New AirRide Transit Service Connects Ann Arbor, Detroit Metro Airport

Starting Monday, Ann Arbor residents can take one of 12 trips offered daily by the new AirRide public transportation service to Detroit Metro Airport. The convenient, service to or from the airport will be offered at an introductory price $10 each way with advance reservation through July 30.

“Ann Arbor residents have been asking for a public transportation option between Ann Arbor and Detroit Metro Airport for several years,” Michael Ford, CEO of the Ann Arbor Transportation Authority (TheRide), said at a celebration ceremony today. “We’re proud to finally bring this service to Ann Arbor residents and we’re grateful for our partners’ help in making it happen.”

AirRide is a public-private partnership between TheRide, Michigan Flyer, the University of Michigan, the Ann Arbor Downtown Development Authority and the Ann Arbor Convention and Visitors Bureau.

The organizations celebrated their partnership at the Kensington Court hotel, one of the three stops in Ann Arbor that will be served by AirRide. They were joined by Congressman John Dingell; Gordon Mackay, president of Indian Trails, parent company of Michigan Flyer; Kirk Steudle, director of the Michigan Department of Transportation; John Hieftje, mayor of Ann Arbor; and several local elected leaders.

Bus stops for the service in Ann Arbor include 12 stops daily at the Blake Transit Center and Kensington Court Hotel, and four stops daily the University of Michigan Central Campus Transit Center. At the airport, AirRide offers bus stops at both the McNamara and North terminals. The buses feature comfortable seating, wireless internet and restroom amenities.

 “AirRide will provide convenient, low-cost airport shuttle service for Ann Arbor and surrounding communities, and ultimately increase the number of people who use public transportation to get to or from the airport,” said Gordon MacKay, president of Indian Trails. “AirRide will also help conserve energy, reduce both traffic congestion and environmental pollution in the region, and save passengers time and money in the process.”

Following the $10 introductory rate, regular adult fares will be $12 one-way with advance reservation and $15 for walk-ons. Discounts will be available for seniors, people with disabilities and children. Reservations can be booked online at 

Passengers departing from the Blake Transit Center can take advantage of $2-per-trip for up to 14 days reduced parking rates at the Fourth Avenue and William Street parking structure, while those leaving from the Kensington Court Hotel can park for just $2 per day.

Because AirRide is a public-private partnership, it also saves taxpayer dollars. While the total cost of the new service is $1.2 million, state operating assistance, passenger fares and private contractor contributions bring TheRide’s direct annual cost for the service to $303,400.

“Increasing the availability of regional transit services like AirRide is critical to the future of our state. The local economy, air quality, and development patterns are all connected to transportation,” said Congressman Dingell. “The fact that this service is saving taxpayer dollars through a public-private partnership makes it even more important.”

AirRide also falls in line with the vision Gov. Rick Snyder expressed in his transportation message last fall. Gov. Snyder called for using public transportation to improve regional connectivity in Southeast Michigan. AirRide will connect Ann Arbor area residents to other regional transportation systems by sharing a stop at Detroit Metro Airport with the SMART transit system.

“The public’s transportation needs do not start and stop at municipal or transit authority boundaries,” said Kirk Steudle, director of MDOT. “By sharing a stop with the SMART buses, AirRide isn’t just connecting Ann Arbor and Detroit Metro Airport, it’s connecting Ann Arbor to the rest of Southeast Michigan.” 

Information on reservations and schedules for AirRide can be found at

The Ann Arbor Transportation Authority (TheRide) was chartered in 1969 by the City of Ann Arbor, Michigan, as a not-for-profit unit of government. AATA operates the local public transit system for the greater Ann Arbor-Ypsilanti area, enabling the area’s residents to reach their destinations at reasonable cost, and offers the region efficient, environmentally sound transportation alternatives. For more information, please visit

TheRide’s Board of Directors has endorsed a 30-year Transit Master Plan for Washtenaw County. Updates on the progress of the plan are available at

E-mail and text message updates on bus routes, schedules, detours and other news from TheRide are available by free subscription to MyRide at

Connect with TheRide through social media at Facebook, Twitter, or Youtube.

Michigan Flyer—whose motto is “Why Drive?”—offers affordable, seamless, luxury motorcoach connections between East Lansing, Ann Arbor, and Detroit Metro Airport. A division of Indian Trails, Michigan Flyer has carried more than 500,000 passengers since its launch in November 2006. On the web at

Indian Trails, Inc.—which has served as Michigan’s premiere, family-owned, inter-city motorcoach carrier for more than 100 years, and is based in Owosso, MI—operates one of the largest and newest fleets of deluxe motorcoaches in Michigan. Its services include charters, tours, shuttles, airport transfers, and daily scheduled routes throughout Michigan and into Chicago and Milwaukee. On the web at