As a student with a trusty AC Transit bus sticker on your Cal 1 Card, the world is your oyster. Hopping on a bus can take you to class, to the BART station or to your favorite restaurant Downtown. Most people know that the 52 takes you in a circle around campus and that the 51B takes you to Downtown Berkeley BART in one direction and Rockridge BART in the other — but what else is there? AC Transit has tons of buses that can take you to every corner of Alameda County, so there are tons of local lines that you might not have utilized. We at the Clog looked at our local AC Transit lines and picked five that are more useful than you might have thought.
Most people will take the 51B if they want to bus to Rockridge BART or Elmwood. But it’s not the only bus that travels there. Though it might not arrive as frequently as the 51B, the 49A will also get you to many choice destinations in South Berkeley. The biggest difference between the two buses is the routes they take. The 49A travels down Piedmont and Claremont and stops by Channing Circle and the Clark Kerr Campus, which is extremely convenient for many students living in Greek housing and the surrounding area. For grocery store-goers and coffee fiends alike, the line stops directly behind Safeway and the new Philz Coffee on Southside. Perhaps the biggest benefit is that the route doesn’t travel down College like the 51B does. Significantly less vehicle and foot traffic on Piedmont and Claremont means that the slightly longer route on paper can actually take less travel time.
Why waste money taking an Uber to Oakland when you can bus there for free? The 1 and 1R lines send passengers straight down Telegraph all the way to downtown Oakland. Feel like going skating at the Oakland Ice Center? Have concert tickets at the Fox Theater? This is your line. Want to go pet cats at the Cat Town Cafe? You know where to go. Macaroni and cheese addicts of Berkeley will also be interested to find out that the 1 drops passengers off a mere five minute walk from Homeroom. The only difference between the two lines is that the 1R stops less frequently than the 1, so just be sure the 1R will stop where you need to go before you hop on.
If you’ve ever strolled down Shattuck, you’ve probably seen the 18 bus go by — but chances are you’ve never actually stepped on board. After all, where on earth would it possibly go? As it turns out, you might be missing out on an awesome and easy way to get to some normally inaccessible corners of Berkeley. The 18 goes up and down Shattuck, connecting you from just west of campus to the Gourmet Ghetto in the north. If you ever find yourself craving Cheese Board or want to go study at Philz on Northside, those places are more accessible than you might think. Additionally, a trip south on the 18 can take you all the way to the Oakland City Hall and the Greyhound station, among other destinations.
The F line is useful for circling campus, just like the 52. But the F bus is also beyond useful if you’re looking to travel far for cheap. It can take you to Emeryville if you need to shop at Target or the Bay Street Center, which saves you about $15 each way on an Uber or Lyft ride. But it can also take you all the way to San Francisco. It’s a long trip, sure, but if you’re really pinching pennies, then it might be worth it to sit on the bus with a good book instead of paying for a BART ticket.
If you need to get from Berkeley BART to Northside, then this is the bus route for you. Additionally, the 65 can take you to even more destinations up in the Berkeley Hills. The bus winds all the way up Euclid into the area around Tilden Regional Park. Its final destination is the Lawrence Hall of Science, so it’s the perfect line to take if you want to enjoy an afternoon at the science center’s exhibits and planetarium. We personally recommend taking it up to the Berkeley Rose Garden to enjoy the flora and fauna.
Contact Kelsi Krandel at [email protected].