FROM AIRPORTS BY TAXI OR CAR SERVICE

Travelers with experience in New York might be confident using one of the public transportation options detailed below. First time visitors may prefer to come into the city via taxi or private car service.

Taxi service from La Guardia (LGA) Airport is metered, and will cost $25-30, depending on traffic. Bridge toll and tips are extra. The trip to midtown can be as fast as 25 minutes, or can drag past 45 minutes.

Taxi from John F. Kennedy (JFK) Airport to Manhattan has a FLAT RATE of $45 + bridge or tunnel toll (currently $4.50) and tip. The flat rate does NOT apply to a taxi trip TO JFK from Manhattan - that trip will cost the price on the taxi meter, which can climb high in heavy traffic.

Taxi from Newark Liberty (EWR) Airport to Manhattan carries this caveat: Newark is in New Jersey, not New York. New Jersey cabs can't pick up a fare in New York for the trip back. (The same goes for a cab from New York City out to Newark Airport.) There is consequently a $15 surcharge for those trips. A car service is a good alternative, and can be reserved ahead of time to be waiting for you when your plane arrives.

You can book a car service in advance by phone or internet. Rates to and from La Guardia range from $29-33. To and from JFK, $40-48. To and from Newark Liberty, $44-48. Price range depends on the company and the time of day. If you have a larger group you can arrange for a private van. Credit cards are accepted, and you may pay cash as well.

Two companies guests have had good experience with:

Visit Tel Aviv for rates = or call toll free1-800-222-9888

Visit Dial 7 for rates = or call toll free 1-866-777-7777

Find others on this helpful page at About.com.

NOTE:

- Typically New Yorkers tip 10-20% to taxi and private drivers.

- New York City taxis now accept credit card payments - you don't even have to hand over your card, just swipe it yourself and enter the tip as well, via an interactive screen in the back of the cab. And of course you can pay cash if you prefer. Ask for a receipt - it can come in very handy if you happen to leave anything behind, as the receipt bears the cab's license number.

- Taxi and private car rates become more competitive with other options if there are 2 or more in your group. Remember that the public transportaion fees are PER PERSON, while taxi and car service rates are PER VEHICLE.

FROM JFK AIRPORT / public transportation
AIRTRAIN / JFK

A great way to travel between JFK and Manhattan is the combo trip of the AirTrain and subway. The charge is $5.00 for the AirTrain, and $2.25 for the subway. If you're planning to use the NYC subway and buses a lot, you might like to purchase a 7-day MetroCard right away for unlimited use. Both AirTrain and MetroCard can be purchased with cash or credit card from machines. Children under 5 travel FREE.

From the airport you can board the AirTrain at any terminal. The train makes two separate connections to subway lines. The slightly faster connection for our apartments is with the E subway line, at Jamaica Station. (Alternate trains will arrive at the platform at JFK. Choose the Jamaica Station-bound train. If you happen to accidentally board the train bound for Howard Beach, don't panic: on arrival you can board the A subway line and make the same stops when you reach Manhattan.)

Depending on the location of your apartment, choose from these stops:

For Chelsea, 14th Street station (A & E) or 23rd Street station (E) - the stairs will take you up to 8th Avenue at street level.

For Greenwich Village, West 4th Street station (A & E) or 14th Street station (A & E).

BUS SERVICE / JFK

You can also catch a comfortable bus that makes stops at each terminal, then choose between a couple of stops in the city. For our East Village apartment, choose the 42nd St / Grand Central Terminal stop. For the rest, choose 34th St / Penn Station. Buses leave the airport every half hour from 7:30 AM until 11:30 PM. Travel time is about 45 minutes to Grand Central, an hour and 20 minutes to Penn Station.

Get the full details:

New York Airport Service

Remember, if you plan to take a taxi from Grand Central or Penn Station to your apartment, you'll add another $9-12 to your total trip. Sometimes, especially for two or more travelers, a taxi or car service is not much more expensive, but considerably more convenient.

SHUTTLE / JFK
Another alternative is a shuttle van, shared with other riders, that will deliver you at your destination. You can reserve and pay ahead, or even call from the airport on arrival. SuperShuttle, for one, has service in 50 different US cities, so you may be able to use their service at home, too, and avoid airport parking.

