There are several options for getting around Seattle without a car. Seattle offers a variety of options including buses, light rail, monorail, streetcar, ferries and water taxis that can be used to travel.
Bus Website: metro.kingcounty.gov
There are two bus service providers in Seattle: King County Metro and Sound Transit. Sound Transit generally provides longer distance, commuter focused buses, while Metro provides most bus service in the City of Seattle. As a visitor, you will mostly be using Metro buses.
Link Light Rail/Sound Transit Website: soundtransit.org
The Central Link operates between Seatac International Airport and Westlake Station in downtown Seattle, making 11 stops along the way. For solo travelers, the Link light rail is a very inexpensive way to get from the airport to downtown Seattle ($2.75/per person). Link trains run every 7.5, 10 or 15 minutes depending on the time of day.
Monorail Website: seattlemonorail.com.
Another option within downtown Seattle is the historic Monorail to Seattle Center, site of the 1962 World’s Fair and the landmark Space Needle. The Seattle Center Monorail operates daily, with departures every 10 minutes from the station at Seattle Center, (across from the Space Needle) and from Westlake Center Mall, at Fifth and Pine Street. Each trip takes two minutes to cover the 1 mile route. Each train can carry up to 450 passengers per trip. The Monorail provides two-train service during special events and activities, with departures every five minutes or less.
Seattle Streetcar - South Lake Union Line Website: seattlestreetcar.org
The Seattle Streetcar - Southlake Union Line is a 2.6 mile route that runs from Westlake Center to the South Lake Union Neighborhood. This is a good option for travel to/from hotels in the South Lake Union area, the new Lake Union Waterfront Park, the Center for Wooden Boats or the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center.
Washington State Ferries Website: http://www.wsdot.wa.gov/ferries/
From downtown Seattle, you can also take advantage of the Washington State Ferry System and take a scenic ferry ride to Bainbridge Island or Bremerton. Washington State ferries take both cars and walk-on passengers. From downtown, the ferries leave from Colman Dock at pier 52, at the end of Madison Street.
Water Taxi Website: http://www.kingcounty.gov/transportation/kcdot/WaterTaxi.aspx
King County Water Taxi operates passenger ferries to West Seattle and Vashon Island from downtown, leaving from pier 50 just south of the State ferry dock at the end of Yesler Way.
Paying your Fare
Cash is accepted throughout the public transit system and by the Seattle Monorail. Exact change is required for buses. On Metro buses, if receive a paper transfer, it is valid only on metro buses and the Seattle Streetcar until the time shown on the transfer that day. The transfer is not accepted on Sound Transit, Washington State Ferries, the Water Taxi or the Monorail.