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Brightline offers free and cheap rides to and from stations

Brightline riders can take advantage of a new service: free or cheap shuttle rides to and from the train’s South Florida stations.

The service called Brightline+  offers riders service from their home, office or event venue to the Brightline station. Here is how it works:

How to book a ride to the station

Within 5 miles of the station, Brightline will pick up standard, or Smart, service passengers who book the Brightline+ service in advance for a flat fee of $5 per person for a shared ride to or from the station.

Bright yellow Telsa parked in from of a Brightline station.

Brightline Premium passengers can advance book a free Tesla ride to or from within 5 miles of the station. Photo: Carolyn DiPaolo

Premium fare passengers can get a complimentary ride from within 5 miles when they book a private Tesla.

How to ride and save on South Florida’s Brightline trains

Request the ride when you book a fare online or in the Brightline app. You can choose how much time you want to have at the station before the train departs: 15 minutes, 30 minutes or more.

Those reserved rides can fill up so secure that reservation as soon as you know your plans. Be sure to book a scheduled ride at least two hours before the train.

On the day of your trip, Brightline+ passengers will receive a text reminder about their ride to the station. Then, when the driver is on the way to your location, you will receive another text with a link that allows you to track his or her route to you. It’s like the map in a Lyft or Uber app. You will also be able to call the driver if necessary.

While I was on a Brightline excursion in August 2022, the shuttle driver told me his guidance is to wait eight minutes for a passenger to come out to the shuttle before moving on. Bring some cash to tip your driver.

Brightline’s shuttle fleet includes handicapped-accessible vehicles.

Tri-Rail offers free shuttle, taxi and Uber rides to and from most stations.

Walk-up rides to ballgames, concerts

Brightline also offers all of its passengers free walk-up shuttle rides from its stations to select locations. No reservation is required, and rides are first-come, first-served. I took Brightline this year to Miami to see a Wednesday afternoon Padres-Marlins game. Waiting at the Miami Brightline station was a massive bus that easily accommodated me and my fellow baseball fans.

Passengers boarding large bus.

A cool, comfortable motor coach waits to whisk Brightline passengers to Marlins Park. Photo: Carolyn DiPaolo

The staff was also super-helpful in passing out a small paper copy of a map that showed where I needed to be after the game to catch the bus back to the station. During Marlins home games, shuttles start their return to the Miami station two hours after the first pitch and depart every 30 minutes until 30 minutes after the last pitch.

Brightline provides walk-up shuttle service to these attractions and venues:

Miami station to:

Miami Beach

The Port of Miami

Miami International Airport

Miami Marlins home games

Miami skyline with elevated train in foreground.

Brightine pulls out of the Miami station. Photo courtesy of Brightline.


Fort Lauderdale station to:

The beach

Port Everglades

Fort Lauderdale International Airport

West Palm Beach station to:

Palm Beach International Airport

Important note: A Brightline shuttle is available to take you to MIA, FLL or PBIA, but the train line does not yet have shuttle service to pick you up from the airports and take you to its stations. You will need to arrange other transportation when you want to catch a train after arriving at a South Florida airport.

Were you unable to book a shared ride from the station, are you going someplace besides the airport, a ballgame or the beach? Look for the zippy Brightline-branded EV golf-carts when you leave the station. The driver can give you a free ride to locations within 3 miles of the station.

Brightline is also leveraging the wide variety of things to do in South Florida to draw event goers to its trains. For example: It offers a walk-up free ride to select concerts at the iThink Financial Amphitheater 10 miles west of the West Palm Beach Station.

Concert shuttles depart from the West Palm Beach Station five minutes after trains arrive at the station and drop you off at the front entrance of the venue. Shuttles to the shows run from 6:05 pm to 8:05 pm, according to Brightline’s website. Look for the Concert Shuttle icon during booking to find a train and shuttle.

“Those are really great because when you are coming down by car for an event, the traffic is terrible, the parking is expensive, and you have to walk a long distance,” Alfonso said.

When the Miami Heat are playing, Brightline typically offers a Buzzer Beater train to transport riders home after the final play.

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