The Sacramento community and surrounding areas are thriving and continue to expand as more people are choosing to live outside county lines and make their commutes into the city as needed. In fact, almost all of the counties in California that saw growth between 2020-2022 were inland. With this, there are a lot more commuters on our roads every day making their long and short journeys to and fro. Check out our best tips for Sacramento travelers and what your commutes might look like.
The Average Commute
The best way to understand commuting in Sacramento is by showing the baseline travel times for surrounding areas and how long each commute is on average. The surrounding areas like Lincoln, Roseville, Rocklin, and all the others in this list have their own pros and cons in terms of travel, but for the most part, if you plan ahead of time, you should have no issues. According to TravelMath, these are the average travel times and costs you can expect on your daily commutes.
In the Nevada foothills, this area has tons of opportunities for hiking and biking trails. On average, the commute is between 20-25 minutes depending on your speed and traffic. If you’re traveling to Sacramento proper, you’ll most likely take Interstate 80 until your exit. Daily this commute costs about $4.03 one-way / $8.05 round trip at 25 mpg. Per week this comes out to an average of $40-50 for your weekly commute.
Traveler’s tip: For longer commutes, sometimes companies will offer discounts, gas coupons, or even transportation. Ask your company if they offer any of these amenities or if your job allows it, working from home some days.
Just under two hours from Lake Tahoe and a quick 20-25 minute jaunt into Sacramento, Rocklin was named one of the best places for families and individuals and has schools in the top 20% of California rankings. This path will have you take Interstate 80 the whole way into Sacramento and will cost about $4.45 one-way / $8.90 round trip costing about $45-$55 per week for a 5 day commute.
Traveler’s tip: When we memorize our daily commute, using GPS can feel redundant. However, using common apps like Google Maps or Waze before leaving can give you a heads up for avoiding traffic.
Along the Sacramento river with an amazing lake near the heart of the city, Folsom is a great blend of urban and nature landscapes, plus a fun trail dedicated to Johnny Cash. Traveling to and from Folsom takes about 25-30 on average and will cost you about $5.09 one-way / $10.17 round trip, making it about $50-60 per week. Highway 50 is the typical route that you will take to and from Folsom which leads you through the heart of Sacramento.
This city has grown over the years but still keeps its rustic charm with its quaint Old Town shops and plenty of beautiful trees surrounding the neighborhoods. Daily commutes usually take anywhere from 30-40 minutes depending on traffic costing about $6.99 one-way / $13.99 round trip. This comes out to about $70-$80 per week at 25mpg. Interstate 80 will get you all the way there most of the time depending on traffic.
Traveler’s tip: As most of these commutes will take you along Interstate 80, if you ever find yourself in gridlock traffic, Auburn Blvd. is a great alternative. It’s a major thoroughfare in Sacramento and parts of Placer County. You can access it from almost anywhere along the interstate 80 to escape traffic if needed.
From its origins as a farm town, Lincoln has grown into a quaint but lively city with tons of shops and great dining to enjoy. On average, this commute is similar to Auburn’s running about 30-40 minutes, but you might be able to shave off a few cents from your trip at $6.15 one-way / $12.29 round trip; about $60-70 each week. Interstate 80 is back again as the host of this trip, but this time you’ll exit on to Route 65 to take you the full way to Lincoln.
Traveler’s tip: If you don’t have a car and are wondering the best way to get around Sacramento, check out Sac Region 511. They offer tons of options for ways to get around using public transportation, bikes, and more.
As the final stop on our list, it's a host to beautiful trails and parks, plus no end to active opportunities with private and public access to tennis courts, golf clubs, and equestrian courses. As a 3 for 3, this trip will also average about 30-40 mins but ranges around $5.51 one-way / $11.02 round trip; about $55-$65 each week. Interstate 80 is happy to get you there up until you exit onto Douglas Blvd. taking you the rest of the way.
Traveler’s tip: If you primarily travel by bike, remember to consider the ‘ABC check’ before traveling. It’s a simple check that takes less than 5-10 minutes and can even save you on the road.
The Sacramento region is undeniably bustling with growth and expansion, drawing many to its surrounding areas. As more individuals and families opt for the outskirts, the daily commute starts to play a big role. Each area, be it Roseville, Rocklin, Folsom, Auburn, Lincoln, or Granite Bay, offers its unique charm and appeal, coupled with its own set of commuting challenges and costs. However, with a little planning, technology, and being aware of alternative routes and transportation options, these commutes can be made more manageable and even enjoyable. Whether you're a seasoned traveler or new to the Sacramento commute, remember to stay informed, be prepared, and make the most of your journey. Safe travels!