My Experience With the Washington Metro to Dulles Airport: More Details
W hen reiterating my trip report — that I rode on Megabus from Atlanta to Washington, D.C.; stayed over a weekend; then took the Red Line of the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority Metro to the Metro Center station to catch the Silver Line to the end, which is the Wiehle-Reston East station; then I was a passenger on the Dulles International Airport Silver Line Express — I once again realized that when it comes to travel, there is something seriously wrong with me.
I do not intend to change that. Nope. Not ever. As long as I am able to walk freely, breath easily and stay healthy, I want to enjoy travel as much as I can — and I enjoy the looks on the faces of people when they ask where and how I travel.
When the train of the Silver Line of the Washington Metro emerged outside from the tunnel on that wet and soggy morning, there was Interstate 66 — the same Interstate 66 which traffic was at an inexplicably complete standstill when I was a passenger on Megabus. Oh, sure — now it is moving, I thought to myself. Fortunately, the rain had already stopped by the time I began my journey to the airport. I like the rain — just not when I am traveling.
The Silver Line train switched from Interstate 66 to the middle of Virginia State Highway 267, which is also known as the Dulles Access Road or the Dulles Toll Road. The tracks then left the highway; and one of the stops was in McLean, Virginia.
McLean. Is that not where Hilton Worldwide is headquartered?
Sure enough, I turned around and there it was — drenched; but there it was.
I am typing this article from the Hilton Nairobi, by the way. I intend to give a report on this hotel property in a future article. Meanwhile, I am attempting to catch up on reports of this trip which I missed; so please bear with me.
Of course, the bus had just left moments before I arrived; so I had to wait at least 15 minutes for the next bus — which was not a problem, as I had plenty of time to catch my flight. The Dulles International Airport Silver Line Express operates every 20 minutes and cost five dollars.
The entire trip from Medical Center station to the airport was $8.60 total with a Smartrip card during off-peak hours, which saved me a dollar — otherwise, the trip would have cost me $9.60.
I borrowed the Smartrip card and will return it to its rightful owner — who loaned me a spare — when I am back in the Washington, D.C. area. Because I am not a resident of the Washington, D.C. area and do not intend to use the transit system often, I did not bother to purchase my own Smartrip card.
As has been suggested to me by readers of The Gate, the preferable way to have traveled would have probably been using the Metrobus route 5A instead. It would have cost only seven dollars using a Smartrip card and I would not have had to switch from one mode of transportation to another; but I was given a ride to the Medical Center station that morning — and beggars cannot be choosers, as the old saying goes. I was grateful for the ride.
It was a pleasant trip overall; but it will certainly be a faster trip — and hopefully less expensive, but I doubt it — when the Silver Line is finally completed, which is expected to occur in 2018.
All photographs ©2015 by Brian Cohen.