First time to New York

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Travel' started by MeeToo, Nov 20, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. MeeToo

    MeeToo Silver Member

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    Hi y'all,

    I have never been to New York, but am contemplating a short 2-3 day trip mainly to see the Rockettes Christmas show at Radio City. It will be a "girls" trip, just me and my girlfriend. I am planning to stay at Hilton Garden Inn. Is LGA the airport we should fly in to? We are country girls (Texas) and not city girls! For whatever that is worth. ;)

    I am thinking we fly to LGA and have a car service take us to the hotel.
     
  2. wrxmom

    wrxmom Gold Member

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    If you fly into JFK you can take the air train and then the subway to your hotel.

    Or take a cab - fixed rate from JFK to Manhattan. I don't recall what the rate is.

    If you do fly into LGA, call for a shuttle. There's a desk right next to baggage claim that can make the reservation for you and it's a few dollars less than walking outside to the curb for the same shuttle. It's a lot cheaper than a car service.
     
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  3. ella
    Original Member

    ella Silver Member

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    I usually fly into LGA and use Dial 7 car service into midtown. It's about $35 plus tolls and tip. www.dial7.com for reservations. You call when you arrive and they meet you at the curb. I don't know how that compares to taxi because I've not done taxi from airport, but I know it's a lot less hassle than supershuttle while still being very close in price.

    Have a great time in NYC ! A December trip to NYC always puts me in the Christmas spirit. We'll be there 12/19-22. Just be prepared for tremendous crowds in the areas around Rockefeller Center and Times Square. Pack A LOT of patience !!
     
  4. MSYgirl

    MSYgirl Gold Member

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    Thanks for this tip; it might come in handy for my February trip. Last time I took a taxi from LGA to Brooklyn, and it was about that price (February, 2012).
     
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  5. canucklehead
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    canucklehead Gold Member

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    If you are planning to stay at the HGI near Time Square or 35th, LGA will be a tad easier (ask to go via 59th St Bridge) which does not incur a toll like the Triborough/RFK Bridge does. By LGA, it will be metered, prob around $35 + surcharge ($0.50 + Night surcharge of $.50 after 8:00 PM & before 6:00 AM, or Peak hour Weekday Surcharge of $1.00 Monday - Friday after 4:00 PM & before 8:00 PM).

    If you arrive by JFK, it will be a $52 flat rate + tolls + surcharge.

    Taxis are abundant and more economical than car service.

    If you are at HGI TS, it is a nice walk to Radio City Music Hall, the 35th St one is about 15 block (approx 0.75mi)
     
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  6. anileze

    anileze Gold Member

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    I cannot comment on the hotel strategy for NYC as I live there, and have personally never booked a hotel room. However, try hotelscombined.com and try to stay in the city as opposed to the boroughs.
     
  7. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    If you fly into JFK it's also a flat rate of $52 plus tolls plus a 50 cent surcharge.

    I know one of the bloggers here was just at the HGI this past week and loved it, so you should have a good time.

    It's been unseasonably cold around these parts, with the lows this Sunday dipping into the 20s, so I'd be prepared with cold weather gear -- you'd be surprised how many people come to New York without expecting it to be fridgid even in December :)

    Not sure when your trip is exactly but the tree lighting ceremony is on 12/4 this year. It's quite a sight, although the crowds are crazy (mostly with tourists just like you though :) ).
     
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  8. ella
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    ella Silver Member

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    I just booked my res for December, and Dial 7 was $34+ for standard sedan, or $39 for luxury sedan from LGA to midtown. Return has gone up to $51+ for luxury sedan.
     
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  9. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    Brrrrr....Thanks for the reminder! Having spent the past week in Singapore where it's been and is always hot & muggy, wearing shorts and Hawaiian shirts, it sounds like I am in for a cold reception when I return to City on Sunday!

    To the OP, I would suggest flying into LGA and just taking a yellow cab directly to the HGI, especially since this is your first trip. Enjoy the City!
     
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  10. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Nooooooooooo!!!!

    Definitely not with more than one person. The minimal cash savings is eaten up by the lime costs, the horrible service and then general awfulness which is those shuttle services in NYC. If you want to save the cash then go with Q70->E train to midtown. Otherwise just take a cab.
     
  11. Newscience

    Newscience Gold Member

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    O.K., I'll ask the question (it's at least somewhat related to this posting):
    What's the best (relatively fast, not wallet-emptying) way to travel between NYC-area airports? Between EWR and JFK? Between LGA and JFK?
     
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  12. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Between the airports I'd either do mass transit - it isn't horrible but also not great - or the dedicated buses between the facilities. The "shuttle" I was referring to above was something like SuperShuttle or GO Airlink or whatever which are door-to-door but really, really bad.
     
  13. Newscience

    Newscience Gold Member

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    TNKS! :)
     
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  14. MeeToo

    MeeToo Silver Member

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    If I can educate myself enough to feel comfortable/confident about doing this, it really appeals to me to take trains and subways simply for the experience. Is there a good website for reading up on how to navigate NYC for someone like me that lives in a small town?
     
