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Quickest public transport route from intercity to Boston

Quickest public transport route from intercity to Boston

Old Nov 1, 15, 4:47 am
  #1  
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Quickest public transport route from intercity to Boston

Hi all,

I travel to Boston monthly to/from the UK. However, I have never travelled on the (what I expect to be) the very busy Sunday of Thanksgiving.

I have two options for getting from inner-city Boston to Logan Airport, which are either:

1) Start at Back Bay station, get the blue line T to the Airport stop. Then, I can get the intra-airport bus around Logan airport to Terminal B; or:

2) South Station, getting the Silver line bus straight to Terminal B.

What do you think is going to be the quickest option around 1130am/midday on the Thanksgiving Sunday? I've taken both options before so know where to go for each.

Simon.

P.S. I'm not going to get the blue line bus (e.g. from outside the Marriott/Pru) as I won't want to walk to the stop.
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Old Nov 1, 15, 5:51 am
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That Silver line route is the quickest of the two at any time IMO from the mentioned start points, but I really don't see the T being a problem in T'day travel. People travel home to family for the holiday; I think most often that family drops them off by car.
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Old Nov 1, 15, 9:41 am
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Silver Line will be the quicker of those two options, though quite possibly very full. But where are you starting from? If you can get to the Back Bay station, the stop for the bus that goes straight from Back Bay to Logan is about a block from there.
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Old Nov 1, 15, 2:46 pm
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Thank you VidaNaParia and LoganFlyer.

I'm getting Amtrak from Stamford, CT. Annoyingly, I booked my flight back to the UK from Boston rather than JFK as I was originally going to be in Boston and NH for longer but that plan has changed (and the cost to change my flights is prohibitive). I can get off the train at Back Bay station or at South Station, hence why I chose those options.

LoganFlyer, you kindly mention that: "If you can get to the Back Bay station, the stop for the bus that goes straight from Back Bay to Logan is about a block from there.". Is that the blue 'Back Bay Logan Express' where one just has to show their MBTA card and can get on for free?

If so then I've tended to always take that when I used an office up in the Pru as it was so convenient when heading to the airport after getting some work done. I could get on from outside the Marriott/Hynes Convention Centre. However, I think you're suggesting that I should get on at Copley though in the direction towards the airport? I actually forgot that there was a stop at Copley which I'm guessing is a fair bit closer (and therefore easier with luggage) than heading to Hynes. Maybe I'll do that route as the blue bus always tended to be less crowded. From getting off the train, I've got 2hrs 50mins until my flight departs from Logan which should be okay as hand baggage only and using priority security in Terminal B.
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Old Nov 1, 15, 3:27 pm
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That is correct--the Back Bay bus I refer to is the one that's free if you have a CharlieCard. It has a stop at Copley Square, a block from the Back Bay train station. However, since you'll be coming on an Amtrak train, I would suggest going all the way to South Station and taking the Silver Line. No awkward one block trek with your luggage and while the Back Bay Logan Express bus only runs every 20 minutes, the Silver Line runs every 12 minutes on Sunday around 11:30 AM.
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Old Nov 5, 15, 12:26 am
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I'll second LoganFlyer: take the Silver Line. Get off the train, go downstairs, and get a one seat ride to your terminal. No walking a block, no Orange-Blue-bus connections, and good frequency.
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Old Nov 5, 15, 5:00 am
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If you have a lot of extra time, definitely take the Silver Line; you'll get a slow motion tour of the most boring parts of Boston, and you might sort of feel like you're in a big non-posh limo because you may well be the only passenger onboard.

If you do want the quickest route, just walk a couple blocks to the Aquarium stop and hop the Blue Line two stops to the airport right away. Theres a reason the Blue Line is crowded and the Silver Line is empty.
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Old Nov 5, 15, 8:22 am
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Originally Posted by tanri View Post
If you have a lot of extra time, definitely take the Silver Line; you'll get a slow motion tour of the most boring parts of Boston, and you might sort of feel like you're in a big non-posh limo because you may well be the only passenger onboard.

If you do want the quickest route, just walk a couple blocks to the Aquarium stop and hop the Blue Line two stops to the airport right away. Theres a reason the Blue Line is crowded and the Silver Line is empty.
Obviously, locals differ on this. When I'm at South Station (since I live south of Boston, that happens more than once in a while) I always* take the Silver Line to the airport. The Blue Line is a fine way to get to a transit station named "Airport," but that station is outside the airport proper. Once you get there, you have to wait (it can seem like forever) for the bus that takes you to the airport itself. The Silver Line drops you off where you want to be.

