Background and Disclaimer
Very few people in Silicon Valley are aware that there has always been public bus service to and from Mineta San Jose International Airport (SJC). Currently known as the 10 Airport Flyer bus run by the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA), this FREE shuttle bus serves both terminals A and B at the Airport. The shuttle bus line’s endpoints are the Metro/Airport light rail station (on the eastern end) and the Santa Clara Caltrain station (on the western end).
Before light rail opened in San Jose in 1987, the 10 bus line directly served downtown San Jose to San Jose Diridion Station via North First Street. It even ended at Franklin Mall in Santa Clara. In fact, bus service to San Jose’s airport can be traced back to the 1940’s with the number 6 bus line run by San Jose City Lines.
The purpose of this guide is to provide more information on alternate bus service to and from SJC. Another purpose of this guide is to show you how to use this shuttle bus as alternate to the costs of driving and parking at or near SJC.
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This guide is NOT affiliated with Mineta San Jose International Airport, the City of San Jose, nor the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) in any way whatsoever. Like all of our transit guides written, it is intended to be of a public service. We are not responsible for personal safety and/or property damage as a result of the use of this guide.
Metro/Airport Light Rail Station
Eastern (northern) terminus of the VTA’s 10 Airport Shuttle is detailed on this map:
The stop is at North 1st Street and Metro Drive in San Jose, just south of Highway 101 at the North First Street exit. Note that there is no public parking available at the station.
Santa Clara Transit Center
Western (southern) terminus of the VTA’s 10 Airport Shuttle is detailed on this map:
Our Santa Clara University transit guide has more information on VTA bus and other rail service connecting you to the 10 Airport Shuttle bus.
Free Long-Term Airport Parking At VTA Light Rail Stations
VTA has free, airport-specific long-term parking for up to a maximum of seven (7) days at select light rail stations. When you reach each light rail station’s parking lot, look for signs pointing you to the area where the airport-specific parking is located.
All other parking spots at these light rail stations only allow you to park for a maximum of 24 hours. Make sure you park in the correct airport-specific parking area at the station or you risk having your car towed!
- I-880/Milpitas (516 Alder Drive, west of Interstate 880 right off Tasman Drive, Milpitas) – 12 airport parking spaces. The parking lot is on the southeast corner of Tasman and Alder Drive.
- Evelyn (Evelyn Avenue & Pioneer Way, Mountain View) – 21 airport parking spaces. The parking lot is directly across the street from the light rail station tunnel entrance on Evelyn Avenue.
- Almaden (Winfield Road & Coleman Road, San Jose) – 26 airport parking spaces. VTA’s 13 and 64 bus lines also serve the Almaden light rail station. The light rail station parking lot is on the western side of the station.
- Blossom Hill (Blossom Hill Road @ Caonas Creek, San Jose) – 28 airport parking spaces. VTA’s 27 bus line serves the Blossom Hill light rail station. The light rail station parking lot is on the southern side of the station.
- Branham (Branham Lane and Narvaez Avenue, San Jose) – 26 airport parking spaces. The light rail station parking lot is on the eastern side of the station.
- Capitol (Capitol Expressway @ Highway 87, San Jose) – 18 airport parking spaces. Enter the parking lot thru Narvaez Avenue at the eastern end of the station. VTA’s 37 and 70 bus lines serve the Capitol light rail station.
- Cottle (Cottle Road @ Highway 85, San Jose) – 24 airport parking spaces. VTA’s 27 and 68 bus lines, and the FREE Kaiser/VA Clinic light rail shuttle, all serve the Cottle light rail station. The light rail station parking lot is on the southeastern portion of the station area.
- Curtner (Curtner Avenue at Highway 87, San Jose) – 24 airport parking spaces. VTA’s 26 bus line serves the Curtner light rail station.
- Ohlone/Chynoweth (Chynoweth Avenue & Pearl Avenue [off Highway 85/87 interchange], San Jose) – 20 airport parking spaces. VTA’s 13 bus line serves this light rail station. Transit Unlimited observes that “free parking is available at the lot by Chynoweth Ave and at the lot by Santa Teresa Blvd freeway ramps. There’s no direct driveway that connects the two lots.” Call VTA at (408)321-2300 to verify which specific lot at Ohlone/Chynoweth the dedicated airport parking spaces are located.
- Santa Teresa (Santa Teresa Boulevard at Miyuki Drive, San Jose) – 20 airport parking spaces. VTA’s 42 and 68 bus lines and the FREE IBM light rail shuttle all stop at Santa Teresa light rail station.
- Tamien (1355 Lick Avenue [off West Alma Street], San Jose) – several airport parking spaces at the western (Lelong Avenue) side of the station. VTA’s 25 & 82 bus lines serve this light rail station. Caltrain has rail service to and from Tamien only during weekday peak periods, with shuttle bus service to San Jose Diridon station on weekends and holidays.
Additional Airport Travel Tips
Before leaving home or the office – Check in online in advance and print your boarding pass. Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and airlines departing SJC accept mobile boarding passes, but having a printed pass can be helpful if a mobile device experiences power or connectivity issues.
- Even with a boarding pass, reconfirm airline flight status before leaving for the airport. Flight schedules may change due to inclement weather at the connecting or arriving city, or other factors.
- Review the TSA’s tips for packing. If traveling with holiday food, beverages and gifts, leave packages unwrapped as they may need added screening.
- Arrive at the airport early. SJC suggests arriving 90 minutes before domestic flight boarding time and two (2) hours prior to international flight boarding.
- Be patient if delays occur. Aviation professionals around the globe are working together to get travelers to their destinations safely and on time.
Need More Information Before Traveling through SJC? Contact SJC at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 408-392-3600. Airport staff is here to serve you.
Tips courtesy of the office of San Jose City Councilmember (and VTA Board Of Directors’ member) Johnny Khamis.
We hope this guide helped you with public transit options to and from Mineta San Jose International Airport. Please inform our group if you see any information on this page that needs to be corrected.