LAX - getting TAP card for public transport?

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flyingfan

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Seeking the assistance of those familiar with Los Angeles. I'll be arriving at LAX soon and will need to use public transport, a combination of buses and trains, to get around to the usual touristy destinations.
I've read that the TAP card is what I need but it seems to be difficult to get one upon arrival at LAX and bus drivers don't sell them onboard.

What's the easiest way to get a TAP card as soon as I arrive at LAX to help me get to my hotel and then, later, around Los Angeles?

Thanks for any advice.
 

BAM1748

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Oooh, while I'm familiar with LA I haven't caught public transport there for 25 years. I'd get a taxi to the hotel and ask them.

Not much help.

Matt
 

moa999

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You can get them at most Metro station machines.
Or a number of convenience stores
For near LAX
https://www.taptogo.net/TAPLocator?zip=90045

The bus from LAX to Aviation is free, then machine at station.

Note that LAX public transport isn't great, but can be useful for some destinations. I have happily taken the Silver Line (express bus) then Green line and Airport bus to LAX. The extension of the Expo line to Santa Monica will make it more useful for tourists
 

kermatu

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I've purchased day passes before and found them very useful. Getting across town in particular, or just to do some (limited) city scouting.

If memory serves the day passes were cheaper from station machines than the convenience stores.
 

dfcatch

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Wait.....

Your plan is to get around Los Angeles using Public Transport..??..??


evil-laugh.jpg
 

flyingfan

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Oooh, while I'm familiar with LA I haven't caught public transport there for 25 years. I'd get a taxi to the hotel and ask them.

Not much help.

Matt

Maybe not so unhelpful - after posting I thought that this might be the most sensible thing to do. Cred with SWMBO will be low after a 14-hour flight in Y (and although she hasn't experienced it before, no F lounging), especially when it looks increasingly likely I won't get upgrades. Probably the worst way to start our trip is waiting for a bus, lugging our stuff onto a bus and taking the 1-hour ride to the hotel. Might well end up sucking up the cost for a taxi. Thanks.

You can get them at most Metro station machines.
Or a number of convenience stores
For near LAX
https://www.taptogo.net/TAPLocator?zip=90045

The bus from LAX to Aviation is free, then machine at station.

Note that LAX public transport isn't great, but can be useful for some destinations. I have happily taken the Silver Line (express bus) then Green line and Airport bus to LAX. The extension of the Expo line to Santa Monica will make it more useful for tourists

I've purchased day passes before and found them very useful. Getting across town in particular, or just to do some (limited) city scouting.

If memory serves the day passes were cheaper from station machines than the convenience stores.

Thanks guys. I'm disappointed they don't seem to have a vendor at the airport. Not exactly user-friendly is it?

Wait.....

Your plan is to get around Los Angeles using Public Transport..??..??

Hahaha I know... LA is the spiritual home of the automobile isn't it? Hiring a car seemed crazy but I wonder if it's worth it if parking around the hotel is manageable. One of the places I want to go to is the Griffith Observatory and that will also need a taxi to get to and from.
 

dfcatch

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Hahaha I know... LA is the spiritual home of the automobile isn't it? Hiring a car seemed crazy but I wonder if it's worth it if parking around the hotel is manageable. One of the places I want to go to is the Griffith Observatory and that will also need a taxi to get to and from.

Seriously - Just take an Uber from LAX to the hotel - it's not that outrageous.

Don't hire a car - the parking alone costs more per day basically than the car hire.

Even for the Griffith Observatory - just grab an Uber, or pretty much for any other attraction.

Now - if you're wanting to visit places out of LA (Orange County counts as "out of LA") - then hiring a car does make sense.
 

PLANT

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Yeah Uber it.... I used public bus to go 4 stops....... Did not arrive on time 30 min to 1hr late...... Still cost $2 if going 1 or five stops..... Otherwise hire a car to do tourist stuff out of CBD!
Have not used Uber my self but read on here since 2013 no issues with price or service in LA.
 

flyingfan

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Seriously - Just take an Uber from LAX to the hotel - it's not that outrageous.

Don't hire a car - the parking alone costs more per day basically than the car hire.

Even for the Griffith Observatory - just grab an Uber, or pretty much for any other attraction.

Now - if you're wanting to visit places out of LA (Orange County counts as "out of LA") - then hiring a car does make sense.

An Uber hadn't occurred to me. Reading up on it and trying a dummy booking it costs up to $90 for an Uber Black from LAX to my hotel.

