Get Me to the Airport on Time

Comments 19 by Rebecca Bollwitt

Despite going through a painless “random agriculture check” we’re soaking up some of the free public wifi here at YVR. It’s is a pretty great airport (actually it’s one of the best in the world) but getting here in the months before there Canada Line opens up is a bit of a challenge if you don’t know your options. If you do not have access to a car you’ll have to rely on shuttle services and taxis to get you to YVR and back so allow me to lend a hand and share some of the options for locals and those visiting our fair region.

Photo credit:
John Bollwitt on Flickr

The YVR Airporter
This is the most convenient option if you are traveling alone and have extra time to get to the airport. Purchase a round trip ticket from one of many departure hotels in downtown Vancouver for $28. This will get you to the airport and secure your way home when you return to Vancouver. This does make many stops at other hotels along the way (you don’t necessarily need to be a guest at any of the hotels) so it takes about 1.5 hours. [website]

Taxi Service
In non-peak hours (afternoon rush hour) this could be a quick 20 minute trek across town. This morning we got from downtown to the airport in 30 minutes and our total far was $29.00 for the two of us. Many local cab companies have shiny new cars (YVR boasts they’re all 6 years old or newer) and some operate hybrids, in case you’re concerned about adding to the smog. [YVR Taxi Listing]

Public Transit – Bus
From downtown you can take the 98 B-line express bus (Burrard Station Bay 9) to Richmond’s Airport Station (Bay 2) from there you can connect to the 424 airport bus. After 6pm and on weekends this will cost you all of $2.50 and will take about 50 minutes from downtown depending on traffic. [Translink]

Of course my preferred option is having a family member drop us off as this is also conducive to plenty of hug time.

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19 Comments  —  Comments Are Closed

  1. Tyler IngramWednesday, August 6th, 2008 — 9:31am PDT

    If you have a group of people taking a Limo ($40-45 flat rate) from downtown to YVR is another option. We did that for our trip (there was 4 of us) to the Dominican Republic and it was comfy and relaxing.

    I looked at the AirPorter before and for only a couple $$ more per person we choose the Limo though we found out (after calling them) they did not service Denman St and we would have had to walk to the Fairmount or something stupid to pick it up.

    Once the Skytrain line is completed that will definitely be a great option for getting to YVR even if it costs an extra $2 or something.

    But yes having friends/family drop you off/pick you up is always the best option, especially when I live out in Pitt Meadows and need to go to YVR for a business flight as taxis etc cost over $80 each way.

  2. Phillip JeffreyWednesday, August 6th, 2008 — 9:40am PDT

    The bus option is cheap and very quick. From my place at UBC to the airport took about an hour. YVR is also a 24 hour airport so if you have an early flight, you can sleep there without problems. Starbucks at the International Terminal opens at 5am and the A&W pre-security is open all night.

  3. John BiehlerWednesday, August 6th, 2008 — 9:49am PDT

    I agree with Phillip that the bus is cheap and somewhat quick…last time I did that (to get from YVR to North Van) I decided to never do it again and cab it/call a friend next time.

    Having to haul two bags (laptop and large checked bag) in the heat of July via three transfers on overly full buses just wasn’t worth it to me. Might be okay if you just have a small overnight bag…but who just takes that if they are going somewhere on a plane?

  4. John BollwittWednesday, August 6th, 2008 — 9:54am PDT

    More airports need free WiFi. Period.

  5. Duane StoreyWednesday, August 6th, 2008 — 10:01am PDT

    Yup. I always cab. $28 or $29 from my place, fairly consistently. Even when the skytrain opens you’ll still have to make it to a skytrain terminal, and then you still have a pile of luggage on a small train. So who knows.

  6. Miss604Wednesday, August 6th, 2008 — 10:05am PDT

    Using the tube in London was pretty easy when I went to visit Michelle – right from Heathrow to Notting Hill pretty seamlessly. Although yes, with luggage it was a pain, especially with that gap I had to keep minding.

