A flat fare of RMB 2.00 with unlimited transfers applies throughout the metro system. This flat fare will also apply to all future lines except the planned airport Line. Children less than 1.2m in height who are accompanied by a paying adult may ride for free.
All lines now collect fares through an automatic fare collection system (AFC) which accepts single-ride electronic tickets and the Beijing Transportation Card or Yikatong, an integrated circuit card (IC card) that commuters use to purchase and store credit for multiple rides. Riders can purchase tickets and add credit to the Yikatong at ticket counters and vending machines in every station. Yikatong is also accepted on many city buses.
Step by step instructions
A. Find the subway station
Beijing subway stations are marked with a blue sign above the entrance, usually with the name of the station at the entrance. Enter the station near the sign, from an entrance that leads downward underground.
B. Buy a single-ride electronic ticket or use a Beijing Transportation (Yikatong) Card
When you enter the station, follow the signs to buy a ticket or card at the ticket window or machine. Swipe the card across the sensor, or insert the ticket in the turnstile to enter through the fare gate.
C. Wait for the train
Usually, there are two tracks of trains heading for opposite directions, so you must follow the sign and choose the correct side of the tracks to wait for your train. In some stations, the display screen will indicate arrival times, and destination information.
D. Take the train
While taking the subway, the display screen inside the train will indicate arrival times, destination information, and show short television programs.
E. Leave the station
After you leave the train, please insert the single-ride electronic ticket in the turnstile, or swipe the transportation card over the sensor. Next, look for the signs which indicate how to exit the station. Usually, there are four exits for each station; each exit leads to a different direction. Find the direction of your destination and choose the right exit to get out of the station.
Beijing Travel Guide