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If you’re traveling to Washington D.C. and arriving at the city’s main train station, Union Station, you may need to then get out to Dulles International Airport for a flight.

Dulles Airport is located in Virginia, about 26 miles from downtown D.C.

Here’s a quick answer: The best and fastest way to get from Union Station to Dulles is taking the Metro Silver Line train directly to the airport. It takes about 1 hour and runs every 15 minutes during peak times.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll outline everything you need to know to get from Union Station to Dulles Airport.

We’ll cover the Silver Line train, other public transportation options like buses, rideshares, shuttles, and taxis, and tips for making the trip smooth.

Taking the Metro Silver Line

Traveling from Washington’s Union Station to Dulles International Airport can be a breeze when you take advantage of the convenient Metro Silver Line.

This article will guide you through the process, from purchasing tickets to arriving at your destination.

Overview and Logistics

The Metro Silver Line is a great option for those looking to travel from Union Station to Dulles International Airport.

It offers a direct connection between the two locations, making your journey seamless and hassle-free.

The line operates from early morning until late at night, so you can easily catch a train that fits your schedule.

To begin your journey, head to Union Station and locate the Metro entrance. The station is well-marked and easily accessible. Once inside, follow the signs for the Silver Line.

The platform for the Silver Line trains will be marked, making it easy to find your way.

Tickets and fares

Before boarding the Metro Silver Line, you will need to purchase a fare card. These can be obtained at the ticket vending machines located throughout the station.

Simply select the fare amount that corresponds to your destination and follow the instructions to purchase your card.

Don’t forget to keep your fare card handy, as you will need it to exit the station at Dulles International Airport.

The cost of your fare will depend on your destination, but it will probably be around $4–$8.  

Boarding at Union Station

When it’s time to board the Metro Silver Line, simply wait for the train to arrive on the platform.

The trains are frequent, so you won’t have to wait long. Once the train arrives, make your way inside and find a seat or grab hold of one of the handrails if the train is crowded.

The journey from Union Station to Dulles International Airport typically takes around 1 hour, so sit back, relax, and enjoy the ride.


If you need to transfer to another line during your journey, pay close attention to the announcements and signs within the train.

The Metro system is well-connected, and there are several transfer points along the way.

Transferring to another line is usually straightforward, but if you have any doubts, don’t hesitate to ask a Metro employee for assistance.

Arriving at Dulles

Once you reach Dulles International Airport, follow the signs to the terminal.

The Metro station is conveniently located near the airport’s main entrance, making it easy to access your desired terminal.

Simply exit the station and make your way to the appropriate check-in area or baggage claim.

If you’re unsure of where to go, airport staff will be happy to assist you.

Traveling from Washington’s Union Station to Dulles International Airport has never been easier thanks to the Metro Silver Line. So sit back, relax, and enjoy the convenience and efficiency of this transportation option.

Taking a Bus

If you’re looking for an affordable and convenient way to travel from Washington’s Union Station to Dulles International Airport, taking a bus is a great option.

There are several bus services available that can get you to the airport in a timely manner.

In this section, we will explore the different bus options, ticket prices, boarding procedures, transfer information, and what to expect upon arrival at Dulles.

Bus options

There are a few bus services that operate between Union Station and Dulles International Airport.

One popular option is the Washington Flyer Bus, which offers a direct route to the airport.

Another option is the Metrobus, which provides a more budget-friendly choice but may require transfers along the way.

Both services offer comfortable seating and reliable transportation.

Tickets and fares

When it comes to ticket prices, the Washington Flyer Bus typically charges a flat fee for a one-way trip to Dulles International Airport.

You can purchase tickets online or at the bus stop. On the other hand, the Metrobus operates on a fare system, with prices varying depending on the distance traveled.

It’s advisable to check the respective websites for the most up-to-date ticket prices and fare information.

Boarding at Union Station

To catch the bus at Union Station, you’ll need to locate the designated bus stop. Signs and information booths are available to assist you.

It’s recommended to arrive at the bus stop a few minutes early to ensure you don’t miss your bus.

Be sure to have your ticket or fare ready for inspection before boarding.


If you choose to take the Metrobus, you may need to transfer buses depending on your specific route.

The bus driver or station attendant can provide guidance on which bus to board and where to make transfers.

It’s important to pay attention to announcements or ask for assistance to ensure a smooth transfer process.

Arriving at Dulles

Upon arrival at Dulles International Airport, the bus will drop you off at a designated area near the terminals.

From there, you can easily access the airport’s facilities, including check-in counters, baggage claim, and security checkpoints.

If you have any questions or need assistance, airport staff will be available to help guide you to your desired location.

Shuttles from Union Station

When traveling from Washington’s Union Station to Dulles International Airport, one of the most convenient options is to take a shuttle.

Shuttles are a popular choice for many travelers as they offer a hassle-free and cost-effective way to get to the airport.

Shuttle options

There are several shuttle options available from Union Station to Dulles Airport. One of the most well-known shuttle services is the Washington Flyer.

They offer comfortable and reliable transportation with frequent departures throughout the day.

