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How to Get From the Airport to NYC (LaGuardia, JFK & Newark)

How to Get From the Airport to NYC (LaGuardia, JFK & Newark)

When it comes to getting from the airport to New York City, you will have some different ways to go about the journey.

There are several options out there to choose from including busses, subways, taxis, ride hailing apps, and shared shuttles.

Not only that, but there are also three different airports in the NYC area – JFK, LaGuardia, and Newark.

Depending on which airport you are arriving and leaving from may make a difference when it comes to the cheapest & most efficient options.

Read on to learn more about getting from the airport to NYC during a visit to New York.

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1) NYC Airport Transport Overview

New York City is home to three major airports:

  • John F Kennedy Airport – JFK (Jamaica, Queens, NY)
  • LaGuardia Airport – LGA (East Elmhurst, Queens, NY)
  • Newark Airport – EWR (Newark, New Jersey)

There is also a smaller airport in Westchester (HPN) that is about 30 miles north of NYC

JFK and Newark handle most (but not all) of the international flights coming into NYC, while all three of them have domestic flights.

Now, when it comes to getting from/to the airport and Manhattan, there are several options to choose from. These include:

  • Public Transport (bus, subway, train)
  • Taxi
  • Uber / Lyft
  • Shared Shuttle

Based on your budget & the convenience of each option will dictate which mode of transport you will go with.

Below is a New York City map that highlights the location of each one of the three major airports in relation to NYC.

NYC Airports to Manhattan

2) NYC Airport Transport Tips

Before getting starting though, I did want to point out some helpful tips to consider as you are going about your trip.

1) If opting for public transport options, note that there are a few different transport systems around NYC.

These include the MTA (NYC busses & subways), the LIRR (Long Island Rail Road), and the NJ Transit (NJ trains & busses).

The PATH is a fourth option, which connects Manhattan and New Jersey. While that could be used getting between Newark and NYC, I won’t be covering it much.

You will need to purchase tickets separately for these three if you happen to use them during your time in the city (note that the LIRR and NJ Transit will only really need to be used to/from the airport, if at all).

2) In addition to those few transportation systems, you will find AirTrains at both Newark & JFK airports. The AirTrain heads around the airport area and connects to nearby public transport options.

3) The most common transport option that you will use throughout your time in NYC is the MTA subway & bus system. These routes require a fare of $2.90, no matter how far you go on a journey.

While Metrocards are still around, they are getting phased out. The new way to travel is by using OMNY. This will be in the form of an OMNY card or by simply tapping your credit card / smartphone at the turnstile.

4) Some routes from the airport combine an MTA subway & bus. In these cases the fare does transfer over. So, you will not need to pay $2.90 twice. You simply need to swipe/tap again within a 2 hour time window.

5) When using public transport from the airport, you will need to consider where in the city you are staying. Some places may be closer/faster to the airports when compared to other parts of the city.

As you are figuring out your route, Google Maps does a great job to help you decide on subway, bus, & other transport options.

6) Another consideration when choosing between options is how many people you are traveling with. If you are a group of 4 for example, taking a taxi/Uber potentially may be as cheap as public transport.

7) Lastly, be aware of rush hour traffic in NYC! Taxis and Ubers may be the most convenient option going door to door but if you are stuck in traffic it could be longer than public transport.

In each of the next three sections I will lay out the various transport options, logistics, and pricing for the airports.

Feel free to scroll on down to the airport you will be flying into and out of to learn more.

-> Be sure to check out the 4 Day NYC Itinerary and the guide to Where to Stay in NYC, to help you prepare for a visit.

Manhattan Airports

3) LaGuardia Airport to Manhattan

Many consider LGA to be the easiest airport to travel to as it is the closest airport to Manhattan.

Below are the logistics for each main option:

Public Transport

LaGuardia Airport is not immediately connected to the subway system of NYC. Instead you first will need to take a bus, which will then connect to a subway line.

LaGuardia Bus-Subway Routes:

  • Q70-SBS Bus -> 7/E/F/M/R Train at Jackson Heights – Roosevelt Avenue
  • M60-SBS Bus -> 4/5 Train at 125th Street
  • M60-SBS Bus -> N/W Train at Astoria Blvd

By taking the Q70-SBS or M60-SBS bus, you should be able to connect to several subway lines that will get yourself into Manhattan.

Note: you can also transfer onto the LIRR, but that will be more expensive and may not save you much time.

LaGuardia Bus-Subway Cost: $2.90

LaGuardia Airport to Manhattan Time Estimate: 45 minutes

LaGuardia Airport to Manhattan

Taxi

Once you get out of the terminal, taxis will be lined up to take visitors right to their hotel’s doorstep.

Depending on traffic/where you are staying, driving can take as little as 15-20 minutes. During rush hour though, it very well may take closer to an hour.

This is going to be the most convenient of options but can come at a price.

How Much is a Cab from LaGuardia to Manhattan?

Expect to pay between $30 – $50 depending on where you are headed & how much traffic there is. Currently there is no flat fare for LGA.

