The following airports are served by commercial airlines. In addition there are many general aviation airports in the region.
San Francisco International Airport (SFO), the largest and oldest airport in the region, and a major international hub airport in California second only to LAX (Los Angeles).
Oakland International Airport (OAK), the second largest airport in the region and a hub for mostly low-cost domestic flights. Oakland International is the base airport for the rapidly growing Southwest Airlines.
Mineta San Jose International Airport (SJC), a minor hub for American and Southwest Airlines. Construction is currently ongoing for a new concourse. Website: www.sjc.org
Charles M. Schulz - Sonoma County Airport (STS), a minor airport in Santa Rosa, it is served by Horizon Air. Website: www.sonomacountyairport.org
Oakland and San Jose tend to offer more discount airline flights, while San Francisco Airport attracts more international flights and can be more convenient for those staying in the city. Private pilots should consider Oakland rather than SFO, as the separate general aviation field there is more accommodating to light aircraft.
Public Air Transportation
San Francisco and Oakland Airports are connected to downtown SF by the Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) system (Oakland Airport indirectly through an AirBART shuttle buses). Passengers arriving in SFO can walk or take a free airport shuttle (AirTrain) to the BART station. The BART ride from SFO to San Francisco runs every 15 or 20 minutes depending on the time of day. BART trains run through San Bruno, South San Francisco, Colma and Daly City before reaching the city of San Francisco, from where the SF MUNI can take travelers anywhere in the city.
From Oakland Airport, passengers take a 10-15 min "AirBart" bus ride to the BART station. The bus runs every 10 minutes during the day. BART trains from there run directly to San Francisco.
The San Jose airport is served by a free shuttle to both VTA Light Rail and Caltrain called the Airport Flyer - VTA Route #10. Passengers arriving in San Jose can use Caltrain to reach San Francisco directly. Caltrain also links with the BART system at the Millbrae intermodal station. Be aware that public transportation within the South Bay is not as developed as around San Francisco. Also, when riding Caltrain, be sure to buy your ticket at the automated station kiosks before boarding, as they are not sold on the trains.