Another option is the SuperShuttle, which provides shared rides and private van services to the airport.


The fares for the shuttle services vary depending on the provider and the type of service you choose.

Generally, the prices range from $30 to $40 per person for a one-way trip.

It’s worth noting that some shuttle services offer discounts for round-trip bookings or for traveling with a group, so it’s a good idea to check for any available promotions or deals.

Booking and boarding

Booking a shuttle from Union Station to Dulles Airport is relatively simple.

You can make a reservation online through the respective shuttle service’s website or by calling their customer service.

It’s recommended to book your shuttle in advance to secure your spot, especially during peak travel times.

When it comes to boarding the shuttle, you’ll usually find designated pick-up points at Union Station.

The shuttle operators will provide clear instructions on where to meet, and they typically have staff members available to assist passengers with boarding.

The ride to Dulles

The shuttle ride from Union Station to Dulles Airport usually takes around 45 minutes to an hour, depending on traffic conditions.

During the journey, you can sit back and relax, knowing that you’re in capable hands.

The shuttle drivers are experienced professionals who are familiar with the route and will ensure a smooth and comfortable ride to the airport.

Once you arrive at Dulles Airport, the shuttle will drop you off at the appropriate terminal, making it easy for you to continue your journey through the airport.

Taxis and Rideshares

When it comes to traveling from Washington’s Union Station to Dulles International Airport, taxis and rideshares are convenient options that many travelers choose.

They provide a hassle-free and comfortable ride, ensuring you reach your destination on time.

Here’s what you need to know about taxis and rideshares:

Booking a taxi or rideshare

Booking a taxi or rideshare is simple and can be done through various mobile apps or by hailing a cab from the designated taxi stands at Union Station.

Popular rideshare options include Uber and Lyft, while traditional taxi companies like Yellow Cab also operate in the area.

Using a mobile app allows you to conveniently request a ride, track the driver’s arrival, and make cashless payments.


The fares for taxis and rideshares from Union Station to Dulles International Airport vary depending on factors such as distance, time of day, and demand.

It’s important to note that rideshare services often have surge pricing during peak hours, so it’s a good idea to check the app for estimated fares before booking.

Traditional taxis typically charge a metered fare, which may include additional fees for tolls or luggage.

According to a study conducted by The Rideshare Guy, the average cost of an Uber or Lyft ride from Union Station to Dulles International Airport ranges from $35 to $50.

However, it’s always recommended to check the current fares on the respective app or website for the most accurate pricing information.

The ride to Dulles

The journey from Union Station to Dulles International Airport usually takes around 45 minutes to an hour, depending on traffic conditions.

It’s important to factor in extra time during peak hours or if you are traveling during rush hour.

The route typically involves taking major highways like Interstate 66 and Dulles Access Road.

During the ride, you can sit back and relax in the comfort of a private vehicle, enjoying amenities such as air conditioning and comfortable seating.

Taxis and rideshares provide a convenient alternative to public transportation, allowing you to arrive at the airport without the hassle of navigating multiple transfers or carrying heavy luggage.

Tips for an Easy Trip

Allow plenty of time

When traveling from Washington’s Union Station to Dulles International Airport, it’s important to allow yourself plenty of time to reach your destination.

Traffic in the Washington D.C. area can be unpredictable, especially during rush hour, so it’s best to give yourself some extra time to avoid any potential delays.

The last thing you want is to be rushing through the airport and risking missing your flight. It’s always better to be early than to be stressed and in a hurry.

Have backup options

Even with careful planning, unforeseen circumstances can still occur. That’s why it’s always a good idea to have backup options in case things don’t go as planned.

Consider alternative routes or transportation methods in case there is heavy traffic or unexpected road closures.

Additionally, make sure you have a backup plan for parking at the airport in case the lots are full. Having a backup plan will give you peace of mind and ensure that you reach your destination on time.

Check airport terminal

Before heading to Dulles International Airport, it’s important to check which terminal your flight is departing from.

Dulles has multiple terminals, and knowing which one you need to go to will save you time and confusion.

You can easily find this information on the airport’s official website or by contacting your airline.

Being aware of the terminal beforehand will help you navigate the airport more efficiently and avoid any unnecessary stress.

Bring food/entertainment

Traveling can be a long and tiring process, so it’s a great idea to bring some snacks or entertainment to keep yourself occupied during the journey.

Whether you prefer a good book, your favorite TV show downloaded on your device, or some healthy snacks to keep you energized, having these items on hand will make the trip more enjoyable.

Additionally, bringing your own food can save you money and ensure that you have something you like to eat, especially if you have dietary restrictions.


Getting between Washington’s Union Station and Dulles International Airport is fairly straightforward thanks to public transit options like the Metro Silver Line.

With the train, bus, shuttles, taxis and rideshares, you have plenty of ways to make the roughly 45 minute journey.

Just be sure to budget enough time to account for traffic, allow time for transfers if needed, and confirm which Dulles terminal you need before departing. With the right planning, you’ll be able to get from downtown D.C. to your flight with ease.

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