New York City – Getting into Manhattan from JFK

Here are some tips on getting to Manhattan from JFK.

Airplane Flight
We took advantage of some great prices on flights to JFK Airport in New York. The airport is about ~1 hour drive into Manhattan depending on traffic. Note: In case you want to do the red-eye flight, many hotels in New York do not have early check-in around 7 a.m. Thats something to consider. Make sure you sleep well the night before if you decide to do the red eye flight.

Getting into town. You have a few options on getting into the city.

Taxi is the easiest and cheapest if you have more than 2 people. It’ll run you about $50 + tips via cab. Cabs charge by the car so if you have a group of 3 or 4 it will be the cheapest way.

Note: There are some people driving regular cars looking for people to drive into town. I wouldn’t recommend this. Don’t go outside of the terminal unless you find a legitimate cab driver.

Van/Shuttle:  I wouldn’t recommend buying van tickets ahead of time since they usually have to fill the van before they can leave. We tried the Go Link since they had a van ready to go and the slightly cheaper rates. $19 into Mid-town, front door service. The driver was nice, so I can’t really complain for the money. They have to drop everyone off across town so its not recommended if you are in a rush.

Airport Service Bus: $15 each way or $27 R/T. The bus is the cheapest way into town with suitcases. They have a few stops (Grand Central Station, Port Authority, and Penn Station)   Its a bit slow getting back to the airport since they stop at each terminal. Ours was one of the last terminals so it took around 1.5 hours from departure.

Train: This is probably the fastest way into town during rush hour if you are light in luggage (either a small bag or backpack) The train is not convenient if you have a lot of luggage since there really isn’t much room on the train. There is the Air Train which will take you to Penn Station for around $12 total.


Take AirTrain to Jamaica Station.

•  At Jamaica Station, take a Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) train to New York Penn Station.
New York Penn Station is a major transportation hub offering connections from New York City subways and buses, the LIRR, Amtrak® and NJ TRANSIT®.



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