Coming from the United States, where public transportation often keeps limited hours even where it's supposedly the best in the country, I've always appreciated that in Buenos Aires, I can walk out onto the street at 3 a.m. or later and, in no more than a few minutes, be riding back to Palermo on a reasonably comfortable colectivo (city bus). Despite late hours, through nearly 30 years I've never felt threatened or even uncomfortable aboard a colectivo (except when they've been so crowded it's almost impossible to move, but that rarely happens at non-peak hours).
These past several days, though, there's been no night bus service since the Thursday stabbing murder of a driver on the No. 96 bus in the provincial suburb of González Catán, a route that starts from the city neighborhood of Constitución. Demanding better security, drivers from the UTA transportation union have stopped service between 10 p.m. and 3:30 p.m., with no suggestion when they may lift the strike.
Bus routes in Buenos Aires, like that of the No. 15 bus pictured here, tend to be very long ones from the central city to the suburbs; in this case, it's a roughly 50-kilometer route that, in heavy city traffic, can take more than two hours in each direction. Unlike in much of North America, though, travel through the prosperous city tends to be safer than in the suburbs, which have many marginal shantytowns. This is what the UTA drivers see as risky, and they are appealing to provincial Governor Daniel Scioli for help.
For my part, I rarely take city buses to distant suburbs, and few other visitors should find it risky once nighttime service resumes. That doesn't mean the city is crime-free, but it won't deter me from taking the bus at any hour.
Meanwhile, as Argentines start their winter vacations, there's chaos at the city airport of Aeroparque and international airport at Ezeiza. According to the daily Clarín, more than 60 percent of flights from Aeroparque have departed late in the last 72 hours; several delays exceeded 12 hours. Most of the problems are with the recently nationalized Aerolíneas Argentinas and its close affiliate Austral, and whether they'll improve by the coming summer season is the looming question.
By then, though, you should at least be able to get a bus to the airport.