San Francisco Commuting Hacks Every Nurse Needs To Know

Let’s put San Francisco on your travel nurse bucket list! If you have never been, the Bay Area will steal your heart and welcome you with open arms. With nearly a million residents, San Francisco life is truly one of a kind.

If the hustle and bustle of the work commute intimidates you, we have all the resources you need right here to plan your shift’s commute. From apps to neighborhood accommodations, read on in preparation for your travel assignment in San Francisco!

Get a Clipper Card

If you are planning to use public transportation, your Clipper card will give you access to multiple different modes of public transportation. You can buy the card online and manage your balance to make the work commute easier.

Here are a couple of places to utilize this card:

Bay Area Rapid Transit

The Bay Area Rapid Transit, known as BART, is the primary public transit option that residents use in and around the city. This is convenient for traveling between various locations in the Bay Area, including San Francisco, Oakland, Berkeley, Walnut Creek, Pleasanton, and many more.

The trains generally run every 15 minutes on the weekdays and operate only slightly slower on weekends, running every 20 minutes or so. This is a dependable option that you can tap your Clipper card to access.


CalTrain is used more by residents throughout the Peninsula and the South Bay area who need to commute to and from San Francisco. The CalTrain has popular routes running all the way from Downtown SF to San Jose.

This option is more spacious with commuter compartments and also accommodates bicyclists. You can also use your Clipper card to pay your fare for a variety of options including one-way tickets to monthly access passes.

Download the Muni Mobile app

Muni is San Francisco’s network of buses, light rails, and cable cars, all of which are essential to your commute. The transportation is affordable and environmentally friendly transportation, plus the cable cars are a historic part of San Francisco.

When you are traveling within the bounds of the city limits, the options offered by Muni will be your go-to. Whether you need to pick something up on your break or get to a BART station after a shift, check out your route and find the fares on the Muni mobile app.

Ferries, Buses, and Rideshare apps

If it is your first time working in the Bay Area, it may be an adjustment to the size of the city. There are lots of surrounding areas to live in and commute into the city for work, so try to do some research on what neighborhood will be most convenient for your routine. If you are living outside of the city, a ferry ride, bus ride, or car ride might be the first portion of your commute.

Ferries are a scenic mode of transportation around the Bay Area. Many locals use the ferries to make their way across the bay, primarily from Oakland, Alameda, and Sausalito. Taking the ferry helps avoid the stress of traffic, and although it’s not the most commonly used commuter option, the ferry is a great choice to keep in mind depending on your location and schedule.

The Transbay bus is another great way to get around for those who live outside the city. It’s best for those who need to get to and from San Francisco while living in the East Bay, especially in Berkeley, Oakland, and the surrounding communities.

Newest on the commuting scene are rideshare services such as Uber and Lyft that you can order at varying rates depending on the type of car, private or communal rides, and current demand. Calling an Uber or Lyft is an alternative that’s quick and convenient on the occasions you need it. However, rideshares can be expensive, especially for long-distance travel – they are cheaper in San Francisco if you opt to share the ride with another passenger.

Travel to San Francisco with GIFTED

If you are hoping to head out west for your next assignment, connect with a recruiter and learn about opportunities with GIFTED. Once you are settled in San Francisco, check out some of the exciting things to do on your days off here.

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