Getting Around, San Diego Travel, Transport and Car Rental

(San Diego, California - CA, USA)

As the last major stopping off point before reaching Mexico, San Diego is easy to travel to. One of the largest cities in the US, the city of San Diego has good public transport and travel options. Major road links in the San Diego area include the I-5, which travels to the west coast from Canada down to Mexico and passing through San Diego and Los Angeles, two hours' drive to the north, and the I-8, which heads east from downtown San Diego.

San Diego's local airport offers regular connecting flights with Los Angeles as well as numerous direct flights to and from destinations across the country. Train and bus travel are also popular methods of transport in San Diego.

San Diego International Airport (SAN) / Arriving by Air

San Diego International Airport is home to two terminals servicing flights from 08:00 to 23:00. Located 3 miles / 5 km northwest of downtown San Diego, the airport is served by a multitude of national carriers offering both direct and connecting flights via Los Angeles, while a limited number of direct international flights are also on offer. San Diego Transit operates express buses to downtown every 15 minutes between 05:00 and 01:00, from where you can connect with the local San Diego Trolley. Other methods of ground transport at San Diego Airport include taxis and car rental. For further information, please refer to the San Diego Airport travel page.

San Diego Airport (SAN) Guide

Car Rental

Hiring a car is a popular way to travel around the outskirts of San Diego, although driving around the city is not recommended, especially during rush hour when roads come to a standstill. The I-5 travels north to Los Angeles and San Francisco and south to the Mexican border, while I-15 travels northeast from San Diego city and highway 163 travels east from downtown San Diego and connects up with I-8 and cities farther east.

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Buses and Coaches

The San Diego Trolley is the best way to travel around the city, with stops at all the major attractions including Gaslamp Quarter, Old Town, Little Italy, Fashion Valley and the university. Greyhound offers regular coach travel between downtown San Diego and southwestern cities such as Los Angeles and Phoenix.


Amtrak trains travel from Los Angeles to points across the country. Visitors to San Diego will need to transfer at LA for one of 11 daily trains running south to the city's Santa Fe Station; the San Diego Trolley Station is located opposite. The Coaster offers a limited transport service of six stops between San Diego and Oceanside, and travels every 30 minutes during rush hour on weekdays and four times on Saturday. San Diego's Metrolink offers a high-speed travel service between Oceanside and Union Station in Los Angeles.


Taxis are available throughout San Diego city, with taxi travel companies including Silver Cabs and Yellow Cabs.