Which New York pass is worth it

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Lluis Enric Mayans
@lluisenricmayans
SOURCES CONSULTED:

wikipedia.org, lonelyplanet.com

Author and references

Index

  • What is a pass exactly?
  • Why take a pass for New York
  • Pass comparison table
  • Which pass includes the Metrocard
  • New York Pass
  • New York CityPASS
  • New York Explorer Pass
  • Build Your Own Pass
  • Sightseeing Day Pass
  • Sightseeing Flex Pass
  • Dine4Less

There are so many things to see and do in New York pass can be of great help to save time and money.



What is a pass exactly?

A pass for tourists yes usually buy before travel and includes packages of attractions to see over a certain period of time.

With the pass in hand - be it paper, physical or digital format - generally it is not necessary to stop at the classic ticket office (you have already paid before!), and in some cases you can skip the line completely, passing through a sort of preferential lane.

Don't think about something very complicated; on the contrary, the passes can simplify your tourist experience, as long as you choose the one that best suits your needs.

There are various types: with a fixed number of attractions, having a duration in days predetermined and the ability to see all the attractions you want in that time frame, with attractions to choose on the spot or in advance.

Each attraction can only be visited once, with the exception of the CityPASS which allows you to visit the Empire State Building twice on the same day.



Since there are so many passes for New York (all-inclusive, customizable ...) you will certainly find the one that suits you best.

Why take a pass for New York

  • Obviously, to save money compared to buying single tickets; how much? The sites dedicated to the various passes usually highlight the savings that you will be able to obtain.
  • For convenience: you won't have to buy individual tickets for the attractions you are interested in, and your journey will flow more smoothly.
  • To skip the lines of some of the most popular attractions. You will feel great satisfaction (and your tired feet will thank you) in quickly crossing the entrance while not far away a line of people proceeds towards the entrance at a snail's pace.

Pass comparison table

New York Pass Sightseeing Day CityPASS Explorer Pass Sightseeing Flex Dine4Less Build Your Own
price and $117 at $305 and $159 at $229 from $ 136 and $69 at $229 and $64 at $264 from $ 29 depends on the attractions
attractions over 100 over 100 3 fixed + 3 at your choice max 10 max 12 - by 1 to 82
validity up to 10 days up to 7 days 9 days 30 days 30 days 90 days 30 days

Which pass includes the Metrocard

At the moment, no pass includes the Metro card, the popular (and convenient) Metrocard.



However, there are some passes (such as the New York Pass, the Sightseeing Unlimited Pass, the New York Explorer Pass, the Sightseeing Passes in the Day and Flex versions, the FreeStyle Pass) that include a means of transport much appreciated by tourists: the bus hop-on hop-off, on which you can get on and off, at any stop of their route, whenever you want.

How long? It depends on the type of pass; it ranges from one day to validity for the entire duration of the pass.
Let's see the passes one by one now.

New York Pass

It is a pass that includes more than 100 attractions; at the time of purchase you will have to choose only the number of days of validity, while you can decide later which attractions to see!

How it works

Once in possession of the pass, you can freely access the attractions offered for the duration of the pass.
Activation will take place at the time of the visit to the first attraction and the pass will be valid for the following consecutive days (this, of course, in the case of passes lasting more than 24 hours).

To visit most of the attractions, advance reservations are not required; just show up and the staff will scan your pass at the entrance.

Some tours with fixed times, however, must be booked in advance. You will find all the information on the New York Pass App and / or in the pocket guide.


What does it include

The 10 most interesting attractions are the following:

  1. Empire State Building
  2. Top of the Rock panoramic terrace
  3. Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
  4. One day hop-on hop-off bus tour
  5. Food walking tour to discover the best restaurants in New York and taste different local dishes
  6. Wax Museum
  7. Crociere Circle Line Sightseeing
  8. Harlem Gospel Tour (Sunday Service)
  9. Little Italy & Arthur Avenue Walking Tour in the Bronx
  10. Tour of the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island

The complete list is available on this page.


Furthermore, this pass offers discounts on restaurants, theaters, shopping and airport transfers.

How many days is it worth

The duration can be 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7 or 10 days.

When it is convenient

In general, the savings will be greater the more you use it to visit numerous attractions and if, among these, you prefer those that have the highest standard admission price (you can easily find them on the official website page that lists the attractions and specifies the “Price without pass”.

This pass is also suitable for those looking for great flexibility and the ability to choose from many attractions.

At which attractions you can skip the lines

La Fast Track it is a queue specially dedicated to holders of a New York Pass that allows you to enter the desired places without having to queue like everyone else to buy the ticket.

