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Trains from San Diego to Irvine

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Trip Summary

There are 10 daily trains from San Diego to Irvine. Traveling by train from San Diego to Irvine usually takes around one hour and 44 minutes, but the fastest Amtrak train can make the trip in one hour and 38 minutes.

Distance76 mi (123 km)
Fastest train1h 38m
Lowest price$26.25
Trains per day20
Most frequent serviceAmtrak Pacific Surfliner
Train lines2

Train Trip Reviews from Wanderu Customers

Overall score for trains from San Diego, CA to Irvine, CA

(Based on 7 ratings and reviews)

5.0

5.0

Jennifer

January 29, 2020- Business

Amtrak Pacific Surfliner

Pros: Breakfast snacks, accessible wifi, open seating in business class. Tips: there's plenty of overhead storage for briefcases, etc. Roomy seating to sit side by side with laptops and work.

Pros: Breakfast snacks, accessible wifi, open seating in business class. Tips: there's plenty of overhead storage for briefcases, etc. Roomy seating to sit side by side with laptops and work.

5.0

Esther

November 8, 2019- Business

Amtrak

Pros: Really love traveling by train - great views. Cons: The wi-fi was useless - I had to use my hotspot on my phone instead. I upgraded to business class, and it was confusing when/where/who/how would get snacks and complementary drinks. Tips: Upgrading to business c...

Pros: Really love traveling by train - great views. Cons: The wi-fi was useless - I had to use my hotspot on my phone instead. I upgraded to business class, and it was confusing when/where/who/how would get snacks and complementary drinks. Tips: Upgrading to business class isn't necessary - the seats in the regular cars were plenty spacious and actually looked nicer than those in business class! The snacks and drinks were nice, but not worth the extra $12.

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5.0

Pia

October 18, 2019- Visiting family

Amtrak Pacific Surfliner

Cons: Somebody to ask for help, not very clear which train goes where. Tips: Have enough time to figure out where to wait for the train.

Cons: Somebody to ask for help, not very clear which train goes where. Tips: Have enough time to figure out where to wait for the train.

5.0

Joseph

September 4, 2019- Business

Amtrak

Beautiful site seeing

Beautiful site seeing

5.0

Sanda

August 27, 2019- Business

Amtrak

Pros: Convenient and comfortable. Cons: A clear direction of where to catch the train. The passengers were asking among ourselves where to go. Tips: Get there early. Bring a light jacket just in case.

Pros: Convenient and comfortable. Cons: A clear direction of where to catch the train. The passengers were asking among ourselves where to go. Tips: Get there early. Bring a light jacket just in case.

What is the price of a train ticket from San Diego to Irvine?

In the last month, $26.63 was the average price of a train ticket from San Diego, CA to Irvine, CA. This is about as inexpensive as train tickets ever get. You can expect to find tickets at that price or lower if you book your trip at least 27 days in advance. Otherwise, expect to pay around $1.48 more than that for a same-day booking.

Average prices by travel date

$45$30$15NovDec

Over the next 30 days, the average cost of a one-way train trip from San Diego to Irvine will vary between $27 and $33. Planning a train trip to Irvine within the upcoming week? The cheapest train ticket you can find from San Diego over the next 7 days is $27. Make sure to book your trip as soon as possible as train fares tend to go up as you get closer to your travel date.

Monthly average prices

$50$40$30$20$10JFMAMJJASOND
Traveling from San Diego to Irvine by train will cost you about the same regardless of the time of year for which you plan your trip. In general, train ticket prices for that route don’t fluctuate much throughout the year, so expect to pay around $27 whenever you decide to board the train to Irvine.

Prices as travel date approaches

$50$40$30$20$103020100

Since the average price of train trips from San Diego to Irvine remains pretty consistent throughout the year, there’s no need to book your tickets too far in advance. However, we still recommend you purchase your train tickets at least 48 hours ahead of departure time to avoid surprise last-minute surges and the risk of the train selling out.

Which train should you take from San Diego to Irvine?

2 train services operate from San Diego, California to Irvine, California. Amtrak Pacific Surfliner usually has more trains scheduled, with 8 trips per day. That said, it's still worth comparing the prices and trip durations:

TrainDaily TripsAvg. TimeAvg. Price
Amtrak21h 44m$28.45
Amtrak Pacific Surfliner81h 45m$28.45
  • Amtrak

    Amtrak

    Amtrak is the largest passenger railroad service in America, offering daily intercity trains to hundreds of destinations across the contiguous United States, as well as several cities in Canada. Every Amtrak train comes equipped with comfortable seats with extra legroom, as well as several four-seat areas with tables in the middle. In addition, each car has a freshly cleaned restroom, free WiFi and power outlets at every seat. There are also snack bars where you can purchase drinks or food during your journey. On average, there are 2 Amtrak trains from San Diego to Irvine every day, as well as 4 trips on the weekends, with prices starting from $26.

