SamTrans — the San Mateo County Transit District located south of San Francisco — announced the availability of their bus route and schedule information on Google Maps beginning today.
San Mateo County encompasses all of the San Francisco Peninsula south of the city and county of San Francisco. The transit system operates what are basically two different systems: a low frequency lifeline service for communities on the Pacific coast; and higher frequency bus routes with larger 40 foot coaches and 60 foot tandems for the more urban Bay side of the county. The transit district provides over 12 million rides for a service area that covers a population of 720,000 residents.
The big benefit to including transit info in Google Maps is ease of use for occasional users or those who need multiple connections. The inclusion of SamTrans data into Google Maps allows easier planning for those who use multiple transit agencies in the Bay Area. BART was one of the inaugural users of Google Transit. Other Bay Area transit agencies with Google Maps routing include Caltrain (which is managed by SamTrans), SF Muni, AC Transit in Alameda and Contra Costa counties, Contra Costa County Transit, Golden Gate Transit, all of the Bay Area ferry services, and VTA in Santa Clara County. Google Maps knows how to connect the public transportation dots for any trip among those counties.
SamTrans charges $2 for one-way fare. Your Caltrain monthly pass with two zones or more gives you a free ride on SamTrans. Your Clipper Card works on VTA. All SamTrans buses are equipped with bike racks with room for two bikes. Up to two bikes can be loaded inside at the drivers discretion if space is available.