New York Pass Review
Looking for an honest New York Pass review? Read on!
As a native New Yorker, I want everyone who visits this city to have an amazing time. (No, New Yorkers aren’t all rude like the stereotype suggests!)
I may be a little biased, but I truly believe New York is the best city in the world. However, I also realize that there are a few negatives to New York, like the crazy crowds and high prices.
And oh how expensive it can be! Luckily, there’s a great way for visitors to save money if you plan on doing a lot of sightseeing, and that is the New York Pass.
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What Is the New York Pass?
The New York Pass is an all-inclusive sightseeing pass that includes free admission to more than 100 popular attractions in New York.
It can save you up to 70% on what it would cost to purchase tickets to these attractions individually.
And it also saves you time – with the New York Pass, you get skip-the-line tickets for many of the included attractions.
Additionally, you have UNLIMITED access to all the attractions, meaning you could do 10 different things in one day if you wanted. (Some similar tourist passes limit you to a certain number of attractions per day, which drastically reduces the value of the pass.)
The New York Pass is available in different time increments, from 1 day to 10 days.
What’s Included in the New York Pass?
The New York Pass includes over 100 different attractions (full list here.)
Here are just a few of the best attractions you get access to with the New York Pass. I’ve included the cost of admission if you were to purchase tickets for each attraction individually so you can get an idea of how much you would save with the New York Pass.
- Empire State Building Observatory ($48): Get an amazing view of the whole city from the 86th floor observatory of the Empire State Building.
- Top of the Rock Observation Deck ($41): The observation deck at Rockefeller Center is my favorite view in New York, because you can actually see the iconic Empire State Building!
- Big Bus Hop On Hop Off Bus Tour ($55): This hop on hop off sightseeing bus tour takes you around all of Manhattan in one day.
- Museum of Modern Art ($25): The MoMA has one of the world’s best modern art collections and is a must-visit museum in New York!
- Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island ($19): Visit the Statue of Liberty and the Ellis Island Immigration Museum (includes the ferry ride to get there plus museum admission.)
- Metropolitan Museum of Art ($32): The Met is probably my favorite museum in New York, and it’s one of the best in the world! You could easily spend a whole day wandering around.
- Central Park Bike Tour ($45): If you want a fun and unique way to explore Central Park, this guided bike tour is the best way to do it. (You can also do a self-guided tour.)
- 9/11 Memorial & Museum ($28): Built on the site of the former World Trade Center, the 9/11 Memorial & Museum honors the victims of 9/11.
- Circle Line Sightseeing Cruise ($43): One of my favorite ways to see New York is by water. This gives you access to one of four Circle Line cruises (including a two-hour sunset cruise!)
- THE RIDE ($69): Not just your average sightseeing bus tour, THE RIDE takes you around Manhattan with flair including singers, dancers, and comedians.
- Food on Foot Tour ($49): New York has some of the best food in the whole world, and you can eat your way through the city on one of these guided food tours.
- Color Factory ($38): This interactive art exhibit is known as “the most Instagrammable place on Earth” due to its colorful and collaborative installations.
- Luna Park at Coney Island ($39): There’s no better way to spend a summer day in New York than going to the classic Coney Island amusement park in Brooklyn!
- Whitney Museum ($25): Located just off the Chelsea High Line in the Meatpacking District, the Whitney is home to an amazing collection of American art.
New York Pass Pricing
The price of your New York Pass will depend on the duration you choose.
There are 1 Day, 2 Day, 3 Day, 4 Day, 5 Day, 7 Day, or 10 Day passes available. The more days you add, the cheaper the total cost of each day becomes.
Adult prices are for anyone aged 13 and over, while child prices are for children aged 4 to 12. (Children under the age of 4 get in almost everywhere for free.)
- 1 Day Pass: $134
- 2 Day Pass: $199
- 3 Day Pass: $274
- 4 Day Pass: $299
- 5 Day Pass: $339
- 7 Day Pass: $379
- 10 Day Pass: $469
- 1 Day Pass: $101
- 2 Day Pass: $159
- 3 Day Pass: $199
- 4 Day Pass: $224
- 5 Day Pass: $244
- 7 Day Pass: $259
- 10 Day Pass: $299
How to Buy the New York Pass
You can purchase your tickets online and then either collect your pass from the designated pickup location in Times Square, or receive it immediately via the New York Pass mobile app.
I recommend choosing digital delivery via the mobile app, because then you’ll have the pass on your phone and can just scan it at the entrance of each attraction. It’s one less thing to keep up with!
For an additional fee, you can also have the pass delivered to your home before your trip.
