Step 1: Planning Your Trip

1. Planning Your Trip > 2. Boarding the Bus > 3. Paying Your Fare > 4. Taking a Seat > 5. Arriving at Your Destination

Step 1: Planning Your Trip
SamTrans travels throughout San Mateo County and into parts of San Francisco and Palo Alto via 48 routes. To plan your trip, look at the SamTrans System Map to see which bus routes serve the areas you want to travel. Then, look at the route’s timetable. Each route has an individual timetable .

Reading a Timetable
Each timetable lists key stops, known as time points, along the route. The timetable also includes a basic map of the route (see below). For our example, we will take a trip from Foster City to the Hillsdale Shopping Center and plan to get there for lunch.

  • Locate a time point (noted with a capital letter) on the map near the point where you want to board the bus.
  • Find the same time point on the timetable. The bus serves the stop at the times listed below the time point. Please note: timetables only list time points; the stops in between the time points are not shown.
  • Find your destination time point, noted with another capital letter and verify that the bus you board will stop there by reading across.
  • The pick-up and drop-off times will be shown.
  • If your trip requires transferring or if you have questions, call SamTrans Customer Service at
    1-800-660-4287 (TTY 650-508-6448 for hearing impaired).


Copies of the SamTrans System Map and timetables are available on buses, at SamTrans headquarters and at key civic centers.