    Same thing with Boston – there was the mysterious “blue line” that was off my everyday radar and looked like it was from 1943 but it got me home from the airport via the green line, then the red line 😛

    I’m looking forward to see how seamless the Canada Line will be.

  7. fotoeinsWednesday, August 6th, 2008 — 10:08am PDT

    Upon arrival at YVR on the international side, the open spaces are really pretty to see, before heading down (or is that funneled down?) to passport control.

    As I now fly primarily through DFW, I echo JB’s statement and wish more airports in the U.S. provided free wireless – and free which allowed users to navigate beyond the airport’s access constraints (e.g., weather or arrivals/departures).

  8. Bright Star (B*)Wednesday, August 6th, 2008 — 10:41am PDT

    I have no problem with YVR, but I was curious about the criteria you would use to determine that it’s one of the best in the world. I think it’s fine. I actually don’t know which airport that I would consider one of the best.

    I think the YVR free wireless is relatively new, right? I love it.

    A taxi costs about $60 from Burnaby Mountain to YVR — just sharing. 🙂

  9. PercyWednesday, August 6th, 2008 — 10:46am PDT

    When you pass through security for international departures, that secured area you enter is just absolutely magnificent (that big aquarium is a sight). Sadly, my last international trip was to the UK/Europe earlier this year and all the trips I do now are domestic business trips.

    However, if you’re bored on Sunday, consider going to YVR just for the heck of it. The areas for non-travellers have some great artwork and sculptures and it’s always sweet to check out the arrival areas to see people reuniting with others.

  10. Miss604Wednesday, August 6th, 2008 — 10:55am PDT

    @Bright star – it’s one of the best I’ve experienced however those rankings/titles came from several international surveys a few years ago, not me :p

  11. Bright Star (B*)Wednesday, August 6th, 2008 — 1:30pm PDT

    Well, I have been thinking about it, and I agree that it’s hard to think of an airport that I personally like more. The public art is nice. The architecture is aesthetically pleasing. (I love the high ceilings.) They’re remodeling a lot of it, too, so it’s looking better all of the time. The public wifi is super. Perhaps the food options could be a touch better.

    I didn’t know that it was ranked somewhere! Cool!

  12. Mom-in-lawWednesday, August 6th, 2008 — 2:50pm PDT

    We are so looking forward to “hug time” with our Canadian children. Can’t wait to see the two of you.

  13. Tyler IngramWednesday, August 6th, 2008 — 2:55pm PDT

    @BrightStar I like the international terminal. Being greeted with the native art that reminds me of the Victoria Museum is always a treat!

  14. Mom604Wednesday, August 6th, 2008 — 2:56pm PDT

    I miss my kids already!

  15. Kulpreet SinghThursday, August 7th, 2008 — 2:24pm PDT

    YVR has free public wi-fi? Since when? Last time I went it asked me to sign up and pay for access to the Telus hotspot. That’s awesome if they have it free now.

  16. Miss604Thursday, August 7th, 2008 — 2:30pm PDT

    @ Kulpreet – Yeah they still have a “Telus” account you can connect to but so far in int’l departures, and arrivals we’ve used the “YVR Public” account

  17. RaulSunday, August 10th, 2008 — 8:26pm PDT

    Feels so weird not to be the first one to comment on your blog 😛

    I just went through YVR airport a few days ago, and my experience was pretty seamless. But that’s been a rarity in all my international travel!

  18. Day 0: Waiting at the airport « Mind the (Half) GapWednesday, August 13th, 2008 — 2:45pm PDT

    […] in front of the plane I will be boarding in an hour or so (and thanks to Miss 604 for posting about YVR’s free wifi, without which I won’t be able to post this from my own […]

  19. Vancouver LimoTuesday, August 10th, 2010 — 12:24am PDT

    Get to the Airport on time and like a Celebrity

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