Recently we visited New York City over the weekend. Since we planned to do most of the Manhattan sightseeing on Saturday, we decided to buy 1-Day New York Pass (not New York City Pass) for $80 per person to save some money.
Now based on the their website you have to pick up the passes somewhere around Times Square and since we did not want to start our day with Times Square, I did a little bit of research on the web and found that New York Sky Ride at the Empire State building also sells New York Pass. And since generally there are no online discounts on 1-day passes, Empire State seemed like a perfect place to start our day. Now one of the key decisions we made was to stay in Manhattan and NOT to do the Statue of Liberty/Ellis Island cruise using the New York Pass, as that almost eats up half of your day and all of your energy and only cost $13 if you pay out of pocket. Here is sequence we followed and covered 6 paid attractions(All covered by New York Pass) without being rushed or dead tired.
- NY Skyride + Empire State Observatory ($41+$24): Bought the New York Pass at NY Sky Ride box office around 9:00 AM (Enter using the 33rd st entrance go to level 2), Redeemed it for NY Skyride right there and then bought the Empire State building tickets at their box office. After I had both the tickets started with NY Sky ride and then straight from there for the Empire State observatory. Enjoyed the 30 min NY skyride and avoided almost 70% of the waiting time in the line by entering into the observatory line directly from the NY sky ride.
- Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museum ($39): Took a cab and went to Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museum around 10:30 and got out of there by 12:00 pm
- Times Square(Daytime): Afterwards we grabbed few pizza slices and hung out on Times Sq while enjoying the New York Pizza.
- Central Park: Went to central park after lunch and relaxed/snoozed for a bit before heading to Intrepid Museum.
- Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum ($24): Checked out the Submarine and the warship museum for an hour and 30 minutes.
- Circle Line 30-minute Beast Speedboat ride ($24): Walked up 4 blocks and took a 30 minutes beast(speed-boat) ride with party music and a 45mph speed. The boat takes you right in front of the Stature of Liberty and allows you to click pictures. This is the best location to click pictures with the statue, as you can’t get the full statue in the camera once you are under the stature at the Island. Got a great view of downtown skyline while enjoying the fast boat ride.
- Top of the Rock ($25): Around 7:30 pm we went up the Rockefeller center and enjoyed the evening/night view of New York. It was simply awesome.
- Times Square(Nighttime):For 15 bucks took a rickshaw ride from Rockefeller to Times Square. Enjoyed the nighttime square for full 2 hours before heading back to our hotel.
In all using New York 1-Day pass for $80 did $177 worth sightseeing. Next day we did the WTC and Statue of Liberty cruise to wrap up the trip. In all the New York Pass turned out to be a pretty good deal. The key thing to buy and start the day at Empire State building and to avoid statue of liberty using the pass .
Hope this helps you plan your trip, in case you are short on time and money!!