The Distance from Charlotte to Greensboro and How to Get There

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Charlotte is located in the state of North Carolina and is the largest city in that state. It has a population of around 900,000 people as per the last census. Greensboro is in the middle of the state, in the Piedmont area, and has a population of around 300,000 people.

Charlotte is a major transportation hub for North Carolina, the Tri-Cities, Georgia, and the Research Triangle, NC areas. Due to this, there are several ways to travel from Charlotte to Greensboro.

The driving distance between Greensboro and Charlotte is about 92 miles.

Here, we’ll look at the ways you can get between the two cities and the trip cost for each of the various ways you can travel.

Charlotte to Greensboro is 92 miles

Most Convenient: Driving

There are a few different routes you can take, which we’ll look at more closely.

Route 1: All highway

The fastest way to get from Charlotte to Greensboro is going direct via I-85. I-85 is a north-south highway that connects Charlotte with Atlanta and Richmond, Virginia. This route also goes there in the shortest distance.

Because this is all highway driving, the average speed is pretty good. Overall, you should be able to average 60-70 miles per hour. In total, the trip takes about 1.5 hours.

Route 2: Go through Lexington

You can take another route, but it covers more distance and takes about 15 minutes longer. This route goes to Winston Salem first via I-40.

From I-40, get on 285 and go through Lexington. Right after Lexington you will run into I-85, which takes you to Charlotte.

Route 3: Go through Statesville

Lastly, you can go through Statesville. Take I-40 to Statesville, then get on I-77. This route is also mostly highway driving and is about 15 minutes longer than the fastest route, at 1 hour and 45 minutes.

Checking traffic conditions

You never know what traffic conditions will be like, or if there will be a wreck, on any of these highways. That can add major delays, so the true fastest route actually depends on the day. Be sure to check Google Maps or your favorite maps app

Uber or Lyft

Another option instead of driving is to hire a driver. The most popular apps for doing this are Uber and Lyft.

Rates vary too much to pin down a ballpark price. But it’s best to download both the Uber and Lyft apps so you can compare prices before booking it.

Great experience but pricey: flying

You can also fly between Charlotte and Greensboro. American Airlines has direct flights between Charlotte CLT (Charlotte Douglas International Airport) and Greensboro GSO (Piedmont Triad International Airport). They are the only airline with non-stop flights between the two cities.

The flight time is about 54 minutes. The earliest flight is 7:38AM. The last flight is 10:44PM.

Flight Amenities

This flight uses smaller planes, like the Canadair RJ900 and Airbus A319. So the seats are a little tighter than some other flights. There is about 30 inches of leg room in the standard economy seat. Business and First class feature standard reclining seats with more leg room.

The flight includes WiFi for a fee, an in-seat power outlet, and ability to stream media to your device. There is unfortunately no free WiFi, even in first class seats.

Flight Amenities

This flight uses smaller planes, like the Canadair RJ900 and Airbus A319. So the seats are a little tighter than some other flights. There is about 30 inches of leg room in the standard economy seat. Business and First class feature standard reclining seats with more leg room.

The flight includes WiFi for a fee, an in-seat power outlet, and ability to stream media to your device. There is unfortunately no free WiFi, even in first class seats.

Budget Route: Bus and Train

Greyhound Bus

Greyhound bus will take you from Charlotte to Greensboro for about $20 one way. And Greyhound can travel between the two cities for the same amount of time it takes you to drive – around 1 hour and 45 minutes.

Greensboro Bus Station (GSO)
234 E Washington St
Greensboro, NC 27401

Charlotte Bus Station (CLT)
518 W 4th St
Charlotte, NC 28202

With a bus trip, you can also sit back and relax and not worry about driving. Greyhound has onboard entertainment options too, including movies and free Wifi.

Reviews

Unfortunately, Greyhound is poorly rated. Below are reviews from the Greensboro location.

It’s a shame, because otherwise bus could be a very convenient, relaxing way to get there without worry about the stress of driving on the highways.

