Domestic goddess and backyard explorer with a passion for freelance writing!
Published July 17th 2014
It's easy It's affordable It's comprehensive
It's easy. It's affordable. It's comprehensive.
Our trip to New York would not have been complete without the New York CityPASS. We purchased our pass at our first sightseeing stop which was the Statue of Liberty on Liberty Island. The ferry tickets to the Statue and Ellis island were available from Battery Park which is where the passes were sold too, the southern tip of Manhattan, where all the ferries departed from. You can however, purchase the city pass from any major tourist attraction or if you're very organised, online.
The pass potentially covers multiple attractions in New York, all accessible with one little booklet. The great thing about it was it seemed to be recognised at most of the major attractions, which had a separate queue for New York CityPASS holders, which was fantastic as it meant you didn't have to wait as long in the ordinary queues.
Some of the attractions that were included in the pass were The Empire State Building including a climb/ lift up to the 65th floor for the amazing views and best of all you could one back the same night for night time views all in one ticket, the above mentioned Statue of Liberty, and the Rockefeller Centre and the views from 'the top of the rock'. Unfortunately we didn't have the time to climb up to the top of the Empire State again that evening however that would've been great opportunity. Twice in one day!
The pass also includes discounts at some of the stores and additional tours such as $5 off the Rockefeller tour, or 10% off merchandise from the 'Top of the Rock', or from the museum stores such as the 9/11 museum store.
The museums that are included with the pass are the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Natural history museum, MOMA, and the Cloisters museum and gardens.
You also get discounts e.g., buy one get one ticket free on the Circle line sightseeing cruise or a discount on the Guggenheim museum or $5 off a hop on hop off tour of the city of New York on a two day tour, which we would have loved to do but ran out of time.
Furthermore for the shopaholics out there, there are also discounts from Bloomingdales and Macy's, which helps your wallet that tiny bit, although it's not a huge amount but better than nothing. I'm sure we'll all be going in those stores at least once given a chance. The trick is to remember that you do have those vouchers when you go shopping, otherwise like me, you'll remember after you leave the store and have to go to the trouble of going back to redeem them.
The other thing that was extremely useful with the New York CityPASS was that it came with a complimentary ticket to travel on the train / tube system with $5 or an initial amount already in the card. That was extremely good for a tourist who did not know how to navigate the train system, and therefore was easy after that to top it up as needed. And as we all know, the tube system in Manhattan is fantastic and convenient and gets you almost anywhere.
Overall, we had a great experience with the pass and recommend it to anyone travelling for the first time to New York City as it covers almost everything for just over $100. Furthermore, the pass is valid for 9 days so plenty of time to cover everything. Also, if you're lucky, there are deals on passes too such as a summer deal of 15% off so keep an eye on the website.