How To Get Around Houston, Texas USA
A city this spread out has its issues, however, you can easily get around parts of the city, while other parts takes a long time or you just need a car.
Almost everyone in Houston drives everywhere. With the driving age at 16, it’s not uncommon to see the teenagers driving everywhere. With so many people driving, this creates a real problem when it comes to traffic.
Parking is an issue downtown and in the Galleria area. Apart from the Mall, you will have to pay for parking via parking meters or parking garages.
The rest of the city parking is pretty much free, but pay attention for parking meters.
Traffic around morning (7a to 9:30a) and afternoon rush hour (4p to 7:30p) is pretty bad, so avoid these times if you can.
These bicycles are placed at various points around the city.
The system is membership-based and it is necessary for you to download an App, create an account and add a credit/debit card for payment. You may also just do a pay as you go for individual rides.
There are bike path paths around the city, so look out for these otherwise you have to ride on the normal roadways.
The Web site also provides a map to show you where the bikes are located and how many are at each station.
If you’re staying downtown and want to get around on the cheap, you can take the MetroLink which runs around the downtown area connecting the hotels to the Convention Center. Anyone can take these free compressed natural gas buses. The service runs from Monday to Friday.
There are two lines, the Green and Orange lines Routes 412 and 413. For more information including a route map and times, check out their Web site.
Houston does have buses connecting the city. But not all parts of the city is connected. So it may take you a long time to get to some places. You may have to connect downtown to get where you want to go.
The two airports (Houston-Intercontinental and Houston-Hobby), are connected to downtown Houston by the #102 and the #88 respectively. Once downtown, you can get another bus to your final destination if you’re not staying downtown.
You will need a Q card for the fare or you can use the App and show your ticket when you enter the bus. You may also pay by in cash using exact change.
You may purchase a Q card at various shops around Houston as well as the Metro bus center in downtown Houston. You can top up your card at select Metro Train station stops. You cannot purchase a Q card at either airports.
Houston has three train lines; the Green, Red and Purple lines. They all run through the downtown city center. The fare is the same as the bus. You can use your Q card for transfers or purchase a ticket before you board the train. You cannot pay on the train.
Houston has a lot of parks and trails. You may not always find a sidewalk everywhere especially in the suburbs, so you may have to run on the street.
Shared ride services such as Lyft and Uber are available throughout the city.
You can walk around and explore the city. Just know that not every street have sidewalks.