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New York City Day Trip; Arrive EWR. Should I Depart from EWR or LGA?

New York City Day Trip; Arrive EWR. Should I Depart from EWR or LGA?

Old Mar 2, 19, 12:29 am
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Question New York City Day Trip; Arrive EWR. Should I Depart from EWR or LGA?

Hello,
I am trying to weigh up my departure options for a NYC day trip so as to maximise time exploring.

I arrive into Newark at 06:00 on a Friday in August (Singapore Airlines, Terminal B)
My onward destination (separate ticket) is in Atlantic Canada.; I can either take a 4PM departure from Newark on Porter Airlines (1:20 transit in YTZ) or a 4PM departure from LaGuardia on Delta/WestJet (50 min transit in BOS).

Are there any factors I should bear in mind in terms of the time it takes to reach either airport and clear security?
I appreciate EWR has the AirTrain whilst LGA is metro & bus, but I'm not clear on the reliability of either option and the amoutn of time padding I need to add-on, considering security queues on a Friday afternoon in the summer.

(Both options will be travel in Economy).
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Old Mar 2, 19, 6:14 am
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Originally Posted by jbfield View Post
I am trying to weigh up my departure options for a NYC day trip so as to maximise time exploring.
If you want to spend some time in Manhattan while in transit, book the 400pm LGA departure and use public transit to get out there. From Midtown it is quicker and cheaper to reach LaGuardia than Newark.

With a 600am landing at EWR, you could be out of Customs and into the city via train or bus by 800am, easy. You would have until 130p or 200p until you have to head to LGA, which you can do via the subway (7, E, F, M, R lines) to Roosevelt Avenue, then transfer to Q70 bus... or direct M60 bus. Taxi / Uber to LGA may be a less fast option owing to construction-related congestion around LGA access roads.
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Old Mar 2, 19, 6:14 am
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Exactly where you’re leaving from to get to the airport can make a big difference. I suggest you figure out where you’d like to have lunch — as you’ll need to head to the airport right afterwards — and decide on that basis.

I think the Pub Room at Keens is a great place for lunch. From there you could walk to Penn Station to catch the train to Newark. (To be honest, from there you also can catch the F train subway to the bus to LaGuardia. As long as you leave Keens by, say, 1:30, you’ll be fine with either option.)
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Old Mar 2, 19, 6:41 am
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Originally Posted by Blumie View Post
I think the Pub Room at Keens is a great place for lunch.
Pretty classy joint, and if OP is dressed down for marathon travel he/she might not be totally comfortable with the upscale ambiance... nor the huge portions, nor the time investment. I would probably steer OP to a simple pub in Hell's Kitchen or something, where food and drink can be had quickly. But it all depends on OP's to-do agenda in a short six-hour timeframe. For all we know a hot dog on the Staten Island Ferry would suffice.
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Old Mar 2, 19, 7:07 am
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Originally Posted by BearX220 View Post
Pretty classy joint, and if OP is dressed down for marathon travel he/she might not be totally comfortable with the upscale ambiance... nor the huge portions, nor the time investment. I would probably steer OP to a simple pub in Hell's Kitchen or something, where food and drink can be had quickly. But it all depends on OP's to-do agenda in a short six-hour timeframe. For all we know a hot dog on the Staten Island Ferry would suffice.
The Pub Room is the more casual side of Keens, offering a more casual menu and smaller portions (though one can also order off of the main menu as well).
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Old Mar 2, 19, 4:30 pm
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I think the much more important question is whether you have luggage and specifically checked luggage. If you do and can get away with checking it at EWR (multiple factors to consider in making that assessment), that creates a strong vote for EWR.

