I am proposed two flights with similar times and price, one to Hongqiao and the other to Pudong.

Which one will allow me to reach the city center (say People's Square) the earliest, while not being too expensive?

  • Seing a map, Hongqiao seems closer.
  • Pudong has Maglev (fast train) but it seems like Maglev does not go to People's Square, requiring to change to metro.

Wikivoyage does not say much about the time metro trains take.

  • A little bit more: don't take the meglev. Single ticket costs 80RMB and round ticket costs 100, which is riduculous given the distance of traveling and all the inconvenience that you'll have to get out of the metro station and get into the meglev again. (Chinese highspeed trains travels at the same speed too - this makes the meglev a joke.) Although for metro you may have to get off the train and get on again, you don't have to get out of the metro station - just wait on the platform. This will save you a lot of time and confusion about "hey where the hell should I go to find the meglev". – golddc May 29 '13 at 14:43
  • @golddc Actually, the Shanghai airport maglev is the world's fastest train at 431 km/h, and is IMHO very much worth riding. Sure, RMB 80 is pricy by Chinese standards, but consider it a $10 tourist attraction, not just an airport train. – lambshaanxy Nov 18 '18 at 23:32
  • @jpatokal Thanks for your comment. 5 years after my previous comment on this, if you ask me now, I would say: try it. (Well, people change.) My concern was the maglev was not seamlessly connected to the metro (subway). This might be confusing to some first time travelers. For me personally, I'm already used to traveling at 350 km/h on fast trains with wheels, and it'll go up to 400 some day, so 430 km/h isn't very attractive. – golddc Nov 21 '18 at 2:52

With the help of Google maps, using the public transport option, it seems that Hongqiao aiport is closer and needs less time and less subway stops (cheaper?).

Using subway, Hongqiao Airport to People's Square is 51 minutes away with 11 stops while from Pudong Airport you will need 1h25m with 17 stops.

  • 1
    Second this. I've only done it by road but Hongqiao is definitely a shorter trip. – Loren Pechtel Oct 15 '12 at 22:58
  • In Shanghai subway price increases with distance (I think in the range 2/3-6 yuan), so there is probably a 1 yuan difference in prince. Normally you won't care about this amount as compared to the price of the flight. – Bernhard May 9 '13 at 10:49
  • Second this too. But I like Pudong airport (PVG) better because the traffic signs and parking spaces in Hongqiao airport (SHA) really suck. In SHA, all parking lots in B1 (basement 1), B2 and B3 have the same label, for example Parking Space A. And it turned out different storeys are numbered differently: B1 starts with 10*, B2 with 20*, B3 with 30*, and there's no info anywhere about this. Well this doesn't sound funny, but all the other parking places I know are labeled pretty well. PVG is so much better than SHA. Also if you go to the wrong terminal in SHA, good luck then. And there's more. – golddc May 29 '13 at 14:56

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