(credit: Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
The biggest game of the season for the San Francisco 49ers is on Thanksgiving night, when the home team hosts division rival and defending Super Bowl champion Seattle Seahawks at the new Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara. In what should be an epic matchup in the 49ers first Thanksgiving home game in club history, a sellout crowd of more than 70,000 is expected. For fans traveling from San Francisco, possibly for the first time, it’s important to know what travel options are available and what to expect at Levi’s Stadium.
4900 Marie P. DeBartolo Way
Santa Clara, CA 95054
The most direct driving route from San Francisco to Levi’s Stadium is via Highway 101 South. As drivers approach Santa Clara past the city of Sunnyvale, they can either take Highway 237 East to Great America Parkway or continue on Highway 101 South to Great America Parkway. Visitors are also encouraged to visit the Levi’s Stadium directions link.
The estimated time from San Francisco is contingent upon the amount of holiday traffic on Thanksgiving Day. However, motorists should plan on at least 90 minutes of driving time before reaching one of the multiple parking lots that will be open four hours before kickoff. The only expected delays will be on Great America Parkway and all motorists should review the Levi’s Stadium parking link and follow instructions from traffic guides to avoid further delay. Fans with pre-paid parking can print their passes or use the Levi’s Stadium mobile app. Visitors are advised that some parking lots may require walking a mile or more to the stadium.
By Public Transportation
Taking Caltrain from San Francisco is an excellent way to avoid traffic delays before and after the game. Unless more service is added for the game, Caltrain will be operating on a holiday (Sunday) schedule, with hourly southbound service from the San Francisco Caltrain station to the Mountain View Caltrain station after approximately 75 minutes later to transfer to VTA’s Light Rail, with direct service to the Great America station, adjacent to Levi’s Stadium. VTA will also be operating on a Sunday-level service, departing every 30 minutes from the Mountain View station unless additional service is announced.
Single fare from the San Francisco Caltrain station to the Mountain View Caltrain station is $7.25 one-way and day passes are $14.50. Visitors can purchase one-way tickets or day passes with cash, debit or credit card at ticket vending machines available at the San Francisco Caltrain station. All passengers must have a valid ticket before boarding a train and must present a valid ticket upon request.
Fare for single rides on the VTA Light Rail is $2, an eight-hour light rail pass is $4 and day passes are $6. Tickets can be purchased at a ticket vending machine with cash, most major credit cards and debit cards or by using VTA’s mobile app Eventik for day passes only. Fans visiting Levi’s Stadium must note that ticket vending machines are not available after the game and should purchase an eight-hour light rail pass or day pass in advance. VTA also provides bus service to the Fremont BART station, with connections to San Francisco.
Bauer Transportation and Get2TheGame will provide shuttles on Thanksgiving from five San Francisco locations. All shuttles arrive and depart at the same location, less than a mile from Levi’s Stadium. Round-trip fare is $29.
Levi’s Stadium Policy
All ticket holders must pass through a security checkpoint and observe the NFL’s Bag Policy before being permitted to enter. As with all other NFL stadiums, Levi’s Stadium observes a fan Code of Conduct of policy to “encourage a stadium environment that is enjoyable for all fans.” Additional information on Levi’s Stadium may be obtained by visiting the stadium’s A to Z Guide.
Levi’s Stadium offers more than 180 different food items from several gourmet food concessions. Popular items include wood-fired pizza, Angus burgers, steamed pork buns and all-natural frankfurters, as well as vegan and vegetarian options. Fans using the stadium app and the stadium’s free Wi-Fi can preorder food with an Express Pickup from the closest concession stand or an In-Seat Delivery right to the ticket holder’s seat.
The premier dining experience at Levi’s Stadium is Bourbon Steak and Pub and Michael Mina’s Tailgate. Located near Toyota Gate F, Michael Mina’s Tailgate will be part of the regular season, members-only tailgate experience prior to the game but will also host a post-game party that’s open to the public and the perfect spot to enjoy exceptional food and drink while avoiding the expected traffic after the game. Bourbon Steak will be offering a three-course prix fixe menu, Bourbon Pub will feature a special game day menu and the pub patio will feature its sandwich bar, which includes a selection of gourmet sandwiches and specialty cocktails. Special guest chefs Ethan Stowell and Jason Franey will be joining Bourbon Steak and Pub on Thanksgiving to cook up some competition with dishes inspired by Seattle.
Finding Your Seat
Fans unfamiliar with the stadium’s seating arrangement may ask for assistance from any usher or at Guest Services. The stadium mobile app also provides stadium maps of each level, including all clubs and suites. There are 38 escalators and 25 elevators located at Levi’s Stadium. Public elevators can be found upon entry at Intel Gate A, Dignity Health Gate C, Gate D and Toyota Gate F.
Many fans attending previous home games at Levi’s Stadium have left before the game ended in order to avoid the traffic. However, due to the extreme importance of the game for both teams, fans may stay until the game is officially over. If this is the case, pedestrians and motorists are advised to proceed with caution and obey all traffic controllers. Fans who arrived by public transportation will be guided to their light rail train for transport back to the Mountain View Caltrain station, before transferring to Caltrain to San Francisco.