Amtrak

Amtrak will take you there too for similar rates – about $20 one way. They can also travel between the two cities for nearly the same time as driving, at around 1 hour 30 minutes.

Amtrak Greensboro
236 E Washington St
Greensboro, NC 27401

Amtrak Charlotte
1914 N Tryon St
Charlotte, NC 28206

Reviews

Considering the reviews of Amtrak are much better and the price is the same, Amtrak is probably a better way to go. Here are some reviews:

Read Demetrius A.‘s review of Amtrak on Yelp
Read Rebecca M.‘s review of Amtrak on Yelp
Read Jim K.‘s review of Amtrak on Yelp

What’s the cheapest way to travel?

The cheapest way to travel depends on a number of things. Let’s first look a little more closely at the cost of each so we can better answer the question.

Costs of driving

Your estimated cost of gas depends on your vehicle’s fuel economy. It also depends on traffic and other factors, but overall the highway driving should help you here. You can estimate your fuel costs for this trip using a free tool from the EPA.

Also, the costs of car ownership don’t stop at just gas. You also need to consider the purchase cost, insurance, registration, and maintenance.  According to the American Automobile Association’s 2022 report on driving costs, the average cost to own and operate a new car in 2022 was over $10,000.

The cheapest car to own was a small sedan, coming in at around 54 cents per mile. Charlotte to Greensboro is 92 miles one way, or 184 miles round trip. So with a small sedan, your total costs of driving will be around $100. These costs are of course much higher with less fuel efficient vehicles.

Costs of flying

While flying might be a convenient way to travel between Charlotte and Greensboro, it is also the most expensive.

Flights depend on day of the week and time of year, but I saw ticket prices over $300. If you are looking to save money on travel expenses, flying is not the way to do it.

Costs of Greyhound

Greyhound tickets run about $20 one way, or $40 round trip. You may also need to account for parking while you’re gone, if you’re planning on driving to the bus station.

Depending on the location, you could end up needing to pay for parking, which is additional cost you’ll want to take into account.

Costs of Amtrak

Amtrak tickets run the same, at about $20 one way. And here again, you’ll want to factor in parking when looking at your total cost. But if you can have a friend drop you off or take public transit to get there, then you can save that money too.

So what’s the cheapest?

The cheapest way to travel is often either going to be Greyhound or Amtrak. At $20 one way, or $40 round trip, you really can’t beat it. But if you have to pay for parking at the station, or rent a car when you get to your destination, then it could become more expensive than driving.

Also, if you’re traveling in a group, driving will be the clear winner here, since you would need a bus or train ticket for each person in your group.

Flying will be generally always be the most expensive way to travel between Charlotte and Greensboro. It may mostly make sense if you’re flying into Charlotte first, and then have a layover to Greensboro.

What’s the fastest way to travel?

Overall, driving is probably your fastest way to get there. Greyhound and Amtrak can take you there in the same amount of time it takes to drive, but you’ll need to account for getting to their station, boarding, and getting out once you’re in your destination city.

Even though the flight time is just under an hour, you’ll need to account for getting to the airport early, going through security, boarding the plane, and getting out of the airport when you get there.

Still, if you’re coming in from another part of the United States, this could be the best way to get there. Many people fly into Charlotte from large cities like Los Angeles, San Francisco, or New York because it is one of the larger airports in the Southeast. Charlotte is also a big banking hub, so it sees a lot of business travelers. From there, it’s just a short layover to Greensboro.

What’s the most environmentally friendly way to travel?

The average carbon emissions for flying between Charlotte and Greensboro is around 40-50kg. According to the EPA, that’s actually about the same as driving a car 120 miles, so this flight’s emissions is not really any different for the environment than driving.

Still, mass transit like buses and trains are always going to be the most environmentally friendly way to go. Greyhound claims that they are the most environmentally friendly way to go, and that taking a Greyhound can reduce emissions by 79% over driving.

