How is the San Francisco public transportation system?

San Francisco public transportation

The San Francisco public transportation system, also called MUNI system, consists of a train network that includes the BART trains, buses, and their famous cable cars which are similar to tramways.

The fare depends on the route traveled, and some travel cards can be bought.

A round trip with the BART train from SFO San Francisco international airport to San Francisco center costs around US$20, depending on the exact exit stop.

Airport San Francisco transportation to city

San Francisco: Find local activities

To get from San Francisco airport to city center, you should use the BART train system, which goes from SFO airport all the way to OAK airport, on the other side of the bay, through San Francisco city center.

A round trip from airport to city costs around US$20, depending on the exact exit stop, and tickets can easily be bought on a machine before boarding the train.

Take care, on your way back from city center to airport, not all trains are actually to airport, and a change might be required - the best to avoid getting in the wrong train or waiting on the wrong dock is to ask around about it, the locals are generally very helpful.

Do not forget to keep your ticket with you during the whole journey, as you will need the ticket to exit the BART network at the exit station.

The BART schedule runs 24hours a day, therefore it is possible at any time to reach airport, or come to city center from there.

BART Schedules by Station |

MUNI transport San Francisco

The MUNI public transportation system covers city trains, buses and historic streetcars. It is possible to either buy a prepaid ticket before boarding the transports, to buy day pass which excludes cable car, or to buy a cable car ticket.

How to Ride Muni: The Quick Start Guide

A single ride costs US$2.5, a day pass costs US$5, and a cable car ride costs US$7, all of them can be bought on the MuniMobile application.

MuniMobile - San Francisco public transportation
MuniMobile on the Apple AppStore
MuniMobile on Google Play

A San Francisco public transportation day pass with MUNI costs US$5, and most be bought on the MuniMobile application - it does not include the cable car, but includes all the other means of transportation of the network.

San Francisco public transportation day pass

A cable car single ride costs US$7, and can also be bought on the MuniMobile app, or in any case before boarding the cable car, as it is not possible to buy tickets at the cable car.

Cable Car Single Ride tickets fares

For our trip, our free  walking tour ‌  guide managed the tickets, which we prepaid when booking the  walking tour ‌  on the website, and it was very convenient - plus it was included within an amazing tour of the city with great explanations.

San Francisco in One Day walking tour

Frequent questions about SF public transportation

  • Does San Francisco have good public transportation? Yes, public transportation is pretty good in San Francisco, and you can expect to go pretty much everywhere around, especially around center, using public transports.
  • What is the best way to get around San Francisco? The best way to get around San Francisco is to use the MUNI transport system, which includes tramways, buses, and some historical cars.
  • What BART train goes to SFO? The BART yellow train in direction of Millbrae goes to SFO international airport.
  • Is it easy to get around San Francisco without a car? Yes it is easy, for touristic purposes there is no need to use a car, everything is either at walking distance or can be reached with public transport.
  • Can I take Millbrae BART to SFO? Yes, the Millbrae BART is the train line going to SFO San Francisco international airport.
  • Does Millbrae BART train go to SFO? Yes, it is the train going to SFO airport. However, you might have to change in San Bruno, as not all trains in direction of Millbrae are going to airport.
  • Is public transportation free in San Francisco? No, public transportation is not free in San Francisco. A single ride costs US$2.5, a day pass costs US$5, and a cable car ride costs US$7.
  • Are San Francisco cable cars free? No, a cable car ride costs US$7, and ticket must be bought in advance, as they cannot be bought on the cable car.
  • Does San Francisco have a subway? Yes, San Francisco does have a subway, the BART train system and some trains of the MUNI system that both go underground.
  • Does BART run on Sundays? Yes, it does run on Sunday, check the schedule on their website.
  • How much is the BART from San Francisco Airport to downtown? The BART train from San Francisco airport to downtown costs around US$20, depending on the exact exit station.

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