I think I'll try to catch the bus to Aviation and then UberX it to the hotel, the fare comes down to $21 apparently. I hope that's not too bad a plan. I won't be going to Orange County or Disneyland.

Thanks for the tips.
 

kermatu

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An Uber hadn't occurred to me. Reading up on it and trying a dummy booking it costs up to $90 for an Uber Black from LAX to my hotel.

I think I'll try to catch the bus to Aviation and then UberX it to the hotel, the fare comes down to $21 apparently. I hope that's not too bad a plan. I won't be going to Orange County or Disneyland.

Thanks for the tips.

I've used Prime Time Shuttle out of LAX to and from hotel several times. $15 ticket one way (add $5 for a tip - never asked for). I think 2nd passenger is only $5 (but I don't know that for sure). Will take you to hotel door. I've never waited more than 10 minutes to commence journey and buses don't wait until they are full. Maybe an option?
 

flyingfan

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I've used Prime Time Shuttle out of LAX to and from hotel several times. $15 ticket one way (add $5 for a tip - never asked for). I think 2nd passenger is only $5 (but I don't know that for sure). Will take you to hotel door. I've never waited more than 10 minutes to commence journey and buses don't wait until they are full. Maybe an option?

Thanks, I'll look into this. Sounds great. From that intro video sounds like when we come out of the terminal they'll assign us to the next available bus so I don't have to get hung up on what time we'll collect our bags and emerge.
 

kermatu

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Thanks, I'll look into this. Sounds great. From that intro video sounds like when we come out of the terminal they'll assign us to the next available bus so I don't have to get hung up on what time we'll collect our bags and emerge.

Leaving LAX I've never pre-booked -- just walked to the shuttle stops and advised them I want a spot for destination X and a bus comes along soon enough. No purchase required upfront - payment to the driver as you leave the bus. Good incentive for driver to get you there asap! They're also right next to another company (supershuttle, I think) so you shouldn't have a drama.
 

Himeno

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I got around LA with public transport last year just fine (including a train and bus from downtown to/from Disney).

The TAP cards are just like the Myki cards in Vic or MyWay in Canberra. Get them from the ticket machines at the metro stations.

As for the airport shuttles in LA... Never had a problem with them from the airport, just rock up when I'm ready to leave the airport. Always have an issue with them to get back to the airport.
 

flyingfan

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All the online reviews of Prime Time and some of Super Shuttle make me anxious . . . they're almost all very critical. Seems a major issue is getting to LAX; getting from mightn't be so bad.
 

kermatu

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Pretty low risk from LAX - so maybe just do that - taxi on way back. I've used them maybe 4 times from LAX; and twice for pickup from hotel -- never a problem, maybe 5 minutes late - though I always allow plenty of time so I'm never fussed.
 

turtlemichael

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I'll stand up for the LA bus system. It is not like Sydney or Melbourne but I use it extensively when there, particularly Santa Monica - West Hollywood - Downtown. If they go where I want to go I'm in! And it is an eye opening experience. I have had the best conversations with helpful drivers and my fellow travellers on the buses. :)
 
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moa999

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I'm agree the bus drivers are generally surprised to see tourists on the buses

But equally have found public transport pretty useful, particularly if staying downtown.

From the Hilton LAX the public bus and then transfer to the LAX shuttle is also an alternative when there is a queue for the hotel shuttle (or it goes straight past In'n'out and one goes on to Santa Monica)
 

dajop

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In the pre-Uber days, I once caught two buses from Century City to Hilton LAX. Now the bus running from Century City to Sepulveda was fine, but along Sepulveda to LAX area was excruciatingly painful. A 15 min journey (via fwy) or 30 min journey (not on freeway) by car took over an hour, with a couple of detours into adjacent shopping mall bus terminus that took forever to turn off and back onto Sepulveda. Never again!

However the metro from Aviation to downtown and downtown to Hollywood worked well for me.
 

dfcatch

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An Uber hadn't occurred to me. Reading up on it and trying a dummy booking it costs up to $90 for an Uber Black from LAX to my hotel.

I think I'll try to catch the bus to Aviation and then UberX it to the hotel, the fare comes down to $21 apparently. I hope that's not too bad a plan. I won't be going to Orange County or Disneyland.

Thanks for the tips.

Just UberX directly from the airport - there's only a $4 LAX-TAX.
 

Quickstatus

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Just UberX directly from the airport - there's only a $4 LAX-TAX.

Just supershuttle to your hotel then drop off bags. Then uber x

I never prebook SS, just turn up to SS island tell them where you wanna go. Wait time very short.
 
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