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Do Metrolink Trains Still Have a Downtown "Free Ride" Zone?

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Chickamauga, Georgia
Destination Expert
for Orlando, Walt Disney World
posts: 34,798
reviews: 67
Do Metrolink Trains Still Have a Downtown "Free Ride" Zone?

I'm still trying to nail down details about our potential trip in early August.

Years ago, Metrolink trains in the downtown area had a "ride free" zones during certain parts of the weekdays which I believe ran between the stations at the Arch and Union Station or perhaps a little further.

Is this still in effect?

I couldn't find any info on it on their website.

Chickamauga, Georgia
Destination Expert
for Orlando, Walt Disney World
posts: 34,798
reviews: 67
11. Re: Do Metrolink Trains Still Have a Downtown "Free Ride" Zone?

Matt F,

Thank you for your post, but it's not really helpful for my situation.

The whole point of taking the Metrolink train from the Busch Stadium area to Union Station was to avoid "walking a few blocks" in the midday August heat and humidity. especially considering they are only a few blocks apart anyway.

If I've got to "walk a few blocks" to catch a trolley bus which won't give me "door-to-door" service and will cost me $2, I might as well walk the entire distance between the two locations and save the money.

Saint Louis...
Destination Expert
for Saint Louis
posts: 1,069
reviews: 61
12. Re: Do Metrolink Trains Still Have a Downtown "Free Ride" Zone?

I thought of one other very cheap meal possibility-the prepared sandwich section at Schnucks Culinaria (grocery store) downtown might have some offering for $5 or less, and you might be able to get some pizza by the slice. Or, if it works for you, you could probably order a pizza at Calecos (think local TGIF) that would work out to $5 pp. That's all I can think of, and I live near downtown.

Chickamauga, Georgia
Destination Expert
for Orlando, Walt Disney World
posts: 34,798
reviews: 67
13. Re: Do Metrolink Trains Still Have a Downtown "Free Ride" Zone?

Thanks, Clvier1

We'll just have to see what to do when we get there, I guess, but I'll write those names down as possibilities.

Granted, I've not been to STL since a very short trip in 2005, but one reason I always loved coming there, even being the die-hard Cubs fan that I am, was how cheap we could do a vacation. Obviously, things have changed, and STL isn't the "bargain" vacation spot it used to be.

Back in the day, we were able to get decent lodging for $40 per night around the I-270 corridor, a full day pass on Metrolink was $4 with the downtown portion being ride-free, parking fees at Grant's Farm were under $5, and Cardinal tickets were only about $15 to $20 for good seats.

We can't even think of going to a ballgame now with the price of tickets. Thank goodness, most of the things in Forrest Park are still free.

Saint Peters
posts: 489
reviews: 58
14. Re: Do Metrolink Trains Still Have a Downtown "Free Ride" Zone?

Jimmy Johns at 508 Pine (near intersection of Pine and Broadway) is pretty close to Busch that fits your budget, and they make a pretty decent sandwich. FWIW, St. Louis is still a very cheap place to take a vacation. You can't get a decent hotel room anywhere anymore for $40.

Saint Louis...
Destination Expert
for Saint Louis
posts: 1,069
reviews: 61
15. Re: Do Metrolink Trains Still Have a Downtown "Free Ride" Zone?

Forgot about JJ. There may still be a Hardee's downtown, their corporate headquarters is in one of the downtown towers. St. Louis is still a cheap vacation-been to DC or Chicago lately, to say nothing of NY. The occupancy levels are high enough and economy has recovered enough that it's near impossible to get a room in the city for much under $200, and even O'Hare cheaper hotels are in the $100 range. To say nothing of dining, $55/night for downtown hotel parking, etc.

St. Louis
Destination Expert
for Saint Louis
posts: 856
reviews: 13
16. Re: Do Metrolink Trains Still Have a Downtown "Free Ride" Zone?

There is a subway on North 7th about a block and a half north of Kiener Plaza.

As far as baseball tickets, I think ticket pricing is better with the availability of season ticket holder's seats on Stub Hub. I can routinely find good seats for $10 - $20 on the third deck along the 1st base line. If you are coming for the Cubs / Cards series, you won't find deals as attractive, but that goes with the territory.

One other option is the first pitch tickets. This is a voucher for a pair of seats for $11.20. You have to line up in the morning, and then be at gate 5, 10 minutes before game time, to enter and get your actual tickets. Details are provided in the link below..

…mlb.com/stl/ticketing/first_pitch.jsp

You don't say how many are in your party, but you can always split up in twos, or find some open seats together when you get in the ballpark. The vouchers go on sale at 7am, and people will begin lining up as early as 7am for the more popular games, like the Cubs. For some series, there will still be tickets, even if you arrive at 9am.

The Cardinals also offer the Hunter Family value package on most Sunday games with a free hot dog and coke and seats in the Right Field Terrace and RF/LF Pavilion.

St. Louis, MO
posts: 34
reviews: 21
17. Re: Do Metrolink Trains Still Have a Downtown "Free Ride" Zone?

I second this opinion. It's hard to eat for $5.00 at White Castle or Taco Bell anymore, much less a somewhat nicer place in the downtown area of a major city. I think you need to revise your food budget.

Chickamauga, Georgia
Destination Expert
for Orlando, Walt Disney World
posts: 34,798
reviews: 67
18. Re: Do Metrolink Trains Still Have a Downtown "Free Ride" Zone?

I would like to thank you all for your suggestions and responses on my recent STL queries.

As our luck would have it, our trip has gotten cancelled due to the sudden illness of Lamar's Mom (her heart went into afib last Friday; we were supposed to leave Sunday). She was in the hospital until Tuesday, but her heart, while doing better, is still out of sync and may require significant followup for some time to come.

As this is the third trip in the last few years we've had to cancel due to aging parent's illnesses (both of Lamar's parents are in their 80s and my mom just turned 90), I suppose we should be used to it by now, but it's always disappointing.

Thank you again for your help and suggestions.

19. Re: Do Metrolink Trains Still Have a Downtown "Free Ride" Zone?

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