Ride Hail (Uber/Lyft)

Instead of opting for a taxi, where rates can fluctuate for LGA, you can lock in a price with an Uber or Lyft ride.

The average cost for an UberX from LGA in Manhattan is listed as $52 while a UberXL is $63

Is It Cheaper to Take a Taxi or Uber from LaGuardia to Manhattan?

In general, these two options will be quite similar in price (Taxis at $30 – $50 and Ubers around $52). If you want to lock in your rate, head with an Uber.

If you see that Ubers are on the more expensive side, opt for the taxi.

Shuttle

A shared shuttle service is also available at LGA. These are run by companies such as Airlink and SuperShuttle.

You can book your ride ahead of time, and the shuttles will take you right to your hotel.

How Much is the Shuttle from LaGuardia to Manhattan?

Expect to pay around $40 for the shuttle though. This means it may be right in line with an Uber or taxi.

I would only recommend it during peak traffic, when the private transport options can be very expensive.

Cheapest Way to Get from LaGuardia to Manhattan

Without a doubt, taking the combination of the bus and subway will be the cheapest way to get from LaGuardia to Manhattan.

For just $2.90, it does not get much better than that!

NYC Airport Bus

4) JFK Airport to Manhattan

JFK is located in southern Queens and can be a bit more difficult & farther to get to. However, there have been some public transport improvements made which I will cover.

Below are the logistics for each main option:

Public Transport

When it comes to JFK and public transport, you will first need to take the “AirTrain” out of the main airport area.

The AirTrain has a few different colored lines that then connect with subway & LIRR lines nearby.

JFK AirTrain-Subway Routes:

  • AirTrain Red Line -> E/J/Z Train
  • AirTrain Green Line -> A Train

You can also take the AirTrain Red Line and transfer to the LIRR. The LIRR will get you into either Penn Station or Grand Central Station (new as of 2023) depending on the train you choose.

  • JFK AirTrain-Subway Cost: $8.25 + $2.90 = $11.15
  • JFK AirTrain-LIRR Cost: $8.25 + ~$10.00 = ~$18.00

The AirTrain out of the airport area costs $8.25 (riding the AirTrain between terminals is free). This will be paid after getting off of the AirTrain (or before when going to the airport).

If you connect to a subway it will cost just $2.90, while connecting to an LIRR train will be between $8 – $11 depending on peak vs non peak hours.

JFK Airport to Manhattan Time Estimate: 60 minutes

JFK Airport to Manhattan

Taxi

Once you get out of the JFK terminal, taxis will be lined up to take visitors right to their hotel’s doorstep.

Depending on traffic/where you are staying, driving can take as little as 30 minutes. During rush hour though, it could take well over an hour.

This is going to be the most convenient of options but can come at a price.

How Much is a Cab from JFK to Manhattan?

For JFK airport, there is a flat rate of $70 to/from Manhattan. You will also have a $5 surcharge during peak hours (4:00PM – 8:00PM) in addition to tolls & tips.

All in the taxi cost can be $80+ when getting between JFK and Manhattan

Ride Hail (Uber/Lyft)

Instead of opting for the flat rate taxi, you can lock in a price with an Uber or Lyft ride.

The average cost for an UberX from JFK in Manhattan is listed as $75 while a UberXL is $97.

However, if you are traveling during non-peak hours where there is little traffic, prices can be substantially lower.

Is It Cheaper to Take a Taxi or Uber from JFK to Manhattan?

In general, these two options will be quite similar in price (around $75).

However, if you are traveling to/from the airport in the early hours of the morning or later at night, it is possible that an Uber will be less expensive.

Since the JFK taxi ride is a flat rate, there is more flexibility with Ubers during those less busy times.

Shuttle

A shared shuttle service is also available at JFK. These are run by companies such as Airlink and SuperShuttle.

You can book your ride ahead of time, and the shuttles will take you right to your hotel.

How Much is the Shuttle from JFK to Manhattan?

Expect to pay around $45 for the shuttle, which can be significantly less than a taxi or Uber.

You still get that door to door service. It just comes at the cost of having a shared van vs private transport.

Cheapest Way to Get from JFK to Manhattan

Without a doubt, taking the combination of the AirTrain and subway will be the cheapest way to get from JFK to Manhattan.

For $11.15, you will be able to make it all the way from the airport right into Manhattan.

Taxi to NYC Airport

5) Newark Airport to Manhattan

Instead of flying into New York when visiting NYC, you can also fly into Newark airport in New Jersey.

Surprisingly, it can be cheaper and faster than flying into an airport like JFK, which is in New York!

Below are the logistics for each main option:

Public Transport

When it comes to public transport between Newark and Manhattan, there is an option for you.

This will be a combination of taking the Newark AirTrain and connecting to the NJ Transit.

Newark AirTrain-Train Routes:

  • AirTrain Newark -> NEC/NJCL Train Line (directly into Penn Station)

Once you reach Penn Station, you can then hop on several nearby subway lines (or walk) to get to your hotel.