Details: SuperShuttle or call (800) BLUE VAN (800-258-3826)

$23 first passenger, $10 for second.
Details: Go Air Link or call toll-free 1-877 599-8200
Starting at $18 per person
FROM LA GUARDIA AIRPORT / public transportation
BUS SERVICE / La Guardia
There is no "fast train" public transportation route from La Guardia, but there are some inexpensive options.

You can easily catch a comfortable bus that makes stops at each terminal, then a couple of stops in the city. For our East Village apartment, choose the 42nd St / Grand Central Terminal stop. For the rest, choose 34th St / Penn Station. Buses leave the airport every half hour from 7:30 AM until 11:30 PM. Travel time is about 45 minutes to Grand Central, an hour and 20 minutes to Penn Station. Look for the special La Guardia group fare: first passenger / $12 ; second passenger / $9 ; third passenger $6 = total, 3 for $25.

Get the full details:

New York Airport Service

Remember, if you plan to take a taxi from Grand Central or Penn Station to your apartment, you'll add another $9-12 to your total trip. Sometimes, especially for two or more travelers, a taxi or car service is not much more expensive, but considerably more convenient.

SHUTTLE / La Guardia
Another alternative is a shuttle van, shared with other riders, that will deliver you at your destination. You can reserve and pay ahead, or even call from the airport on arrival. SuperShuttle, for one, has service in 50 different US cities, so you may be able to use their service at home, too, and avoid airport parking.

Details: SuperShuttle or call 1--BLUE VAN ( 1-800-258-3826 )

$15 first passenger, $10 for second.
Details: Go Air Link or call toll-free 1-877 599-8200
Starting at $14 per person
FROM NEWARK LIBERTY AIRPORT
public transportation
NEW JERSEY TRANSIT / AIRTRAIN / Newark Liberty
The easiest, most convenient and most affordable route between New York City and Newark Liberty Airport is via new Jersey Transit commuter railway, combined with the AirTrain.

With frequent departures from the airport beginning at 4:48 AM until 12:50 AM., it's easy to schedule - it's also easy to continue via subway or taxi to your apartment. (Depart Penn Station for the return trip from 4:17 AM until 1:41 AM.)

The fare is $15 one way / $11.25 for seniors and children. Tickets for return to the airport can be purchased at Penn Station, either at a ticket window or from vending machines. Lines can sometimes be long, so give yourself a few extra minutes.

Details: New Jersey Transit

Before you leave for Penn Station it's a good idea to confirm that there are no unusual delays - they are rare, but they can happen. Check the website or call New Jersey Transit at 973-275-5555.

Have phone numbers on hand for a couple of car service companies in case of any emergency - as mentioned above, taxis are not the best option for travel between New York and New Jersey. Or have a contingency plan for a bus or shuttle.

BUS SERVICE / Newark Liberty
Olympia Bus Lines from Newark Liberty makes stops at NYC Port Authority Terminal (42nd Street & 8th Avenue), Bryant Park (42nd Street & 6th Avenue) and Grand Central Station (42nd Street & Park Avenue). The trip takes 40-50 minutes depending on the stop, with departures every half hour beginning at 4:00 AM running until 1:00 AM. Return trips from Manhattan depart from the same three locations, beginning 4:45 AM through 1:45 AM.

Purchase tickets at the terminal; for returns, pay inside Port Authority or from the driver at Bryant Park or Grand Central. you can also purchase tickets online.

Details: Olympia Bus Lines

SHUTTLE / Newark Liberty
Another alternative is a shuttle van, shared with other riders, that will deliver you at your destination. You can reserve and pay ahead, or even call from the airport on arrival. SuperShuttle, for one, has service in 50 different US cities, so you may be able to use their service at home, too, and avoid airport parking.

Details: SuperShuttle or call 1--BLUE VAN ( 1-800-258-3826 )

$23 first passenger, $10 for second.
Details: Go Air Link or call toll-free 1-877 599-8200
Starting at $18 per person
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