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Old Jan 28, 12, 11:07 pm   #1
 
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Driving to Fishkill from LGA/JFK

I'll be soon starting a project in Poughkeepsie and Fishkill, and wanted to know what commute times I should expect from either JFK or LGA on Mondays.

Which segments are typical bottlenecks and how much time should I budget from the rental car lot at either airport?

Also, is there much difference between driving up there in the mornings (assuming I get off a redeye) or evenings (say, after 4pm)?
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Old Jan 29, 12, 12:27 am   #2
 
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I'll let others speak as to driving time for LGA/JFK, but have you considered flying into/out if HPN (Westchester County Airport) -- It is served by AA via American Eagle through ORD. (I am assuming you are an AA flyer, based on the info under your handle.) I'd say you are 20-40 minutes away from Fishkill.



If you are truly flexible, also look at SWF (Newburgh/Stewart Airport), while on the other side of the Hudson, you are 15 minutes or less from Fishkill. -- Currently only has US Service via PHL, and DL via DTW/ATL.


Id say by choosing HPN/SWF you are looking at at least 30-60 minutes savings in drive time each way, maybe more. Both airports are small, rarely have awful security lines (SWF usually has but one or two people ahead if you), and are served by most major car companies. The downside would be the requirEd connection, but well worth it, if you ask me.
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Old Jan 29, 12, 9:05 am   #3
 
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HPN would indeed be my first choice, and on a previous visit the hour drive was bearable.

Just keeping options open for last minute scheduling, where the other two airports offer more redeyes, nonstops and single connections from the Bay Area.
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Old Jan 29, 12, 4:42 pm   #4
 
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I haven't done this drive recently but your traffic points.
GCP (From LGA) to RFK Bridge. Maybe a little traffic around 287.

You are about 90-110 minutes each way no matter how you do it.

If you are doing a red-eye that would put you at JFK which changes the bridge onto the mainland but doesn't really change the time much. It really is your preference as you could fly into Hartford Airport and the same commute time - just changes the tolls and route.


Westchester airport is your best bet if you have a choice but I'm sure you know that already.
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Old Jan 29, 12, 9:38 pm   #5
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Originally Posted by ntamayo View Post
I'll be soon starting a project in Poughkeepsie and Fishkill, and wanted to know what commute times I should expect from either JFK or LGA on Mondays.

Which segments are typical bottlenecks and how much time should I budget from the rental car lot at either airport?

Also, is there much difference between driving up there in the mornings (assuming I get off a redeye) or evenings (say, after 4pm)?
From my house in White Plains, it take 60 minutes to get to I-84 and Route 9 in Fishkill. Add another 25 minutes if you're coming from LGA if there's no traffic. From JFK, this would be 35 - 40 minutes if no traffic; and that's not going to happen in the morning rush. There are 2 ways to go to Fishkill from LGA or JFK. After you cross the Bronx-Whitestone Bridge, you'll see signs for The Hutch. From the bridge, the roads feeds into that. The Hutch eventually forks and you'll see signs for 684. From here it's 25 minutes to 84 west, and at least 15 minutes to the junction of 84 and Route 9.

Northbound in the morning, there's rush hour as you head north to Westchester. The Hutch and Saw Mill get backed up. FYI, the Saw Mill has lights. In total, the rush hour adds 10+ minutes to your trip (at a minimum).
If you're coming from JFK, add an extra 20 minutes.

FYI, Poughkeepsie is ~ 10 miles north of Fishkill.

Evening rush hours will take a little bit longer if you're coming from JFK.

Let us know additional details as you get them. If you're PGH bound, there are other alternate routes for heading north from 84.

dh
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Old Jan 29, 12, 9:49 pm   #6
 
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I vote for SWF if you can. It may not be to your airline alliance liking but EWR is quite easy to get to from Orange/Putnam Counties. I grew up there and we use EWR over JFK/LGA to avoid the clusterf**k of traffic problems.

Another option (not AA but allows for redeyes) is flying to PHL and connecting to SWF.
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Old Jan 30, 12, 12:14 pm   #7
 
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Originally Posted by armattheus View Post
I vote for SWF if you can. It may not be to your airline alliance liking but EWR is quite easy to get to from Orange/Putnam Counties. I grew up there and we use EWR over JFK/LGA to avoid the clusterf**k of traffic problems.

Another option (not AA but allows for redeyes) is flying to PHL and connecting to SWF.
I didn't mention it earlier but EWR is a reasonable option. It adds some miles to your trip but less traffic overall if commuting during rush hour.
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Old Jan 30, 12, 3:26 pm   #8
 
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Originally Posted by RooseveltL View Post
I didn't mention it earlier but EWR is a reasonable option. It adds some miles to your trip but less traffic overall if commuting during rush hour.
That was my thought, too. You can shoot up Rt. 21 to Rt. 46 to Rt. 20 to Rt. 208 to I-287 to I-87 which may actually save you a bit of time over trying to get north from LGA or JFK. EWR to Fishkill should take about 90 dependable minutes.