This discount is currently available for the following attractions:

  • Empire State Building
  • Top of the Rock panoramic terrace
  • Madame Tussauds
  • Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
  • Crociere Circle Line Sightseeing
  • Metropolitan Museum of Art (The Met)
  • Museo Intrepid Sea, Air and Space
  • Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum

Where to buy and how to collect

It can be purchased on the official website, which often offers attractive discounts, and can be downloaded immediately after purchase in the "mobile" version on the New York Pass App.

Those who prefer a physical subscription can have it delivered (delivery is available worldwide, for a fee) or collect it upon arrival in New York.

How much does it cost (discounted until 18/03)

Prices vary based on the length of the pass and, of course, children spend less.

  • 1 day, Adults $ 117, Children (4-12 years) $ 90;
  • 2 days, Adults $ 149, Children $ 129;
  • 3 days, Adults $ 179, Children $ 139;
  • 4 days, Adults $ 206, Children $ 149;
  • 5 days, Adults $ 233, Children $ 161;
  • 7 days, Adults $ 269, Children $ 179;
  • 10 days, Adults $ 305, Children $ 199;

Is this more convenient or the Sightseeing Day Pass?

This pass includes a New York icon among the attractions, The empire state building, which the Sightseeing does not propose, however the latter has the One World Observatory!

The advice can only be to choose between the two passes based on your preferences regarding these top attractions.

In case you are a fan of hop-on hop-off bus, also consider that the Sightseeing Day Pass offers them to you for their entire duration (eg 4 days of pass = 4 days of bus!), and not just for one day like the New York Pass.

Finally, if you need a 6 day pass, consider that this “cut” is available with the Sightseeing Day Pass but not with the New York Pass.

Purchase the New York Pass

New York CityPASS

Il CityPASS includes admission to six of the main attractions of New York, so it's ideal if, for example, it's your first visit to the Big Apple and you plan to visit the most famous points of interest and museums.

How it works

You will need to show i electronic tickets at the entrance of each attraction or present the paper ticket, if you have chosen the material booklet. In this case, do not detach the tickets, so as not to invalidate them: the attendants at the entrance of the attractions will do so.

What does it include

Entrance to 6 attractions

  • Empire State Building (ascent to 86th floor and - inviting option  - possibility to enter a second time in the evening of the same day)
  • American Museum of Natural History
  • The Metropolitan Museum of Art
  • choice between Top of the Rock e Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
  • choice between Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island e Circle Line sightseeing cruise
  • choice between National September 11 Memorial & Museum e Intrepid Sea-Air-Space Museum

How many days is it worth

The pass is valid for 9 consecutive days starting from the first day of use, and you have one year from the date of purchase to start using it.

When it is convenient

Compared to the purchase of individual tickets, always! The savings are around 40%. If, on the other hand, you are interested in other attractions, other than those included in this pass, consider purchasing other passes.

Where to buy and how to collect

You can buy it online

By purchasing the CityPASS via the web, you can choose to receive the tickets via email: in this case they will be sent to you in electronic format.

Are you more traditional? In this case you can have the paper tickets sent to your home (however there are shipping costs.).

How much

Adult: $ 136
Reductions and free tickets are available for children under the age of 6 traveling together with CityPASS holders.

Purchase the CityPASS

New York Explorer Pass

This pass allows you to choose between 95 attractions, from 2 to 10 attractions to see (you will choose them on the spot: you do not need to indicate them in advance), and winks at those who have planned long holidays in the Big Apple!

In fact, it is valid for 30 days from the visit to the first attraction.

How it works

In the usual way: you just have to show it at the ticket offices of the attractions.

What does it include

95 attractions, which you find listed on this page.

Among the most famous, we point out the following 10:

  1. Empire State Building
  2. Top of the Rock observation deck
  3. Sightseeing tour on the Hop-On Hop-Off bus
  4. Ferry to the Statue of Liberty
  5. American Museum of Natural History
  6. 9/11 Memorial e museo
  7. MOMA
  8. The Metropolitan Museum of Art
  9. Madame Tussauds
  10. Luna Park at Coney Island (24 attraction pass)

Plus, this pass includes extra discounts on meals, shopping, and entertainment.

How many days is it worth

As we have said, it is valid for 30 days from the visit to the first of the chosen attractions, and you have one year from the date of purchase to start using the pass.

When it is convenient

The savings are substantial: up to 50% on New York's best attractions; it pays even more when you choose the package with many attractions, and opting for the more expensive ones.

