Alaska's Turnagain Arm is among those voted as one of the country's most unforgettable, must see areas of Alaska.

Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions
1. Where can I buy a ticket for the tour?2021-04-12T11:59:48+00:00

You can purchase tickets either on this website, at the Anchorage Convention & Visitors Center or from a trusted retailer such as your hotel concierge. All add on tours must be purchased from the vendor you wish to enjoy or on our website if offered.

2. Where do I get picked up at and where can I get dropped off at?2021-04-12T12:00:55+00:00

We pick up at the Anchorage Downtown Visitors Center located at 524 W 4th Avenue. Please visit us “Find a Shuttle Stop”.

3. Is there parking at the Anchorage Downtown Visitors Center?2021-04-12T12:01:11+00:00

No, but you can find parking at the many high tower garages located just blocks from the visitor’s center. Any metered parking has only 2 hour limits while parking garages you pay for the time you use as you exit. Please find parking well in advance and be out front at the visitor’s center 15 minutes prior to departure. The shuttle operates much like a city bus and we all know city busses do not look for you or wait. The shuttle must remain on schedule for each and every stop so please be ready to depart at the appointed time. If we have everyone we will leave early. Remember tickets are non-refundable and if there is no space on the next shuttle we cannot accommodate you.

4. Where are your points of interest that I should know about?2021-04-12T12:02:16+00:00

We encourage you to visit the links “Visit Anchorage” “Visit Girdwood” and “Visit Portage

5. If I am going to the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center do I need to purchase that ticket separately?2021-04-12T12:02:43+00:00

Yes, most shuttles that depart hourly go through the Wildlife Center. If you go past Girdwood you will be going through the Wildlife Center on most shuttles except for Noon departure and the 3:30 p.m. departure. The driver will be checking tickets prior to arrival at the Wildlife Center in order to not delay entrance. You should purchase your Alaska Wildlife Entrance Fee on our website when you purchase your shuttle ticket by simply clicking on Purchase Wildlife Ticket

6. If I go to the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center what can I expect?2021-04-12T12:09:19+00:00

You will have approximately one hour to visit the many animals located at the center. The driver will bring you into the center and usually drop you off at the bears. From there it is just a short walk back across the bear board walk and then you zig zag your way back visiting the animals. You will be provided with a map to follow. At the appointed time the same driver will pick you up in front of the Gift Shop or just across the parking lot. Again, the van clearly says Turnagain Arm Shuttle on the top and can be easily seen. So look for the driver and be ready at the appointed time. The driver has to keep to a schedule as other customers will be waiting for the shuttle down the line. He or she will leave if they can’t find you. From there you are responsible for your own way back to Anchorage if all other shuttles are full. Uber, Lyft and cabs will cost you approximately $150.00 to return. So please do not miss the shuttle as there is no refund allowed if you miss the shuttle.

7. Tell me about The Turnagain Shuttle?2021-04-12T12:09:50+00:00

We’re on a mission to provide service to the Turnagain Arm area known as the Chugach National Forest one of Alaska’s most scenic byways of the United States. We think once you experience the area known as the Turnagain Arm that you will agree with us that this area is the number one thing to do on your Anchorage City Visit. Did you know that the Turnagain Arm is not just minutes from Anchorage but the area offers over 30 other activities that you will not want to miss? Because the shuttle is broken out separately from tours you purchase you save. You then can avoid the cost of the driver/guide staying with you the whole day.

By using the Turnagain Arm Shuttle you will be able to spend the day in Girdwood and the very next day explorer Portage Valley. Both areas have plenty to offer that will fill your day with memorable activities. Most of our shuttles include a one hour visit to the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center that allows you to pay separately, again by doing this you avoid the mark up and cost of paying for a driver/guide. To help you tick off the best attractions in Anchorage and the surrounding areas we have provide helpful links to plan your day right here on our website. By doing your homework right here on our site you will find it is easy to get to and get off at the best tours, hikes and activities. Remember, these activities are paid for separately and done on your own and at your own pace. To make things easier to plan your day we provide a link on our website labeled Self-Guided Tours. These tours on the link are pre-planned with departure times, return times, descriptions to allow you to see at a glance what your day will entail and still allows ample time to spread out your day in the area.

