While travelers departing Austin can still be dropped off curbside in front of the terminal on the upper level at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (ABIA), arriving visitors now have a bit of a hike to get to taxi and rideshare pickups. The new place to hail a cab or high-five your rideshare driver is on the ground level of the Rental Car Facility, reachable via walkways and stairs or elevators that cross the parking garage. Mobility assistance vehicles are available from the garage to the Rental Car Facility.
CapMetro’s Airport Service
Capital Metro’s Route 20 Manor Road/Riverside bus runs to and from the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport every 15 minutes. It is $1.25 for a single ride. From the airport, the bus heads down to Riverside Drive before stopping downtown around the University of Texas campus. It travels on Manor Road near the Mueller neighborhood before turning toward Northeast Austin, where it reaches its destination on Manor near U.S. 183. Along the way, the route provides transfers to a number of other high-frequency routes (where buses show up every 15 minutes). If you have to transfer from route to route, it is best to buy a $2.50 day pass, instead of paying $1.25 every time you have to transfer routes.
Carter Transportation (formerly SuperShuttle)
Not all hotels Downtown have shuttle services. An alternative is are the blue vans formerly known as SuperShuttles, which offers shared rides, single-group rides and luxury and SUV options. Prices vary and can be booked online, through their app, or by calling 800/258-3826.
For charters and limousine services, visit the airport's website.
CapMetro – Austin's multimodal public transit system – is the easiest way to explore Downtown and the greater Austin area on the cheap. Single bus 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.
What might be your best bet is MetroRapid, Capital Metro's express bus service that covers Austin’s busiest corridors. There are only two rapid buses – Route 801 and Route 803 – that run between North Austin and South Austin. Rapid buses run every 10-15 minutes during peak weekday hours and every 15-20 minutes during peak hours on the weekend. 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.
Buses typically stop running around midnight, but CapMetro offers Night Owl services in any late-night pinch. Night Owl buses run every 20-30 minutes from midnight until 3:00am, 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 are $1.25.
Finally, MetroRail is a 26-mile commuter rail 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.
Check www.capmetro.org or call the GO Line at 512/474-1200 for more info. If you’re going to be a regular rider, the app – which allows you to purchase tickets, plan trips, and track buses in real time – is essential.
Austin has had a prickly relationship with transportation network company behemoths Uber and Lyft, but they’re still operating in Austin after the Texas Legislature overruled the will of local voters.
After Uber’s year-long hiatus from Austin from mid-2016 to mid-2017, the ride hailing company has been back and running for five years. Uber gives you six different ways to ride, from regular to large vehicles, as well as wheelchair accessible and luxury rides. The company also has its UberPool, where you can share rides with other users going to the same destination to cut costs, pet-friendly rides and scooters. Get a fare estimate here.
Lyft also left Austin along with its ride-hailing counterpart and came back around the same time in 2017. Ride types range from economy options (Standard Lyft, Lyft Shared) to luxury and “Extra Seats” options (Lux, Lyft XL). Get a fare estimate here.
Wingz specializes in airport rides booked in advance. Rates vary, but you can get a quote and book your ride here or through the app, available on Android and iOS platforms.
zTrip's ExecuCar offers scheduled sedan and SUV service to and from the airport. You can book your ride ahead of time or instantly online or through its app. Rates vary.
The Austin-based startup provides on-demand group transportation. Fetii eliminates the need for groups to be split when going to the same place since it utilizes 15 passenger transit vans to accommodate everyone in the same vehicle. Allowing passengers to effortlessly split the fare by scanning a Fetii vehicle’s QR Code with the app – available on iOS and Android platforms – and selecting how many passengers they would like to pay for. Rides can be on-demand or by prescheduled reservation. Rates vary.
Travel from city to city by booking a ride on-demand or pre schedule through the app, available on iOS and Android platforms. This platform connects drivers and passengers heading to the same city. Get the different routes available from Austin here. Rates vary.
A novel solution to traffic congestion, or public safety risk? The dockless transportation movement is a divisive one, with some praising electric scooters for being fast, cheap, easy to access, and environmentally sound, and others arguing that the scooters – which are rented, usually, by the hour, and can be abandoned anywhere when you’re done with it – pose serious safety risks via blocked sidewalks, for instance, or uncertainty over the rules. If you can, use one of the city’s “parking boxes” for dockless bikes and scooters around Downtown and West Campus.
