Popular Careers

Career Development

Career development resources for aspiring professionals.

Career Change Center

Career change guides, tutorials and resources for professionals in transition.

Job Search Resources

Job search resources, websites, guides and directories for job seekers.


Career and Education Opportunities for Subway Train Operators in San Francisco, California

San Francisco, California provides a wide variety of opportunities, both career and educational, for subway train operators. The national trend for subway train operators sees this job pool growing by about 18.8% over the next eight years. In general, subway train operators operate subway or elevated suburban train with no separate locomotive, or electric-powered streetcar to transport passengers.

A person working as a subway train operator can expect to earn about $27 per hour or $57,510 yearly on average in California and about $25 per hour or $53,220 per year on average in the U.S. as a whole. Subway train operators earn more than people working in the category of Rail generally in California and more than people in the Rail category nationally.

The San Francisco area is home to eighty-six schools of higher education, including one within twenty-five miles of San Francisco where you can get a degree as a subway train operator. Given that the most common education level for subway train operators is a high school diploma or GED, it will take only a short time to learn to be a subway train operator if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Subway Train Operator

Subway Train Operator video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, subway train operators operate subway or elevated suburban train with no separate locomotive, or electric-powered streetcar to transport passengers. They also may handle fares.

Subway train operators report delays and emergencies to supervisors or dispatchers, using radios. They also make announcements to passengers. Equally important, subway train operators have to drive and control rail-guided public transportation, such as subways and electric-powered streetcars or trolleys, in order to move passengers. They are often called upon to make use of controls to open and close transit vehicle doors. They are expected to regulate vehicle speed and the time spent at each stop, so as to maintain schedules. Finally, subway train operators greet passengers and answer questions concerning fares and routings.

Every day, subway train operators are expected to be able to respond quickly in general. They need to maintain precise control of objects and devices through a range of movements. It is also important that they judge how far and close objects are from one another and themselves.

It is important for subway train operators to monitor lights indicating obstructions or other trains ahead and watch for car and truck traffic at crossings to stay alert to potential hazards. They are often called upon to collect fares from passengers, and issue change and transfers. Somewhat less frequently, subway train operators are also expected to direct emergency evacuation procedures.

Subway train operators sometimes are asked to greet passengers and answer questions concerning fares and routings. They also have to be able to attend meetings on driver and passenger safety so as to learn ways in which job performance might be affected And finally, they sometimes have to record transactions and coin receptor readings in order to confirm the amount of money collected.

Like many other jobs, subway train operators must be reliable and be able to deal with stress and deal with situations calmly.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in San Francisco include:

  • Bus Driver. Drive bus or motor coach, including regular route operations, charters, and private carriage. May assist passengers with baggage. May collect fares or tickets.
  • Taxi Driver. Drive automobiles, vans, or limousines to transport passengers. May occasionally carry cargo.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Subway Train Operator Training

College of Alameda - Alameda, CA

College of Alameda, 555 Ralph Appezzato Memorial Parkway, Alameda, CA 94501. College of Alameda is a medium sized college located in Alameda, California. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 6,576 students. College of Alameda has a two to four year program in Truck and Bus Driver/Commercial Vehicle Operation.

LOCATION INFORMATION: San Francisco, California

San Francisco, California
San Francisco, California photo by Optigan13

San Francisco is located in San Francisco County, California. It has a population of over 808,976, which has grown by 4.2% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in San Francisco, 180, is far greater than the national average. New single-family homes in San Francisco cost $218,300 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, fifty-seven new homes were built in San Francisco, up from fifty-five the previous year.

The three most popular industries for women in San Francisco are professional, scientific, and technical services, health care, and educational services. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, accommodation and food services, and construction. The average travel time to work is about 31 minutes. More than 45.0% of San Francisco residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 16.4%, is higher than the state average.

The percentage of San Francisco residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 41.8%, is less than both the national and state average. Gold Mountain Monastery, Golden Gate Community Church of the Nazarene and Golden Gate Lutheran Church are among the churches located in San Francisco. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Muslim Estimate and the United Methodist Church.

San Francisco is home to the Pier 88 and the Prayer Book Cross as well as Helen Wills Playground and Music Concourse. Shopping malls in the area include Yerba Buena Square Shopping Center, Fox Plaza Shopping Center and Galleria At Crocker Center Shopping Center. Visitors to San Francisco can choose from Astoria Hotel, A-1 Inn Motel and Best Western Canterbury Hotel for temporary stays in the area.