Clara Grudberg and Kirsten Garino
The Georgetown University Transportation Shuttle (GUTS) is the best thing to know about when you decide to take the Metro out to Washington, D.C.’s museums or when you decide you’re not walking all the way back from Trader Joe’s in the cold. Free for all Georgetown students and staff, GUTS buses run through several loops around the District and northern Virginia from 5 a.m. to midnight daily. Key routes to know: You can reach the two closest Metrorail stations on the Rosslyn and Dupont Circle loops, and the Wisconsin Avenue loop runs north into the Georgetown neighborhood.
The Metrorail system, run by the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, can take you all around the District and out into the suburbs of Virginia and Maryland. Taking the train is a convenient option for navigating the city, but it can be a bit tough to reach from campus. The closest stations that serve the Orange, Blue and Silver lines are Foggy Bottom-GWU and Rosslyn, which are both about 30-minute walks from campus. If you want to hop onto the Red line, head over to the Dupont Circle station, which is about 30 minutes by foot and 10 minutes on the GUTS bus. You can purchase a SmarTrip fare card in any Metro station. To refill your card efficiently, download the SmarTrip mobile app, which allows you to pay from your device. Cost per trip depends on length, which you can calculate with WMATA’s Trip Planner — pro tip: To sound like a local, pronounce WMATA “wuh-mah-tah.”
The Metrobus is the underappreciated cousin of the Metrorail — also run by WMATA, the Metrobus will take you all around D.C. and even stops at Georgetown’s front gates on its G2 route, which then runs across Dupont Circle to Howard University. Other routes near campus are the D2 (Glover Park-Dupont Circle) and D6 (Sibley Hospital-Stadium-Armory) lines. You can ride the Metrobus for $2 — or for cheaper, with an unlimited pass — but make sure to load your funds onto a SmarTrip card or a mobile device — the bus drivers do not carry cash!
D.C. Circulator buses are convenient ways to get to popular neighborhoods outside of Georgetown. Still operated by WMATA, the Circulator only has a $1 trip fare, less than Metrobus lines. You can catch the Union Station-bound Circulator on Wisconsin Avenue and N Street, in front of the Georgetown Inn. The route will take you through downtown D.C. via K Street, and is a good option for anyone planning to catch an Amtrak train at Union. The Dupont Circle-Rosslyn loop runs along M Street, and you can catch it in both directions to take a quick trip to either neighborhood.
Bikes and Scooters
Bikes: If you want to stay active and be green while traveling, consider biking D.C. — with programs like Capital Bikeshare, you won’t have to bring a bike from home. You can pick up or leave a bike at any of Capital Bikeshare’s over 500 stations, including one at Georgetown’s front gates and another at the northern edge of campus. Rideshare companies like Uber and Lyft have also recently introduced electric bikes around D.C., but if you plan on biking extensively, taking advantage of Capital Bikeshare’s student discount is the way to go: You can get a membership with unlimited rides for just $25 annually.
Scooters: D.C. introduced its first fleet of electric scooters in 2018, and they’ve taken the city by storm — there are now about 7,000 scooters in the District! Zipping down to the Georgetown Waterfront or monuments can be a fun way to see what the hype is all about. To rent a scooter, you’ll have to pay a per-minute charge on the app of whatever company owns the scooter you’re looking to rent, like Lime or Bird. And the best part is that scooters come with a built-in kickstand, so you actually don’t have to toss them in the middle of the sidewalk when you’re done riding!
Although the Streetcar doesn’t run in Georgetown or the surrounding neighborhoods, it’s a handy option if you happen to be in northeast D.C. — or if you just want to try riding in a streetcar. The line runs along the H Street Corridor from Union Station to Oklahoma Avenue. An added bonus — the Streetcar is free!
City Cruises by Hornblower offers a water taxi service that docks at the Georgetown Waterfront if you are interested in commuting via the Potomac. This ferry stops at The Wharf in Southwest, an area featuring restaurants, an open-air fish market and popular music venue The Anthem. The boat also travels further down the river to Old Town Alexandria, Va., and the National Harbor in Maryland. Purchase a ticket for $20 online in advance or at a ticket booth.