At which attractions you can skip the lines

To find out if, among the 82 attractions that interest you, any have the welcome skip-the-line option, do this: on the page that lists them all, select the attraction (eg Madame Tussauds), and once the relative page opens click - in the top bar - on “Details”.

If there is an option to skip the line, it will be specified there, as in the case of Madame Tussauds.

Where to buy and how to collect

It can be conveniently purchased online.

Buying it via the internet, yes will receive the pass by email as soon as the order is processed.
You can choose to use the pass from your phone, with the free Go city card App, or to print the pass and its useful guide at home.

How much does it cost (discounted until 18/03)

  • 3 attractions, Adults $ 87, Children (ages 3-12) $ 67;
  • 4 attractions, Adults $ 117, Children $ 84;
  • 5 attractions, Adults $ 140, Children $ 107;
  • 6 attractions, Adults $ 159, Children $ 124;
  • 7 attractions, Adults $ 178, Children $ 139;
  • 10 attractions, Adults $ 229, Children $ 175.

This pass is very similar in characteristics to the Sightseeing Flex Pass (which we will discuss in an ad hoc paragraph), which in fact provides for the choice of the number of attractions to visit at the time of purchase: 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 10 or 12.

It is therefore advisable to compare them carefully and then decide which one to choose.

Purchase the Explorer Pass

Build Your Own Pass

You can immediately guess from the name (“Build your pass!): It is a personalized pass that must be composed at the time of purchase, choosing the attractions to visit.

How it works

You have to go to this page and select the attractions to visit (there are 93 of them!)

What does it include

The 93 attractions available are listed here; among the most interesting we point out

  1. Empire State Building
  2. Top of The Rock observation deck
  3. Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island Immigration Museum
  4. Madame Tussauds
  5. Memorial e museo 9/11
  6. American Museum of Natural History
  7. MOMA
  8. Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum e Space Shuttle
  9. Guggenheim Museum
  10. Helicopter tour of New York

You can "build" the pass with your favorite attractions (even one, possibly, but in this case it would not make any sense, since there will be no discount compared to the purchase of a single ticket).

How many days is it worth

30 days, and yes will activate with the visit to the first attraction and can be used within one year from the date of purchase.

When it is convenient

When two or more attractions are included in the pass: in this case you can save 10% -20% on the price of the entrance ticket (yes, the savings compared to other passes are lower ...).

This pass is suitable for those who want to visit few and not very expensive attractions.

Furthermore, it is only recommended for those who have a really clear idea of ​​what they want to see, since the choice of attractions must be made in advance.

If you prefer to reserve the right to decide once you arrive in New York, orient yourself on the other types of passes that leave this freedom, whether they are structured as a "package" of attractions or with a number of consecutive days of validity.

At which attractions you can skip the lines

To find out which of the 93 attractions include the option to skip the line at the entrance, go to the page that presents them all, click on the attraction you are interested in and then, on the description page that opens - click on “Details ". When fast entry is foreseen, it will be specified!

Where to buy and how to collect

The pass can be purchased online and sent in digital format: it must be printed or shown at the entrance of the attractions directly from your smartphone.

How much

Il price varies according to the attractions you insert in your pass and, in general, you will have a saving compared to the purchase of single tickets, the percentage of which will be clearly indicated on the same page of the site, as you add the attractions.

The savings can be 10% or 20%.

Acquista il Build your own Pass

Sightseeing Day Pass

This pass is available for a number of days of the buyer's choice, and the attractions to choose from do not have to be decided at the time of purchase.

It therefore has exactly the same layout as the New York Pass.

How it works

Si can visit all desired attractions, during the validity of the pass.

It is activated the first time you visit the first attraction, and then it will expire at 24.00 on its last day of validity (yes, like Cinderella's magic ending at midnight!).

By activating the pass early in the morning on the first day of validity, you will have more opportunities to take full advantage of it; do not make the mistake of activating it on the evening of the first day.

From the date of purchase you will have 12 months to use your pass.

What does it include

The opportunity to visit many attractions, summarized on this page, including:

  1. One World Observatory
  2. Hop-on Hop-off bus for the duration of the pass
  3. American Museum of Natural History
  4. The Metropolitan Museum of Art
  5. MoMA
  6. Top of the Rock
  7. Guggenheim Museum
  8. Manhattan by Sail
  9. Tour the Downtown Experience
  10. Food on foot (food tour in the East Village with tasting sessions)

You have already noticed that an illustrious absentee is the Empire State Building ...

This lack is forgiven with a characteristic of the pass: Hop on and off tours are valid for the duration of the pass, so for example, if you choose the 10 day version, you could use the Hop-on Hop-off buses daily!

