Essential Tips > Getting Around Seattle

Getting Around Seattle

When visiting an environmentally sound city, public transportation is often the easiest and most rewarding way to get around. King County Metro can get visitors from Sea-Tac Airport to downtown in a short train ride; city buses, many of which are electric, move people around all points in the city; and there’s even a monorail that ferries folks to and from Seattle Center.
King County Metro
Metro buses travel to nearly every corner of Seattle. They are easy to ride and offer an affordable and greener way to get around. For bus schedules and information, visit, which provides bus schedules and regional trip planning. Or call (206) 553-3000, 24 hours a day.
The details of riding the bus:
  • Exact fare is required at all times.
  • Metro has a two-zone fare system. The Seattle city limits are the zone border.
  • Generally, peak hours are Monday–Friday, 6–9 a.m. and 3–6 p.m. All other times are off-peak.
  • Nearly all Metro buses are fully accessible.
  • *Note*-The free ride area in downtown Seattle, including the Downtown Seattle Transit Tunnel, is no longer being offered. All riders are required to pay exact fare upon entry for all King County Metro, Sound Transit and Community Transit buses operating within King County. For more information on the transit changes, visit
King County Water Taxi
Water taxi service across Seattle’s Elliott Bay between Pier 50 at the foot of Yesler Way on the downtown Seattle waterfront and Seacrest dock in West Seattle. The crossing time between Pier 50 and Seacrest is approximately 10 minutes. One-way passage is $4. Operation is seasonal. Click here for more information and schedules.
Sound Transit
Regional service is available through Sound Transit’s programs: ST Express Bus, Sounder Commuter Rail and Tacoma Link. Visit for more information.
Central Link Light Rail
New Link light rail trains now offer service from downtown Seattle to the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, with eleven stops in between. Round-trip tickets from Sea-Tac International Airport to downtown’s Westlake station cost $5. Visit for updates.
Seattle Center Monorail
The Seattle Center Monorail zips passengers between downtown Seattle and Seattle Center in about two minutes. Departures are every 10 minutes from two stations: Seattle Center station (across from the Space Needle) and Westlake Center Mall station (Fifth and Pine sts.). Tickets are $2 each way. Hours: Monday-Friday, 7 a.m.-11 p.m. and Saturday-Sunday, 8:30 a.m.-11 p.m.
The South Lake Union Streetcar is the first in a planned streetcar network. It travels from downtown’s Westlake Center to Fairview and Campus Dr. in the South Lake Union neighborhood, with 11 stops along the way. It runs seven days a week at 15-minute intervals during the following hours: Monday–Thursday, 6 a.m.–9 p.m.; Friday–Saturday, 6 a.m.–11 p.m.; Sunday, 10 a.m.–7 p.m. Fares are $2.50. For more information, go to

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