San Antonio and Austin are two of the most popular cities in Texas, and they are only 80 miles apart. While you can fly or take a bus from San Antonio to Austin, many people prefer driving because it gives them the freedom to explore the area at their own pace. In this article, we will cover everything you need to know about driving from San Antonio to Austin, including the distance, drive hours, stops along the way, and the best driving route.
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San Antonio to Austin Drive
Driving from San Antonio to Austin will take you approximately 1 hour and 41 minutes if you take the most direct route, which is to drive on I-35 N. This route will take you through the Texas Hill Country and past small towns like New Braunfels and San Marcos.
The distance between San Antonio and Austin is 79.5 miles (127.9 km), and there are no tolls on this route. However, be aware that there can be heavy traffic during peak hours, especially on weekdays.
San Antonio to Austin: How far is San Antonio from Austin?
San Antonio is located 79.5 miles (127.9 km) south of Austin. If you’re driving from San Antonio to Austin, you can take I-35 N, which is the most direct route.
How far is San Antonio to Austin by plane?
The flight distance between San Antonio to Austin is approximately 66 miles (106.2 km)
If you’re looking to save time, you can fly from San Antonio International Airport (SAT) to Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS), which takes approximately 45 minutes. Several airlines offer flights between these two cities, including Southwest, United, and Delta.
What is the time difference between San Antonio and Austin?
San Antonio and Austin are both in the Central Time Zone, so there is no time difference between these two cities.
The Cheapest Way to Get from San Antonio to Austin
If you’re on a tight budget, the cheapest way to get from San Antonio to Austin is to take the bus. Greyhound and Megabus both offer regular service between these two cities, with prices starting at $12 if you book in advance.
Another affordable option is to carpool using a service like Zimride or Craigslist. You can split the cost of gas and tolls with other travelers, making this a great option if you’re traveling alone or with a small group.
San Antonio to Austin Drive – Rent A Car In San Antonio
If you prefer to drive yourself, you can rent a car in San Antonio and drive to Austin. There are several rental car companies to choose from, including:
- Alamo: starts at $80 per day
- Avis: starts at $85 per day
- Budget: starts at $90 per day
- Enterprise: starts at $85 per day
- Hertz: starts at $90 per day
- National: starts at $80 per day
Prices vary depending on the type of car you rent and the length of your rental period.
Gas prices in Texas are generally lower than the national average, so you can expect to pay around $3.7 per gallon for regular unleaded gasoline. The cost of a full tank will depend on the size of your car, but you can expect to spend around $40-$55 for a mid-sized car.
San Antonio to Austin – Driving Stops Along The Way
If you have some extra time, there are several interesting stops you can make along the way from San Antonio to Austin:
San Marcos Premium Outlets
Located just off I-35 in San Marcos, the San Marcos Premium Outlets is a shopper’s paradise. With more than 140 stores, including designer brands like Michael Kors, Kate Spade, and Tory Burch, you’re sure to find something you love.
Gruene Historic District
If you’re a fan of historic architecture, don’t miss the chance to visit the Gruene Historic District. This small town,
located just outside of New Braunfels, is home to several well-preserved buildings from the late 19th and early 20th centuries. You can also grab a bite to eat at one of the many restaurants in the area, or catch a show at the famous Gruene Hall, which has been hosting live music since 1878.
Inner Space Cavern
Located just north of San Marcos, the Inner Space Cavern is a must-see for anyone interested in natural history. The cave was discovered in 1963 by a Texas Highway Department core drilling team and is home to a variety of unique geological formations.
Texas Hill Country Wineries
If you’re a wine enthusiast, be sure to make a stop at one of the many wineries in the Texas Hill Country. The region is home to more than 50 wineries, many of which offer tastings and tours. Some popular options include Becker Vineyards, Pedernales Cellars, and Fall Creek Vineyards.
San Antonio to Austin – Best Driving Route
The most direct route from San Antonio to Austin is to take I-35 N, which will take you through the Texas Hill Country and past several small towns. However, if you’re looking for a more scenic route, consider taking the backroads through the Hill Country.
One popular option is to take Highway 281 N out of San Antonio, which will take you through several charming towns like Blanco, Johnson City, and Marble Falls. From there, you can take Highway 71 E into Austin. This route is longer than taking I-35, but it offers beautiful scenery and plenty of opportunities to stop and explore along the way.
In conclusion, driving from San Antonio to Austin is a quick and easy way to explore the beautiful Texas Hill Country and two of the state’s most popular cities. Whether you’re looking for a scenic drive or want to make some stops along the way, there are plenty of options to suit every traveler’s preferences. With no tolls on the most direct route and affordable transportation options like buses and carpooling available, it’s a budget-friendly way to travel. So, pack your bags, hit the road, and get ready for an unforgettable journey through the heart of Texas.