There was no way of confirming those exact numbers, but bus travel is by far better for the environment than a private vehicle or flying. With Amtrak, not much exact data is available. But their sustainability report indicates that in the future emissions data will be on all ticket information, starting with the route from Boston to Washington DC.

What’s the safest way to travel?

By far, flying is the safest way to travel anywhere. There hasn’t been a fatal plane crash for a commercial airline in the US since 2009. That’s over a decade.

Amtrak is likely safer than driving. But they have had a string of high-profile accidents that doesn’t give you a great feeling stepping onto one of their trains. None have involved this exact route and there might have been others at fault (i.e. parking on the tracks, etc), so it might not be entirely fair to avoid this route over them.

Driving, including taking an Uber or Lyft, is likely the least safe by a wide margin. According to government statistics, the counties of Mecklenburg (Charlotte) and Guilford (Greensboro) both top the charts for traffic accident fatalities.

Because Greyhound buses must take the same roads, the risk is likely similar with a Greyhound. The biggest difference might be the experience of the bus driver, who logs far more miles of driving than most people do. That experience can make a big difference in avoiding accidents. But Greyhound bus accidents are not uncommon, and the driver has been found at fault at times.

Where to stay in Charlotte

Many people traveling between the two cities will just be taking a day trip. But if you are planning to be there longer than that, you’ll need a place to stay.

Below are a few different accommodation options to suit different tastes. Keep in mind Charlotte is a major metropolitan area and has lots of places to choose from, so be sure to check where you want to go so you can find the right place for you. This is just a list to get you started.

Luxury option: The Ritz Carlton

If you’re looking for luxury, The Ritz-Carlton with its plush bedding and a stunning city view may be for you. This hotel offers a wide range of amenities, including an onsite spa, a pool, free breakfast, and free WiFi.

Boutique Options: The Ivey’s Hotel or the Dunhill Hotel

If you prefer boutique hotels, you’ll love the The Ivey’s Hotel, located right in the heart of Uptown Charlotte. Its unique design and impeccable service may be just what you are looking for.

The Ivey’s Hotel is pet-friendly, too, so it’s a great option if you’re traveling with your best friend. It is located right near the Bank of America Stadium.

If you are fond of history, The Dunhill Hotel, a historic hotel in Uptown Charlotte, might just be your ideal choice. They are also centrally located, just a short walk from the Bank of America Stadium, Spectrum Center, and the Charlotte Convention Center. Dunhill is located about 15-20 minutes from the Charlotte Douglas Airport.

Budget option: Hampton Inn and Suites

For the budget-conscious traveler, options such as the Hampton Inn and Suites, located near the South Park neighborhood, offer affordable rates without compromising on quality.

Great Camp Spot: McDowell Nature Preserve

If you love camping, McDowell Nature Preserve is a fantastic spot. It offers campsites with beautiful lake views, hiking trails, and even chance to get some fishing in while you’re in town.

Where to stay in Greensboro

If you’re traveling the other way and need a place to stay, there are also some places in Greensboro you may want to check out.

Luxury option: O. Henry Hotel

The O. Henry Hotel is Greensboro’s storied, landmark accommodation. Named after the famous author, this hotel is luxurious in every sense of the word. Whenever someone important is coming to town, they pick O. Henry.

Budget option: Sleep Inn Airport

Sleep Inn airport is easy on the wallet, but still gives you some great amenities. When you stay here, you get free breakfast, free Wifi, and a pool. They are also a pet friendly option.

Sleep Inn Airport, as the name implies, is conveniently located right next to the Piedmont Triad International Airport.

The Bottom Line

Traveling from Charlotte to Greensboro is a breeze. And both cities offer plenty of options for dining, recreation, and more.

I went to college at UNC-Greensboro and always loved the Bog Garden. Its beautiful natural landscape and the chance to see North Carolina wildlife in a natural setting is a nice escape from the city. The Mint Museum Uptown in Charlotte is also a great place to visit, and is just one of numerous places you can go in the Queen City.

If you are traveling with friends or family, be sure to check out the nearby cities of Winston-Salem and High Point for even more things to do.



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