Emma asked in TravelUnited StatesLos Angeles · 2 months ago

Holiday in Los Angeles: Car or Public Transportation?

Hi guys, I'm planning my trip to LA for next summer and I was wondering what the best (aka cheapest) option would be to move around.

I'm staying in the Santa Monica area to enjoy the beach, but I'd also love to explore Downtown LA and Hollywood a couple of times, and I have no idea about the costs of transportation.

Could anybody tell me which way would be cheaper? I've seen that it would take over an hour with public transportation and half an hour by car (in that case Uber or Lyft).

Thanks a lot! :)

Update:

I could also rent a car, but since I'm staying for 2 full weeks, it's not a full time option because of the costs.

8 Answers

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  • Foofa
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    It you're just traveling from Sta Monica to DTLA the Expo Line is cheap and pretty fast. It's places like the Getty that you can't really get to easily on public transport. So I'd get a metro map and see where you want to go. LA Metro melds seamlessly with OC Metro should you care to go to Disneyland or Angel Stadium. But for other destinations it's easy enough to take Uber/Lyft. TL:DR Use public transport for some destinations and a ride hailing service for others. We've also got no shortage of electric scooters and bikes one can pick up almost everywhere for short trips.

  • 2 months ago

    You cannot estimate the time between locations in the LA area by looking at the distance. The traffic is horrible, and it can take an hour to go a few blocks. There are some decent bus lines, especially up the coast. But uber or lyft is your best option because they don't charge by time. You''ll get the cost upfront for your journey. Regular taxis will keep the meter running even when you're stuck in traffic.

  • 2 months ago

    Downtown LA, Hollywood, and Santa Monica are very urban and have decent public transportation. It would probably cost $25 for an uber or lyft from Santa Monica to Downtown LA, for example.

    • Diane A
      Lv 7
      2 months agoReport

      Be aware if you rent a car, you will pay to park it at the hotel as well as many venues, so that adds to costs

  • drip
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    If you don’t want to rent a car and drive, take a taxi, Uber or Lyft.

    Avoid buses all together. Long or short trips.

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  • 2 months ago

    Goodness, where are you from, that you think public transportation is an option?? LA's public transportation is limited. A rental car, or your own is a necessity. The exception would be if you wanted to see Disneyland & you were staying @ a Disney hotel.

  • John
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    Funny, I've never heard anybody put "LA" and "public transportation" in the same sentence before. Taking a bus more than a few blocks could take days.......

  • Satan
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    Car would be the best option all round

    Yes, you can probably save a few bucks on a bus ticket, but even in the cheapest of hire cars, you won't be sat next to someone with questionable body hygiene, unless you choose to be.

    besides, you can get some really good hire deals, and not have to wait around for the bus, or their connections

    • Foofa
      Lv 7
      2 months agoReport

      Emma, some tourist attractions here are easily reachable by public transport; Universal, Hwd/Highland, the Broad, DTLA, etc. Others aren't; the Getty, Malibu, etc. So w/o knowing where you plan to go it's hard to be exact about this. Get a Metro map when you arrive and you'll figure it out.

  • 2 months ago

    You mentioned " car". Renting is e pensive, But,BRing your own if have one. Public transport is not good in an area that's so spread out like LA

    Source(s): Lived there for 18 years.
    • Emma2 months agoReport

      I should have mentioned that I will be travelling from Germany haha so I'll get there by plane and won't have my car. So your advice would be to avoid public transportation for long routes and take an Uber/Lyft?

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