San Francisco has about 50 square miles of road network, streets, and alleys. The dense network can make visitors afraid to visit and travel around it. You do not need to fear. This article is going to give you tips that will make you a transportation guru in San Francisco. Not only is it easy and affordable to move around the city without a car, but also convenient most of the time. Parking fees in the town are high and at the same time challenging to drive in the city.
Rapid rail transportation system
The main airline to get you to San Francisco international airport (SFO) is United Airlines. It serves it with both domestic and international flights. Once at the airport, you can move to the city using the rapid rail system often referred to as BART. It is San Francisco’s fastest and most affordable form of transportation. Connecting from the airport to the BART terminal is made easier using the Air train, a service offered at no cost. The costs of using the BART system are determined by how far you are going. This means the farther you travel the higher the cost. For example, a round trip from the airport to downtown San Francisco would cost $20.
There are ticket machines at the airport BART terminal. At the entry gate, there are designated slots for placing your ticket to board. The same is done when exiting the station. If you want to save time at the airport, you can buy a BART voucher earlier. In addition, you can opt to use Clipper cards at specific ticket machines. The trains operate to and from the airport four times every hour. The last trip from the airport happens at 11.50pm and resumes 4 am during weekdays and 8 am over the weekends. It will take you approximately 30 minutes to get to arrive in downtown San Francisco. Check out our additional information on how to use the trasportation systems in San Francisco.
There are app-based transportation services like Uber and Lyft. With these, you can catch a ride on the non-commercial cars via mobile apps. The service will pick you from any terminal to your destination. The time and cost will vary depending on the distance and traffic conditions.
Besides the app-based services, you can use shared-ride vans. These operate between the airport and designated locations. The rides might make multiple stops depending on the number of passengers on board which means the travel time will also vary. If you don’t like the three options, you can use a limousine or taxi. Travel time and costs will also vary with distance to the drop off point. Limousine services, however, have to be arranged in advance with a company of choice.
There are many things to love about San Francisco. From mouth-watering cuisines, Victorian house, the hills etc. Tourists planning to visit the city always wonder whether to drive or use public transport. The best advice would be not to drive around the city. It is hectic getting a parking slot and the traffic is a nightmare. Fortunately, San Francisco offers a wide range of public transport networks. They are efficient and affordable thus make it easy to commute in the city. They include cable cars, light trains, buses, and shared rides.
General information on San Francisco Public Transport
It is useful to locate a central and well-connected neighborhood when visiting San Francisco. It is going to make it easy to move around especially with the many good things you can do there. One good place to find accommodation would be around Fisherman’s Wharf or Union Square. Knowing which bus to take when you want to move around can be challenging at first. Make use of transit trip planner tools such as the 511 that can be used on any smartphone.
Using the Muni network
Muni refers to the city’s Municipal Transport Agency. It is the main agency for public transport in San Francisco, therefore most tourists visiting the city use it to move around. It is a vast network consisting of street-cars, buses, and cable cars. With the network, getting around the city is quick and easy. The agency also provides temporary passports to visitors ranging from a day to a week. The passports grant the traveler unlimited rides across the network of operators. These passports are a good option if you are planning to travel around a lot. The passports issued by Muni are valid only in the Muni transport system. They are not valid for other transport systems such as the rapid train or for airport transfer.
The rail network in San Francisco includes the Metro light rail system that makes up 7 lines. It is useful in connecting southern areas and downtown. The advantage with it is that the Muni passport is valid. The second option in the rail network is the Caltrain. This provides services between San Jose and San Francisco. The absence of tourist attraction features along its route makes many tourists avoid it. it might still be an exciting ride for those who don’t want the usual attractions.
The Bay Area Rapid Transit train (BART) is the most popular and main transport system in the bay area. It has an expansive network connecting Oakland, Walnut Creek, Berkley, Peninsula, and other cities. It delivers fast services between downtown and mission district as well as Oracle Arena. Below is a map of BART’s train lines.
Being a city on the ocean, you cannot miss ferry transport. There are various ferry lines offering other options for getting out of the city. Some ferries serve the main tourist points such as Sausalito while others operate to Tiburon, Vallejo, Angel Island, Oakland, and Alameda.
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