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Distance between Santa Barbara and San Diego



Driving non-stop from Santa Barbara to San Diego

How far is San Diego from Santa Barbara? Here's the quick answer if you are able to make this entire trip by car without stopping.

Nonstop drive: 218 miles or 351 km

Driving time: 3 hours, 23 minutes

Realistically, you'll probably want to add a buffer for rest stops, gas, or food along the way. To get a better idea of how long this trip would really be, scroll down to calculate how many hours it would take if you drive with stops.





Flying non-stop from Santa Barbara to San Diego

Now let's assume you have a private jet and you can fly in the fastest possible straight line between Santa Barbara, California and San Diego, California. Because of the curvature of the Earth, the shortest distance is actually the "great circle" distance, or "as the crow flies" which is calculated using an iterative Vincenty formula.

Flight distance: 188 miles or 302 km

Flight time: 53 minutes

The straight line flight distance is 30 miles less than driving on roads, which means the driving distance is roughly 1.2x of the flight distance.

Your plane flies much faster than a car, so the flight time is about 1/0th of the time it would take to drive.

This is a relatively short flight in a private plane, but you might be planning to book a commercial flight. In that case, your travel time would really need to include how many minutes to get to your local airport, wait for security, board and taxi on the runway, land at the other airport, and get to your destination. Scroll down to see a more realistic calculation that takes into account all these factors to get a more accurate estimate of your actual flight time.




Santa Barbara to San Diego road trip

Let's say you're actually planning a road trip to San Diego, and you want to stop on the way to explore. If it's a real road trip, you might want to check out interesting places along the way, or maybe eat at a great restaurant. That's what Trippy is perfect for, helping you figure out travel plans in detail.

Road trip: 1 day of driving

With the full itinerary planned out, we can estimate your total travel time for this trip.

Travel time: 4 hours on the road


Itinerary

Start in Santa Barbara.

Drive for about 34 minutes, then stop in Ojai and stay for about 1 hour. Next, drive for another 47 minutes then stop in Malibu and stay for 1 hour. Drive for 30 minutes then stop in Los Angeles and stay for 6 hours. Drive for 35 minutes then stop at Disneyland and stay for 1 hour. Drive for 1 hour then stop in Carlsbad (California) and stay for 1 hour.

Finally, drive for about 37 minutes and arrive in San Diego.


To see all the details on this itinerary, including recommended restaurants, hotels, and things to do along the way, check out the full road trip planner:






Santa Barbara to San Diego airports and flights

In the quick calculation above, we assumed you had a private plane and just wanted to know the time in the air from city to city. But for most of us, we're going to be flying on a commercial airline (whether it's first class or coach). So that means we really need to account for all the extra travel time getting to the airport, waiting for our flight, and making it to the destination.

To give you a better estimate of real-life travel, we've put together a flight itinerary with actual airports. Eventually you'll be able to customize this plan, choosing your own airports and flights. But for now, here's an example we've selected to give you an idea of how traveling might work between airports.

Departure airport: Santa Barbara Municipal Airport (SBA)

Arrival airport: San Diego International Airport (SAN)

With the airports selected, we can estimate the travel time to and from the airport, based on how far the airport is from downtown.

Getting to the airport: 25 minutes

Getting to your destination: 7 minutes

Now finally, let's look at an actual flight from SBA connecting through LAX and arriving at SAN flying on United Airlines. We can figure out how long it would take to fly including take-off and landing, time to taxi on the runways, and an average layover time of about 2 hours.

Initial flight time: 49 minutes

Connecting airport: Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)

Connection flight time: 51 minutes

So now we can finally get an idea of the total travel time from Santa Barbara to San Diego including time spent getting to and from the airports, roughly 2 hours at the departure airport for TSA security lines and waiting at the gate, plus the connecting flight with a 2-hour layover.

Total travel time: 6 hours




Plan a trip to San Diego

Trippy has a ton of information that can help you plan your trip to San Diego, California. Start by reading the Trippy page on where to stay in San Diego. If you're looking for a place to stay, you might want to check out Hotel Del Coronado. A great place to eat might be The Prado at Balboa Park. Trippy members can suggest things to do in San Diego like Balboa Park. Check out some of the questions people have asked about San Diego like Fun for a family with small children (NOT Disneyland!). Click the button below to explore San Diego in detail.






How far is it the other way?

The distance is the same either way if you're flying a straight line (or driving the same roads back and forth). But for a real trip, there can be plenty of differences so go ahead and check the reverse directions to get the distance from San Diego to Santa Barbara, or go to the main page to calculate the distance between cities.

If you happen to know Santa Barbara, don't forget to help other travelers and answer some questions about Santa Barbara!






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At a Glance
without making any stops
total driving distance is 218 miles
driving time of 3 hours, 23 minutes
flight distance is 188 miles
flight time of 53 minutes
172 Santa Barbara travel answers
196 San Diego travel answers





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