Guest Author - Donna Ledbetter
The Washington Metropolitan Transit Authority (WMATA) has good news for travelers. To accommodate the increased traffic it expects during the days leading up to the presidential inauguration of Barack Obama, it has increased service on several routes. These routes primarily serve area airports and include special service bus routes. WMATA authorities say an estimated 500,000 passengers can be transported on the buses on inauguration day.
In an official statement WMATA writes:
Metro will run additional buses from Friday, January 16 through Wednesday, January 21 on the B30 Route, which runs from the Greenbelt Metrorail station on the Green Line to the Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport and on the 5A Route, which will run a modified service from Rosslyn Metrorail station on the Blue and Orange lines to Washington Dulles International Airport. The expansion is to meet an influx of air travelers heading to the Washington region for the January 20th Inauguration. The 5A normally stops at L’Enfant Plaza and Rosslyn Metrorail stations, but will not service the Tysons-Westpark Transit Station or the Herndon-Monroe Park and Ride Lot between January 16 and January 21.
For schedule information, visit the WMATA metro website.
WMATA’s special service bus routes transporting passengers to the National Mall cover areas from around the Washington, D.C. area that many travelers will find they’ve booked their hotels. This convenient service covers heavy traffic areas, including Wisconsin, Connecticut, and Massachusetts Avenues; the Silver Spring area; RFK Stadium; the Pentagon; and others. For more information, visit http://www.wmata.com/getting_around/metro_events/inauguration_bus.cfm.
Also on January 20, for just $5.00, you can ride the bus all day with a special pass that you can purchase only upon boarding the bus. Regular fares of $1.25 with a SmarTrip card (or $1.35 cash) still apply, but if you plan to board the bus more than four times this Tuesday, the all-day pass will be more economical. Remember, after the inauguration, you can take the bus to other Washington, D.C. area attractions (or to the airport), and the cost of an all day bus pass will be less than a round trip on the metro. An all-day metro pass is almost $8.00. Riding the bus is a great travel option.
For those travelers who still wish to brave the metro crowds, please check out the Metro—Washington, DC section of MidAtlantic USA on BellaOnline.com. All too often I see travelers on the metro wandering aimlessly around trying to figure out how to navigate their way around the District. These articles were written with those people in mind, people like you, and the novice traveler. Please read these articles, use them, and have a great time in D.C.