For your comfort our shuttles offer spacious interiors with high-top vans which allows guest to easily walk on walk and walk off. And we think we’re allowing you to win because each activity you choose on your own are paid separately. This can offer a big savings as a good portion of packaged tours are marked up to include the cost of the driver/guide.

Because your time is valuable we have made frequency and convenience an important factor which is why we provide almost hourly and daily service. The shuttle leaves Anchorage daily starting at 8 a.m. and returns hourly coming back from the furthest point of the Turnagain Arm up until 5:40 p.m. The Turnagain Arm Shuttle is the largest hourly shuttle operator providing service to many tour operators who provide exciting adventures and tours along Turnagain Arm. Our motto is we “get you there” at a reasonable price.

8. What is included on my shuttle ride?2021-04-12T12:10:25+00:00

Our Turnagain Arm Shuttle & Tour will provide you stops at photo stops and they are usually 10 minute stops. If you take the roundtrip shuttle all the way to Portage Valley the shuttle will stop at the most popular sightseeing destinations such as Beluga Point, Explorer Glacier, the Rain Forest and the Alaska Wildlife Center. While on board the Turnagain Arm Shuttle, you may see Moose, Dahl Sheep, the Bore Tide, Hanging Glaciers and other iconic wildlife that is often seen along the route.

9. Which days does the Turnagain Shuttle & Tours operate?2021-04-12T12:10:53+00:00

The Turnagain Arm Shuttle runs every day between June 1st and September 15th of the year. The shuttle runs hourly starting at 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. With the last return from Portage at 5:40 p.m. getting back to Anchorage around 7 p.m.

10. How long does the Turnagain Arm Shuttle Tour take?2021-04-12T12:11:39+00:00

Tour duration can fluctuate according to the weather or traffic patterns. Keep in mind that if there is an accident along the Turnagain Arm that pick-ups and drop offs can change drastically but we will alert you and call you as we get alerted to traffic updates.

11. Do I need to specify a date of travel?2021-04-12T12:12:43+00:00

Yes, you can use your ticket on the date you requested. If you want to change the date there is no problem up to the date of travel however seats must be available. We may charge you a change fee of upwards to anywhere from 5 % to 25% of your booking fee. If you purchased with another travel partner your charge will appear on your statement as a change fee. You are welcome to buy your ticket on the day if that is your preference, but please note that discounts online are not available on same-day purchases. Last minute sales are often available but guaranteed seats are not.

12. How does the website discount work?2021-04-12T12:13:08+00:00

We regularly provide special offers on tickets that are available to purchase online if booked well in advance or for special offers provided. Take a look at our current ticket offers. Also, it is not uncommon to provide last minute ticket sales at the departure time to fill seats that are not already sold. However, eats are usually sold out. All discount seats are non-refundable and a change fee does apply.

13. Is there a discount available for groups?2021-04-12T12:16:42+00:00

Yes, discounts are available for groups of 14 or more. To find out more, submit an enquiry using our group booking information page.

14. Is it possible to hire one the Turnagain Arm Shuttle for a private event?2021-04-12T12:17:19+00:00

Yes, Shuttles are available for private hires and charters. For more information or to receive a quote, please submit an inquiry using our private hires and charters page.

15. What time are the first and last Shuttles?2021-04-12T12:46:41+00:00

Please visit our Routes and Maps (hyperlink) for up-to-date information on the first and last Shuttle times for the various shuttles.

16. What is the child ticketing policy?2021-04-12T12:19:01+00:00

All passengers under the age of 15 must be accompanied by a passenger over the age of 15. Infants and Children must pay for a ticket as seats are limited and it is a law that everyone have a seat. Strollers must be folded and stowed on the back area of the shuttle. If you have a child please be early and ready for boarding as not to delay the driver or departure time. It takes time to get booster seats, child seats and strollers stowed. All children under the age of 14 must sit two rows back from the driver. This is the safest place for a child and ensures that the driver is not distracted. The driver will leave in order to maintain the roundtrip schedule. Please do not delay the shuttle. There are NO exceptions and refunds are not granted for late arrivals. Because children have limited places to sit, passengers with children are asked to settle in first so others may start the boarding process. Note: If you have an infant please know that you will be at the last row of the vehicle as it is the safest location for infants. We do not have room for large quantities of gear so please bring only what is absolutely needed.