Here are some of the dockless operators currently in Austin:
Bird, a California-based company, had to go bye-bye birdie after it unleashed its dockless scooters in the streets of Austin without the city’s permission. Now the Bird is back after getting a city license to operate.
Bird’s main dockless scooter competitor, LimeBike, is also from California. It left Austin around the same time Bird did, and came back to the city shortly after. Lime scooters are available through the Lime app or the Uber app.
GOAT was started right here in Austin, making it the only dockless scooter sharing company with homegrown roots. The roots are also humble as the company is being run by a small team of people working out of a garage to make the electric scooters.
The bright orange Spin scooters were suspended in March 2020 and restarted their services in May 2020.
Austin is a bike-friendly town, but be wary of Texas drivers, who aren’t always on the lookout for two-wheeled riders. You can find info on bike lanes and trails via theCity of Austin’s bike map. Looking for social rides and discussion groups? Bike Austin and Bicycle Austin are both good resources.
Metro Bike (formerly Austin B-cycle), the city’s docked bike system, has more than 75 kiosks dotting Central Austin. You can pay as you ride ($1.09 to unlock, and 23 cents a minute) or sign up for 24-hour access at the kiosk for $12.99 (with added fees after an hour). Monthly memberships ($11) get you the first 60 minutes free, and $4 for every 30 minutes beyond that first hour. Annual memberships are also available online. Members are granted unlimited free rides up to 60 minutes, but checkouts longer than 60 minutes are $4 per 30 minutes. An annual membership is $80.
Austin Bike Tours & Rentals
1710 E. Second, 512/277-0609
Rent one of these multispeed city bikes starting at $20 for 2 hours, $25 for 3 hours, or $35 for the day. You can also rent a bike for multiple days up to a week. Lock, lights, roadside assistance, and an optional helmet are included. Call for more information.
Barton Springs Bike Rental
1707 Barton Springs Rd., 512/480-0200
Barton Springs Bike Rental offers cruisers, mountain bikes, hybrids, kids bikes, tandems, and road bikes starting at $7.50 an hour, $22.50 per day, and $85 per week, plus a $5 one-time overnight fee. All rentals come with helmets, locks, lights, baskets, and roadside assistance during business hours. Reserve online or by phone.
517 S. Lamar, 512/477-3472
10947 Research Blvd., 512/345-7460
12005 Bee Caves Rd., 512/634-8844
9900 W. Parmer Ln., 512/637-6890
Trek Bicycle rents out hybrid bikes ($50 per day), electric bikes ($45 per day), and road bikes ($60 per day).
Mellow Johnny’s Bike Shop
400 Nueces, 512/473-0222
Spend as little as $40 for all-day access on one of Mellow Johnny's mountain, road, or city bikes. The more days you rent, the cheaper the day rate. Call or go online to reserve a bike. Closed Tuesdays.
Spinlister is the bike equivalent of Airbnb. This bike-share app lets people rent out their spare bikes at an affordable price. Rental costs vary but with the large selection of bikes listed in Austin, it’s possible to rent for about $15 per day. Rental periods, pickup, and drop off options are decided between the bike owner and renter.
Mike's Bikes and Tours
This local company offers daily and weekly bike rentals, including free pickup and delivery, as well as guided bike tours of Lady Bird Lake, McKinney Falls, Eastside craft breweries Brews Cruise, and more.
In addition to the usual car rental and cab options, car-sharing is a popular way to get around town.
Members can use ZipCar's app or website to reserve a car for as little as an hour or for as long as two weeks. Rates start at $11 per hour or $83 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.
ATX Co-op Taxi
You can book online with your choice of a sedan, six passenger, or wheelchair accessible vehicle.
Lone Star Cab
Yellow Cab is partnering with zTrip, so you can book online or through the zTrip app.
Austin Express Cab
Electric Cab of Austin
Microtransit service for the following Austin areas: Downtown Austin (7 days a week, Dispatch: 737/241-9675) and Domain Northside (Friday-Sunday, Dispatch: 737/202-8143).
Pedicabs can be an easy way to navigate Downtown at night and on the weekends and are best just hailed from the street.
Austin Pedicab Company
Easy Rider Pedicabs
Red Devil Rides
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