That said, if HPN or SWF are feasible for you, those airports provide much better access to Fishkill.
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Old Jan 30, 12, 3:38 pm   #9
 
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Thanks so far for the feedback. Sounds like this Hutchinson Expy / Sawmill Pkwy area would be the main bottleneck, then, for this commute from NYC.

Ultimately, I know that HPN would be my first choice. However, to add options in the event of IRROPS, it's OK if I have to budget an extra 1.5 hrs for the further commute to airports with more arrival options.
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Old Jan 31, 12, 9:10 am   #10
 
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Note to OP - others had already commented on airport options but you might want to get help in getting an EZ-Pass to zip thru the toll plaza at the Queens-Bronx bridge crossings (RFK Bridge, Whitestone Bridge or T-Neck Bridge) as without it, the cash lane could add 10 to 20 minutes for your morning "commute" assuming that weather isn't playing tricks on you.

From major JFK car rental lots to the Van Wyck Expwy (Rt. 678 North) toward the Whitestone Bridge to the Bronx is typically about 15 to 20 minutes before 7:15 am as the morning rush only get worsen, if you are behind schedule with this, expect 30+ minutes to get up to the Whitestone crossing - going to the RFK or T-Neck Bridge (try to avoid it) will easily add extra 15 to 30 minutes as it meant a bad day to commute (wet roads or wind, traffic, accidents, construction spillovers, etc.)

Hutchinson Parkway, north of Co-Op City/City Island (just before the Bronx & Westchester County line) usually started slowing down with backup traffic as it switch from 3 lanes to 2 lanes, and typically moving along in bumper to bumper, stop-n-go fashion to the Cross County exits (going toward the Saw Mills/Taconic Parkways) as I occassionally do this route in the morning from Queens to eastern CT. Delays for this stretch can vary from 10 to 25 minutes due to traffic, more time if there's an accident and/or mixed with poor weather/wet roads, etc. Using Rt. 684 is definitely the best option these days vs. the Saw Mills (consider Rt. 95 North to Rt. 287 West as alternate plan B instead of the Hutchson, EZ-Pass Toll will speed you thru northbound as it's collected one-way only.)

If your fly into LGA instead, you can opt for either RFK Bridge to the I-87 North (Major Deegan Expwy) or the Whitestone Bridge, depending on local road conditions that morning and keep going to get out of commuter traffic coming toward NYC.

To make this work for JFK or LGA, your red-eye need to land no later than 6 am so that you can be at your car rental in 30 minutes or less, and hitting the highway by 6:45 am so that you can be out of the Bronx by 7:30 am - as very often, a few extra minutes will result in a substantial delay.

I would allocate about 2 hours and 30 minutes for JFK to Fishkill, NY (subtract 15 minutes from LGA) to allow for the random nature of metro NY traffic bottlenecks. It will most likely be closer to 2 hours (90 min. is very optimistic & unlikely) and once you are north of Rt. 287 in Westchester, your commute should mostly be at/above posted speed limits and moving with the pace of traffic (just be careful with NYSP and their laser traffic enforcement.)
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Old Jan 31, 12, 10:35 am   #11
 
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On the EZ Pass front, with a California address I think you can get an Illinois I-Pass which doesn't have a monthly fee and will work on EZ Pass toll roads and bridges. You should definitely get one.

Technically I think you're supposed to register the transponder to the car you're driving, but I've been using an EZ Pass for years now with dozens of different rental and borrowed cars and have never had an issue.
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Old May 1, 12, 2:57 pm   #12
 
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Most of my arrivals into JFK have been Mon mornings, so with a 9am departure from the rental car lot, I've been able to get up to mid-Hudson valley in 1.75 to 2hrs. Conversely, I would leave the area for JFK at about 1:30 - 1:45pm on a Friday, stop for gas, and make it back to rental car lot by 3:45pm. Van Wyck Expy to Whitestone Bridge has definitely been the bottleneck both ways.

The quickest route I found one week was through Cross Island Expy and Throgs Neck Bridge, but it only saved maybe 10min. Another alternate route I tried which added a few miles to the commute, but was less of a crawl, was on I-95 to I-287.

The fastest I was able to make it up one week was 95min, but that was on Presidents' Day holiday.

I rented cars with EZ-Pass which helped alot at the toll plazas.

Thanks again for the suggestions.
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