    AMT-0AMT-1AMT-2AMT-3AMT-4AMT-5AMT-6AMT-7AMT-8AMT-9
  • Amtrak Pacific Surfliner

    Amtrak Pacific Surfliner

    The Pacific Surfliner is Amtrak’s passenger train service that runs along the Pacific coast of Southern California, connecting San Luis Obispo to the north with San Diego to the south. The line is among the most famous Amtrak routes due to the unique scenic views it presents, as the train parallels the coastline for large portions of the 268-mile railroad stretch. The Pacific Surfliner offers first-class amenities like onboard restrooms, free WiFi, seats with extra legroom and power outlets, as well as storage racks for surfboards. On average, the service offers 8 train trips from San Diego to Irvine every day, and prices for a one-way train ticket start from $26.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it safe to travel by train from San Diego to Irvine during the COVID-19 pandemic?

Our train 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, train 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.

In addition, federal law requires all train passengers to wear a face covering for the entire duration of the trip. Please make sure you are wearing a face mask or you may not be allowed to board the train.

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 train journey from San Diego to Irvine?

The distance between San Diego and Irvine is approximately 76 miles, or 123 kilometers. The average train journey between these two cities takes 1 hour 44 minutes, although the absolute fastest you could get there is 1 hour 38 minutes. As a relatively short ride, taking the train is an easy way to travel between these two cities.

When are trains the most crowded?

Tuesday tends to be the busiest day of the week with travelers taking trains from San Diego to Irvine. Ticket price also tend to be more expensive on Tuesday than other days. If you are hoping to have more room on the train and even save some change check out travel options on Saturday instead, as less people travel then and deals are more likely to be found.

When are the first and last trains of the day?

The earliest train departs San Diego at 4:00am while the last train of the day leaves at 9:00pm. To see all scheduled departure times, use the search function on this page to get the full schedule for your specific travel dates.

Is there a direct train from San Diego to Irvine?

There are 10 scheduled trains on most days. 20 of these are direct connections to Irvine. While direct trains may still make stops along the way, you will not need to switch trains at any point. If you're looking to get to your destination faster, a direct train is the convenient and time-efficient choice.

You can also take a train for your return trip from Irvine to San Diego. If you're not not set on traveling by train, you could always take the bus from San Diego to Irvine for $9.99.

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.

Irvine

Irvine, CA - IRV-0

Image credit: Unsplash

Irvine, CA - IRV-1

Image credit: Unsplash

Irvine, CA - IRV-2

Image credit: Unsplash

Though Irvine is probably most famous for its corporations and university campuses, the city is well worth the trip for its variety of attractions and activities. Start with a date night at the Irvine Barclay Theatre, which boasts an intimate atmosphere and superb acoustics. You could also check out the UCI Arboretum, where you can learn more about the unique flora of the coastal California region. The Beall Center for Art + Technology features interesting exhibitions that fuse modern art with futuristic technologies.

When you've worked up an appetite, you can find a wide variety of dining options available in the city. For some of the best Japanese dishes in town, check out Fukuda, which serves udon and soba dishes. If you are craving a good chicken parm, North Italia has just what you need!

It's easy to get to Irvine from anywhere in Southern California via intercity buses or Amtrak trains. Flights operate through the nearby John Wayne Airport-Orange County Airport, just 4.3 miles away from downtown.

Station Information

Where is the train station in San Diego?

San Diego, CA - Santa Fe Depot (1050 Kettner Blvd) - SANAMT2-0

Image credit: Doug Letterman

Link to image attribution

Departure stations

The Santa Fe Depot is the main train station in San Diego and one of the end points of the Pacific Surfliner, the only Amtrak train line that serves the city. The station is also used by the Green Line of the San Diego Trolley light rail transit service and the COASTER commuter rail service that connects the city with the central and northern coastal regions of San Diego County. Opened in 1915, the Santa Fe Depot is famous for its Spanish Colonial Revival Style architecture and grand interior space that features natural redwood beam ceilings and ceramic details. The train station is located in the heart of Downtown San Diego, making it easy to reach from all parts of the city.

All train stations in San Diego:

  • Santa Fe Depot - 1050 Kettner Blvd

  • 4005 Taylor St

Where is the train station in Irvine?

Irvine Transp Ctr - 15215 Barranca Pkwy  - IRVAMT-0

Image credit: Adam Moss

Link to image attribution

Arrival stations

Irvine Station – also known as Irvine Transportation Center – is the busiest station in South Orange County, serving over a million passengers annually. It first opened in 1990 on the south side of the decommissioned Marine Corps Air Station El Toro in the Spectrum district. The station serves Amtrak's Pacific Surfliner, Metrolink (Southern California's commuter rail system), and various local transit bus lines part of the Orange County Transportation Authority's network. In the vicinity of the station, there are hotels, offices, and shops. Irvine Station is also close to the Irvine Spectrum Center, one of SoCal's most popular entertainment and shopping destinations.

All train stations in Irvine:

  • Irvine Transp Ctr - 15215 Barranca Pkwy

Need a return trip from Irvine to San Diego?

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