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The Tufts Daily
Where you read it first | Saturday, June 22, 2024

T Time: Ditch the Uber for the T

Two methods for getting to the airport on the T.

graphic for Jeremy Gramson's "T Time" column
Graphic by Emma Selesnick

Typically, I use this column to focus on one specific MBTA station and the neighborhood surrounding it. However, I recently traveled out of Boston via plane and Amtrak, so I thought it would be helpful to discuss how to use the T to access other forms of transportation, especially before the upcoming winter break.

For those going to the airport, you have two methods of using the T.

The first, which I usually use, is a three-step process:

1: Take the Green Line from the Medford/Tufts station to the Government Center station.

2: Transfer to the Blue Line at the Government Center and take it to the Boston Logan International Airport station.

3: Hop on a free shuttle bus outside the station to your terminal.

I realize this process can sound daunting, as it involves two transfers and two modes of transportation, but I promise that, in reality, it is not. The Massport shuttle buses to the airport pick you up right outside the station and take you to their designated terminal. As I mentioned, the shuttles are free, so you only pay a single fare for your entire trip.

The second method, which I have also tried but tends to take longer, is a three-step process as well:

1: Take the Green Line from the Medford/Tufts station to the Park Street station.

2: Transfer to the Red Line at Park Street and take an inbound train to South Station.

3: Take the Silver Line’s SL1 bus to your terminal at the airport.

The Silver Line is arguably the T’s most interesting line, consisting of buses that run both aboveground for most of its route and underground in what feels like subway tunnels near the downtown area. For those departing the airport, this second method may be more convenient, as the SL1 picks you up directly from the terminal; however, since the SL1 runs on roads much longer than the shuttle buses, you risk getting stuck in traffic.

Now that we have covered getting to the airport, let’s discuss accessing the Amtrak and the commuter rail (both of which are far easier to get to than the airport). The Amtrak operates out of three stations in Boston: South Station, North Station and Back Bay. Two of Amtrak’s most popular services  – the Northeast Regional and its express variant, the Acela – both go from Boston to D.C. within a couple of hours.

North Station is the southern terminus for Amtrak’s Downeaster service, which goes up to Maine. You can also access the Commuter Rail from this station, and a multitude of others, including Back Bay and South Station.

As a self-proclaimed “anti-uberer,” I hope this column inspires you to utilize public transportation instead of Uber or another rideshare service next time you are traveling out of Boston.

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