USAtourist's Hotel and Car Rental Discounts.  Save up to 30% instantly.
Tucson
Arizona
Destinations
Reservations

Tucson Transportation

Getting there

Airport

Tucson International Airport (TIA) is Tucson's only airport. TIA is about a 12 minute drive south of downtown. Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport is the next closet airport about an hour and a half drive north. Not long ago flying into Sky Harbor was less expensive than flying into Tucson, but today the fares are much more competitive.

Old Pueblo Trolley © MTC&VB/David Jewell
The Old Pueblo Trolley is located in one of Tucson's historical areas, the Fourth Avenue Business District.

Airport Transportation

Tucson based Arizona Stagecoach, provides share-ride van service to residences, hotels, resorts, or businesses throughout Tucson. The cost to downtown is about $20.

Several rental car agencies service TIA. The rental car counters are located next to the main terminal. There are also several car-rental agencies located throughout Tucson. Some offer pick up service from the airport.

Sun Tran, Tucson's public bus service, offers hourly service from Tucson International Airport to stops city wide. The bus stop is located directly in front of the main terminal building.

Three Taxi companies services TIA. The line of taxis can be found on the lower level in front of the airport terminal. The average rate to downtown is $18.50.

The passengers who fly into Phoenix Sky Harbor often rent a car and drive to Tucson. Another option for getting to Tucson from Phoenix is taking the Arizona Shuttle which has three drop off and pick up locations in Tucson. Prices average $30 to $41 one way.

Trains

Amtrak's Sunset Limited route services Tucson three times a week in both east-west and west-east directions. The route starts and ends in Los Angeles, California and New Orleans, Louisiana. (Due to complications from Hurricane Katrina the service that normally extends to Orlando, Florida has temporarily been put on hold.)

Interstate Buses

Greyhound buses service Tucson seven days a week. Service goes directly to Phoenix, Arizona continuing west into southern California or northern Arizona. Eastbound the route continues to Las Cruces, New Mexico and on through the other eastern states. Greyhound also has affiliated carriers that continue service into Mexico, including Nogales.

Driving

Interstate10 (I-10) is the United State's most southern, east to west interstate highway. I-10 comes from the north from Phoenix though Tucson continuing southeast to El Paso, Texas. Breaking off of I-10 in Tucson is Interstate 19 (I-19) which is measured and marked in kilometers and runs south from Tucson to Nogales, a Mexico border town.

Looking for car rental in Tucson? Check EasyTerra.com, a worldwide online car rental comparison engine.

Getting around

Tucson is very easy to navigate. The streets were designed using a grid pattern which means most major streets are one mile (1.6 km) apart with streets running east-west and avenues running north-south.

The Catalina Mountains sit directly north of Tucson and serve as a convenient landmark for drivers.

Buses

Sun Tran is Tucson's public bus system with 37 routes throughout Tucson. Fares are only one dollar and transfers are free but riders must get their transfer tickets at the beginning of the trip.

Arizona wash sign © Elizabeth Blair / USATourist.com
Throughout Tucson and other Arizona areas there are dry river beds, called "washes," that remain dry most months of the year until the summer monsoon season arrives.

Bicycling

Tucson is a bicycle friendly city with over 500 miles of paved bicycle lanes, shoulders, and paths. All of the city's public road ways allow bicycles except for the two Interstates in the area, I-10 and I-19.

Old Pueblo Trolley

The Old Pueblo Trolley is located in one of Tucson's historical areas, the Fourth Avenue Business District. The route travels down 4th Avenue and continues down University Boulevard, stopping shy of the University of Arizona's main gate.

Handicap Access

Van Tran is the alternative for local residents and visitors who are unable to take Sun Tran city bus. Those who wish to ride Van Tran must apply for an Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Eligibility Card. Applications must be submitted through the City of Tucson's ADA Eligibility Office.

Driving Warnings

Throughout Tucson and other Arizona areas there are dry river beds, called "washes," that remain dry most months of the year until the summer monsoon season arrives. During the heavier storms the washes often overflow and flood the nearby streets. When this occurs local officials place barricades to prevent drivers from trying to cross the stream. Sometimes visitors underestimate the danger of crossing these flooded roads and end up needing to be rescued.

A combination of high summer temperatures, under inflated tires, and high driving speeds can easily lead to tire blowouts and deadly accidents. Please use caution when driving the hot Arizona highways.

Written by: Elizabeth Blair
Top Photo Credit: James Randklev © Metropolitan Tucson Convention & Visitors Bureau
Photo Description: Tucson Scenic Highway Panorama