  15. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    The MTA has a fantastic site with all the info you need, including maps, tolls and the like.

    http://mta.info

    Also, if you have an Android phone, the latest Google Now updates have improved the public transit directions and even tell you when the next train/bus is due to arrive whenever you're near a train station.
     
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  16. MeeToo

    MeeToo Silver Member

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    Thanks!
     
  17. Espan

    Espan Silver Member

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    Is the fixed rate from JFK to midtown currently $52? Oops, just saw that answered above. Sorry.
     
  18. Wandering Aramean
    Original Member

    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    It is mostly straightforward and there are agents to help through the part of the trip which is inside the airport. Once you switch to the MTA it gets a bit harder but not too awful.

    There are three different routes running on the AirTrain. They are the Jamaica Line, Howard Beach Line and All Terminals Line. When you get off the plane you'd follow the signs in your terminal to baggage claim and then to AirTrain. All of the terminals are pretty well signed for this step.
    [​IMG]

    Once you get to the AirTrain platform you need to wait for a Jamaica train. The Jamaica and Howard Beach trains run on the same track typically so you may have to wait a few minutes. The route is indicated overhead on the signs at the train doors, on the LCDs and by an audible announcement when the train is arriving and when the doors open for boarding. If you listen it is hard to get on the wrong train.

    Ride the train all the way to the end of the line. Should be no more than 10 minutes. Walk along with everyone else towards the exit. At this point you need to buy a MetroCard to get out of the AirTrain area. If you are going to take the Subway it is a different card from taking the LIRR (commuter rail) and which one you should take mostly depends on where your hotel is. The LIRR is a bit more expensive and a bit faster but only goes to NY Penn Station (or out to Long Island - don't do that ;)). The Subway makes multiple stops along the way so it is slower but it is also cheaper and the stops might be closer to your hotel. The fee to get out of the AirTrain is $5 plus $1 to get a MetroCard issued. Then it is $2.50 for the subway ride. A round trip is $15 and you get a 10% bonus if you put more than $10 on the card. Also, the same card can be used to ride around town if you want so if you think you'll use it a few times putting $20 on it wouldn't be so horrible. Also note that the vending machines accept CCs so that helps a bit.

    LIRR:
    [​IMG]

    MTA/Subway:
    [​IMG]

    Once you leave the AirTrain keep walking forward and bear left past the retail shops. Do NOT go down the escalators/elevators inside. There is a set of doors all the way at the end of the top level which open out onto a concourse above the LIRR tracks.
    [​IMG]

    If you are taking the LIRR into town look on the displays there for the NY Penn train track number. Go down the appropriate escalator to that track then ride in to NY Penn.

    [​IMG]
     
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  19. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    If you are taking the subway go all the way to the far end of the concourse and get in the elevator. Go all the way down to the bottom floor. Don't get out halfway at street level. Walk out and a bit to the right and then bear left (it really is the only direction you can walk so it makes sense) and you'll be at the turnstiles to enter the subway system. Swipe your MetroCard again and you're in.

    [​IMG]
    (The above is looking out from inside the subway; you'll go the other direction but it mostly looks like this.)

    Once through the turnstiles there is an elevator directly in front of you or an escalator just off to the left. I typically use the escalator down one level to the platform where the E train runs. At the bottom of the escalator you want the trains which will be to your right as you come down. Similar to the AirTrain there will be announcements made on the platform and on the train. You need a Manhattan Bound train. The ride is about 30 minutes into Manhattan from the station, plus a few more minutes depending on where exactly you are trying to get to.

    If you have a specific hotel/cross street in mind there might be a reasonable subway transfer which makes it easy but I'd need to know exactly where you are going.

    (Split into two because of too many images. :oops:)
     
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  20. Espan

    Espan Silver Member

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    Wow, Wandering.... above and beyond!
     
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  21. LarryInNYC

    LarryInNYC Gold Member

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    I think the shuttles are great value. I took one from Newark a couple of years ago -- I drove the length of Manhattan several times and spent around four hours in the van.

    On a cents-per-mile basis, hard to beat.
     
  22. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Different priorities, I suppose. :D :D
     
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  23. Espan

    Espan Silver Member

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    I'm sensing this is sarcasm...
     
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  24. jgreen

    jgreen New Member

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    When i was in New York this summer (from the UK) we flew to JFK but were staying much nearer to LGA (but these flights were cheaper) and we managed to navigate the airtrain, subway and bus no problem. Yes it took us a while, and in hindsight it was a bit chaotic with our luggage but if you want the challenge, there' enough signage around and friendly locals to help you out.
     
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  25. LarryInNYC

    LarryInNYC Gold Member

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    While there's no problem taking public transportation from the airport to the hotel it is a bit indirect (requiring at least one change en route). Since I'm sensing you're a little nervous about visiting New York, I'd suggest that for your first visit splurge on a cab from the airport to your hotel. From LGA to midtown will be about $35 or $40 (less if you're going to the east side). Once in town, by all means, use the buses and subways. As far as safety goes, I live in Harlem (uptown Manhattan) and have two daughters aged 12 and 14 who each use the subways by themselves and have since the age of 11.

    You'll really enjoy New York. Make sure you come prepared for the cold weather and for lots of walking -- most people are surprised by how much walking they wind up doing in New York.
     

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