San Juan Mass-Transit: Tren Urbano

Tren Urbano, the first mass-transit project in the history of Puerto Rico, opened in 2005, linking San Juan to suburbs such as Santurce, Bayamón, and Guaynabo. Costing about $2 billion, the system provides an easy mode of transportation to the most congested areas of metropolitan San Juan. During rush hour (5-9am and 3-6pm), the train operates every 8 minutes; otherwise, it runs every 12 minutes. There is no service daily from 11:20pm to 5:30am. The fare is 75¢ one-way and includes a transfer to buses. It’s a beautiful ride and gives tourists a different experience of the city; the train passes on an elevated track through the modern, Hato Rey financial district, plunges underground in Río Piedras, and then snakes through upscale suburban neighborhoods, with tropical foliage and pools in many backyards. The fare includes a transfer because a special class of buses has been created to link up with particular Tren Urbano routes.

The train and accompanying buses keep special expanded schedules during big events, such as festivals in Old San Juan. They also extend schedules when big acts play at the Puerto Rico Coliseum, or the Tourism Company throws a New Year’s Eve party at the Convention Center.