As a rule situated in a special building and always marked with a big letter M of blue colour, the metro stations open at 5.30 am and close between midnight and 0.30 am with the trains running with great regularity - you'll rarely wait more than three minutes for a train, and the clock at the end of the platform shows time elapsed since the last train departed. In some parts of the city, the metro entry is linked with the pedestrian subway, but in this case the letter M will always indicate the direction to go.
To get to the metro station it is necessary to purchasing either a token or a metro card that are sold at ticket offices in metro vestibules and are valid only in Petersburg. After slipping it into the turnstiles, one goes to vertiginous escalators (due to the city's many rivers and swampy subsoil, most of the lines were built extremely deep underground) taking passengers to the underground trains. Although at present time the Petersburg metro network consists of 58 stations, one should not be afraid of getting lost as the metro scheme giving the names of the stations and indicating places for changing the line can be found in every carriage or metro vestibule.
Things a tourist should bear in mind about Petersburg metro code:
- Having got to the platform you may spend the whole day under the ground because changing metro lines is free of charge.
- Smoking is prohibited in the metro as well as in any other means of transport.
- Taking pictures and video in Petersburg metro is also forbidden.
- It is not allowed to eat or drink in the metro.
- Where two lines connect, the station has two separate names, one for each line. The only exception to this rule is the "Tekhnologichesky Institut" station where trains on different lines leave from the same platform.
- Children under 7 use the metro services for free.
- One should not pay extra for having pets, birds in cages, bicycles, prams, sledge with.
- Roller skating and cycling is not allowed.