There are 9 ways to get from Chicago to San Francisco by plane, train, bus or car

Select an option below to see step-by-step directions and to compare ticket prices and travel times in Rome2rio's travel planner.

Recommended option

Fly Chicago Midway to San Francisco  •  6 h 34 min

  1. Fly from Chicago Midway (MDW) to San Francisco (SFO) MDW - SFO

$148 - $403

Cheapest option

Fly Chicago O'Hare to San Francisco  •  6 h 47 min

  1. Fly from Chicago O'Hare (ORD) to San Francisco (SFO) ORD - SFO

$78 - $324

7 alternative options

Fly Chicago Midway to Oakland  •  6 h 39 min

  1. Fly from Chicago Midway (MDW) to Oakland (OAK) MDW - OAK

$152 - $615

Fly Chicago O'Hare to Oakland  •  7 h 12 min

  1. Fly from Chicago O'Hare (ORD) to Oakland (OAK) ORD - OAK

$112 - $396

Fly Chicago O'Hare to San Jose, Caltrain  •  8 h 22 min

  1. Fly from Chicago O'Hare (ORD) to San Jose (SJC) ORD - SJC
  2. Take the Caltrain from Santa Clara Caltrain to San Francisco Caltrain

$153 - $469

Fly Chicago Midway to San Jose, Caltrain  •  8 h 17 min

  1. Fly from Chicago Midway (MDW) to San Jose (SJC) MDW - SJC
  2. Take the Caltrain from Santa Clara Caltrain to San Francisco Caltrain

$183 - $438

Train  •  2 days 4 h

  1. Take the train from Chicago Union Station to Richmond Transit Station California Zephyr

$299 - $883

Bus  •  2 days 8 h

  1. Take the bus from Chicago, Il to Los Angeles, Ca 1351
  2. Take the bus from Los Angeles, Ca to San Francisco, Ca 6860 / ...

$243 - $609

Drive  •  32 h 39 min

  1. Drive from Chicago to San Francisco 2144.4 miles

$210 - $310

Questions & Answers

The cheapest way to get from Chicago to San Francisco is to fly which costs $75 - $330 and takes 6 h 47 min.

More details

The quickest way to get from Chicago to San Francisco is to fly which costs $140 - $410 and takes 6 h 34 min.

More details

No, there is no direct bus from Chicago to San Francisco. However, there are services departing from Chicago, Il and arriving at San Francisco, Ca via Los Angeles, Ca. The journey, including transfers, takes approximately 2 days 8 h.

More details

The distance between Chicago and San Francisco is 1866 miles. The road distance is 2144.4 miles.

Get driving directions

The best way to get from Chicago to San Francisco without a car is to train which takes 2 days 4 h and costs $290 - $900.

More details

It takes approximately 6 h 34 min to get from Chicago to San Francisco, including transfers.

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Chicago to San Francisco bus services, operated by Greyhound USA, depart from Chicago, Il station.

More details

The best way to get from Chicago to San Francisco is to fly which takes 6 h 34 min and costs $140 - $410. Alternatively, you can train, which costs $290 - $900 and takes 2 days 4 h, you could also bus, which costs $240 - $650 and takes 2 days 8 h.

Mode details

Map of how to get from Chicago to San Francisco.
Launch map view
  • Distance: 1865.7 miles
  • Duration: 6 h 34 min

What companies run services between Chicago, IL, USA and San Francisco, CA, USA?

Southwest Airlines and Delta fly from Chicago to San Francisco hourly. Alternatively, Amtrak operates a train from Chicago to San Francisco once daily. Tickets cost $290 - $900 and the journey takes 2 days 3 h.

