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On the SAA site, you can find: Get to - and Around - San Francisco
Share your own experience, advice or comments about traveling to/from San Francisco.
-- GETTING DOWNTOWN FROM THE AIRPORT - I thought I should give my "tips" or experience getting downtown from the airport. There was an information desk by the baggage claim area, but there was no one there when I arrived. Through the kindness of nice San Franciscoians, I found my way. After you get your bags: 1) Find the AirTrain. I found it by following the signs downstairs and the up five floors on an elevator. Get on the AirTrain, it is free, and take it around to the BART platform, for me it was around five stops; 2) Purchase a ticket for the BART from the ticket machine. You need to get to the Powell Street Exit. I think that was around $5.35 or something. It takes credit cards, but I found the machine confusing to negotiate. Then get on the BART. This is where it is a little fuzzy for me. I am not sure if there are other trains, but make sure you get on the one that is going to San Francisco-Pittsburgh-and Bay Something. There may be one going in and one going out of SF so make sure you are on the one going in. The Powell Street Exit is maybe 8 or 10 exits into the ride and approximately a half an hour. Once I got there, though, I can't tell you how I found the hotel. I just asked some people and they directed me, maybe a couple of blocks. It also depends on what street you exit the station from. IF anyone has more specific information, please FEEL FREE to edit this. --EddieBud
It's SF/Pittsburg/Bay Point; the airport is a final station so no worries about getting on going in the wrong direction. The fare from the airport to Powell is indeed $5.35. Use the BART link below to find map, schedules, and fare calculator for other travel on the system. Once at the Powell Street station, exit on the side away from the Westfield shopping center. You'll find yourself at the intersection of Powell and Market (it's also the end of a cable car line). Head up Powell away from Market (same direction as the cable car line), two blocks to O'Farrell, turn left, the Hilton is two and a half blocks on the left side.
Getting around in San Francisco is quite easy, via:
-- BART, the Bay Area Rapid Transit District, takes you up and down both sides of the Bay.
-- CalTrain, will take you from San Francisco down to San Jose.
-- Muni, (the San Francisco Municipal Train Service), can take you along "80 routes throughout San Francisco with stops within 2 blocks of 90% of all residences in the city." This is done via streetcars, buses, light rail vehicles, alternative fuel vehicles, electric trolley coaches, and the all-time famous cable cars.
Finally, SAA is unlikely to be hot and humid! There's the famous quote attributed to Mark Twain "The coldest winter I ever saw was the summer I spent in San Francisco." We like to consider the fog to be nature's air conditioner (another way to go green!), but you can't count on it being foggy either. Weather in the Bay Area is ruled by microclimates--it may be sunny and warm in one place and foggy and cool in another--and those microclimates may only be a short walk apart. Dress in layers (always a good idea for conference rooms anyway). If you are headed to the East Bay or down the Peninsula it is sure to be sunnier and warmer while if you head to the coast it is likely to be foggy and cool.
Update 8/26/2008: Did SAA bring the heat with them? Word is that there's gonna be a heat wave this week. Well, at least it shouldn't be terribly humid.