Take me out to the ballgame (A's)
April 9, 2015 1:47 PM   Subscribe

Coming in from out of town, and aiming at the Dublin/Pleasanton station.

It's a Wednesday day game (12:30 pm). Plan A - Buy a reserved parking ticket at the station. The catch, must be there before 10:00 am. Doable but then what to do with the extra time? It seems too far to go into SF with that amount of time?

Plan B - There is a Best Western close to the station. Reserve a room and spend the night after. Try for an early check-in walk to the station. Extra time? What to do with it?

Plan C - a fantastic idea that I haven't thought of.

We did amtrak last time and it worked perfectly, but my wife isn't up for sitting that long in those seats again.

There's this question while it's close isn't exactly what I'm asking. Thanks very much.
posted by notned to Travel & Transportation around Oakland, CA (11 answers total)
For a 12:30 day game when you have a car I'd probably just drive to the Coliseum. It's only 30 minutes past the Dublin/Pleasanton station and 580 and 880 shouldn't be bad at that time. Is taking BART in a necessary part of this plan?
posted by brainmouse at 1:54 PM on April 9, 2015 [1 favorite]

Yes, could you clarify what the Dublin/Pleasanton station has to do with your plan exactly? I assume you're driving in from out of town and want to leave your car there, but my advice could obviously be totally different if that's not what you mean.

Honestly I don't think you have that much extra time. Assume you get to Dublin station and park just before 10; it's going to take you half an hour on the train to get to Coliseum, then you have to walk over the bridge, wait in line, and clear security - at least another 15-20 minutes, possibly longer. That's really only like an hour early, and there's batting practice and stuff to watch if you're in the park during that time.

Alternately you could take Bart a couple more stops to either Lake Merritt or 12th St and walk down to Jack London Square to get a beer and a snack on the waterfront. That's about all you'd have time for, though, if you want to catch the first pitch. I certainly wouldn't bother going into the city.
posted by Joey Buttafoucault at 2:05 PM on April 9, 2015

The cost of taking BART from Dublin/Pleasanton to the Coliseum is $7.60 round trip, and parking costs $3. For two of you, that's $18.20. The trip takes around 25 minutes.

Parking at the Coliseum itself is $20 per car. Driving from Dublin/Pleasanton BART to the Coliseum takes around 25 minutes in the late morning, and the game should let out at around 3:30pm before traffic gets bad. Unless you have a real gas guzzler, you'd use around a gallon of gas.

You're talking, at most, an extra cost of $5 for parking at the stadium, it won't take any more time, and you don't have to worry about parking at BART. (If there's more than two of you going, it's actually cheaper to just drive!)

I'm a big fan of BART, but the hassle versus benefit here just doesn't seem worth it. Just drive to the Coliseum.
posted by eschatfische at 2:27 PM on April 9, 2015

I hear you, I thought traffic would be an issue. You're saying it's not.

The last game there was a big crush of people leaving and it was great not to fight traffic.

New plan.
posted by notned at 2:50 PM on April 9, 2015

Are you thinking that the problem with just driving to the game is the traffic home afterwards that eventually runs into commute time? Maybe you'd prefer to stay overnight afterwards somewhere a little nicer than the Best Western near the Coliseum - you could either try for an early check-in, or drive and park at the game then drive to your hotel and park there. You could stay in Jack London or Old Oakland or at the Marriott near 12th and Broadway. 12th and Broadway is still pretty desolate in the evening, but the Uptown neighborhood just one BART stop away near 20th is pretty active with bars and nice restaurants, as is Jack London Square.
posted by vunder at 2:52 PM on April 9, 2015

The last game there was a big crush of people leaving and it was great not to fight traffic.

Oh, I gotcha. Let me reinforce my suggestion to drive if comfort is a primary concern.

Only a handful of people take Amtrak to the Coliseum for a game, even though there's a station nearby, so indeed, you can avoid the crowd by taking Amtrak. On the other hand, thousands or even tens of thousands of people take BART to any given game - and they all swarm directly to the station after the game.

You may indeed have to sit in your car and wait for cars to exit the lot if you drive, and you may indeed hit some traffic heading home if there are extra innings. But with BART, there's going to be a swarm of people to a packed station, a packed platform, and standing in a packed BART car that may or may not have decent climate control on the way back.

Also know that BART only runs trains to Dublin/Pleasanton every 15 minutes mid-day, so the wait to get back on BART may be more than expected.

You're going to get big crushes of people either way, so go with whichever one sounds less annoying to you.
posted by eschatfische at 3:09 PM on April 9, 2015

Chiming in to say yeah, just drive to the stadium. BART after a game is always crowded; better to wait in the parking lot, or sit in your car. You'll be more comfortable.
posted by asterix at 3:23 PM on April 9, 2015

The opponent influences the advice. July 1st vs. Colorado, heck yeah, drive! May 13 vs. Boston, tougher to park, more of a wait getting out of the lot, but also more of a crush at the BART station after the game.
posted by rekrap at 4:21 PM on April 9, 2015

posted by notned at 4:54 PM on April 9, 2015

I drive to games if I think parking will be easy and I BART to games if it's going to be super crowded - Boston, Yankees, fireworks games. I know the platform and the trains are going to be packed after the game. I hate that crush of people going across the bridge and into the station but I hate the parking lot at sell-out games even more. I usually just try leave the stadium v e r y s l o w l y when the BART crowd is starting to break up. Day games during the week are not usually anywhere close to sell-outs so it should be fine to drive. If it's a late season game, it might be a little more crowded if the A's and Angels are in a hot race. But hopefully the A's leave 'em in the dust by that time. (Hey, I can dream!)
posted by rekrap at 5:23 PM on April 9, 2015

Fruitvale BART station has a huge garage and another huge lot about half a block away. You don't have to pay for parking at all if you get there after 10am. There are sometimes still day reserved spaces open that never got purchased.

I'd park there and take BART one stop to the game. I have also in the past, just parked in the AmTrak parking lot, but I'm not sure if that's still a free lot on game day.
posted by duckus at 1:45 PM on April 12, 2015

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