Oakland California Airport

Everything You Need to Know About Flying into OAK

The Oakland California airport is officially known as the Oakland International Airport (OAK). It is located right across the bay from San Francisco. It is another great option for those traveling to the SF bay area.

This is the one for you if you are staying in Oakland, Berkeley or Walnut Creek. It’s also a great option for you if you are heading straight north to visit the wineries in Napa Valley.

You can also fly to OAK if you staying in San Francisco. However, transportation to and from San Francisco from it is more expensive than from San Francisco International Airport (SFO).

Since you have to cross the San Francisco Bay Bridge, it takes more time - and is more of a hassle than SFO. This is why I usually recommend flying into SFO if you are heading straight to San Francisco. However, if you find a killer flight deal into OAK, then paying a little extra for ground transportation might not be as big of a deal.

You will want to leave at least an hour transfer time between the Oakland California Airport and San Francisco. While it's only a few miles, traffic is usually heavy between these two cities - so you want to leave plenty of time for your transfer.

At times, it will only take about 30 minutes. During rush hour, it could take you even more than an hour.

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Oakland Airlines

These are the eleven airlines that service the Oakland California Airport:

  • Alaska Airlines
  • Allegiant Air
  • ArkeFly (International Airline)
  • Delta Airlines
  • Hawaiian Airlines
  • JetBlue Airways
  • Sata
  • Southwest Airlines
  • Spirit Airlines
  • US Airways
  • Volaris

There are around a hundred flights per day that come in and out of OAK. The majority of them are domestic flights from other cities within the US. There are also a handful of international flights each day.

The great thing about Oakland is that its a smaller place, so it's easy to get around. You can quickly make your way to your airport transportation transfer once you arrive.

Transportation Options

You have several options for transferring from Oakland California Airport to cities in the east bay or San Francisco. Here are some of the top options.

Shuttle Oakland

As with the other airports in San Francisco, Oakland also has several shuttle options. The difference here is that they require that you book in advance. They do not have walk up service - although some times you might get lucky and find a shuttle with an open spot. I don't recommend taking that chance though - so make sure you book your shuttle before you arrive.

Book Your Shuttle: Shuttle from OAK to downtown San Francisco

Car Rental

The rental car center at the Oakland California Airport is open 24 hours a day. You will find the standard rental car companies at here including Alamo, Avis, Budget, Dollar, Enterprise, Fox, Hertz, National and Thrifty. This is a great option if you are staying outside of San Francisco. If you are spending your entire vacation at a hotel in San Francisco, then I'd recommend looking at the other Oakland Airport transportation options as you will save quite a bit of money.

Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART Trains)

A cheap way to travel to San Francisco from OAK is by taking BART. There is now a station directly at the airport. It's a new link that was recently added to get you to the main BART line in Oakland. If you are traveling light, this is an option to save a little money. It does take some effort and a little more time though.


If you are staying in Oakland, then a good option for you is to take a taxi. This is not an option for those staying in San Francisco as most taxis don't want to drive that far to drop you off. Since each city is in a different county, there are strict regulations for them which further discourages them from wanting to take you all the way into San Francisco.

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