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Muni Pass - To Buy Or Not To Buy?

Hull, East Yorkshire
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Muni Pass - To Buy Or Not To Buy?

Hi,

We are coming to San Fancisco in 2 weeks and staying at the Mayflower hotel on Bush street, we want to do all the normal tourist things like fishermans wharf, mission, chinatown, downtown, haight. We are staying 4nights/3 days. Is it worth getting a muni Passport?? We do enjoy walking but we are used to flat terrain!!

Let me know your thoughts

Rachael

Bloomington, Indiana
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1. Re: Muni Pass - To Buy Or Not To Buy?

Yes, it's worth it. Cable Car rides are $6 each ride and regular fare $2 (regular fare does include a transfer). Doesn't take too much for the Passport to save some bucks.

Plus there are multiple intangible benefits: not fumbling for your fare, quicker boarding, no worry about transfers expiring, hopping on/off on a whim (especially cable card), and more.

Also, even if you don't ride enough to actually get your money's worth, the "extra" cost will only be a few dollars. Just a drop in the bucket of the total cost of your trip and in my mind worth paying for the convenience & other benefits.

Lastly, depending on what you're planning to do & how long you're in SF, you might want to get a Citypass which bundles a 7-day MUNI Passport with about a half dozen attractions (at a discounted price).

That's my $.02,

hlo

Fortaleza, CE
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2. Re: Muni Pass - To Buy Or Not To Buy?

Just be aware of the difference between Muni and BART, which you may well be already since you know about passes.

Hull, East Yorkshire
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3. Re: Muni Pass - To Buy Or Not To Buy?

Thank you for the advice!

I am aware that I cannot use the BART on a muni pass but can I get everywhere a BART goes using the muni pass. I am using the BART to get from SFO to hotel but that was going to be it. Am i right in thinking then that the Muni can get me just about everywhere sightseeing wise in San Francisco.

Bloomington, Indiana
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4. Re: Muni Pass - To Buy Or Not To Buy?

MUNI will take you everywhere in the city with (at most) a few blocks of walking; this includes areas you wouldn't want to go.

BART only has a single "spine" through SF and, other than getting from SFO to the city, most visitor's won't want or need to ride BART. It's really a commuter rail system designed to bring people into/out of the city and around the whole bay area and not so much for travel within SF.

There is one intra-city trip city where BART does better than MUNI (from Downtown/Market Street to the Mission area); MUNI can also be used for this, it just isn't as quick/direct and lacks a fixed schedule. On the off chance you want to do this and desire the extra speed/convenience/certainty of BART, you can simply purchase another BART fare and away you go!

hlo

Orlando
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5. Re: Muni Pass - To Buy Or Not To Buy?

Absolutely worth it. As a tourist, it was so convenient to just whip out our passes and not worry about what we owe or exact change.

Interesting note: the only cable car line that checked our passes was the California. The other two were so packed when we boarded, the conductor didn't bother.

San Francisco...
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6. Re: Muni Pass - To Buy Or Not To Buy?

We on the SF forum spend time creating and updating top questions on the right side of this web page with info photo and details so please take time to read them including the first question about MUNI and BART There is one on using MUNI to see all the attractions. Will take you a minute to peruse them all and then you can read the ones you want

Edited: 14 March 2013, 13:41
San Francisco
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7. Re: Muni Pass - To Buy Or Not To Buy?

The only place on your list that is easier/faster to get to via BART from Union Square is the Mission. You can catch Muni of course, but the ride from Powell St. to 16th and Mission on BART is about 5 minutes. $1.75 fare.

Otherwise, even if you don't get ever nickel's worth out of the pass (which you probably won't unless you use the cable cars a lot) they're still worth their weight based on convenience.

Hull, East Yorkshire
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8. Re: Muni Pass - To Buy Or Not To Buy?

Thank you for all your advice, looks like we will be getting the Muni for convenience as well as penny saving!

My last question is can I buy from embarcedero station as this is the bart stop we will be getting off on our first night. we will be there approx 6.30pm will the kiosk be open? can it start the following day? and also if i can't get from embarcedero station where can we get it from in the morning from near mayflower hotel on bush street.

i realise this is a lot more than one question!!! oops!

San Francisco...
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9. Re: Muni Pass - To Buy Or Not To Buy?

why not just purchase it AT San Francisco Airport. The information desk at each terminal sells them and they are open late. The passport is valid from the first day you scratch on it and it is calendar days. so yes just scratch it the next day when you start using the passport.

Edited: 14 March 2013, 15:45
Bloomington, Indiana
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10. Re: Muni Pass - To Buy Or Not To Buy?

I agree with belomiser, purchasing at the baggage claim info booth is my preferred method. Works well unless you're arriving at a late/early hour when the booth isn't manned. You're usually waiting for your luggage anyway and generally I am able to purchase a passport before the bags arrive.

One other note regarding the "scratch off days" aspect. While you don't have to "activate" it right away, you do have to make sure the days you scratch off are consecutive.

Lastly, while I generally advise that if in doubt, purchase "more" passport than you need, depending on the details of your trip you might purchase one that doesn't cover the whole stay and simply pay regular fares. For example, if you're going to be in SF for 4 days, but arrive later in the day, you might purchase a 3 day pass and if you end up wanting to ride MUNI (but not the Cable Cars) to go somewhere your first night just pay a regular fare and use the transfer for the return trip.

hlo