Detroit Metropolitan Airport, or DTW, is one of the biggest airports in the United States. With tens of millions of people flying in and out of the city every year, DTW operates like a well-oiled machine on a good day. When you’re traveling, you hope to slip right into the order of things and get from point A to point B with no worries.
Yet, for those figuring out how to get to DTW airport, bad days sometimes happen. You might be held up in a business meeting, lose track of time with friends, or have any of an infinite range of experiences that put you in a tight position when trying to get to DTW.
Having a plan to get to the airport before you travel is ideal, but don’t worry if you need to know now, because you’re in the right place to learn. Here’s a list of five quick ways to get to Detroit Metropolitan Airport.
1. How to Get to DTW Airport on Public Transportation
If you’re familiar with the Detroit-area public transportation system, SMART, then it’s a fine option for getting to DTW.
Those wondering how to get to the North Terminal can hop on Route 125 (Fort Street-Eureka Road) or Route 280 (Middle Belt South). You can reach DTW’s McNamara Terminal on Route 125 as well.
If you’re stuck in the Detroit suburbs, don’t worry: You can get out of there FAST. Jokes aside, FAST is SMART’s high-frequency bus service. It makes getting downtown from the suburbs no problem at all. Route 261 (Michigan Avenue) gets you to both of DTW’s terminals.
2. Drive a Car to Detroit Metropolitan Airport
Driving a car to DTW might seem like something you don’t need to research. Yet, there are some specifics you might miss if you just feed the address into Google Maps.
If you’re dropping someone off or picking them up, DTW’s airline directory tells you where to go. If you’re bringing someone inside the airport, you need to park in the garage. Short-term parking and long-term parking are available, and the McNamara and Big Blue Deck long-term parking lots even have complimentary electric vehicle charging.
People who want to go into the airport with their loved ones and would rather not bother with the garage can make use of valet services at McNamara Terminal.
If you’re driving your own car to the airport, you’ll pay $26 a day to leave it in the garage. So, as with most airports, it’s best to have someone else bring you there and drop you off.
Those visiting Detroit can rent cars from the airport when they fly in, and returning them is a matter of making one’s way back to the same place they picked the car up from. The lots are at the northeast corner of the airport, and a shuttle bus brings you to the terminal.
Keep in mind that if you rent a car from a company in a different location, you won’t be able to return the car at the airport.
3. Enjoy an Airport Shuttle to DTW Airport
If you have more money to spend and want a more comfortable ride with less COVID-19 risk from the public, try an airport car service. Because you and your group—if you have one—are the only passengers, you don’t have to worry about other people pulling their masks down or causing delays.
Taking a private airport shuttle is an added cost, but it can be less expensive than some other car transport options. Paying for an airport car service is extra reasonable when the alternative is leaving your car at DTW for multiple days.
If DTW’s valet services are appealing and you’ll be at the airport for multiple hours, many airport shuttles provide you the same comforts at a sometimes competitive price. The added benefit is that you don’t need to worry about someone else driving your car.
These airport car services aren’t to be confused with the DTW airport shuttle options that take travelers between the two terminals. Those shuttles will not pick you up from elsewhere and bring you to the airport.
4. Employ a Taxi to DTW Airport
If you need to get to DTW fast and can’t arrange a car service, consider taking a less formal taxi. Ubers, Lyfts, and other rideshare services are popular these days, but traditional taxis maintain appeal.
Taxi drivers are often more accountable than rideshare app drivers as their vehicles are well-monitored by the companies they work for. Uber and the other apps have guidelines but aren’t as good as taxi companies are at enforcing them.
On the flip side, most taxi companies are also more accountable to their drivers than Lyft and Uber are to theirs. Because the drivers are actual employees, not freelance gig workers, they’re able to participate in collective bargaining. This is good for you because companies held accountable have to keep cars well-maintained and keep their drivers happy—and a happy driver makes for safe and happy passengers.
Taxi drivers in the area are also well-acquainted with airport procedures and all the best shortcuts to DTW. Many rideshare app drivers know the way to the airport from all over town, too, but you aren’t assured of that. Taxi companies, on the other hand, train their drivers.
5. Travel to DTW With Rideshare Companies
If you can’t get a taxi or would rather not take one for whatever reason, rideshare is still a popular way to travel to Detroit Metropolitan Airport.
If you’re being picked up from the airport by a rideshare driver, they need to get you from the designated rideshare parking areas on Level 1 of the Big Blue Deck and Level 4 of McNamara Parking Garage. Traveling to DTW in a Uber, Lyft, or another rideshare vehicle is like being dropped off by any other vehicle service.
Excel in Travel and in Every Other Area of Life
With these tips on how to get to DTW airport, you’re prepared to get there with time to spare. While waiting for your flight or for someone else’s flight to come in, take a moment to expand your knowledge.
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