San Francisco does not have an Amtrak train station, but you can reach the city from three nearby stations: Oakland, Emeryville and Hayward. Regardless of which station you use, a transfer to another form of transportation is required, such as Amtrak bus, ferry, rental car, Uber, Lyft or taxi. Here’s what you need to know about each option.
Oakland (Jack London Square)
Oakland has a ferry to downtown San Francisco, making it the easiest and most scenic travel option. Walking time from the Amtrak station to the ferry terminal is only 10 minutes. Book tickets on Amtrak’s Coast Starlight, San Joaquins or Capitol Corridor routes to reach Oakland. If you are traveling across the country on the Empire Builder, you can connect with the Coast Starlight in Seattle and Portland. The Los Angeles Amtrak Station is another great place to transfer to the Coast Starlight from other Amtrak routes.
The cross-country California Zephyr route, along with Capitol Corridor, San Joaquins and Coast Starlight routes, stop in Emeryville. Amtrak bus service from Emeryville to San Francisco is included in your Amtrak fare if you select San Francisco as your final destination when booking your train tickets.
You can also select Emeryville as your final destination and use Lyft or Uber to reach San Francisco or the McArthur BART rail station, which will take you into San Francisco via train. Drive time from Emeryville to San Francisco is less than 15 minutes via the Bay Bridge. Consider riding a BART train if traffic is heavy or if you want to save money — travel time is less than 20 minutes to downtown San Francisco.
Capitol Corridor trains stops at the Hayward Station. There are several options to continue your trip to San Francisco via car. You can get a ride from Uber, Lyft or a taxi, or you can rent a car at one of the two nearby Enterprise offices (both have pick-up service). Hayward is a good option if you are traveling to South San Francisco (although drive time is still 30 minutes).