New York is filled with bargains, deals, and steals, especially in the attraction department.  There are a number of attraction passes to choose from which could save you money on attractions in New York City. Be sure to read the information carefully to determine which sights you're most likely to be seeing to choose the pass that's right for you.

KEEP IN MIND:

 1. Many of the museums included, have pay-what-you-wish admission or may have "free" days.

  • Museum of Modern Art - Admission is free for all visitors during UNIQLO Free Friday Nights, every Friday 4:00–8:00 p.m.  The MoMA is no longer available on the New York City Pass.
  • For the American Museum of Natural History there is a voluntary suggested $19 donation.
  • Metropolitan Museum of Art operates a $25 recommended fee. You can pay the full suggested donation, but it is not mandatory. You can, in fact, pay what you wish, as long as you pay something more than one penny. These are things to keep in mind when reviewing the attractions included with each Pass.

2. The 9/11 Museum has been added to the New York City Pass as one of the alternatives - you can visit the 9/11 Museum OR the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum. The 9/11 Museum is also available on the New York Pass.

3. Visiting the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island: note that the Passes only allow a visit to the RESERVE at the Statue, although the City Pass and the New York Pass do have some PEDESTAL tickets available on a daily, first come first served basis at extra cost.  This upgrade option is NOT available on ANY of the other passes. You cannot upgrade to the Crown on any pass. 

There are 3 companies in New York City that offer Attraction Passes (below in alphabetical order)

There are 2 website services that automatically compares and recommends Attraction Passes based on the attractions you choose to visit. (below in order of coverage)

 


City Pass  Tear out coupons for 6 New York Attractions comprising: 

1) Empire State Building Observatory;

2) The Metropolitan Museum of Art (a suggested-donation-admission museum) and the Cloisters (if you visit BOTH within a week);

3)  American Museum of Natural History  (a suggested-donation-admission museum) & Rose Center;

4) Guggenheim Museum OR Top of the Rock;

5) Statue of Libery and Ellis Island OR Circle Line Sightseeing Cruises and

6) 9/11 Memorial (free) and 9/11 Museum OR Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum.

Good for 9 days.

Prices: $114 for adults, $89 for youths (6 – 17). 

 

Best for: Travelers who want to see at least 4 of the named attractions. Great for someone in town for one week although do remember The Met and AMNH both operate a suggested* price policy. The best part of this pass is that you have nine days to use it, and can visit all the attractions at a comfortable pace, though this Pass is limited to only 6 attractions (some with alternatives).

*Visitors can pay any amount with which they are comfortable (from 1¢ up).  You must go to the sight to purchase these tickets - they are not available online.

 


New York Pass   A credit card sized pass with entry to over 80 Attractions. Pass has no limit to how many attractions can be visited. It offers admission to many iconic attractions, also rich in themed tours: Food tours, Central Park by bicycle, Gospel, NBC Studio, Brooklyn Bridge, Wall Street. Can be purchased for 1, 2, 3 or 7days, valid for use on consecutive days. 15 Attractions offer Fast Track Entry, 17 attractions can be reserved in advance . Pass offers an option with CitySights Hop on Hop off - unlimited use for 2-3 days

Prices: from $85 for 1day to $230 for 7days:  Child option (4-12) available


Best for: Travelers who want to see & do it all, active travelers who like convenience and visit 2+ attractions per day. Good for people who like to plan their trip in advance and first time visitors that would like to see most of NYC. Big savings if you see a lot


Smart Destinations this company offers 2 different products

Go Select Pass – you choose which attractions you add to the pass (choice of 54 Attractions). Can choose as few as 2 attractions to get a discount, Pass can be stored on smartphone. There are some pre built options, but the savings are moderate. If you bundle ESB, MoMA and Intrepid, the cost of the pass is $62.04 saving 13% over the standard admission costs of those three attractions

 

Best for: People who know what they want to visit, and want to have time to enjoy New York itself. Also, great for on-the-go travelers, as you can buy the pass last minute and just display the pass on your smartphone to show at the gate.

 

New York Explorer Pass - A credit-card sized pass loaded with 56 New York attractions including Land & Water Tours, Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, NBC Studio Tours, the Uncle Sam's New York Broadway Tour, the Metropolitan Museum of Art (a suggested-donation-admission museum), the Empire State Building, the Sx and the City Tour, the Museum of Natural History (a suggested-donation-admission museum) and more. Choose the number of admissions you need (3, 5, 7 or 10),  you don't have to decide in advance -- you simply use the admissions up by presenting your card at each museum, tour, and sight. Skip the line at museums. Good for 30 days.

Prices: from $79.99 (3 attractions) to $209.99 (10 attractions). Child option (3-12) available

 

 Best for: Travelers who want flexibility. Easy to sample the attractions in the city without feeling overwhelmed., but limited to maximum 10 attractions. Good if you want to keep your itinerary open in the event of weather changes or sudden changes in your itinerary. 

 

 

 

Website services that compares Attraction Passes in New York. (below in order of coverage)



Trevii.com Compares above three attraction passes. Considers age when deciding tickets for each member of a trip. Also considers "pay-what-you-wish" admission, "free" days, group/family discounts, or combo ticktes such as Rock+MoMA combo ticket.

Passcomparison.com  Compares above three attraction passes. Considers age when deciding tickets for each member of a trip. Does not consider "pay-what-you-wish" admission, "free" days, or combo tickets. Not sure about group/family discounts.

  

 

 


Summary

It’s best to do your research first, see what attractions you want to visit and then decide if and which Pass fits your needs. Your savings will depend on what type of visitor you are. Having a Pass in NYC is a convenient way to see the city, so if money is not the only deciding factor, then you should enjoy those. Should you decide to get a Pass, get it online  - usually you will get a better price. Plan ahead - enjoy NYC