We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

cabs or car or public trans?

New York City, New...
14 posts
Save Topic
cabs or car or public trans?

Hi all,

Quick question for you. My hubbie and I are visiting the weekend of the 14th. We are staying in Union Square at the Marriot, and I am wondering whether we should rent a car. We are travelling with friends earlier in the week to Napa and they have rented a car. They are staying near Golden Gate Park and will keep their car. While we will spend our weekend days doing "touristy" things, we will most likely meet them for dinner and evening drinks at night, which I imagine will not always be convenient to our hotel. Also, we are leaving out of Oakland in Sunday afternoon, so we will need to pay for a shuttle of some sort to get to the airport should we not rent a car.

What do you think? Should we pick up a rental on our way back from napa? Or do you think it is more cost effective to use cabs and the shuttle?

Thanks for your advice.

Dylan's Tours
Sightseeing Tours, Bus Tours, Bike Tours, City Tours, Private Tours
Vantigo Tours
City Tours, Beer Tastings & Tours, Private Tours, Sightseeing Tours, Wine Tours & Tastings
Urban Trek USA
Sightseeing Tours, Walking Tours, City Tours, Historical & Heritage Tours, Private Tours
Painted Ladies Tour Company
Sightseeing Tours, Food Tours, Wine Tours & Tastings , City Tours, Private Tours
Level Contributor
55 posts
Save Reply
1. Re: cabs or car or public trans?

I stayed with a friend in SF and we only used the public trans to get everywhere we wanted.

I would say buy a 3-day-pass for the public trans - you even can use this pass for the cable cars. You said you want to do "touristy" things...

You will get to the airport with BART; but therefore you have to purchase an extra ticket which cost about USD 5.00

That's my experience.

San Francisco...
Level Contributor
181 posts
4 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: cabs or car or public trans?

You can very easily take the N-Judah "subway" outbound from your hotel to Golden Gate Park, and other transit options to just about anywhere for the Marriott. I don't know why you think your hotel isn't convenient for dinner, etc. There's a public parking lot right across the street, the 5th and Mission lot that would be convenient and not too expensive for your friends. There is another one, close to Union Square, at Stockton on O'Farrell.

I personally think you would be better off without a car.

Oakland, California
Destination Expert
for Yosemite National Park
Level Contributor
6,325 posts
25 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: cabs or car or public trans?

I agree- you'll be fine without a car, especially since your friends will have a car to take you to places farther afield. And as already mentioned, you can get to them on the N-Judah, and they can get to you by parking at 5th and Mission, which isn't too expensive.

As for getting to Oakland airport, you are very close to BART on Powell and Market. You'll take a Fremont or Dublin/Pleasanton train to the Coloseum/Oak airport stop, where you'll catch an AirBART shuttle for $2 that will take you directly there. Here's a good website with information:


San Francisco...
Level Contributor
1,601 posts
1 review
Save Reply
4. Re: cabs or car or public trans?

Don't rent a car. It'll be a pain to drive around the city and find and pay for parking. The hotel where you're staying at has plenty of transit lines nearby that go to pretty much everywhere in the city, such as Chinatown, Fisherman's Wharf, Palace of Fine Arts, SBC Park, Castro, Golden Gate Park, Mission District, etc. Depending on where near Golden Gate Park your friends are staying, you can either take the N-Judah, 6-Parnassus, 7-Haight, 71-Haight-Noreiga, 5-Fulton, or 21-Hayes line. Check out www.sfmuni.com to get an idea of where these lines go, and if they're near where your friends are staying.

Los Altos...
Level Contributor
6,111 posts
28 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: cabs or car or public trans?

If you're staying at the Marriott on 4th Street, you're not on Union Square, but you are close, and more importantly, you are close to public transit -- a very nice array of transit.

If you go out where your friends are staying, you will need to allow at least 30-45 minutes to get to where they are, that's all. I've spent that much time in some neighborhoods looking for parking.

When you want to go to Oakland, you can walk a half block up and catch BART to the airport. At the BART Coliseum/Airport stop you a BART shuttle to OAK.

See www.bartgov for schedules, fares and timing (particularly on Sunday, when the trains on many lines are every 20 minutes).