How many days is it worth

2, 3, 4, 5, 6, or 7 consecutive days.

When it is convenient

It pays off a lot when you use it well; already by visiting 3 attractions a day the savings on the regular admission prices can reach 65% (of course, the actual savings also depend on the attractions you choose, since ticket prices are not the same for all).

If you are planning to take advantage of the pass to do some tours, then there is the advantage of being able to book a large part of it in advance to secure your place.

Where to buy and how to collect

The pass can be purchased online from this page; then you will receive an email with instructions to print it or keep it on your smartphone.

If you prefer a "Plastic Card" you can ask for it to be sent to you (attention; option is subject to payment!).

With each Sightseeing Pass (both this and the Flex version) you also receive a useful free guide of over 250 pages.

How much does it cost (discounted until 17/03)

  • 2 days, Adult $ 159;
  • 3 days, Adult $ 199;
  • 4 days, Adult $ 219;
  • 5 days, Adult $ 249;
  • 6 days, Adult $ 279;
  • 7 days, Adult $ 299;
Buy the Sightseeing Day Pass

Sightseeing Flex Pass

This pass allows you to choose the number of attractions to visit (it is in fact the direct competitor of the New York Explorer Pass seen above). They can be 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 10 or 12.

How it works

You decide the number of attractions you want to visit, without having to identify them in advance, and you buy the pass, which will be activated when you visit the first attraction.

To use it, you have 12 months from the date of purchase.

What does it include

The attractions to choose from are the same as mentioned above for the "brother", Sightseeing Day Pass.

How many days is it worth

The pass is valid for 30 days from its activation, starting from the visit to the first attraction.

When it is convenient

When they also visit only 2 attractions, the savings can already be 50% or more.

Consider, then, that the bonus to get on and off the bus is not bad, being valid for 72 hours (the bus routes in Uptown & Downtown count as a choice); depending on the trips you have planned, it can therefore prove to be very useful.

Where to buy and how to collect

The pass can be purchased online from this page and, just like the Sightseeing Day Pass, you can choose to use it in digital format or have it delivered by courier - for a fee - in the form of a plastic card.

How much

  • 2 attractions, Adult $ 74;
  • 3 attractions, Adult $ 99;
  • 4 attractions, Adult $ 124;
  • 5 attractions, Adult $ 144;
  • 6 attractions, Adult $ 164;
  • 7 attractions, Adult $ 184;
  • 10 attractions, Adult $ 234;
  • 12 attractions, Adult $ 264.

Better this or the Explorer Pass

With the Sightseeing Day Pass among the attractions there is a "big shot", the One World Observatory, which is missing in the Explorer Pass. The latter, however, boasts in its list theEmpire State Building.

Both include the Top of The Rock!
The two passes have slightly different prices, so in indecision, compare the discounts of the moment ...

Purchase the Sightseeing Flex Pass

Dine4Less

We leave the ambit of the attractions that can be visited with the Passes, and enter the equally appreciable one of food. New York is home to all the cuisines of the world: from Mexican to Korean, from French to Chinese, passing through the timeless Spanish pizza. The Dine4Less pass gives you access to strong discounts on dinners in the main restaurants throughout the city, for a period of validity of 90 days.

How it works

It is not necessary to choose the places to dine in advance: after purchasing the pass and having consulted the practical guide attached with the list of partner restaurants, you will only have to show the card to receive the discounts.

What does it include

The Dine4Less card offers discounts of up to 25% on the best restaurants in New York, and is valid for up to 4 paying people. Included in the purchase, the guide and all the information concerning the restaurants participating in the initiative in the form of a practical app for the smartphone.

In the map received following the purchase of the pass, it will be possible to see, in addition to restaurants and clubs, also numerous shops. In fact, the pass allows you to receive discounts of up to 25% on numerous shops and boutiques in New York.

How many days is it worth

Dine4Less is valid for 90 consecutive days from the moment of its first validation. Its use is unlimited for the entire duration of its validity.

When it is convenient

New York is considered to all intents and purposes a culinary destination. The cosmopolitan and vibrant nature of the city makes it possible to host restaurants with cuisines from all over the world in its alleys. So why not take advantage of it? With this in mind, a discount of up to 25% should not be underestimated.

Where to buy and how to collect

The purchase of the Dine4Less pass takes place online, after checking availability. Payment confirmation is immediate.

We remind you that the voucher can only be redeemed in electronic format. The pass will therefore only be available on your smartphone.

Acquista Dine4Less Pass
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