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Dulles Airport (IAD) to Washington DC

Updated: August 14, 2023

This post compares the different ways of reaching Washington, DC from Dulles Airport.

We have ordered the options from cheapest to most expensive with some analysis of each option to help you choose which one is best for you.

Since you are coming to the nation's capital, try one of our walking tours and make sure you know the things to do in DC.


The Silver Line Metro now connects Dulles International Airport to Arlington, VA, and downtown DC.

You no longer need to take the Silver Line Express Bus to connect to the DC Metro system!!

We have a whole post on how to take the Metro between IAD Dulles and downtown Washington, DC

Pros: Low cost and isn't affected by traffic, particularly during rush hour.

Cons: Not a great option if you have lots of luggage.


There are a number of companies offering van service from Dulles Airport to points in and around Washington, DC.

Most are shared services, so how long your journey will take will be dependent on the order of passenger destinations.

Some offer direct service for an additional fee.

All shuttle services pick up outside of arrivals at the main terminal building.

GO Airport Shuttle

GO Airport Shuttle offers 24/7 airport pick up and drop off with private cars and shared vans - you can even get a limousine!

With upfront pricing, you'll know how much your trip will be when you book. You can also request a car seat or a kennel.

Pros: Door-to-door service.  Good choice for those with luggage or who want direct service for a lower cost. Offers car seat or kennel if traveling with children and pets.

Cons: Can take a lot of time depending on traffic and how many others in the van get dropped off before you.

Super Shuttle Dulles Airport

Super Shuttle

Super Shuttle offers rides from airports around the world.

It’s difficult to say for sure what the fare will be, as it depends on where you are going to and how many people are in your party.

On their website, fares into the city start at $19 for the first passenger and $10 for each additional passenger, so the total cost depends on the number in your party.

To get a better idea, you can use their fare estimator.

They also offer direct express service (1-3 people) for $60. This is a private vehicle for you and your family.

Pros: Door-to-door service. Good choice for those with luggage or who want direct service for a lower cost.

Cons: Can take a lot of time depending on traffic and how many others in the van get dropped off before you.

TIP: If you are alone, then you might consider Viator, which offers single-passenger tickets for Super Shuttle for $25, but additional passengers have no discount. The service has been fluctuating due to COVID so make sure to check their website for updated information.


Whether you prefer traditional taxi services or an Uber or Lyft ride, there are multiple car services you can find to and from the airport.


Washington Flyer Taxi operates exclusively out of Dulles International Airport.

There are no reservations required and taxis are available 24/7 every day of the year.

Rates into the district are calculated by a meter, and you should expect to pay between $60 – $80 for most destinations in and around downtown DC, making this one of the more expensive options.

Their website has a map estimating fares in the area. Payment is easy as Washington Flyer Taxi accepts cash, credit cards, and airline vouchers.

To find the taxis, follow signs towards Ground Transportation to Doors 2 or 6, where you can find a representative 24 hours a day.

Pros: Fastest and most convenient.

Cons: One of the most expensive options (if you are traveling solo)

TIP: If you are traveling solo, ask other waiting taxi passengers to share a cab.

UBER / Lyft

Uber and Lyft are taxi alternatives that provide rides on demand through an app.

It’s cashless so the ride is automatically charged to the card on file in the app, which is convenient especially when you’re trying to wrangle luggage.

There are many options within the app, uberX is the basic option, but they also have uberXL if your group is large or you have many bags.


UberBLACK has high-end luxury sedans.

Generally, Uber works out cheaper than a taxi, uberX into the city is estimated to be between $35-$55 (you can check an estimate for your specific trip here).

For more information on Uber, you can see our post here.

Pros: Convenient app, different options to suit you

Cons: Not a good option at rush hour

TIP: Looking for a ride? Download the Lyft App and use Promo Code DCBFRIDES for $10 OFF your first ride with Lyft.

Car Service

If you are looking for peace of mind that you will be picked up from the airport on time and taken to your destination in a timely manner, DCAcar car service is an excellent choice.

You can make the reservation ahead of time and give the company your flight information so they know whether you’ll be early or late.

At Dulles, your driver will meet you at baggage claim and help you with your luggage.

You can get a rate estimation and make a booking with this highly-rated car service company here.

Pros: Luxury personalized service

Cons: Costly - but DCByFoot guests get a 5% discount by using the promo code: dcbyfoot


Most of the major car rental companies operate out of Dulles Airport.

This is a great option if you are traveling with children who require car seats, which can make using taxis or public transport challenging.

It also gives you the freedom to visit many sites around DC which are a little more difficult to reach by public transport, such as George Washington’s Mount Vernon (see our guide to Mount Vernon here) or even a day trip to Gettysburg.

You can use to compare prices.

Pros: Gives you freedom on your trip, great if you have young children

Cons: Navigation and parking can be difficult and expensive in downtown DC


Since Dulles is not as convenient to Washington DC as DCA, you'll need a pretty long layover to make it worth your while to come into DC.

Even if you take the fastest form of transport, you should still budget an hour to and from downtown DC from Dulles, potentially more if during rush hour, plus time to check back in.

If you're short on time, the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum has an annex called Udvar-Hazy just outside the airport. It is one of our favorite museums!

Read more about what to do and how to get there.

If you have a good chunk of time, check out our DC in Day post about how to get the most out of your visit.


About The Author

Canden Arciniega

Follow On Instagram | I'm a historian & tour guide in Washington DC with 4 published books about the city. I have written for HuffPost Travel and have been featured in the Washington Post, WTOP, and numerous other DC papers. I've also been interviewed by the BBC, NPR, Travel Channel and Discovery Family Channel. I am the producer of the podcast, Tour Guide Tell All. I am an authority on D.C. history, and have led tours in the city since 2011. I currently resides in DC, but have also lived in London and South Korea, and have traveled to over 28 countries and every US State but Hawaii. I homeschool my 2 children by exploring the plethora of museums in DC. Read More...
Updated: August 14th, 2023
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