Like most people who live in major metropolises, San Diego residents have the luxury of relying on a mass transit system to take them around the city. Transit options include the San Diego Trolley Service, a variety of bus routes and the COASTER light rail service. Those wishing to get around without using mass transit have several options depending on destination and length of trip.
Those with a car can avoid relying on mass transit simply by getting behind the wheel and driving to wherever they are going. Streets in San Diego are less congested than those in Los Angeles, though traffic will still snarl to a standstill during peak driving hours on most downtown streets and neighboring highways, particularly on weekdays from 8 to 9:30 a.m. and 4:30 to 6 p.m. Drivers have plenty of space to park in the downtown area, with more than 55,000 available spots. Those with prepaid electronic parking cards can use meters simply by swiping the card, avoiding the need for loose change.
Taking a taxi around San Diego provides the rider with a quick way to get to his destination without having to drive himself. The city features several major taxi companies, including American Cab, Orange Cab, Silver Cab, Yellow Cab and USA Cab. The rates are fairly similar from company to company, though there are slight variations. Silver Cab has the lowest starting fare at $2, while the other companies range from $2.40 to $2.50. Silver Cab is also the cheapest when the cab gets moving, charging its customers $2.50 per mile compared with $2.60 from Yellow Cab and $2.70 from American Cab and Orange Cab.
Like most major cities in California, San Diego has a vast network of bicycle lanes for those who wish to travel on two wheels instead of four. These lanes are divided into three classes. Class One lanes offer a separate right of way for use by bicycles and pedestrians, providing little contact with motor vehicles. Class Two lanes consist of a striped line which separates a one-way bike lane from the remainder of the street or highway. Class Three lanes allow cyclists to share the road with motor vehicles. These lanes can be found scattered across the streets of San Diego, giving those with bicycles a safe and viable alternative to riding the bus or driving their cars.