Airlines
Southwest Airlines
Website
southwest.com
Flights from Chicago Midway to San Francisco
Ave. Duration
4 h 35 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$240 - $800
Flights from Chicago Midway to San Francisco via Denver
Ave. Duration
6 h 13 min
When
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday
Estimated price
$240 - $800
Flights from Chicago Midway to San Francisco via Las Vegas
Ave. Duration
6 h 23 min
When
Monday to Saturday
Estimated price
$240 - $800
Flights from Chicago Midway to San Francisco via Los Angeles
Ave. Duration
6 h 30 min
When
Sunday
Estimated price
$240 - $800
Flights from Chicago Midway to Oakland
Ave. Duration
4 h 30 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$240 - $700
Flights from Chicago Midway to Oakland via Las Vegas
Ave. Duration
6 h 10 min
When
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday
Estimated price
$240 - $700
Flights from Chicago Midway to Oakland via Denver
Ave. Duration
6 h 11 min
When
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday
Estimated price
$240 - $700
Flights from Chicago Midway to Oakland via San Diego
Ave. Duration
6 h 25 min
When
Saturday and Sunday
Estimated price
$240 - $700
Flights from Chicago Midway to San Jose
Ave. Duration
4 h 35 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$270 - $650
Flights from Chicago Midway to San Jose via Denver
Ave. Duration
6 h 12 min
When
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday
Estimated price
$270 - $650
Flights from Chicago Midway to San Jose via Las Vegas
Ave. Duration
6 h 19 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$270 - $650
Flights from Chicago Midway to San Jose via Los Angeles
Ave. Duration
6 h 28 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$270 - $650
Flights from Chicago Midway to San Jose via San Diego
Ave. Duration
6 h 30 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$270 - $650
United Airlines
Website
united.com
Flights from Chicago O'Hare to San Francisco
Ave. Duration
4 h 37 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$110 - $550
Flights from Chicago O'Hare to San Jose
Ave. Duration
4 h 37 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$220 - $800
Flights from Chicago O'Hare to San Jose via Denver
Ave. Duration
6 h 15 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$220 - $800
American Airlines
Website
aa.com
Flights from Chicago O'Hare to San Francisco
Ave. Duration
4 h 36 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$190 - $600
Flights from Chicago O'Hare to Oakland via Phoenix
Ave. Duration
6 h 53 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$100 - $700
Flights from Chicago O'Hare to Oakland via Dallas/Ft.Worth
Ave. Duration
7 h 40 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$100 - $700
Flights from Chicago O'Hare to San Jose
Ave. Duration
4 h 28 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$200 - $800
Flights from Chicago O'Hare to San Jose via Phoenix
Ave. Duration
6 h 42 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$200 - $800
Flights from Chicago O'Hare to San Jose via Los Angeles
Ave. Duration
6 h 51 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$200 - $800
Flights from Chicago O'Hare to San Jose via Dallas/Ft.Worth
Ave. Duration
7 h 7 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$200 - $800
Alaska Airlines, Inc.
Website
alaskaair.com
Flights from Chicago O'Hare to San Francisco
Ave. Duration
4 h 41 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$190 - $550
Flights from Chicago O'Hare to Oakland via Seattle
Ave. Duration
8 h 6 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$160 - $650
Spirit Airlines
Website
spirit.com
Flights from Chicago O'Hare to Oakland
Ave. Duration
4 h 45 min
When
Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday
Estimated price
$210 - $600
Flights from Chicago O'Hare to Oakland via Las Vegas
Ave. Duration
7 h 6 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$210 - $600
Delta
Website
delta.com
Flights from Chicago O'Hare to Oakland via Salt Lake City
Ave. Duration
9 h 26 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$130 - $700
Flights from Chicago O'Hare to San Jose via Minneapolis
Ave. Duration
6 h 37 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$230 - $700
Frontier Airlines
Website
flyfrontier.com
Flights from Chicago O'Hare to San Jose via Denver
Ave. Duration
6 h 18 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$130 - $550
Train operators
Caltrain
Phone
+1 650-508-6200
Website
caltrain.com
Train from Santa Clara Caltrain to San Francisco Caltrain
Ave. Duration
1 h 30 min
Frequency
Every 30 minutes
Estimated price
$9 - $12
Schedules at
caltrain.com
Amtrak

Amtrak is a rail service that connects the US and three Canadian provinces. Covering 21,000 route miles (34,000km) Amtrak operates more than 300 trains daily. These medium and long distance intercity services operate at speeds of up to 240km/h, to more than 500 destinations. Founded in 1971, it is based in Washington, D.C. and offers four classes of travel: First Class, Sleeper, Business and Coach. Ticket fares are divided into five subclasses: Saver, Value, Flexible, Business and Premium. Amtrak trains are known for their wide seats, plug-in power, big windows and storage capabilities.

Rome2rio's guide to Amtrak
Contact Details
Phone
+1 1-800-872-7245
Website
amtrak.com
Train from Chicago Union Station to Richmond Transit Station
Ave. Duration
2 days 3 h
Frequency
Once daily
Estimated price
$290 - $900
Website
amtrak.com
Coach Seat
$290 - $430
Flexi Coach Seat
$500 - $750
Business Coach Seat
$600 - $900
Room
$1,100 - $1,600
Bus operators
Greyhound USA

Greyhound is a leading bus company based in Dallas, Texas, serving over 3800 destinations across North America, Mexico and Canada. Greyhound carries around 18 million passengers a year who travel 5.4 billion miles (8.6 billion km) a year on their fleet of around 1700 vehicles. For travel flexibility, you can board or get off a Greyhound bus at official Greyhound stations, partner stations and curbside stops. There are around 230 Greyhound stations across the US where you can both catch your bus and buy tickets, that are also available on the official website and via the mobile app.

Rome2rio's guide to Greyhound USA
Contact Details
Phone
+1 214-849-8100/1-800-231-2222
Email
ifsr@greyhound.com
Website
greyhound.com
Bus from Chicago, Il to Los Angeles, Ca
Ave. Duration
47 h 55 min
Frequency
Hourly
Estimated price
$200 - $550
Website
greyhound.com
Economy
$200 - $330
Flexible
$390 - $550
Bus from Los Angeles, Ca to San Francisco, Ca
Ave. Duration
7 h 55 min
Frequency
Every 3 hours
Estimated price
$40 - $100
Website
greyhound.com
Economy
$40 - $65
Flexible
$75 - $100

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