Those visiting the Santa Barbara South Coast will surely appreciate the overall ease and convenience of getting from point A to point B. Our destination prides itself on the proximity of area beaches, wineries, cultural institutions, and culinary delights, which are mere minutes away from one another. So, whether you consider yourself a walker, cyclist, or automobile enthusiast, there’s more than one way to explore the premier offerings of The American Riviera®.
From four and two-wheel transportation to on-foot adventures, use this FAQ guide for assistance in getting around the Santa Barbara South Coast:
How do I get from the Santa Barbara Airport or Santa Barbara Amtrak Station to my hotel?
The ease of arriving to the Santa Barbara South Coast doesn’t end at the Santa Barbara Airport or Amtrak Station. With access to rideshares and taxis to courtesy shuttle services and more, there are a variety of convenient and cost-effective ways to arrive at your desired location. Here are a few options:
Uber and Lyft
With a few clicks on your smartphone, ridesharing apps such as Uber and Lyft are available for pick-up at your convenience. Once you’ve arranged for a ride, passengers can be picked up directly outside the terminal. Make sure to confirm the license plate number of the car before entering, as rideshares are the most commonly used ground transportation services.
Located directly in front of the Santa Barbara Airport, a line of taxis will be waiting to transport you and your traveling party to your next location. Below are a few taxi cab companies that can also be arranged in advance:
- American Taxi
- Crown Cab
- Fly By Night Taxi
- Roadways Cab
- Rose Cab
- Santa Barbara Airport Taxi
- Santa Barbara City Cab
- Santa Barbara Checker Cab
- Santa Barbara Yellow Cab
Travelers wishing to have their own set of wheels while in town can choose from seven different, conveniently located rental car services within the Santa Barbara Airport, including Alamo, Budget, Dollar, Enterprise, Hertz, and National. Thrifty rental services are also available off-site. Many of these rental car companies additionally have locations in town should you want to pick-up or drop off at alternative locations.
Courtesy Shuttle Services
If you’re staying at an area lodging property, there’s a chance that they most likely offer complimentary shuttle services to and from the Santa Barbara Airport. Here are a few hotels currently offering these services. However, due to changes around COVID-19, please confirm before arrival:
- Best Western Plus South Coast Inn*
- Best Western Plus Pepper Tree Inn*
- Best Western Plus Encina Inn & Suites*
- Courtyard Marriott Santa Barbara Goleta
- Hilton Santa Barbara Beachfront Resort
- Ramada Santa Barbara*
- Residence Inn by Marriott Santa Barbara Goleta
*Indicates pick-up/drop-off available to/from both the Santa Barbara Airport and Amtrak Stations
Commercial Shuttle Services
Within the Santa Barbara South Coast, you can also find transportation provided by commercial shuttle services, providing pick-up/drop-off offerings at the Santa Barbara Airport and surrounding airports such as Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) and Bob Hope Airport (BUR). However, due to changes around COVID-19, please confirm before arrival:
- Santa Barbara Airbus (to/from LAX)
- Central Coast Shuttle
Private Car Services & Limousines
Start your vacation in style with elevated transportation experiences provided by area car and limousine services.
Upon arrival, if you’re not in a rush to get into town, let the Santa Barbara Metropolitan Transit District transport you to where you need to go. There is a Public Bus stop located on Moffett Road, right across from the airline terminal. To receive the most accurate timetables, schedules are available in the Airport’s South Lobby Terminal or can be found online here.
What’s the best way to get around Santa Barbara?
While your first instinct might not be to ditch your car, thanks to Santa Barbara’s year-round Mediterranean-like climate and a full suite of car-free activities, traveling around the Santa Barbara South Coast without a car might be the most relaxed and entertaining activity of your getaway. Here are a few tips for moving around the destination car-free:
Beach Cruiser and Electric Bike Rentals
Cruise the streets on two wheels via a beach cruiser from Wheel Fun Rentals or Cal Coast Adventures. Boost your speed with electric bike rentals from E-Bikery and Santa Barbara Bikes To Go.
Many area hotels offer complimentary bikes for you and your squad to cruise around town. Take advantage of the added amenity at these South Coast hotels:
- Hotel Milo
- Hotel Californian
- Rosewood Miramar Beach
- The Ritz-Carlton Bacara, Santa Barbara
- The Inn at East Beach*
- El Encanto, a Belmond Hotel
- Brisas Del Mar, Inn at the Beach
- Inn by the Harbor
- Lavender Inn by the Sea
- Coast Village Inn
- The Leta Hotel
- Marina Beach Motel
- Montecito Inn
- Palihouse Santa Barbara
- Riviera Beach House
- The Waterman
- Blue Sands Inn*
*Indicates bicycles available for rent
Outside of the traditional transportation services such as Uber/Lyft, rental cars, and taxis that do provide door to door service within the destination, we suggest you also consider these transportation alternatives as a way to infuse an extra dose of fun into your stay:
- Rent an open-air, four-seater, electric Moke vehicle from Wheel Fun Rentals
- Boogie around town with SB Buggie, a three-wheeled automotive delight.
- Get the lay of the land with a destination tour from Santa Barbara Trolley or The Landshark
Hotels with Complimentary Car Service
If you are staying at one of our local resorts, select properties do offer complimentary car services for guests to quickly access area experiences within a select mile radius. These properties include:
- Belmond El Encanto – Complimentary shuttle within a 5-mile radius of the property
- Hotel Californian – Complimentary car service within a 2-mile radius of the property
- Rosewood Miramar Beach – Complimentary car service within a 3-mile radius of the property