17. How will I know where to get off?2021-04-12T12:21:56+00:00

It is up to you to alert your driver to let them know when you need to get off. Please refer to our routes and map section and follow the route to your destination to make sure you get off at the proper location. We suggest you say hello my name is and I am going to? Ask your driver what his or her name is so they know who you are. Ask the driver when they stop is this where I get off and let them know where your ultimate destination is? When you are dropped off if you are going to return back to Anchorage ask the driver is this where I need to be to return back? The tour guide commentary on the bus will announce each stop and will tell you that this is a tour stop and not a drop off point. The only place we allow you to get out of the vehicle to stay durations are Indian, Girdwood and Portage Valley. If the driver knows that there is no drop off or pick up he will elect to bypass the stop. So please let them know of your plans. If you are on the Shuttle Round-trip and not the Turnagain Arm Tour you will be allowed one hour at the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center. If you are going through the Alaska Wildlife Center you must pay to enter which is allowed on our website by simply clicking on purchase the Alaska Wildlife Center ticket.

18. How do I redeem my ticket?2021-04-12T12:34:17+00:00

Show your printed ticket to a member of staff or driver at one of our shuttle pick up locations. They’ll review your status as roundtrip, a drop off, return ticket or a need to have an additional Pre-Paid Alaska Wildlife entrance fee ticket. If your destination is the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center they will ask you to pre-pay prior to your departure to the center. All customers must have a pre-paid ticket prior to going through the gate at the Alaska Wildlife Center and will be verified by the gate before the shuttle is allowed entrance.

19. Are accommodations available for persons with disabilities?2021-04-12T12:34:52+00:00

No, our Turnagain Arm Shuttle fleet is not wheelchair accessible. We have no wheelchair lifts on our vehicles. If you require other special needs please let us know and we can refer you to a company who can accommodate you. Please note that messages left on the office general voicemail do not constitute confirmed arrangements. Please also note that passengers with mobility impairments may not be able to access our drop photo stops or vendor add on tours. We cannot guarantee the accessibility of the various attractions along the tour.

20. Do you allow service dogs?2021-04-12T12:35:43+00:00

Yes, dogs who have a certified vest and certifications are allowed. You must send all documentation prior to our office upon making the reservation. This must be done well in advance as each certification is company verified days or even months prior. If they are not marked as verified on your reservation prior to boarding the shuttle you will be denied boarding. Service animals are not recommended to visit the Alaska Wildlife Center as often times than not upset the animals. We do not allow emotional support animals on the shuttle at all.

21. Is luggage allowed on board the bus?2021-04-12T12:36:38+00:00

Yes, luggage is permitted on board the Shuttle at this time. If you are looking for luggage storage please let us know ahead of time. Usually we can accommodate one piece of luggage per person. If there are extenuating circumstances please give us a heads up and so we might accommodate. Please know we charge a minimum of $10.00 per luggage per person.

22. There are no Turnagain Shuttles running due to weather conditions, what do I do?2021-04-12T12:37:24+00:00

Firstly, check the validity of your ticket. If you bought your ticket online and have yet to have this scanned by one of our representatives, it will still be valid for use for up to 6 months after the date of purchase.
If your ticket was bought on-street or has already been scanned by one of our on-street advisors, and we have cancelled our services due to weather conditions, you will be able to apply for a refund. Please check out our Terms & Conditions for full details.

23. How can I find the stop nearest to me?2021-04-12T12:39:02+00:00

Easy! Just check out our Find a Shuttle Stop (hyperlink) on our web page.