Is the New York Pass Right for You?
Before purchasing the New York Pass for your trip, it’s important to calculate whether or not it’s going to be a good value for you.
One thing you can do is make a list of the things you KNOW you want to do in New York.
For example, if you know you want to do:
- Hop On Hop Off Bus Tour ($55)
- Top of the Rock ($41)
- The Metropolitan Museum of Art ($32)
- The Museum of Modern Art ($25)
- Circle Line Sightseeing Cruise ($43)
- The Color Factory ($38)
That would be $234 in tickets if you purchased them all individually.
However, you could get the 2 Day New York Pass ($199) and save $35. In this case, the New York Pass would definitely be worth it for you.
If you aren’t sure what you want to do yet, take a look at the full list of attractions to get some ideas and see what grabs your attention!
Who Is the New York Pass Best For?
The New York Pass is going to be a good option for…
First-time visitors to New York. If it’s your first time going to New York and you know you want to do all the touristy sightseeing activities, the New York Pass is going to be worth it for you.
Travelers who have very little time in New York but want to see a lot. If you only have one or two days in New York and have a lot that you want to see, the New York Pass will be a good value for you.
Families with kids. Not only are there plenty of kid-friendly activities included in the New York Pass, having the pass will save you so much time (with skip-the-line tickets) and create less hassle (it’s convenient having just one ticket to access 100+ attractions.)
Travelers who love sightseeing and activities. If you’re the type of traveler who loves to follow an action-packed schedule and see and do as much as possible when you’re on vacation, the New York Pass will definitely help you accomplish that.
Travelers on a long trip to New York. While the New York Pass is great for short trips, the real value comes in longer durations because your overall daily cost is lower. For example, if you purchase the 7 Day New York Pass, you really only need to do one or two activities a day to make it worth it.
Who ISN’T the New York Pass For?
However, the New York pass may NOT be worth it for…
Travelers who don’t want to do many touristy things. If you don’t have much interest in doing typical tourist activities or going to museums, the New York Pass may not be worth it for you.
Extreme budget travelers. If you’re on a very tight budget, the New York Pass also may not be a great fit. There are plenty of free and cheap activities you can do in New York instead.
Tips for Getting the Most Out of It
Now that I’ve covered the basics of the New York Pass, what it is, and how it works, here are a few additional tips to help you get the most out of it:
1. Batch your New York Pass attractions.
One way to save money with the New York Pass is to buy a shorter duration pass and batch all your New York Pass attractions into those days.
For example, let’s say you have three days in New York. You could buy a 2 Day New York Pass and spend the first two days doing New York Pass activities, then save your last day for other activities like shopping, going to a Broadway show, etc. (things that aren’t included in the pass.)
2. Get started early in the morning.
The New York Pass operates on calendar days, not 24-hour periods. So if you scan your pass for the first time at noon, that day will still end at midnight (not noon the next day.)
So to make the most of your pass, be sure to activate for the first time in the morning of the first day you want to use it. (It’s always a good idea to get an early start on attractions anyway, since things typically get more crowded later in the day!)
3. Do all the expensive attractions.
A lot of the value in the New York Pass is in the more expensive attractions, like Top of the Rock, the Empire State Building, and the Hop On Hop Off Bus Tour.
You’ll want to make sure you hit these attractions to get your money’s worth from the pass. (Tip: Do the Hop On Hop Off Bus Tour on your first day to orientate yourself with the city!)
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are a few frequently asked questions about the New York Pass:
Is there a limit to how many attractions you can visit each day?
No, one of the major perks of the New York Pass is that there is no limit to how many attractions you can visit each day! Meaning you can do as many activities as you want in one day.
Can you revisit attractions with the New York Pass?
No, you can only visit each attraction once. So you could not visit the Empire State Building once on the New York Pass, then go back again the next day and use your pass again.
Are the passes for consecutive days only?
Yes, if you purchase a multi-day pass, it is valid for that many consecutive days. For example, if you purchase the 3 Day New York pass and start using it for the first time on Monday, then it will be valid for Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday.
Do I have to make reservations for an attraction?
Most tourist attractions and museums do not require an advanced reservation. You can just show up and scan your pass. However, some attractions (like guided tours and behind the scenes tours) may require reservations, so be sure to inquire in advance.
Final Thoughts: New York Pass Review
Overall, I think the New York Pass can be a really good deal for travelers.
It’s especially good for first-time visitors to New York, families with kids, and people who love doing sightseeing/tourist activities. The New York Pass is a great way to see some of the best attractions the city has to offer while saving a ton of money.
I hope you found this New York Pass review helpful!
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