the colectivo buses. However, it can get a little expensive if you pay for all of the rides you take individually. You can purchase SUBE cards which can be charged at all SUBTE station and at various kiosks located through the city. SUBE cards will not only help you reduce travel expenses but also save you the trouble of purchasing a ticket every time.
4) Go to markets for the best food and gifts: One of the best ways to interact with the residents and experience the authentic local environment is to head out to markets like the Feria de San Telmo or the Feria de Chacarita. These markets will provide you amazing opportunities to purchase souvenirs, original art, food items and indigenous jewelry. In these markets, you can also witness live music shows, tango performances, and people cooking parillas meat out in the streets. A unique experience for your Sunday evenings!
5) Take advantage of free passes for museums: There are many museums in Buenos Aires and all offer discounts to students and keep free days for the general public as well. So if you are a student, don’t forget to bring your student card along. And if you are not, then don’t worry, you can still view the arts for free on specific days. MAMBA (Museo de Arte Moderno de Buenos Aires) allows free entry to visitors on Tuesdays, whereas MALBA (Museo de Arte Latinoamericano de Buenos Aires) is free on Wednesdays. Bellas Artes is free for students on all days. Use these opportunities and get cultured for free!
6) Go to the Congreso: Want to experience the works of Argentinian government in motion? You can get a free tour of its congress (Congreso) as well. Since Buenos Aires is the capital city of Argentina, it is also the home of many government bodies. Free tours are offered to the chambers of Congress and the library of Senators along with a few other official departments. You can catch them on all the weekdays at specific hours. The tours are 45 minutes long and worth the trip!
7) Take a tango class: Tango is not just a form of dance. It has a long history and has mirrored the societal experiences of people in Argentina. It originated in River Plate and was influenced by all the various communities that lived in Argentina including German, Polish, Spanish, Cuban, African and the local indigenous population.
Therefore if you want to feel truly authentic, learn the moves of this beautiful art form. You can learn it from Catedral del Tango or countless other locations in Buenos Aires. Even if you don’t become an expert in Tango, you can still get to know the local culture, listen to some amazing music and get amazing photos taken of yourself in the process.
8) Book your accommodation online for cheaper options: Accommodation options in Buenos Aires are generally priced on the higher side. San Telmo is an older neighborhood in the southern part of the city. It has a reputation for bohemian art and late-night bars; and offers relatively lesser priced hotels for rent. However, the best way to save money is searching for the most affordable prices online on FindLateHotel and keeping an eye out for all the amazing deals offered on their platform.