San Diego Airport Trains (SAN)
San Diego International Airport serves Greater San Diego, and is a large airport found in the state of California. It is located about 3 miles from central San Diego, and is referred to by its IATA code of SAN. Another name commonly used for the airport is the Lindbergh Field. The airport has just a single runway, three terminal buildings and many facilities for its passengers. There are also several forms of ground transportation available, however, there are currently no San Diego International Airport trains available. Buses are used to transport passengers to the nearby railway stations.
The airport’s three terminal buildings are named as Terminal 1, Terminal 2 and the Commuter Terminal. The first two are the larger of the passenger buildings, while the third is used solely for flights between San Diego and Los Angeles. It has only four airline gates, but a number of passenger facilities. Within Terminal 2 are facilities for international arrivals and departures, and this terminal has 22 airline gates. Like Terminal 1, it has two parts, an East and West side. The airline companies of Southwest Airlines, Alaska Airlines and United Airlines are found at Terminal 1, and they are a few of the main carriers at the airport. From all the San Diego International Airport terminals, various forms of ground transportation are available, however, there are no direct trains that serve the airport. Passengers have access to public bus services, private shuttles and taxis, or a limousine can be hired for a more elegant way to travel. Car hire companies also provide arriving passengers with private vehicles.
Although there are no train stations at the airport, there are several nearby in downtown San Diego, from where a wide variety of train connections are available. The public buses of the airport, operated by MTS (Metropolitan Transit System) should be used if a passenger needs to reach the railway services of the city. The buses are known as the Flyer Route No 992, and are frequently available from all terminals. They operate approximately every fifteen minutes on weekdays and every thirty minutes on weekends, and will take just ten minutes to reach the downtown area of San Diego. They operate between the hours of 05:00am and 11:30pm. Passengers can follow signs to the bus stops from the baggage reclaim area of their terminal. No reservations are required, and a one way fare will cost just $2.25.
The Route 992 buses connect passengers from San Diego International Airport to the city’s light rail system, also known as Trolleys, Coaster Commuter trains and Amtrak intercity trains. The San Diego Trolley has three lines, and serves a large number of popular areas and attractions. At the American Plaza station, which is one of the stops made by the Route 992 bus, passengers can access the Blue and Orange Lines of the Trolley. A one-way Trolley ticket will cost $2.50, and a day pass is $5.00. There are also discounted fares available for senior or disabled travellers. Children travelling on the Trolley who are with a fare-paying passenger, and who are five years of age or younger, may ride for free. Tickets for the light rail system in San Diego can be purchased from ticket vending machines (TVM) and are valid for up to two hours after their purchase. Transfers between Trolleys within this time are allowed to complete a trip in the same direction. Passengers may not use a one-way ticket to complete a round-trip. If many trips are required, a Day Pass is a better option. San Diego Trolleys are accessible to disabled passengers, as they all have lift mechanisms or ramps to assist customers in wheelchairs.
The Coaster Commuter Trains travel from downtown San Diego to as far as Los Angeles and Orange Counties. The trains also travel to coastal North County, and a few of their stops include Old Town, Sorrento Valley, Solana Beach, Encinitas, Carlsbad and Oceanside. Coaster trains operate every day of the year, besides on the major bank holidays, such as Thanksgiving, Christmas Day, New Year’s Day, July 4th, Memorial Day and Labor Day. Amtrak trains also operate non-stop throughout the year, including on public holidays, and offer twelve round trips. They are intercity trains, with fewer stops at smaller stations. Amtrak is also the main provider of intercity railway services in the United States of America. Both Coaster and Amtrak railway services are available from the Santa Fe Depot train station in downtown San Diego, by way of the Route 992 bus from San Diego International Airport. Amtrak’s train from here is referred to as the Pacific Surfliner. The station is wheelchair accessible, and assistance is available to board the trains.
Coaster trains have cars that are equipped with free Wi-Fi services, and stations with free parking areas (except for the downtown San Diego Santa Fe Depot where metered parking spaces are available). The trains go for a lovely and scenic journey through San Diego County, and make stops at eight stations between Oceanside and central San Diego. There are over 20 trains available on weekdays, and additional services are provided on weekends. The entire Coaster train route will take about an hour to complete. Coaster tickets are available from NCTD ticket vending machines on the station platforms. To travel to the airport from the Santa Fe Depot, passengers will walk south from their platform towards Broadway, and then cross the Trolley tracks to reach the bus stop for the Route 992 buses. There is a bus shelter on Broadway just east of Kettner Boulevard, and in front of the Starbucks.
Although there is currently no San Diego International Airport train station available, all passengers will find the public buses to be very quick and convenient. Information regarding the public buses and San Diego Trolleys can be found at http://www.sdmts.com and information for Coaster trains is available at http://www.gonctd.com/coaster.