24. I bought the ticket but it’s for someone else. It has my name on it, is this ok?2021-04-12T12:39:41+00:00

You’re all set! Simply show your voucher(s) to any member of on-street staff or driver. The problem comes if you bought a ticket as a local and you let someone use that ticket. The name must match the name on the Alaska driver’s license. We give locals a discount because we want them to enjoy their back yard and we want them to know that we give the best of the best to their family or friends who visit.

25. Where does the Turnagain Shuttle end?2021-04-12T12:41:05+00:00

You can book your shuttle to either Indian, Girdwood or Portage. The shuttle stops at various photo stop locations and the drive will let you know how long the stop will be based on the schedule of that particular shuttle. Most stops where you will be able to take pictures vary from shuttle departure time. However, stops for Indian, Girdwood and Portage will be a constant for customers getting off and on. If you go through the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center at any point you will be required to pay an entrance fee. Please communicate with your driver to know when you are entering the center as the company will be charged and you may be required to get out of the vehicle if you chose not to pay the entrance fee.

26. I bought my ticket but now can’t make that date, can I use it on another day?2021-04-12T12:41:54+00:00

Turnagain Arm Shuttle & Tour tickets purchased online or via the app are typically valid for six months up until the point of the ticket being scanned (redeemed) – then the clock starts ticking and you’ll need to enjoy your tour within the time purchased. This is usually, one, two or three days. If you have a non-refundable discount ticket you will need to pay the difference in price. Change fees do apply.

27. How do I know when the next bus is coming?2021-04-12T12:42:36+00:00

You must have outbound and return times pre booked. If you miss your shuttle you must contact the dispatch office. Please know that your shuttle may be delayed for unforeseeable circumstances so at the very least give them a 10 to 15 minute grace period prior to calling dispatch. If you are not at the designated pick up location at least 10 minutes prior you will be considered a no show. We try to run as any city bus which keeps a schedule. That being said we cannot foresee road delays, be responsible for construction or delays due to accidents or traffic. If you miss the shuttle by your own device you will have to call for alternative arrangements which will cost at the very least $100 or more one-way.

28. I am waiting at a stop and can’t see any buses, what do I do?2021-04-12T12:43:28+00:00

Hang in there! The Turnagain Arm Shuttle route will most likely throw all sorts of challenges at our drivers, who are doing their best to get to you as quickly (but safely) as possible. You should have a sim card which allows for local cell phone service via local operated carrier it is best that you text us to let us know that you are waiting. If after 10 to 15 minutes your shuttle does not arrive please call us.

Note: We recommend that all international customers visit a local carrier which can be found at the 5th avenue mall in downtown Anchorage to get a local sim card. If our drivers can’t reach you then you are responsible for your return trip back regardless of any inconveniences. The company will not be held liable because you are going out into the Chugach National Forest without a way for you to contact us if you run into a problem. The driver cannot wait or go around in circles looking for you. The office will try to contact you should the driver report you as a “No Show”. Remember this is the wilderness and you must be prepared.

Passenger Etiquette

  • Please be on time as not to delay the shuttle and others who need to be at a destination to connect with another tour operator.
  • Please remember that you are with other customers so be mindful. Use your indoor voice, let others participate, be mindful of smells and remember you’re on vacation. Relax and enjoy meeting others. People love to meet other people.
  • If you see wildlife let the driver and everyone know. Let’s get excited!
  • Remember that the driver needs to speak about sights as they approach, pass or arrive. So when the driver speaks please stop talking. The driver most likely will be trying to give out instructions or directions that everyone needs to hear.
  • If you are traveling with another and are an interpreter it is best to sit three rows back as to not talk over the driver trying to give a speech on the sights and attractions. So again, please be mindful at sit two rows back as voices carry and distracts the driver from giving his tour.
  • Please do not eat or drink food or beverages that puts off bad odors.
  • Please do not wear cologne or perfume that is over powering as the space is small and you will be with others for upwards of 45 minutes to 5.5 hours. Body odors have been a number one complaint.
  • Tips are always appreciated when a driver provides you with a safe experience and gives good directions making while making the experience enjoyable.

Contact us

For general enquiries, please get in touch using our contact form. For more specific answers please select one of the options below.

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