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Back-to-school transportation guide for spring

Tips and tricks for getting to, and getting around, campus.

Commuter Services is the department dedicated to providing students with a variety of transportation options. Check out these commuter pathways to find a mode of transportation that works for you.


Be on the safe side, request a SafeRide.

SafeRide, the latest pilot program developed by Commuter Services, offers an alternative to walking around campus late at night. This free night service is for students who don’t feel comfortable walking to buildings, parking lots and residential areas, for example.

SafeRide functions similarly to other rideshare programs like Uber or Lyft, but only operates within university boundaries from 6 p.m.-12:30 a.m. Students may request a ride on campus by downloading the TapRide app and following the prompted steps.

Fun fact: To make passengers feel comfortable, all SafeRide drivers are friendly university students.

Learn more about SafeRide here.

What parking permit should I get?

There are a few factors to consider when deciding which parking permit best suits your needs. Parking permit acronyms can be confusing to new students, so here’s a breakdown of the most common student parking permits:

  • U permit: The “U” permit is the best option for students living off-campus. Not only are there a variety of lots across campus reserved for this permit, but it also allows students to park in designated “A” lots after 3 p.m.
    Psst! Keep reading for info on “U” permits allowed in “A” lots.
  • HU permit: The “HU” permit allows students who live on-campus to park overnight in housing lots. This permit can also be used to park in “U” permit lots on the main campus. Be aware that “U” lots do not allow overnight parking.
  • HCU permit: The “HCU” is similar to the “HU” permit but comes with extra perks. In addition to parking in the housing lot, the “HCU” permit also allows you to park in the Central Garage, the Lassonde Studio lot and “U” lots on campus.
  • CU permit: The “CU” permit, like the “HCU,” allows you to park in the Central Garage, the Lassonde Studio lot and “U” lots, but is not permitted in housing lots. This permit is available to all students.

Visit the Student Permits on the Commuter Services website to view pricing, purchasing details and other parking permits.

“U” permits allowed after 3 p.m.

Students with “U” parking permits may park in designated “A” permit parking lots after 3 p.m. This option allows students to park in lots closer to the main campus during the evening. Not all lots have this accommodation, so please take care in reading the signage posted in the lot. If an “A” lot sign includes the phrase, “U Permit Allowed After 3 p.m.,” you may park as stated. Certain “A” lots are reserved for faculty and staff with “A” permits who work afternoons or evenings. These lots are signed accordingly.

Check out the list of lots that allow “U” permits after 3 p.m.

Insider tip:  Students with a ‘U’ permit, may park in designated stalls in the Marriott Library and Union Pay Lot after 3 p.m. Not all stalls in these lots allow ‘U’ permits, so be sure to watch out for signs.

UCard and UTA

The university’s agreement with UTA provides students access to UTA buses, TRAX and FrontRunner trains at no additional cost! The TRAX Red Line and several UTA bus routes come directly to campus, making public transportation accessible to students in the Wasatch Front. Use your UCard to tap on and off the card-readers located on buses and train platforms when boarding and exiting trains.

Insider tip: Use Google Maps and select the transit option to find a UTA route the works for you.

Campus Shuttle

Campus shuttles transport students all over campus. This free service is available to all students—as it stops at housing areas and UTA bus stops and TRAX stations on campus.

Track the Campus Shuttle location live by downloading the Ride Systems app and selecting the University of Utah transit system. With this app, you can also find:

• Nearest stop locations
• Estimated times of arrival
• Additional route information

Insider tip: Check out the notification feature to receive a text message alert when your shuttle is about to arrive.

Biking to the U

Bicycling is a convenient, healthy and sustainable alternative to driving to campus. The university offers free and convenient bicycle parking within 50 feet of almost every building entrance. Remember to yield to pedestrians, always wear a helmet, and slow your speed to avoid a crash and injury to yourself or others.

Check out the following bikeway maps when planning your commute to campus:

University Downtown Bikeway: If your commute begins on the west side of campus.
Salt Lake City/County Bikeways Map: If your commute begins east, north or south of campus.

The Campus Bike Shop, located on 1901 South Campus Drive, offers a wide variety of bicycle maintenance services including tune-up, tire replacement, cable/housing repairs and more.

Text or call 801-599-7039 to make an appointment with our experienced bicycle mechanic.

Shared mobility on campus

Rentable e-bikes and e-scooters, such as Bird or Lime, are allowed on campus. However, just like a bicycle, rentable e-scooters and e-bikes must only be parked adjacent to an outdoor bicycle rack. When operating these devices on campus sidewalks, you are responsible for following the university operating guidelines.


No matter how you commute to campus, you’ll find yourself on the sidewalks at some point or another. If you’re new to the university, you’ll notice that sidewalks are for everyone, including bicyclists, skateboarders, golf cart drivers and much more. Remember, pedestrians always have the right of way. Be aware of your surroundings, and watch where you’re walking to avoid injuries to yourself or others.

If you witness unsafe behavior on campus sidewalks, please report it through the U Heads Up! app.

To learn more about student commuter options, visit the Commuter Services website or call 801-581-6415.