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Old 04-28-2016, 12:44 PM
 
Location: Thousand Oaks, California
10,403 posts, read 2,306,224 times
Reputation: 1475

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I cannot find my original post. I asked for advice/tips on taking the Metrolink from Universal City to Staples center and got many helpful responses. Thank you!

I wanted to come back and add some info that might help others who are thinking about doing this for the first time.

Please keep in mind, I never take public transportation anywhere. We live in Thousand Oaks, and our bus system is a joke. Wont take you anywhere you really need/want to go. So keep that in mind when reading my tips.

I am a season ticket holder for the LA Kings. I hate the whole parking/traffic issue down there so I had been thinking about trying the train from Universal. MANY people take it, and say how easy/wonderful it is. So we finally did it.

Parked at Universal Metrolink station, across from the hill to Universal Studios. The signs at this lot are confusing - says that you have to have a permit to park during certain hours. Well, anytime after 10:30am you are good to park there. Its free! Just dont park there to go to Universal Studios, we heard from one of the parking lot guards that they watch for people to park there and then head up the hill. They will tow their cars! Yikes!

Once parked, walk to the south west corner of the lot and there are stairs/escalator down to the trains. Or just follow all the other Kings fans (many people wearing hockey jerseys).

Once you are downstairs, go to the ticket machines. This is the most confusing part of the whole process! I am pretty tech savvy, and the machines are NOT user friendly. The instructions dont make any sense. So here is what you do.
  1. Click the button to start, then choose to buy a TAP card, and add a one-way fare. It is $1 for the card and $1.75 for the fare. Keep the card for next time - then you will only need to add money to it.
  2. Pay for the TAP card. Then it will come out in the drawer below
  3. Then do another transaction to add money to the card. You can choose a set amount, or get a daily pass. We add a one way fare. This one way fare lets you use the train for 2 hours. So pay the $1.75 and that will cover you all the way to the Staples Center.
  4. You will need to tap your card on the little round thing and it will add the fare to your card.
  5. This machine gives silver dollars as chnage, so if you put in a 20 and only buy $1.75 fare - you are going to end up with a bunch of silver dollars.

After you buy your TAP card and load it with 2 one-way fares (one for your trip down to Staples and another for your way back), TAP your card and go through the turnstyle and into the train loading/waiting area. Take the train that is going towards Union Station. Or once again, just stand with the people wearing Kings Jerseys.

The trains come every few minutes. Just wait for it. You are going to be taking the RED Line. The sign on the hanging tv screen will say when the next one is coming. Hop on when it arrives. You may or may not get a seat. But dont worry if you have to stand for a bit, people get off and you can take their seat. There are several stops before you get off.

Get off on 7th street exit. Leave the train and head towards the right - then take the stairs up and over the train tracks, then back down and get on the BLUE line train. It goes towards Culver City/Long Beach. You will only be on this train for one exit. Get off on the first stop! It lets you off about a block from Staples Center. You will see Staples Center when you exit. Just walk on over.

Going back - do the reverse!

Keep in mind. The second time we took the train we got stuck waiting. There was track maintenance and we were delayed on the Blue Line Train for about 15 minutes - just sitting there. Then once we got to the 7th street station and were transferring onto the Red Line train. It was going to be 28 minutes before the train would be there, and the station was PACKED, so who knows if we would have even gotten on the train. They said there were limited trains because of the maintenance. If I had known this ahead of time, I would have just driven myself. Instead we took an Uber back to Universal. It was $18. But I didn't want to wait for a half hour, and risk maybe not even getting on that train, so I paid it.

We took the train down for 2 games. First time was awesome - no delays and it was really pretty stress-free. 2nd trip down was the one with the delays after the game. Very stressful for me. Turned out fine, but I had to pay for an Uber ride, so there went the savings. If you need to use Uber - use this promo code and you'll get a free ride up to $20 value (if you are a first-time user) kims11653ue
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Old 04-28-2016, 12:53 PM
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Why does this sound much more complicated than it needs to be? Universal City > 7th St/Metro Center > transfer to Expo/Blue for one stop ride to Pico, then walk to the game. Go Kings by the way!
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Old 04-28-2016, 01:00 PM
 
Location: Thousand Oaks, California
10,403 posts, read 2,306,224 times
Reputation: 1475
You are right, that's all there is to it - once you've done it.
If you have never ridden public transportation it is intimidating and confusing. So my post was for others who have never ridden public transportation.
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Old 04-28-2016, 01:03 PM
 
387 posts, read 336,774 times
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I feel like i just read a Suburban Soccer Mom's blog about her exciting first time taking a train into the city.
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Old 04-28-2016, 01:05 PM
 
Location: Thousand Oaks, California
10,403 posts, read 2,306,224 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by I Love Buildings View Post
I feel like i just read a Suburban Mom's blog about her exciting first time taking a train into the city.
Yeah, thats kind of what it was. Really I just wanted to share with others who may want to try it
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Old 04-28-2016, 01:06 PM
 
1,714 posts, read 2,981,464 times
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It's called Metro Rail... not Metrolink. Metrolink is a commuter rail system.

When you do the subway to Blue/Expo transfer, you have to tap again (it's free). The machines are upstairs right before the Blue/Expo platform. They are the tap pads without turnstiles.

You also have to tap to transfer to the subway on the way back.

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Old 04-28-2016, 01:11 PM
 
387 posts, read 336,774 times
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^yeah, and plus i think OP could've of saved time and driving by just parking at the Thousand Oak's Metrolink station and taking it to Union Station

Free transfers all day aswell from Metrolink to Metro Rail.
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Old 04-28-2016, 01:16 PM
 
1,714 posts, read 2,981,464 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by I Love Buildings View Post
^yeah, and plus i think OP could've of saved time and driving by just parking at the Thousand Oak's Metrolink station and taking it to Union Station

Free transfers all day aswell from Metrolink to Metro Rail.
Metrolink is an option, but OP's route is pretty fast. Universal City to 7th/Metro is like a 25 minute ride... and the Blue/Expo ride to Pico Station is just a couple minutes. Can't beat that... it's fast.
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Old 04-28-2016, 01:41 PM
 
Location: Thousand Oaks, California
10,403 posts, read 2,306,224 times
Reputation: 1475
I Love Buildings - we dont have a Metrolink station in Thousand Oaks Metrorail does go from Camarillo down to Union Station, but only a few times a day and I don't think it runs late enough at night for us to make it back from the game.

I can get to Universal City in about 30 minutes, then another 30 or so on the train - vs 2 hours sometimes when we drive all the way down and park.

Thanks for the correction, genjy. MetroLINK..

I enjoy the train, and will be doing it more often
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Old 04-28-2016, 01:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoCalMomma View Post
I Love Buildings - we dont have a Metrolink station in Thousand Oaks Metrorail does go from Camarillo down to Union Station, but only a few times a day and I don't think it runs late enough at night for us to make it back from the game.

I can get to Universal City in about 30 minutes, then another 30 or so on the train - vs 2 hours sometimes when we drive all the way down and park.

Thanks for the correction, genjy. MetroLINK..

I enjoy the train, and will be doing it more often
Definitely sounds faster/more convenient. I'd do it too. Parking down by Staples Center/LA Live is rough.
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