Traveling to Washington DC


If you fly to Washington, D.C. on Southwest or AirTran, you’ll probably land at Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport (BWI). It takes 45 minutes to an hour to drive from the airport to Washington, D.C., so if you’re not renting a car the cheapest option for getting into town is probably the MARC commuter train (forty minutes to an hour to Union Station, trains every half hour). The fastest option will probably be Amtrak (half an hour to Union Station, trains every hour). If you are thinking about renting a car, check out our discounted rates. The SuperShuttle can also get you downtown.

If you fly United, Jet Blue, or American, your flight is probably bound for Washington Dulles International Airport. There is no rail service to Dulles, so your options for getting to downtown Washington, D.C. are pretty much limited to the SuperShuttle, a taxi (35 to 50 minutes, depending on traffic, for between $50 and $60) or the Washington Flyer Coach Service bus, which will drive you as far as the West Falls Church Metro Station, in about 20 to 30 minutes. Or you can rent a car.

The closest in of Washington, D.C.’s airports is Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport. That’s your likely destination if you fly U.S. Airways. The U.S. Airways Shuttle and the Delta Shuttle also land there. You can get directly on the Metro from National, or you can take the SuperShuttle or rent a car.

Ready to book a flight? Find discounted airfare for your trip.


As air travel becomes more of a hassle, more visitors arrive in Washington, D.C. by Amtrak train, especially those coming from Philadelphia, New York, Boston, or one of the smaller cities in between. From Union Station you can get straight on the Metro or take a relatively quick cab ride to your hotel. Or you can hop on one of the tour buses run by Old Town TrolleyGray Line, or Open Top Sightseeing.

And Automobiles.

Washington, DC has a great mode of public transportation in the Metro system, but sometimes you just want a car to get out and explore. If you are thinking about renting a car, check out our discounted rates.

Other Useful information

Need a place to stay? Take a look at our great hotel deals. If you have a question about your hotel or would like to hear about our special tour packages, you can call us toll-free at 1-877-300-6139.

Are you planning a business meeting in D.C.? We offer a variety of meeting planning services for groups.


  1. Henk VanJoolen says

    I planned to stay in Washington DC roughly second week of June during my US-vacation by RV. Do you know any RV-Park or Campground as near to Washiongton DC as possible, because I like to drive from the RV-Park / Campground to the city and go around in downtown by bike (do you recommend to do so?) Thank you.

  2. John says

    We are planning a trip with my son (11 yrs old) to DC for spring break in March. We would like to stay a week and see all that we can see. Is there a travel packet of brochures and info we can request from somewhere like the travel bureau or visitor bureau to help us make this trip a great memory?


    • The District says

      Unfortunately we do not have any printed materials. All of our information is on the web site. That being said, we do have a list of recommended tour books and maps in the “Tour Books” section. These are sold through Amazon.

  3. Rachel Maillet says

    My husband and I are wanting to visit Washington during the Cherry Blossom period. I have looked to see if there are booklets that give a summary of the various activities, restaurants, sight seeing tours,etc. we might enjoy. In other words a booklet that would help us pick and choose what we could do while there, as we plan to spend roughly 1 week in the capital and vicinity and want to make the most of our stay there.

    • The District says

      The Cherry Blossom web site has some great information at:
      You can get request printed information, download a festival app, and get all of the information you need. Once you are in the city, you can get printed information at the following locations: The DC Visitor Information Center at the DC Convention Center, the National Cherry Blossom Festival Headquarters at the Washington Marriott, or at the Visit Fairfax! Information Center in McLean, VA.

  4. Deb says

    Hi. We are going to be visiting DC in March. I have concerns about running out of battery with my mobility scooter. Is there any public places I can plug in if I need to? Thanks

    • The District says

      I do not know the answer, but I would contact the Smithsonian Museum accessibiltiy program toll free at 1-888-783-0001 or e-mail: The museums have at least one entrance that is accessible to visitors with limited mobility, and wheelchairs available free of charge. You can check if the museums are willing to let you charge your mobility scooter.

  5. tammy miller says

    we are planning a day trip on a weekend to bring our two youngest kids to dc and i cannot find information on where i can park . can you please give me information on public daily parking

    • The District says

      There is limited parking around the National Mall, but most of it is metered and very hard to find an open space. You can always try, but be prepared with a LOT of quarters for the meters. If you expand out a block or two from the Mall, you are more likely to find pay parking garages. If you have the ability to take the Metro, that is recommended because of the limited available parking. You can also use a tour service like the Old Town Trolley, and let them take you to all of the sites.

  6. Helen Heidman says

    We plan on a vacation to Washington DC for the Cherry Blossum Festival and would like information about Washington and the sites to see while we are there.
    are there any brochures you could send us.

    thank you

    • The District says

      Sorry Helen, but we do not offer any printed brochures or maps. There are plenty of great tour books available at the book store. We listed our favorites here. Hope you have a great trip to DC!

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