Capital Metro’s 100-AirportFlyer bus runs to and from the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (ABIA) every 30 minutes. Direct access to the Downtown area is $1.25. The route stops at the corner of Riverside and Town Creek Drive on the Southeast side, at the cross section of Fourth and Trinity streets Downtown, and on 23rd Street between Robert Dedman Drive and San Jacinto Boulevard near the University of Texas campus.
We've listed the numbers, but hailing a cab from the airport's transportation line on the lower level just outside baggage claim is probably a better bet.
Not all hotels Downtown have shuttle services. An alternative is SuperShuttle, which offers shared rides, single-group rides and luxury and SUV options. Prices vary and can be booked online or by calling 800/258-3826.
After residents voted against Proposition 1 in 2016, Uber and Lyft dramatically left the city. But Uber and Lyft’s strenuous lobbying efforts at the Texas Legislature paid off – the May 2017 signing of HB 100 dismantled our city’s rideshare regulations and replaces them with statewide rules – and so the TNC giants are back in operation in Austin, and managed to push out of business many of the smaller, largely local ride-hailing companies that filled the void they left
Want your rideshare dollars to make a difference? RideAustin is a community-based, nonprofit TNC serving serving the Greater Austin area. Regular riders pay 99 cents per mile and 25 cents per minute with a $1.50 base fare fee (there's a $5 ride minimum). SUV, Premium, and Luxury rates are $2.60 to $3.75 per mile. If you're feeling generous, you can round your total up to the nearest dollar amount and donate the difference to local charities. The app is available on both iOS and Android devices.
zTrip's ExecuCar offers scheduled sedan and SUV service to and from the airport. You can book your ride ahead of time online or through its app. You must provide your airline and flight number information. Rates vary.
InstaRyde gives Austin customers the option of choosing four- or six-passenger vehicles with varying fares. Unlike most other TNCs, InstaRyde allows riders to choose their preferred route and gives them the option of tipping their driver.
Capital Metro – Austin's multimodal public transit system – is the easiest way to explore Downtown and the greater Austin area on the cheap. Single rides start at $1.25 (transfers not included), while day passes run as little as $2.50. You can buy tickets online, at most grocery stores, or through the CapMetro app, which also gives you up-to-date travel information.
There's also MetroRapid, Capital Metro's express bus service. There are only two rapid buses – Route 801 and Route 803 – that run between North Austin and South Austin. Rapid buses run every 12-15 minutes during peak weekday hours and every 20-30 minutes on the weekend. As of Jan. 8, MetroRapid costs the same as regular CapMetro buses – $1.25 for a single ride, $2.50 for a day pass, $11.25 for a 7-day pass, and $41.25 for a 31-day pass.
MetroRail is a 26-mile line that runs between Leander and Downtown Austin during the week, and from Lakeline to Downtown on Saturdays. It drops off outside the Austin Convention Center on Fourth Street between Neches and Trinity streets and costs $3.50 per ride.
Buses typically stop running around midnight, but Capital Metro offers Night Owl and E-bus services in any late-night pinch. Night Owl buses run every 20-30 minutes from midnight until 3:30am, Monday through Saturday. You can catch a late-night bus from East Sixth Street and Congress Avenue to neighborhoods in North and South Austin. Single rides cost $1.25. The E-bus operates Thursday through Saturday nights during the fall and spring semesters at the University of Texas. It picks up on East Sixth and Colorado streets and drops off on the main UT campus, West Campus and Riverside Drive.
Check www.capmetro.org or call the GO Line at 512/474-1200 for more info.
Renting a car typically isn’t necessary with all the other options within the city, but if you decide to venture outside city limits, here are a couple of options to consider.
car2go: You can access one of these easily recognizable blue-and-white cars from dozens of locations Downtown. Members unlock the car with the car2go app, turn the key and drive for less than 50 cents per minute. No need to return it to where you found it, and no need to pay at meters – that’s included already. Keep in mind that it could take 1-2 business days for your membership to be processed before you can begin reserving cars.
Members can use ZipCar's app or website to reserve a car for as little as an hour or for as long as a week. Rates start at $9.75 per hour or $74 per day depending on your membership plan. Pick up your ZipCar at its designated Downtown parking spot and return it there when you’re done. There is no wait period before new users can begin reserving cars.
Before venturing off, make sure to check out a map of the city’s metered parking here.
For tourists looking to get their workout in while touring the city, here are some bike rental options in the Downtown area. You can find a detailed map of bike routes in Downtown Austin here.
Pedicabs are always cruising throughout the city, especially during peak times such as weekends and during citywide events. Prices vary per trip or per rider, so make sure to ask your driver before hopping in.
For more ideas on what to do while you're visiting Austin, see our Welcome to Austin page.
November 30, 2020
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January 20, 2021