Airplane : After 9/11, the security precautions at airports in the USA and thus also in California were tightened. Usually the luggage is screened with high-dose X-rays, you have to take off your shoes and, if you have a laptop with you, show it. The state Transport Security Administration (TSA) constantly updates the list of items that are not allowed on board.
Due to the increase in baggage theft by airport staff, the TSA allows special locks as long as they can be safely opened and closed again by TSA staff with special tools.
According to ehotelat, when traveling to California from Europe, your first landing will likely be Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) or San Francisco International Airport (SFO). Both airports are also served by domestic flights, but in some cases it may be cheaper and more time-saving to fly from one of the following regional airports.
Arcata / Eureka Airport (ACV), Bob Hope Airport (BUR) in Burbank, Los Angeles County, John Wayne Airport (SNA) in Santa Ana, Orange County, Long Beach Airport (LGB) in southern LA County, McCarran Internation (LAS) in Las Vegas, Monterey Peninsula Airport (MRY), Oakland International (OAK) near San Francisco, Ontario International Airport (ONT) in Riverside County, east of Los Angeles, Palm Springs International Airport (PSP), Redding (RDD), Reno-Tahoe International (RNO), Sacramento International Airport (SMF), San Diego International Airport (SAN), San Jose International (SJC), San Luis Obispo County Airport (SBP), and Santa Barbara Municipal Airport (SBA).
AirTran, Alaska Air / Horizon Air, America West, American Airlines, Continental, Delta, Frontier Air, Jet Blue, Midwest Airlines, Northwest Airlines, Southwest, United Airlines, US Airways.
International airlines flying to California are Aer Lingus, Aeromexico, Air Canada, Air France, Air New Zealand, Alitalia, ANA, Asiana, ATA, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, EVA Air, Iberia, Japan Airlines, KLM, Lufthansa, Mexicana, Philippine Airlines, Qantas, Singapore Airlines, Virgin Atlantic, WestJet.
Tokyo, Seoul, Bangkok and Hong Kong are among the Asian cities that have good flight connections to Los Angeles and San Francisco. Many flights go through Honolulu, but stopovers usually cost extra.
Australia and New Zealand
The dominant companies in this region are Air New Zealand and Qantas, but United Airlines, US Airways and American Airlines offer flights. Flights from New Zealand to San Francisco often go via Japan.
Many airlines, including Air France, Alitalia, Delta, Lufthansa, Iberia, United and US Airways, have direct flights from major European cities to Los Angeles and San Francisco. Many other international and US airlines fly to a US city (usually Chicago or Miami) for domestic flights to California.
There is enormous competition in air travel between the UK and the US. American Airlines, British Airways, Continental, United Airlines and Virgin Atlantic offer direct flights from London to Los Angeles. With the exception of American Airlines, all of them also fly non-stop to San Francisco.
Aeromexico and Mexicana have frequent flights to Los Angeles from Mexican cities. Aeroméxico also has flights to Ontario and San Diego. From Mexico, San Francisco is mainly served by United Airlines and Mexicana. Flights to Tijuana (near San Diego) are often cheaper.
Domestic flight prices to California vary greatly (depending on the time of year, day of the week, length of stay and the flexibility of the ticket). Low-cost airlines such as AirTran, America West, Frontier Air, Jet Blue and Southwest are increasingly taking market share from the major airlines such as United Airlines, American Airlines and US Airways.
Border Crossings : The San Ysidro crossing on the US-Mexican border between San Diego and Tijuana is the world’s most heavily used border crossing. Traveling to Mexico is usually not a problem, but there is almost always a long wait on the way to the USA, especially if you are traveling in your own vehicle. If you are not a US citizen or permanent resident, be sure to have all the required documents with you.
Bus: There are many bus companies in Mexico (including Elite, Autobuses ABC and Estrellas del Pacifico) with trips to Tijuana or Mexicali, from where you can take Greyhound buses to California. Greyhound Canada operates the largest bus route network in Canada. The company is affiliated with the US Greyhound company, at the border you usually have to change between the different Greyhound buses.
Greyhound has recently cut its service but is still the dominant bus route in the US. The company serves around 2000 destinations in the USA, including numerous locations in California, for example, Flagstaff – Albuquerque 3 times a day, Phoenix – Los Angeles up to 8 times a day, Portland – Sacramento up to 6 times a day, Salt Lake City – San Francisco 3 times a day.
Train: Amtrak operates a daily service between Vancouver, Canada and Seattle, from where you can take the Coast Starlight to numerous destinations in California. There are no trains between California and Mexico.
Amtrak operates a fairly extensive railroad system across the United States. The trains are comfortable, but quite slow. California is served by four Interstate Amtrak trains:
California Zephyr daily between Chicago and Emeryville (near San Francisco), via Omaha, Denver and Salt Lake City.
Coast Starlight sails daily along the west coast from Seattle to Los Angeles, via Portland, Sacramento and Oakland.
Southwest Chief operates daily between Chicago and Los Angeles, through Kansas City, Albuquerque and Flagstaff.
Sunset Limited operates three times a week between Orlando and Los Angeles, via Tucson, El Paso and New Orleans.
Car: If you are driving to California from Canada or Mexico, bring registration papers, liability insurance, and driver’s license. Some California car rental companies allow their vehicles to be driven in Mexico, but there is a noticeable surcharge (around $ 25 per day).
The major highways that connect California with the rest of the United States are I-10 from Albuquerque and Phoenix, I-15 from Las Vegas, I-80 from Salt Lake City, and I-5 from Portland and Seattle. The quality of the roads is generally very good.