Tips for riding SMART train before service begins Aug. 25

The "Follow This Story" feature will notify you when any articles related to this story are posted.

When you follow a story, the next time a related article is published — it could be days, weeks or months — you'll receive an email informing you of the update.

If you no longer want to follow a story, click the "Unfollow" link on that story. There's also an "Unfollow" link in every email notification we send you.

This tool is available only to subscribers; please make sure you're logged in if you want to follow a story.

Please note: This feature is available only to subscribers; make sure you're logged in if you want to follow a story.


More information:



Read this story in Spanish at La Prensa Sonoma.

Here are some general things to know before the start of SMART service:

When does service begin?

Full train service begins Aug. 25, with the first southbound train scheduled to depart the Sonoma County Airport station at 12:49 p.m. The first northbound train will leave the San Rafael station at 2:29 p.m. A grand opening event will be held at 9 a.m. at the downtown Santa Rosa station in Railroad Square.

How much will it cost to ride?

Train rides will be free of charge on opening day, and fares will be discounted 50 percent through Labor Day, Sept. 4. Regular fares will be in place Sept. 5. The system has a $3.50 base fare and $2 charge for each zone line crossed, which equates to an average overall fare of $5.25 with discounts factored in. Without discounts, the average fare is $7.50. A 31-day pass is $200, and discounts are available for youth, seniors, veterans, college students and disabled riders, as well as commuters who get their tickets in bulk through employers. For a full fare schedule, see

Where can I buy a ticket for the train?

SMART does not offer paper tickets. Fares will be collected from reloadable Clipper cards or through the SMART mobile phone app.

Where can I get on and off the train?

The initial 43-mile line includes 10 stations, from Sonoma County Airport in the north to San Rafael in the south. A $48 million, 2.2-mile extension is planned to Larkspur and ferries serving San Francisco in 2019. No public timeline exists for service north to Windsor, Healdsburg and Cloverdale.

How can I get to a SMART station?

Local transit systems offer stops near most of the SMART stations. Bike racks and lockers exist at most stations. SMART has 268 parking spaces at three stations: in Rohnert Park, and in Novato near Hamilton Parkway and at the Novato-San Marin station. The rail agency is planning an additional 50 parking spaces each at the downtown Petaluma station and the Airport Boulevard station north of Santa Rosa. Some employers also plan to offer shuttle service to stations. SMART’s website offers a full rundown of transportation options for each station.

Can I take my bicycle on SMART?

Bikes are welcome on SMART trains. Each two-car SMART train has spaces for up to 24 bikes. SMART stations will have bike parking and secured bike lockers. SMART is also exploring partnerships to provide bike sharing near some of its stations. For a detailed SMART bicycle informational overview, visit the Sonoma County Bicycle Coalition web page.

Are SMART trains accessible to those with disabilities?

All SMART trains and platforms meet or exceed Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements. Service animals are allowed on the train and must be clearly identified as such.

Have other questions? Leave them in the comments.

More information:



Read this story in Spanish at La Prensa Sonoma.

Please read our commenting policy
  • No profanity, abuse, racism, hate speech or personal attacks on others.
  • No spam or off-topic posts. Keep the conversation to the theme of the article.
  • No disinformation about current events. Claims of "Fake News" will be delayed for moderation
  • No name calling. "Orange Menace", "Libtards", etc. are not respectful.
Send a letter to the editor

Our Network

Sonoma Index-Tribune
Petaluma Argus Courier
North Bay Business Journal
Sonoma Magazine
Bite Club Eats
La Prensa Sonoma
Emerald Report
Spirited Magazine