How To Get Around San Francisco Without A Car

Some people can imagine life without cars, when living in the countryside, for example, but could you try it in a metropolis like SF? If you’re carless and wondering how to get around San Francisco without a car, luckily for you, options are plentiful, regardless of your location and preferences. Without further ado, here’s a quick overview of transportation options in SF, California.

Can I Live in San Francisco Without a Car?

Are you wondering – do I need a car in San Francisco? The short answer to this question is – no. In fact, according to CBS, the city has been named the best one to live in without a vehicle. Whether you prefer to use a bike, ride a bus, or simply walk, you won’t miss having to worry about driving or looking for a parking spot anymore. Whether you live in Downtown SF and want to go to one of the other Bay Area towns or you’re relocating with pets to the suburbs and would like to visit the city center, you’ll have plenty of options.

A car parked in a garage
Leave your vehicle in the garage – you won’t need to use it

Bay Area Rapid Transit – BART

BART is a network of rapid train lines that covers a large chunk of the Bay Area. It serves as a connection between the Peninsula and East Bay. It covers five counties, so even if you are moving to one of the suburban neighborhoods in the Bay Area, you can catch these trains at one of the 50 stops. BART is also a great transportation option if you’re going on a weekend getaway from San Francisco, or even if you’re going on a longer trip, as it can take you all the way to the airport. To make sure you always have a ticket, make sure to buy a Clipper Card.

Empty seats in public transportation
BART is a great way to travel all across the Peninsula

SF Municipal Transportation Agency – MUNI

For transportation within the city itself, most people use MUNI. A part of the larger network called SFMTA, MUNI includes buses, metro trains, streetcars, and cable cars. Not only does it cover all the nooks and crannies of Frisco, but it is also environmentally friendly. MUNI also allows commuters who have a Clipper Card. If you don’t have one, you can purchase your own Clipper Card online or in person at one of several locations.

San Francisco’s Famous Cable Cars

Arguably one of the best features of MUNI is the iconic cable cars. Who says they are only for tourists – they’re also a great way to travel during your staycation in San Francisco. Check out the video below to see what it’s like to ride cable cars.

Getting a Ride With Caltrain

If you’re thinking about relocating to one of the best neighborhoods in San Jose – in which case we suggest you hire our San Jose movers – the Caltrain will be another option for you to get to SF. This transit authority covers the SF Peninsula and South Bay all the way to San Jose and Gilroy. You can choose between a one-way ticket, a day pass, and a monthly pass. There are also different discount programs for low-income adults, seniors, the disabled, and underage commuters.

Hop on a Train to Get to Cities South of San Francisco

Caltrain covers a vast area. Before taking your trip, check out the dozens of stops along the line:

  • Five stops in Zone One, including four in SF proper,
  • Nine stops in Zone Two, from Millbrae to Redwood City,
  • Eight stops in Zone Three, from Atherton to Sunnyvale,
  • Five stops in Zone Four, from Lawrence to Tamien,
  • Two stops in Zone Five, Capitol and Blossom Hill,
  • Three stops in Zone Six, Morgan Hill, San Martin, and Gilroy.
Empty train station
Caltrain can take you all the way to Gilroy

How to Get Around San Francisco Without a Car or Public Transit

If you don’t own a vehicle and aren’t particularly fond of riding a bus or other forms of public transportation, you probably think that living in San Francisco without a car will be quite challenging. We beg to differ. Even if you decide to steer clear of bus lines and trains, you will still have a handful of options for getting around San Francisco without a car.

Frisco Is Highly Walkable

Frisco is one of the most walkable cities in California, as well as in the country. In fact, with a walkability score of 87, it places among the top five on the list of most walkable American cities. However, if you want walking to be your primary way of commuting and running errands, keep in mind that most areas in the city are not exactly flat – you’ll spend a lot of time walking uphill.

Bike Sharing Services Are Everywhere

SFMTA, the authority that operates MUNI, also offers a bike-sharing service to its commuters. Keeping in mind that every major street in SF can get congested during rush hours, bikes are often the most time-efficient manner of commuting. What’s more, SFMTA is actively working on continuously expanding and improving the service.

Taxis and Ride-Sharing

It doesn’t often rain in Frisco, but on an occasional day when it does, you probably wouldn’t want to be stuck on a bike in the middle of the street. Luckily, you can always opt for different ride-sharing services. Uber and Lyft are, of course, the most popular options. If you would rather take a cab, you can choose between Flywheel, Yellowcab, Green Cab, and United, to name a few.

Two girls riding bikes on the street
 Many people decide to travel on bicycles as a healthier and more environmentally friendly option

Where Should I Live in San Francisco Without a Car

As with any major metropole, not every neighborhood is as well-connected. For example, even if you choose to move efficiently to the best place to live outside of San Francisco, you might end up having to buy a car, as suburbs are traditionally underrepresented on public transit maps all across California and the country. You don’t want to lose contact with some of your friends after your going-away party don’t you? So keep that in mind when planning your relocation expenses checklist. Also, we suggest considering the Mission District and Hayes Valley for your new home since they are well-connected.

Street art
The Mission District is one of the best neighborhoods in SF for those who don’t own a car

Hire the Best Bay Area Moving Company and Don’t Worry About Relocating Without a Vehicle

Now that you’ve decided how to get around SF from your new neighborhood, it’s time to start crossing things off your moving to-do list. The first things on the list – find reliable Bay Area movers. Don’t worry, you won’t have to look too far. Golden Bay Relocation is at your service. We are one of the most trustworthy Bay Area moving companies, and we offer a variety of services to ensure you don’t experience any symptoms of relocation stress.

Whether you’re moving house and need residential moving services or you’re relocating your company and need commercial relocation servicesyou can count on us. We even offer secure storage facilities as well as convenient solutions for all sizes of residential relocations. Feel free to contact us to find out why we are the best movers in the Bay Area, request a free quote, and book your relocation day.

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