Heading up to SF for meetings? I have found two very helpful tips to avoid the hassle and cost of driving and parking in downtown SF.
1) Take BART. The Daly City BART station is a mere 15′ish minutes away from the Embarcadero BART station. You can take BART from Milbrae but it more than doubles the time into SF so I drive an extra 10 minutes and park at the Daly City station. It’s about $5 roundtrip and parking is $2 but after 3:00pm the parking is free. The Powell St. station has an entrance to the Westfield Mall, which when you walk through the mall to the other side is a block away from Moscone.
Savings: $30 for parking downtown, gas.
2) Take your car over to The Bay Detail on Pier 38 (True Ventures is here, home to Gigaom among others). Mario will handwash and clean the inside of your car for $30 or fully detail it for $250 (includes a clay bar treatment). From Pier 38 it’s a quick Muni ride away from pretty much anywhere in the downtown area and you don’t have to pay for parking and I would add that it’s probably quicker. I’d rather spend the $30 getting my car washed than having it sit in some parking lot for the day.
Savings: $30 for parking downtown
Cost: $30 for carwash, $1.50 or $3.00 for Muni ticket