Travel to  Santa  Monica

Airplane flying over LAX.

Santa Monica is located within Greater Los Angeles, making the city easily accessible by public transportation, air travel, or car.

Only eight non-freeway miles from Santa Monica, Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) is the closest airport, with direct bus service,  shuttles, and other transportation.

Rates for shuttles between LAX and Santa Monica start at approximately $15 per person one-way, $30-40 round-trip per person ($10-20 for each additional person), not including tip. Shuttles are found on the lower level of the airport.


Travel to Santa Monica It is just eight non-freeway miles from LAX. You'll usually find the best prices and flight options arriving through this hub. While Santa Monica does have a small airport, it is primarily for private planes only.

There are also four additional airports within 60 miles (97 km) of Santa Monica:

BUR:  Bob Hope Airport in Burbank;  23 mi / 37 km;

SNA: John Wayne Airport in Santa Ana; 52 mi / 83 km;

LGB:  Long Beach Airport; 32 mi / 51 km;

ONT:  Ontario International Airport; 56 mi / 90 km.

Public Transportation

Travel to Santa Monica via public services and routes with other systems within the Los Angeles area, is widely available.

Options include:

Train - Amtrak - daily service from San Diego and San Francisco. Routes include Coast Starlight, Pacific Surfliner, Southwest Chief, and Sunset Limited.

Light rail: Metro Expo Line - Daily service with operating hours varying from 4 am until 2 am. Route: EXPO LRT.

Bus: Big Blue Bus - 24-hour service via Rapid 10 (#10 Express)

Travel to Santa Monica by Car

Greater Los Angeles is a large metropolitan area with heavy traffic levels throughout the day. Numerous routes are available to reach Santa Monica, with the Interstate system (I-10 / I-5) and the Pacific Coast Highway (US-1) being the most popular routes.

Once in Santa Monica, real-time parking information, Santa Monica directions, and a downloadable app are available through the City of Santa Monica.


Santa Monica offers several franchised taxi companies available for your travel needs, all of which provide a flat rate fare from Santa Monica to LAX ranging from $30-35 depending on your location in the city and not including tip (approximately 15% of the fare).

A $4 surcharge is levied on trips originating from LAX.


On-demand ridesharing companies, Lyft and Uber, are available for transportation to Santa Monica and drop-off and pick-up at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).

Fare estimates from LAX to Santa Monica start at approximately $20.

Getting Around in Santa Monica

Bicyclist on beach trail.

Santa Monica’s 8.3 square miles have been made to be extremely bike-friendly with well-marked lanes and routes. Bicycles are one of the most scenic and economical ways to navigate the city.

Below is information for navigating around Santa Monica. 

Big Blue Bus provides public transportation on 20 routes within a 58-mile service area. 

Bike & Scooter Share  Shared Mobility Services are a new transportation option where devices like bikes, electric bikes, and electric scooters are shared among users.

Biking  With more than 100 miles of bikeways, mild weather, and few hills, Santa Monica is a great place to ride a bike. The city launched LA County’s first bike share system — Breeze Bike Share, and piloted one of the first dockless shared micro-mobility services in the country.

Bikes are one of the most scenic and economical ways to navigate the city - and Santa Monica's Breeze bike share program makes it easy and inexpensive to tool around town.

If you're staying at one of the Santa Monica beach hotels, most of the places you'll be visiting are within walking distance, including the Santa Monica Pier, Santa Monica beaches, and the Third Street Promenade.

If you'll be venturing further out in Santa Monica or beyond the city limits, the Big Blue Bus line can take you to neighboring areas such as Brentwood, Westwood, and Venice Beach.

You can get information at the Big Blue Bus Transit Store, located at 223 Broadway in Santa Monica; (310) 451-5444.