Going home for the upcoming Thanksgiving break? Super excited to see your friends and family? Me too!! But there’s only one hurdle standing between me, Joey Kopriva, standing outside of my 26-story home known as Founders Hall, and that JetBlue terminal at JFK airport: How in the heck do I get there?!?!
At first, I may be tempted to just hop in a cab, but quickly crunching the numbers in my head, it starts to not make sense. A cab to the airport can be rather pricy, with a flat rate of $45 (plus tip) to JFK, and metered fair to La Guardia, which will typically end up reaching $35-$40 (plus tip). Also, in considering time, often cabs can be hit or miss, as traffic is unpredictable. I have actually arrived late to the airport and missed my flight when I once decided to take a cab! DON’T LET THIS HAPPEN TO YOU!
Public transportation in Manhattan is so accessible, usually reliable, and significantly cheaper than taxis. Here are some tips for taking public transportation to the airports (from Founders):
Put on your walking shoes because you’ve got a hike ahead of you! HAHA JK! Just head up to Union Square and grab the L train heading toward 8th Ave. From there, transfer to the Queens-bound E train (that’s the blue line for all you subway rookies) and take it all the way to Jamaica Station. From there, it’s just a quick ride on the Airtrain, which will take you directly to your terminal.
TOTAL COST: $7.25
*Disclaimer- If traveling after dark, I recommend this alternate route: after the L train, take the C or E headed downtown, get off at West 4th St., and transfer to the downtown, Far Rockaway A train, taking it all the way to Howard Beach (MAKE SURE you get on the Far Rockaway line and NOT the Lefferts line- this could cost you some major travel time!). From here, you can also take the Airtrain. Though this will take a bit more time than the above route, the Howard Beach station is less sketchy than the Jamaica station after dark.
To La Guardia:
Again starting at Union Square, take the uptown N or Q, all the way to Astoria Blvd. Get off the train, walk down the steps of the subway station, and transfer to the M60 bus (DID YOU KNOW?? When transferring from a subway to a bus, or vice versa, in the city, there is no extra charge!) After a few stops, the bus will enter La Guardia airport proper. At that point, there probably won’t be very many people left inside, so just make sure the driver knows which terminal you are going to, and he or she will drop you off there.
TOTAL COST: $2.25
To EWR( aka Newark)
Get excited. Why? Because on you’re way home you get to pass through NEW JERSEY! I mean, let’s be real, NJ is the greatest state on earth. (editors note. anyone who wants to smack talk NJ should consult 2nd floor RA in 206)
Getting from Manhattan and EWR (and back):
-NJ Transit to AirTran. Surprisingly, this can actually be much quicker than taking a cab or bus, and it is much more affordable. $11.55 one way will bring you from Penn Station to Newark Airport. AirTrain connects the NJ Transit “Newark Airport Station” to the airport terminals. Consult the scheduleto determine the schedule of connecting trains. Service is available from 5 a.m. until 2 a.m.
Taxis to Newark Airport: Metered fare (approximately $69-75) plus return tolls and a $15 surcharge for a NYC Taxi to Newark Airport.
Newark Liberty Airport Express : Available from 4 a.m. – 1 a.m., these shuttles leave every 15-30 minutes for midtown Manhattan and every 2 hours to downtown Manhattan (from 11:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.). One-way fare is $13, but you can save by buying round-trip tickets, as they are $22. One free child under 16 is included in the fare. You can choose to disembark at Grand Central, Port Authority or Penn Station, in addition to midtown hotels. The ride takes about an hour. Return schedules and more information are available on their website.
Easy and cheap, in my opinion, public transportation trumps taxis every time when it comes to travelling to the airports. Confused by any of these directions? Come and see RA Joey on the 3rd floor! I’m always ready to answer any questions!