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Buses from San Diego to Santa Barbara

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San Diego - Santa Barbara Bus Schedule

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Journey Information

There are 12 intercity buses per day from San Diego to Santa Barbara. Traveling by bus from San Diego to Santa Barbara usually takes around 7 hours and 27 minutes, but the fastest FlixBus US bus can make the trip in 4 hours and 55 minutes.

Distance188 mi (302 km)
Shortest duration4h 55m
Cheapest price$14.99
Trips per day5
Most frequent serviceFlixBus US
Bus lines1

How much is a bus ticket from San Diego to Santa Barbara?

$21.17 is the average price of a bus ticket from San Diego to Santa Barbara. Taking a bus is an affordable way to make this trip. It’s easy to find a bus ticket at this price or lower when you use Wanderu to book your trip online in advance of your travel date.

Monthly average prices

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The lowest bus ticket prices on this route can usually be found in February. That’s when the average price of a bus ticket is expected to be just $31 – the lowest of the year.

Alternatively, if you plan to travel from San Diego to Santa Barbara in November, expect to spend more on your bus trip, as the average ticket price may surge to $41 at that time of year. However, if you book your trip ahead of time, you can still score a ticket at a lower price.

Prices as travel date approaches

$50$40$30$20$103020100

Most bus companies charge higher ticket prices the closer you book to the date of travel, so it’s a good idea to buy your bus tickets as early as possible. The best way to find cheap bus tickets is to book at least 28 days in advance. By doing so, you can expect to save $14.15 on your bus ticket compared to booking at the last minute.

What bus companies travel from San Diego to Santa Barbara?

There is one intercity bus company available to search and book on Wanderu that operates from San Diego to Santa Barbara. FlixBus US connects the two cities by bus, it offers multiple scheduled buses per day for you to choose from.

BusDaily TripsAvg. TimeAvg. Price
FlixBus US127h 28m$24.90
  • FlixBus US

    FlixBus US

    FlixBus US is the American branch of German bus company FlixBus, known for providing sustainable, affordable, and modern bus travel. The company offers cheap bus tickets to popular urban destinations throughout the United States. FlixBus US buses include many amenities, including comfortable seats, free WiFi, power outlets at every seat, and an online portal for free entertainment. On average, FlixBus US operates 12 trips per day from San Diego to Santa Barbara, and the average ticket for this route costs only .

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it safe to travel by bus from San Diego to Santa Barbara during the COVID-19 pandemic?

Our bus partners have implemented several different policies to keep you safe during the COVID-19 pandemic. From limiting vehicle capacity to enhancing cleaning protocols and upgrading air filters, bus carriers are committed to maintaining a safe environment. For details on what each company is doing to ensure their fleet remains safe for travel, click here.

Although masks are no longer required on public transportation, we stand behind CDC guidelines that encourage passengers to wear a mask over their nose and mouth while on the bus or in stations.

Please visit our COVID-19 Travel Guide for more information on all carrier policies and the latest travel advisories issued by every U.S. state, Canadian province, and European country.

How long is the bus ride from San Diego to Santa Barbara?

The bus takes an average of 7 hours and 27 minutes to cover the 188 miles from San Diego to Santa Barbara. However, the fastest bus only takes 4 hours and 55 minutes. It’s definitely on the longer side, so plan to get comfortable for a long road trip. Keep in mind that your actual bus may arrive earlier or later than scheduled, depending on whether there is more or less traffic than usual.

What is the busiest day of the week to travel by bus?

Because many passengers travel from San Diego to Santa Barbara at the beginning of the work week, Monday is usually the busiest day for buses. If you are planning to travel on a Monday, you should make sure to book tickets well in advance as they may sell out.

On the other hand, Wednesday is typically the least busy day for bus travel on this route. If you're looking for some extra space on the bus, traveling mid-week is your best bet.

When do the earliest and latest buses leave San Diego?

The first bus leaves at 5:00am and the last bus leaves at 10:00am. To see the times for all buses from San Diego to Santa Barbara, enter your specific travel dates in the search bar.

How many bus schedules are there most days?

There are 12 scheduled buses that travel from San Diego to Santa Barbara every day, so you have a decent number of options to choose from. This includes 5 direct buses, where you can stay on the same bus without having to transfer to a connecting bus at any point during your trip.

Need more travel options? Consider taking the train from San Diego to Santa Barbara; ticket prices start at $44.20.

City Information

San Diego

San Diego is known as "America's Finest City" for its sunny weather, white-sand beaches, and dazzling attractions from Belmont Park to SeaWorld. San Diego's 70 miles of pristine beaches include such gems as Mission Beach, Pacific Beach, La Jolla Cove, and Coronado Beach. The city's strong surfing culture may even inspire you to rent a surfboard and catch the epic waves, bro.

Visitors can spend days getting lost in Balboa Park, a 1,200-acre cultural hub which features 16 museums, immaculate gardens, and the world-famous San Diego Zoo. The historic heart of the city, Old Town, showcases San Diego's heritage and ties to Mexican culture, while other sights like the USS Midway pay tribute to the city's military and maritime history. Leave time for some evening exploring, too! San Diego is rated the #1 best city for craft beer in America, so don't miss out on the bars in the Gaslamp Quarter: 16 walkable blocks packed with nightlife and young crowds.

Two airports, as well as many bus and train options, mean it is easy to get to San Diego from afar or from nearby cities like Tijuana, Los Angeles, Phoenix, and Las Vegas.

Station Information

Where does the bus leave from in San Diego?

Main departure station: Westfield UTC Mall

Buses to Santa Barbara leave from 6 stations in San Diego.

All bus stations in San Diego:

  • Westfield UTC Mall

  • 2728 Congress St (Old Town SD)

  • San Ysidro Bus Terminal

  • SDSU - 5716 Hardy Ave

  • Balboa Park - Presidents Way

  • 789 W Harbor Dr - Seaport Village

Where does the bus arrive in Santa Barbara?

Main arrival station: Santa Barbara Bus Station

These are the two stations where buses may stop when they arrive in Santa Barbara.

All bus stations in Santa Barbara:

  • Santa Barbara Bus Station

  • 209 State Street

Need a return trip from Santa Barbara to San Diego?

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