The city of Nashville is best known as the center of the country music world. But it's also a city home to hundreds of thousands of people who need to get around every day, many without the benefit of a car. Luckily, "Music City" is also home to an extensive public transportation network with options to suit nearly any trip. Read on to learn more about public transportation in Nashville, Tennessee.
WeGo Public Transit
Nashvillians looking to grab a bus around town can hop on WeGo Public Transit, which operates 46 routes in and around Nashville. Of these, about half are considered local or connector service, with buses every 30 to 60 minutes. A handful of frequent service routes run every 10–30 minutes, while other express routes only run 1–3 trips per day. Many routes run through Nashville's Music City Central, a downtown transit hub that offers an easy location to switch buses or head out into popular areas of the city.
Schedules vary by route, but weekday service generally begins around or slightly before 5 a.m., continuing until around midnight. Weekends and holidays tend to see later starts and early ends to service and fewer buses overall.
WeGo Ticket Costs
- Single Ride—$2.00
- Discounted Single Ride (Youth, seniors, active military, persons with disabilities, and Medicare cardholders)—$1.00
- Single Ride (Children under 4 and veterans)—Free
- All-Day Pass—$4.00
- 7-Day Pass—$20.00
- 31-Day Pass—$65.00
- Regional Bus Single Ride—$4.25
- Discounted Regional Bus Single Ride—$2.00
- 20-Ride Regional Bus Pass—$73.50
All trips include one free transfer within two hours of boarding. Visitors and Nashville residents alike will find WeGo Public Transit a handy service with its varied routes and destinations.
While WeGo will get riders around Nashville and its nearby suburbs, the RTA is the ticket to getting around the broader region by public transportation. The agency operates the Music City Star regional rail line, as well as eight regional bus routes.
The Music City Star rail system connects Davidson and Wilson counties, with six stations between Riverfront and Lebanon. Single-ride fares cost $5.25 (except for the Donelson station, where they are $2.00.) Those under 19, over 65, active military, disabled, or on Medicare are eligible for reduced fares, while veterans and kids under 4 ride for free. 10-ticket and monthly passes are also available. The Star only operates on weekdays, with service into Nashville beginning at 5:40 a.m. and the final train departing the city at 5:10 p.m.
The RTA also operates bus routes serving towns surrounding Nashville like the Clarksville community, the Franklin community, the Hendersonville community, the Murfreesboro community, and the Smyrna community. This weekday-only service costs $4.25 per ride or $2.00 for reduced fares. 20-ride passes can also be purchased for $73.50. These commuter-focused routes are oriented toward trips into Nashville in the morning and out of the city in the afternoon and evening. As such, service begins as early as 5 a.m. and generally runs until between 5:30 and 8 p.m., depending on the route.
Taxi and Rideshare
Those looking to get around Nashville by taxi and rideshare are lucky to have several options. A variety of traditional taxi companies operate in the area, in addition to services like Uber and Lyft, among other ridesharing options. Fares, of course, will vary depending on trip time and distance, as well as demand. For a less traditional ride, Nashville is also home to a large fleet of pedicabs. These unique vehicles allow riders to soak in the sights and sounds of downtown without the barriers of a vehicle, with the guidance of a friendly driver pedaling away up front.
Commuter-focused ridesharing is also available in the Nashville area through RTA's VanStar vanpooling. Commuters form or join groups of between 7 and 15 people, generally meeting at a central location to drive together in a van rented from VanStar. The agency maintains and insures the vehicles, which are driven each day by group members who share costs. Those enrolled in the program are even offered a guaranteed ride home from the RTA if emergencies prevent them from using their normal vanpool.
Bike and Scooter Rental
Nashville is almost as easy to get around on two wheels as it is on four! In recent years, the city has invested in expanding its bike lane network, and multiple scooter companies also operate for short trips around town.
Nashville's BCycle program allows riders to pick up electric-assist bikes at a network of stations around the city and drop them off at another station near their destination. Single rides cost $5.00 per 30 minutes, while a Guest Pass allows unlimited 120-minute rides over three days for $25.00. Monthly passes allow unlimited 60-minute rides for $20, while an annual pass costs just $120.00 for unlimited 60-minute rides all year. Several more traditional bike rental businesses also operate in Nashville.
Scooters are also a popular way to get around within Nashville. At least three electric scooter companies operate in the city, with riders able to reserve with an app and drop them off wherever they please. These are especially convenient for short trips in denser parts of Nashville. Gas-powered scooter rentals are also available for periods of a few hours up to a full day, allowing visitors and residents to travel longer distances without committing to the expense and hassle of renting a car.
Get Around With Ease in Nashville
Nashville, TN, offers a wide variety of public transportation options, including traditional options like buses, trains, bikes, and taxis. But the city is also home to many newer or less common options like ridesharing, vanpooling, and scooter rentals as well. With all these choices, Nashville residents need a car less now than ever before. For those who plan to drive, however, here's a handy guide to driving in Nashville.
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