Monday, January 24, 2005

Take A Train from San Fran Airport to Palo Alto

If you want to take the train from SFO to Palo Alto, you can do so simply and inexpensively. Exit the terminal at SFO, following the signs to the AirTrain. Domestic Terminals 1, 2 and 3 each have an AirTrain station located on Level 5 of the Domestic Parking Garage. To access Terminals 1's station, take the elevators/escalators down to the tunnel connector to the parking garage. Terminal 3's station connects to the terminal via a passenger skybridge. Take the elevators/escalators to Mezzanine-Level 3. Take the AirTrain (free) to the Garage for International Terminal G and the BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) station. For more specific information, go to http://www.flysfo.com/guide_nonflash/airportinfo/AirTrainBrochure.pdf .

Buy a ticket on BART at the kiosks near your exit from the Air Train. The fare to Millbrae is $1.50 each way per person. Buy enough credit for a round-trip ($3.00) ticket. Proceed through the BART entrance gates and down the escalator to the BART platform for Millbrae. Take the BART train to Millbrae.

At the Millbrae station, go over the CalTrain tracks and, before descending to ground level, buy a ticket at the vending machine. You will need a 2-zone ticket ($3.00, Senior/Disabled/Youth fares are half-price). Descend to ground level and take the next CalTrain southbound to Palo Alto. Disembark at the Palo Alto station. The Sheraton (a garden hotel) is southeast of the station, in the area bounded by the CalTrain tracks, University Avenue, and El Camino Real, as shown on the attached map. Simply walk across the street, enter the hotel through one of the side entrances, and proceed to the lobby.

Stanford University covers the area on the other side of El Camino Real. The Stanford Shopping Center (a major regional shopping center including national chains, such as Macy's, Nieman Marcus, Nordstrom's, et al.) is on university property.

If you have free time and want to visit San Francisco, you can take CalTrain all the way into San Francisco, to the station at the end of the line at 4th and King (near the Giant's stadium), cross the street, and take the Muni (streetcar) into downtown San Francisco or out to Fisherman's Wharf. Alternatively, take CalTrain to Millbrae, switch to BART, and take BART into downtown San Francisco.

For more information, check www.bart.gov <http://www.bart.gov/> or www.caltrain.org <http://www.caltrain.org/> , where you can find fare information, schedules, system maps, and more. For additional information about public transportation around the Bay Area, including inter-system travel and the ferries, check www.511.org <http://www.511.org/> .

[Information courtesy of member Tony Vittal]

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