San Diego Transportation Tips by lmkluque Top 5 Page for this destination
San Diego Transportation: 184 reviews and 205 photos
The Red Trolley Dressed for Comic-Con
San Diego has a light rail system with plans of expanding.
The BLUE LINE runs approx. north/south from American Plaza station downtown to San Ysidro/the International Border.
The ORANGE LINE runs approx. east/west from the Santa Fe Depot downtown to the El Cajon Transit Center.
On 10 July 2005 the GREEN LINE opened.an extension from (The Trolley Transit Station) at 12th & Imperial/Downtown to Santee via Old Town and has stops at San Diego State University, (SDSU) and Grossmont Center and Grossmont College.
Compared to European Metro Systems, our light rail is far behind, but compared to past years and many other cities in the US, the system is much improved.
Many of the SD Trolley stations serve as a Hub for City buses, so transfering from one to another is easy and useful. Several stations have large parking lots offering free parking.
Phone: (619) 233-3004
Some people use hot air balloons, most use cars. What ever you use, be sure to have insurance. By law, it is mandatory and you never know what might get in your way.
San Diego City and County covers a large space. The way things are spread out it is much faster and easier to get around by car. Also, there are many laws that may be different from those you are used to. Let this not daunt you or make you feel insecure. Many people from other countries drive here with no probems at all.
I'll just mention a couple of things that might be useful. If you'd like to see all the rules and regualtions check out California DMV (Every state in the USA has a DMV site, because the rules/laws in each state can be different.)
Newer rules are, Stoppiing for a school bus:
When the school bus is stopped and it's red lights are flashing, you must stop too, even if you are going in the opposite direction.
All Children under five years old must be in a car seat. No child should be in the front seat with an active air bag.
You must slow your speed or move to a further lane in all road constructions areas.
You must have insurance on any car you drive. I mention this because if you rent a car, the car company will offer to sell you an insurance policy. You don't have to buy theirs, but you must have at least liability insurance by law.
Many credit cards offer insurance on a rented car so check with your credit card company to see if that is offered to you before paying the extra insurance from the car rental company. Also, your own personal car insurance company may cover a rental car (or any car you drive) while you are driving it. This can really save on the cost of renting a car.
Type: Car/Motor Home
Cinderella Carriages can be seen on the streets of downtown, especially between Seaport Village and the San Diego Harbor area.
These carriages are normally used for special ocassions, but for some time now they have been stationed at the center of Seaport Village for anyone to hire for a short ride around the downtown Harbor area. The price for these rides is not as expensive as renting a carriage for something like delivering the bride to her wedding, but the romantic aspects are no less enchanting.
Also, the price of a ride changes so you'll have to ask the carriage people before boarding to determine if it is worth it to you.
Phone: (619) 239-8080
The Coronado Ferry crosses the San Diego Bay between San Diego and the city of Coronado. It is one of three ways to travel between these two cities. The ride takes about fifteen minutes and the ferry crosses the Bay every hour, all day between the hours of 9:00 am and 10:00 pm. It is a pedestrian ony ferry, but bicycles are allowed with no extra charge.
The ferry docks at the Broadway Pier in San Diego and at the Ferrylanding Market Place in Coronado.
Phone: (619) 234-4111
San Diego's public transportation has improved over the years and now it is easier--even if slow--to get around the city and county of SD.
Not many people in San Diego, who can afford to travel around the world, use public transportation here. Nor do many people who own a car. I do have a car, but there have been times that I've had to rely on public transportation so I have a better idea of it's value in San Diego.
First I will say that our system, which is probably among the best on the West Coast, it is not nearly as convenient as in Europe, which I have also used while there. Also, if you have the use of a car here I'd say it is the best way to get around.
Now, back to the bus. Buses run throughout the county and many of their Hubs (Transit stations) are located at one of the SD Trolley stations, so the connecting aspect is pretty good in general.
At the Transit 511 website you can easily find out how to get from one place to another by useing their Trip Planner. If you do not have Internet service while traveling, you can call the regional Transit Information phone number found below to have your questions answered, as well as route schedules and times.
