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Are NYC passes worth it?

Vancouver, Canada
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Are NYC passes worth it?

My friend and I are going to NYC for a week right before Christmas this year. There are so many different city passes and bus tour passes and we can't decide if it's worth it to purchase any of it. We will be wanting to go to ESB, TOTR, cruiseline. I've heard most of the museums you can find days where they are free if they aren't already free all the time. We are both 26, females, love photography and hope to get the most out of our week in NYC.

Any suggestions or personal experiences would be greatly appreciated!!

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Bartow, Florida, USA
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1. Re: Are NYC passes worth it?

I am so glad you ask this question I was going to ask the same thing.

NYC / Fire Island...
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2. Re: Are NYC passes worth it?

Skip the passes.


Perth, Australia
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3. Re: Are NYC passes worth it?

Have a look at the Top Question to your right (on the full website version) titled >>>>>>>>>

Are the New York Pass, Explorer Pass or CityPass worth it?

New York City, New...
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4. Re: Are NYC passes worth it?

Not worth it.

Melbourne, Australia
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5. Re: Are NYC passes worth it?

Whether they are worth it or not depends on what you want to do.

You could get the New York City Pass which gives you entry to six major NYC sites in a 9 day period. There is some flexibility in what you can do: http://www.citypass.com/new-york

If I was going for a week and wanting to go to the 'biggies' I'd get this Pass.

You mention the idea that Museums have free time. Yes, MoMA does between 4-8 on Fridays. The Met Museum and the American Museum of Natural History have 'pay as you wish' policies. What this means is that you can go for free (or for cheaper than the recommended entrance rate) if you wish. So that's your decision.

If you don't want to go to those 6 'biggies' another alternative is the Explorer Pass where you choose how many things you want to go to - 3 or 5 or up. I did the sums on using that for ESB, ToTR and AMNH for this Pass on this thread:


Not so great on that calculation, but I think that 'missing queues' is another factor in deciding whether to get a Pass. I've made some comments about that on the thread I've just given you the link to.

The one pass I would not consider is the New York Pass - 80 items. You won't do 80 thing in one week, and they are suggesting that you'd be doing things you'd pay for when you don't need to (eg tour of the Highline....savings of $25...grrrr! The Highline is free and you don't need to do a tour.)


Having said that, a woman who was in NYC for 21 days did have this Pass and loved it for missing the queues.

I'm not sure I've added any more than the FAQ that Pedro suggested you read, but I've typed it now!!

Have a great time....

Also you're in NYC for the week before Christmas, so you'll be spending time doing the wonderful Christmas things - see this great thread from 2013 that is applicable for this year too for the dates you're going:


Hervey Bay...
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6. Re: Are NYC passes worth it?

Generally no, they are not but the only way to know for sure is to look at the pass that appeals to you and then go onto the website of each attraction and add up the total cost of the individual entry fees. If the entry fees are cheaper in total then don't get the pass, if they aren't get the pass.

The reason why people generally recommend against them as people rush through attractions to get their monies worth and they miss out on many of the free or cheap less touristy things such things walking the Highline and Brooklyn Bridge, exploring Greenwich Village, Brooklyn, Queens, Harlem etc.

7. Re: Are NYC passes worth it?

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Melbourne, Australia
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8. Re: Are NYC passes worth it?

Which page Steve..it's gone to the front page of that website. What did you find there that was specific to the Passes?

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9. Re: Are NYC passes worth it?

Jenny - I'm heading to New York next week (SanFran tomorrow!) and this post has been really useful, as well as the other thread you linked, for a fellow Kiwi.

I think we might just pass on the passes as they don't sound so worth it after all, for what my friend and I will be doing.

Manchester, United...
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10. Re: Are NYC passes worth it?

We made a spread sheet of things we wanted to see, worked out how much they would cost (including that I am a student) and then compared the passes.

We worked out that we definitely wanted to do a HoHo bus, ESB, TOTR, AMNH and the met museum. It worked out that our best option was the explorer 5 day pass which is $119 each, but actually if we hadn't wanted the HoHo bus we'd have been better just paying seperately. There's a 3 attraction pass too, plus a combined TOTR/MoMA ticket we also considered (buy it from TOTR).

The only other thing we are paying for in the week we're there is the SoL but we wanted (and got) crown tickets so knew they couldn't be included on any pass. Over 7 days in NYC we thought that was the right amount of attractions and it will still leave us plenty of time for neighbourhood exploring. It also means we've spent less than $150 each on attractions.