Parking & Transportation


All vehicles using USC reserved spaces and lots should be registered with Vehicle Management and Parking Services. USC provides surface lots and parking garages for students varying in price. Garage and reserved spaces are reserved 24 hours a day, seven days a week, while general surface spaces are first come, first serve basis and tend to fill quickly. The City of Columbia also provides street meter parking which you can pay with change or by downloading and using the Passport Parking app via your mobile device. For more information about parking pricing, parking maps and permitting, visit Vehicle Management and Parking Services Website.

USC Shuttle Services

Students are encouraged to park in lots outside of central campus and use the shuttle to ride into central campus. The Carolina Shuttle runs Monday through Friday 7:30 a.m.-6 p.m. during the fall and spring semesters. Shuttle schedules will change during summer, reading days and holidays. Visit to learn more about the USC shuttle routes and schedule.  Download the TransLoc Rider App on your smartphone to see campus shuttles and city buses in real time.

For after-hours shuttle needs, use the Late Night Campus Shuttle Services to safely get from one part of campus to the other.

Apartment Community Shuttles

Many apartment communities offer shuttles.  Check out the amenity chart at Apartment Amenity Chart to see which communities offer this service. While apartment shuttles are a great transportation option, they are not guaranteed, so please have a backup option to get to campus.


The COMET is the public transportation system for the Columbia Metro Area. The COMET’s fixed route system provides quick and easy access to campus and the city, offering stops at the university, downtown, Five Points, the Vista area, Cayce and West Columbia. For more information and route schedules, visit Stop by Off-Campus Student Services to pick up a freedom pass to ride the COMET for free all year long!

Other Transportation

Bicycles: All bicycles must be registered with Parking Services at Cyclists should always ride with the flow of traffic in the street. Bicycle racks can be found in convenient locations all across campus.

Mopeds: All mopeds must be registered with Parking Services at Please note that mopeds have designated spaces in which they must park. Anyone under the age of 21 is required to wear a helmet. It is also illegal for more than one person to ride a moped unless it is designated for two people.  You cannot drive or park on the sidewalk or secure your moped to a bicycle rack.

Motorcycles/Scooters: All motorcycles and scooters must be registered with Parking Services at These vehicles have designated spaces in which they must be parked. Parking on the sidewalk or securing your motorcycle or scooter to a bicycle rack is never allowed. Anyone under the age of 21 is required to wear a helmet.

Commuting Tips

  • You never know when you might encounter a train, wreck or heavy traffic. Give yourself a 30-minute buffer when traveling to campus so you are not late to class.
  • Identify alternative routes for your daily commute in case there is an issue on your regular route.
  • Pack meals or buy a Carolina Dining Commuter Meal Plan.
  • Hang out on-campus between classes to avoid driving back and forth from home multiple times a day.
  • Don’t let living off-campus stop you from being involved with campus activities! Be sure to take advantage of all USC has to offer you. Get involved and join at least one organization on campus to make connections.