2023 United States Grand Prix – Getting Around Guide

Posted on 05 June, 2023

Start planning your trip to the 2023 United States Grand Prix with useful information about flights to Austin and the best ways to get to Circuit of The Americas.

Practical Information

  • Visas: Most travelers do not require a visa to enter the USA, learn more here. However, all travelers are required to submit an Electronic System for Travel Authorisation (ESTA) application in advance of travel.
  • Currency: United States dollar ($USD). Credit cards are widely accepted and ATMs are easy to find. You are also expected to tip service staff around 15-20% in most instances.
  • Language: English. Spanish is also widely spoken in Texas due to the large immigrant population from Mexico.
  • Health: Don’t forget to buy comprehensive travel insurance before you depart for the USA, as emergency medical treatment can be very expensive.
  • Time Zone: UTC/GMT -5 hours
  • In an Emergency: Dial 911 for police, fire & ambulance.
  • Power Sockets: Type A and B. Pack an adapter/voltage converter if you are travelling from Europe, Australia or elsewhere.
  • Weather: The United States Grand Prix takes place in late October when daytime temperatures should be a pleasant 20 - 25°C (68 - 77°F). Storms and rain are not uncommon for this time of the year, so pack your wet weather gear.

Arrival & Getting Around

Flights to Texas

Austin has one international airport, Austin–Bergstrom (AUS), which is located around 8 km (5 miles) southeast of the city’s downtown core in the direction of Circuit of The Americas. Austin-Bergstrom serves mainly domestic routes, including 34 connections from Southwest Airlines, but also has international arrivals from Europe, Canada and Mexico. For a better selection of long-haul flights, international visitors can also consider flying into one of the larger Texas hubs; George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston (IAH) or Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW).

Where to stay for the United States Grand Prix

To get the most out of your weekend away from the track, we recommend staying downtown. There’s a good selection of accommodation in the centre of Austin, from hostel beds and Airbnb apartments to five-star hotels, though high demand drives up room prices on Grand Prix™ weekend. F1® Experiences offers accommodation at several highly-rated Austin hotels and daily coach transfers are available for guests at an additional cost.

How to get to Circuit of The Americas

Circuit of The Americas is located around 15 km (9 miles) southeast of downtown Austin. The best way to get to the circuit on race weekend is to ride the official shuttle buses but, taking a taxi or ride sharing service, or driving yourself, are further options. In all cases, you should be aware that the traffic in Austin can get very congested, especially during major events such as the United States Grand Prix. It can take up to 2 hours to get to the circuit from downtown. Here's more information about the best ways to get to COTA:

F1® Experiences

If you've booked your hotel with F1® Experiences, daily coach transfers to and from COTA can be added to your Official Ticket Package at an additional cost. Contact your sales agent for details.

COTA Shuttles

Shuttle bus services are available from Downtown (Waterloo Park), Northeast Austin (Travis County Expo Center) and Southwest Austin (Barton Creek Square Mall). Details about shuttle bus services will be available closer to race weekend.

Hire a Car

Get to COTA via the SH130 toll road, which can be accessed from downtown Austin by taking the I-35 south to Highway 71 East. For specific directions, the organizers recommend downloading the Waze app. Cars without a valid parking pass are unable to access COTA Blvd during Grand Prix weekend. Contact your F1® Experiences Sales Agent to purchase a parking pass.

Ride Sharing & Taxis

Depending on your chosen service and the level of demand, the cost can vary getting from downtown Austin to Circuit of The Americas or vice versa using a taxi or ride-sharing service. For taxis, use a hotel taxi stand or a reputable company such as Yellow Cab (tel: 512-452-999). For ride-sharing, Lyft and Uber operate in Austin. Rideshare services operate from the Del Valle High School parking lot and can only be accessed by a COTA shuttle (complimentary 3.5-mile ride). Rideshare vehicles are not permitted on McAngus Road or COTA Blvd during race weekend.

What to see & do in Austin

Sample some live music: Did you know that Austin is the self-proclaimed 'Live Music Capital of the World'? Venues with live music can be found all over the city, but especially on 6th street/Red River and just across the river in South Congress. Whatever genre floats your boat – blues, country, soul, rock, metal, punk, indie – you are likely to find something to your taste, especially on weekend nights. Some of the best places on 6th street for live music include San Jac Saloon, The Nook Amphitheater, Bat Bar and The Thirsty Nickel. South Congress, meanwhile, is home to several of Austin’s most famous live music clubs such as C’Boys Heart and Soul and The Continental Club. Learn more: The Best Places in Austin to See Live Music.

Eat at a Food Truck: Tacos, curry or a burger? Food trucks are big business in Austin and the best place to sample them is in one of the city’s many “food truck parks.” With most meals priced around $5-10 and a huge range of cuisines on offer, you won’t go hungry…or break the bank. Some food truck parks also offer live music and market stalls.

Check out the University of Texas: A mecca for sports, history and culture buffs, the largest public university in the United States is situated on a massive campus within walking distance of downtown. Home to some of the best museums in the city, including the Blanton Museum of Art and the LBJ Presidential Library, the centerpiece is the imposing University of Texas Tower, which offers spectacular views from the top. Other campus destinations include one of the largest football stadiums in the country and the Frank Erwin Center, home to the University’s basketball teams. Learn more here.

Get back to nature at Zilker Park: With around 300 days of sunshine a year, outdoor activities of all kinds are popular in Austin and Zilker Metropolitan Park is a great place to sample some of them. Just south of downtown and offering excellent views of Austin’s skyline, the park is one of the city’s most popular green spaces. Highlights include Barton Springs, where you can go swimming almost all year round, and the Lady Bird Lake, which has canoes and kayaks available for rent, as well as a hiking and cycling trail.