________________________
*Added in edit for the logic nit-pickers, of which FT has its share: Obviously, "always" refers only to when I want to get to the airport.

Last edited by Efrem; Nov 5, 15 at 9:11 am
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Old Nov 5, 15, 8:50 am
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Second this. The added travel time on the Silver Line will be cancelled out by not needing the Massport shuttle from the Airport Blue Line station to the terminal.

If the OP really, really wants to know all the info before they pick a route, they should look at the Google traffic map and see if there is a traffic jam in the Ted Williams Tunnel (I-90 highway tunnel going to Logan Airport). If I-90 is red where it crosses the harbor to Logan, then you'll have a slow trip on the Silver Line. If not, it will not be worth it to head up to the Blue Line.
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Old Nov 5, 15, 9:46 am
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Originally Posted by tanri View Post
If you do want the quickest route, just walk a couple blocks to the Aquarium stop and hop the Blue Line two stops to the airport right away. Theres a reason the Blue Line is crowded and the Silver Line is empty.
Is there another entrance to the Aquarium stop other than right outside the Marriott? It doesn't seem like it's really close to South Station, especially if one is toting luggage, but I'll be honest I've never done it myself.
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Old Nov 5, 15, 12:27 pm
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Originally Posted by tanri View Post
If you have a lot of extra time, definitely take the Silver Line; you'll get a slow motion tour of the most boring parts of Boston,
True, but...

Originally Posted by tanri View Post
and you might sort of feel like you're in a big non-posh limo because you may well be the only passenger onboard.

If you do want the quickest route, just walk a couple blocks to the Aquarium stop and hop the Blue Line two stops to the airport right away. Theres a reason the Blue Line is crowded and the Silver Line is empty.
I disagree strongly with this. South Station to the Aquarium is a good 10 minute walk, which is neither straightforward nor fun with luggage. And while I agree the blue line can be crowded, I have never seen the Silver Line empty, except maybe after 11 PM. Usually it's standing room only. More importantly, there's no way that (Walk to Aquarium + Blue Line + Airport Shuttle Bus) is longer than the Silver Line from South Station.
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Old Nov 5, 15, 12:46 pm
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Originally Posted by LoganFlyer View Post
True, but...



I disagree strongly with this. South Station to the Aquarium is a good 10 minute walk, which is neither straightforward nor fun with luggage. And while I agree the blue line can be crowded, I have never seen the Silver Line empty, except maybe after 11 PM. Usually it's standing room only. More importantly, there's no way that (Walk to Aquarium + Blue Line + Airport Shuttle Bus) is longer than the Silver Line from South Station.

Thank you LoganFlyer, CKDGM, tanri, Efrem, octr202 for all your help.

I'll see how I'm feeling on the day. I have found that the Silver line tends to be quite busy (and hot/sweaty!) when I get it and the Blue T line is never busy (but I have tended landed in Boston about 2-4pm). The Blue T line used to be the most convenient for me when heading towards Medford as I could change from the blue to the Orange line at State. I might end up with the Blue Logan Express bus Thank you all again!

Simon.
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Old Nov 5, 15, 11:40 pm
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Originally Posted by tanri View Post
If you have a lot of extra time, definitely take the Silver Line; you'll get a slow motion tour of the most boring parts of Boston, and you might sort of feel like you're in a big non-posh limo because you may well be the only passenger onboard.

If you do want the quickest route, just walk a couple blocks to the Aquarium stop and hop the Blue Line two stops to the airport right away. Theres a reason the Blue Line is crowded and the Silver Line is empty.
I disagree with every assertion in this post. If you're at South Station, the Silver Line will be faster, by a long shot, than walking to Aquarium, taking the Blue Line, and then taking the MassPort shuttle bus. Not even close.
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Old Nov 6, 15, 6:44 am
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We'll, this thread certainly proves that those who know Boston are passionate about even the details. :-)

OP could do either route in less time than reading this debate.
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Old Nov 6, 15, 7:02 am
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Originally Posted by VidaNaPraia View Post
We'll, this thread certainly proves that those who know Boston are passionate about even the details. :-)

OP could do either route in less time than reading this debate.
Haha, we are very, um, particular. And we're always right!
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