How to ride

Are you new to riding buses and trains, or new to the area? No worries – we’ll answer your questions and get you where you need to go.

Our buses and trains give you a fast and reliable way to travel

Notice: 1 Line station signage may temporarily display inaccurate information from Wednesday, May 31 through Monday, July 3 due to revenue testing for the new Passenger Information Management System (PIMS). Trip planner data will be inaccurate during this system testing event, the most reliable source of information about 1 Line arrival times is the 1 Line schedule

The PIMS system will improve the passenger experience by providing passengers with accurate real-time arrival data, onboard service alerts, and out of service train information.


New to Sound Transit? Here are the steps to ride.

Plan your trip

Looking for the best way to get around? Our trip planner is just the ticket. It's easy to use and will show you where to catch your ride and schedules for your trip.

Transit options that save you time and hassle

Once you’ve figured out where you're going, we have plenty of options to reliably get you there.

Who doesn't love trains? During weekday rush hours, Sounder travels between Lakewood and Seattle every 20 minutes and between Everett and Seattle every 30 minutes. Sounder also serves select weekend events such as Seahawks, Sounders and Mariners games.

Get where you want to go quickly on ST Express buses with routes to Snohomish, King and Pierce Counties. We have 28 routes between major cities, and your ORCA card will provide you convenient transfers to Link, Sounder and local buses.

Link light rail is best way to fly past traffic! Link travels from Northgate, the University of Washington, downtown Seattle, southeast Seattle, SeaTac Airport and Angle Lake, 20 hours a day, 7 days a week. Link trains run every 8, 10 or 15 minutes depending on the time of day. Service is available from 5 a.m. to 1 a.m. Monday through Saturday and from 6 a.m. to midnight on Sunday and holidays.

Tacoma Link light rail travels 1.6 miles through downtown Tacoma, with six stops along the way. Tacoma Link trains run every 12 minutes most weekdays and Saturdays, and every 24 minutes on Sundays. Service is available from 5:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday and from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday and holidays.

Connecting to light rail is easy

Catch a bus to the train

Sound Transit is coordinating with other transit agencies to make it easier for you to catch a bus to the nearest light rail station when new service starts. Check the Trip Planner for your most direct route. Learn how to transfer between services here.

Get dropped off or drive

Many Link light rail stations offer convenient pick-up and drop-off locations. Parking for cars is available at Northgate, Shoreline South/145th and Shoreline North/185th stations. Learn more about parking options.

Safely walk or bike

Bike and walking trails offer easy ways to access transit. You can either store your bike safely at the station or bring it on light rail with you. Here are our favorite tips for combining transit and bikes.

Accessibility for everyone

We believe that transit should be accessible to everyone, which is why we offer a wide range of services to make riding easier.

Pay your fare

There are plenty of ways to pay, so take your pick. The super easy, no stress way is with an ORCA card. Buy an ORCA card at a ticket machineonline, or at a retail location

When to tap?

When riding Link or Sounder trains, tap your ORCA card on the yellow card reader at the start and end of your trip. ORCA calculates the cost of your trip and deducts that amount from your account. On buses, tap the reader by the driver. No need to tap off a bus ride.

Graphic explaining how to tap your ORCA card on Link, Sounder, and ST Express buses

More about fares and passes

Park nearby

Whether you're catching the Sounder for a Seahawks game or regularly commute on Link light rail, you can park at one of Sound Transit's stations or King County Metro's park-and-rides.

Enjoy the ride

Getting there can be half the fun, as long as you follow a few common sense rules. No smoking, and please allow people with disabilities and senior citizens to use the designated priority seating. Check out rules for riding to see all the ways to make the ride more enjoyable for you and everyone else.

We're here to help

Your safety and comfort are top priorities for us, so if you have any questions or concerns, contact customer service or security at any time.