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This post about the New York Pass is probably only going to be of interest to someone who is planning a trip to New York so if that’s not you then I’m really sorry but it might make interesting reading anyway and I promise I’ll throw in a picture of a cake at some point just for you. 😉
So, the New York Pass is a pass that will give you access to around 90 attractions in New York and claims to save you 70% if you visit just three attractions a day. If you’re buying online then a one day pass costs $109, a two day pass costs $189, a three day pass is $199 and the five day pass is $249 which isn’t cheap but depending on what you plan to do when you’re in New York, it could save you a lot of money.
We bought the three day pass for our trip but because I added it to my basket the first time I looked into it but didn’t actually buy it, I got an email a couple of days later from them offering a discount so I ended up paying $191.20 for each of us to have the three day passes. We planned to cram a lot into our trip so the passes in theory were a great deal and would have got us in to so many attractions which would have saved us a fortune.
When we were planning our itinerary we incorporated a lot of the attractions that were included in the New York Pass but as I explained here, we got there and decided that we weren’t going to stick to our plan. We realised that a lot of the attractions we’d planned to do were specifically chosen because they were included in the New York Pass so we’d kind of planned our trip around that and not around the things we actually wanted to do.
Here’s what we actually used out New York Pass for:
- Top of the Rock – 2 x $34
- Madame Tussauds – 2 x $37
- The Big Bus Tour – 2 x $59 (we paid $20 locally to extend this from one day to the whole of our trip)
- Water Taxi – 2 x $30
So we didn’t actually use it up to the value that we paid for it, let alone make the savings that we could have made.
Now obviously that was our choice to change our plans and not go from attraction to attraction as we’d intended but it’s definitely something for you to be thinking about if you’re trying to decide whether to buy a pass or not.
The first day we got there we ended up sat in Times Square for ages and people watching which didn’t cost us a penny other than Miss Frugal’s Starbucks.
We had a whole day shopping which included us stopping at free places like the New York Public Library and St Patricks Cathedral. That day we only had chance to do Madame Tussauds but if I’m honest we really only did that as it free with the pass. We were shattered and would have been just as happy collapsing in bed at the end of a long day.
The next day we had a look around Grand Central station, went shopping in Soho took photos of the flat iron building, saw the beautiful Freedom Tower and had a sobering visit to pay our respect at the 9/11 memorial – all of which were free. The only attraction we paid to see that day was Top of the Rock which was one of our best experiences by far. We would have done this regardless of whether we had the passes or not but it was great having the fast track entry here.
The following day we walked across Brooklyn Bridge and spent time in Dumbo which again, didn’t cost a penny. After a lovely morning in Dumbo we hopped on the water taxi to see the Statue of Liberty and whilst we did get the water taxi because it was on the New York Pass’ list of free attractions, we could have got on the Staten Island ferry which is free.
The final day we went to Central Park which, aside from the hot dogs and churros we bought from a cart there, didn’t cost anything at all.
So the things we did really didn’t cost us very much at all but they were exactly what we wanted to do – we just didn’t realise it until we got there and started listening to the guides on the hop on, hop off buses. We’d planned to visit the art museums and do some walking tours or Chinatown and Little Italy which are all included in the pass and had we done that, we would have got more value out of our New York Pass.
Whether or not the New York Pass is going to be worth it for you will depend entirely on what you plan to do when you’re in New York – all I would say is that you need to consider whether you will be visiting the number of attractions you need to make it worth your while. Travelling with a teenager who was more interested in shopping meant that we didn’t. 😉
If you do want to find out more about it then here you go:
And now, here’s that cake….
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