Taking the train from San Francisco Airport to San Francisco is a good way to get into the city center.
Bay Area Rapid Transit, or BART trains, run regularly from San Francisco airport to San Francisco. Follow signs in the arrivals halls to get to the airport BART station to get to the trains.
Tickets for BART trains can be purchased in the airport BART station at ticket machines. Fares vary depending on your final destination. The average price for a fare from the airport to the city center is $8.10.
The BART journey time from San Francisco airport to the downtown area is around 30 minutes.
Note that BART is not meant to serve the entire city of San Francisco, and only runs through the Mission, Civic Center, Union Square, and Financial District/SOMA areas.
If your hotel or final destination is outside of those areas, you will need to take a bus, street car, taxi, or walk after getting off of the BART train downtown or in the Mission district.
Taxis from San Francisco airport to San Francisco leave from the taxi rank outside of the arrivals halls.
A taxi from San Francisco airport to the city center will cost $50 to 70 depending on where your final destination in the city is.
Because the airport is located south of San Francisco, destinations in the southern part of San Francisco will cost less than destinations in the northern part of San Francisco. Prices between the northern and southern parts of the city can vary by around $20 to $25.
Taxis in San Francisco come in all colors and are run by multiple companies, so don’t worry about finding an official airport taxi at San Francisco airport. As long as the taxi has a sign and a meter and is run by an official company, you’re fine.
Be aware that traffic on the highways from San Francisco airport to to San Francisco can be very bad in the morning and evening rush hour periods.
If your flight arrives between 7 and 9am or between 5pm and 8pm, consider taking the BART train into the city and then taking a taxi, bus, or walking to your final destination.