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Getting Around DC on the Metro

Posted by: | June 18, 2009 | No Comment |


The Metro is an incredibly efficient form of transportation you can use to get around Northern Virginia, downtown Washington, D.C. and Maryland.

The Metro system has five lines—red, orange, yellow, green and blue—and each line serves different parts of the metropolitan area. 

Mason is located about fifteen minutes from the Vienna/Fairfax station on the orange line. In order to get to the metro, you can either drive (though parking is only free on the weekends), take the Mason to Metro shuttle (which leaves from the Sandy Creek Parking Deck every half hour Monday through Friday), or take the CUE bus (which has a stop near the Chesapeake housing area and is free to Mason students with your ID). metro

In order to ride the Metro, you will need to purchase one of three things: a pass, a farecard or a SmarTrip card. Passes are available in daily or weekly forms. If you plan to get on and off at various stops during the day, an all-day pass is right for you. Farecards are available in any dollar amount. 

If you are going to one stop and back, it is easy to figure out how much it will cost you round-trip and purchase a farecard for that exact amount. Fares are posted on all farecard machines at Metro stations. 

If you are parking at a Metro station or plan to use the Metro frequently and do not want to purchase multiple farecards, you can purchase a SmarTrip card, which is like a debit card. It is mandatory if you are parking at a Metro station, as that is the form of payment accepted for parking. 

If you are a frequent Metro rider, you can use it and re-load it with money as opposed to purchasing farecards every time you use the Metro. The other upside is that SmarTrip cards cannot be demagnetized or get too crumpled up to use like single farecards you save in your wallet or purse.

Click here for metro-riding tips and the “unwritten rules” of the Metro.

under: Getting Around