THE TRANSIT STORE is located downtown at 102 Broadway at First street. There you can buy passes, ask questions and pick-up route pamplets free of charge.
Phone: (619) 233-3004
The Coaster is basically a comuter train that connects Oceanside to downtown San Diego. It offers a few morning trips from San Diego to Carlsbad and Oceanside with stops in between. It is economical and a great solution for those who would like to see these destinations and who must rely on public transportation. The price at this time is up to $5.50 one way and a day pass is $11.00 which would be best for people making various trips in one day.
Check out the website, below, for schedule/fare information.
I'll mention here that if you want to take a trip up the coast from San Diego, to maybe Los Angeles, the Surfliner might be the way to go. There are about twelve departures a day, so pretty convenient too.
Other Contact: (760) 966-6500
Phone: (619) 233-3004
Most of the larger/chain hotel/motels and some of the smaller ones, in San Diego, will offer some sort of shuttle to/from the airport and in some cases around town. Until recently, most offered the service free of charge. Some still do.
Be sure to check with your hotel for this option and ask if they charge or not. The Holiday Inn on the SD Bay makes such an offer and is a convenient place to stay if you want to be in the Downtown or Harbor area.
However, there are other Shuttle companies around town that will charge for the service but might be worth it if your's is a large party with lots of luggage.
Of course, the vehicle pictured here will not be the one sent to the airport for you! They have vans for that service.
Phone: I don't know your Hotel Number
If you are the type of person who likes to put on a great image, this is not the car rental place for you. If you are the type of person who wants to save on the cost of a vacation, then this may be an answer for you.
State law requires that you carry car insurance and Car rental companies hold you responsible for any damage done to their cars so car insurance is a must. This company Bargin Auto Rentals is about the least expensive in the county of San Diego and the price of renting the car and being fully insured is about the same as, or in some cases less than just renting a car from one of the major companies before paying the insurance premiums. In other words, you car rental expenses are cut in half. Another advantage is that this company allows you to take their cars in to Mexico and they offer Mexican Insurance as well. Also, they offer free local pick up, so no matter where in San Diego City you're staying, even at the airport, they'll pick you up to rent the car.
Their cars are older and show signs of wear, but are basically reliable and not so expensive.
Phone: (619) 288-0009
Type: Car/Motor Home
The Gaslamp Quarter has become so popular a place that it is more difficult to get around these few blocks by car. Parking has become obscenly expensive in some sections, even Valet parking can take a chunck out of your evening's budget. These pedi-cabs are a fun way of getting around. They are easy to find. Located on the corners of most streets in the Gaslamp, except at peak hours when you'll see them all in service and either you wait patiently for one to unload customers or walk. Try it at least once!
They can also be found at the Harbor, around the USS Midway, basically in the tourist areas of down town SD. Also, you can call one of the Pedicab companies for a ride in other areas of down town.
The last time I talked to one of these driver's the average cost for a ride was about five dollars per person, to get in, then the price would depend upon how far you wanted to go.
They also offer tours of this section of San Diego that might be interesting to you.
This narrated tour of San Diego lasts about two hours, however taking advantage of the eleven "on and off stops," the tour can last longer than a day and they offer a two day package as well. During the summer the tours run from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm and in winter time from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm.
A tour can begin at any of the eleven stops if you have purchased your ticket on line, which I suggest. Regular price for a ticket is $34.00 and only $30.00 if purchased on line and the ticket can be printed from your own computer. The bus arrives at each stop about every thrity minutes. However, if you have the use of a car, I'd sugguest beginning and ending the tour from the Old Town stop as there is plenty of free parking, if you get there early.
Through the years the number of stops have changed so, check their website for updated information.
At present, these are the stops to expect:
Old Town State Historic Park
San Diego Convention Center
Coronado Ferry Landing
Hotel del Coronado
San Diego Zoo-Balboa Park-El Prado Museums
Other Contact: Toll Free 1-888-910-8687
Phone: (619) 298-8687
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