Newark AirTrain-NJ Transit Cost: $15.25

When purchasing a NJ Transit ticket, the cost of the AirTrain will be included in the total fee.

Newark Airport to Manhattan Time Estimate: 40 minutes

Newark Airport to Manhattan

Taxi

Once you get out of the Newark terminal, taxis will be lined up to take visitors right to their hotel’s doorstep.

Depending on traffic/where you are staying, driving in can take as little as 25 minutes. During rush hour though, it can take over an hour.

This is going to be the most convenient of options but can come at a price.

How Much is a Cab from Newark to Manhattan?

Depending on where you are going in the city, expect to pay between $60 – $80 for the ride from Newark into Manhattan.

Ride Hail (Uber/Lyft)

Instead of opting for a taxi, you can lock in a price with an Uber or Lyft ride.

The average cost for an UberX from Newark into Manhattan is listed as $67 while a UberXL is $76.

However, if you are traveling during non-peak hours where there is little traffic, prices can be substantially lower.

Is It Cheaper to Take a Taxi or Uber from Newark to Manhattan?

In general, these two options will be quite similar in price (around $70 – $80). If you want to lock in your rate, head with an Uber. If you see that Ubers are on the more expensive side, opt for the taxi.

Shuttle – Newark Airport Express

One of the most convenient and easy ways to get into the city is to take the direct Newark Airport Express bus from the airport that stops at the Port Authority Bus Terminal, Grand Central Station, and Bryant Park.

Coachusa runs these busses from the early hours in the morning until late at night. Feel free to check out the latest schedules.

How Much is the Shuttle from Newark to Manhattan?

Expect to pay $18.70 for a one way or $33 for a round trip bus. This cost gets you very close to the public transport option.

I would recommend opting for the Newark Airport Express if you are looking for the convenience of getting dropped off at Port Authority Bus Terminal, Grand Central Station, and Bryant Park.

There are also shuttle companies (similar to JFK/EWR) that would cost closer to $40-$45 for door to door service.

Cheapest Way to Get from Newark to Manhattan

Once again, opting for public transport with the AirTrain & NJ Transit will be your best bet, coming in at $15.25.

However, the Newark Airport Express is a great and cheap option to that costs just $18.70.

New York City to Airport

6) Getting Between Airports

I also wanted to touch upon the times where travelers may need to get between airports.

This is a common situation when traveling to/from an international location through NYC. So, you may land in one airport, and then need to transfer to another airport to catch a second flight.

Below are some high level logistics for each one of these situations.

Note: there may be more than one public transport route available. The ones listed below are usually going to be the most convenient ones.

Visiting NYC? Check out some New York quotes that can help inspire your trip

Transport Between LGA and JFK

This is one of the most common transfers as travelers land in LGA or JFK and then need to catch a second flight from the other.

Public Transport

Below is the public transport route between LGA and JFK (60-70 minutes). If heading in the opposite direction, just go about it in the reverse order:

  1. Q70-SBS to Roosevelt Avenue / 74th Street
  2. E Subway Line to Jamaica Station
  3. JFK Red AirTrain to JFK

Uber / Taxi: 20 – 40 minutes ($40 – $60) -> be aware of rush hour traffic!

Shuttle: the ETS Shuttle offers shared rides for as low as ~$22

Transport Between LGA and Newark

Another potential transfer is between LGA and Newark. Here are some options to consider:

Public Transport

Below is the public transport route between LGA and EWR (75-90 minutes). If heading in the opposite direction, just go about it in the reverse order:

  1. Q70-SBS to Woodside Avenue / 61st Street
  2. LIRR Train to Penn Station
  3. NJ Transit Train to Newark Airport Station
  4. Newark AirTrain to EWR

Uber / Taxi: 40 – 60 minutes (~$120) -> be aware of rush hour traffic!

Shuttle: the ETS Shuttle offers shared rides for as low as ~$52

Transport Between JFK and Newark

Lastly, you have the transfer between JFK and EWR. While this is a but less common of a route, I still wanted to include some options.

Public Transport

Below is the public transport route between JFK and EWR (80-90 minutes). If heading in the opposite direction, just go about it in the reverse order:

  1. JFK Red AirTrain to Jamaica Station
  2. LIRR Train to Penn Station
  3. NJ Transit Train to Newark Airport Station
  4. Newark AirTrain to EWR

Uber / Taxi: 50 – 60 minutes (~$150) -> be aware of rush hour traffic!

Shuttle: the ETS Shuttle offers shared rides for as low as ~$52

Governors Island NYC Sunset

So, there you have it. Everything you need to consider when getting from NYC airports into Manhattan.

If you have any questions about getting into the city, feel free to add them in below.

Also, be sure to check out the other New York itineraries and guides up on the site, like this 7 day in NYC itinerary.

Have fun out there and safe travels!

How to Get From the Airport to NYC

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Kathy D

Saturday 4th of March 2023

It would help if you also included transportation tips between airports. ie. NWK to JFK.

Charles

Saturday 11th of March 2023

Hi Kathy - thanks for the callout! I added in a section at the end of the article to go over some of those logistics.