Actually, I'll do better than that for you. SQ has an interline with Porter and they will interline across separate tickets still. I would 100% book PD and have SQ interline your bags. Can just drop at connections area after customs, and then you have a much easier day.
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Old Mar 5, 19, 7:03 pm
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Originally Posted by BearX220 View Post
If you want to spend some time in Manhattan while in transit, book the 400pm LGA departure and use public transit to get out there. From Midtown it is quicker and cheaper to reach LaGuardia than Newark.
Far from it. If you are within walking distance to Penn Station (or on the 1/2/3/A/C/E line), it costs you all of $15.50 to get to EWR. That is without having to roll the dice on whether or not the bus gets stuck in traffic. I'd recommend EWR in a heartbeat over LGA - and I say that as someone who works in Midtown East, which theoretically makes LGA an 'easier' trek.
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Old Mar 6, 19, 8:33 am
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Thank you all for our suggestions.
Originally Posted by stevenshev View Post
I think the much more important question is whether you have luggage and specifically checked luggage. If you do and can get away with checking it at EWR (multiple factors to consider in making that assessment), that creates a strong vote for EWR.

Actually, I'll do better than that for you. SQ has an interline with Porter and they will interline across separate tickets still. I would 100% book PD and have SQ interline your bags. Can just drop at connections area after customs, and then you have a much easier day.
They interline? That's great! I had got the impression from the SQ website that they don't interline with Porter.
I expect to have 1x check-in luggage, and would intend to drop-it off as soon as I can. If that means transfer it straight onto Porter super. Otherwise I would end up storing it near Penn Station, so that would probably be where I end up starting my journey to either airport.

My trip is not until the summer so I have some time yet to do my day-trip planning. Right now, I expect I'll do a lot of walking to take in the views, perhaps head down to the Wall Street area by metro, then walk to and over the Broklyn Bridge. If I feel I have time I'll head up to Central Park and back again (by metro). I'll keep The Pub Room in mind; I think this will be most heavily influenced by my jetlagged stomach on the day.

Originally Posted by BearX220 View Post
If you want to spend some time in Manhattan while in transit, book the 400pm LGA departure and use public transit to get out there. From Midtown it is quicker and cheaper to reach LaGuardia than Newark.
With a 600am landing at EWR, you could be out of Customs and into the city via train or bus by 800am, easy. You would have until 130p or 200p until you have to head to LGA, which you can do via the subway (7, E, F, M, R lines) to Roosevelt Avenue, then transfer to Q70 bus... or direct M60 bus. Taxi / Uber to LGA may be a less fast option owing to construction-related congestion around LGA access roads.
Originally Posted by PsiFighter37 View Post
Far from it. If you are within walking distance to Penn Station (or on the 1/2/3/A/C/E line), it costs you all of $15.50 to get to EWR. That is without having to roll the dice on whether or not the bus gets stuck in traffic. I'd recommend EWR in a heartbeat over LGA - and I say that as someone who works in Midtown East, which theoretically makes LGA an 'easier' trek.
This is the sort of thing I was wondering because reading up there seems to be strong views for either. My normal preference, anywhere in the world, would be to take a train over a bus because it's got a known schedule and duration. But does the train actually run regularly to schedule or is it often late? And do the security lines at EWR outweigh any time saving during the commute? I picked-up some horror stories about queuing at EWR, but I don't know how true they really are.

Right now I spotted a FlexiFare on Delta/Westjet for USD $124 (to YHZ), so I have secured that - but obviously I can cancel it for not much and switch back to Porter at EWR if the predictability of getting back there lets me maximise my time. in the city.

Last edited by jbfield; Mar 6, 19 at 8:44 am
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Old Mar 6, 19, 10:14 am
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Originally Posted by PsiFighter37 View Post
Far from it. If you are within walking distance to Penn Station (or on the 1/2/3/A/C/E line), it costs you all of $15.50 to get to EWR. That is without having to roll the dice on whether or not the bus gets stuck in traffic. I'd recommend EWR in a heartbeat over LGA - and I say that as someone who works in Midtown East, which theoretically makes LGA an 'easier' trek.
I disagree with this. Even when I lived in Chelsea, I chose LGA over EWR every time. The E or F to the Q70 bus is great. The train to Newark Airport Station is fine, but if the EWR AirTrain were any slower it would be going backwards.

That said, the difference is not so substantial to make that the basis of your decision.
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Old Mar 6, 19, 10:32 am
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Originally Posted by jbfield View Post
I would end up storing it near Penn Station, so that would probably be where I end up starting my journey to either airport.
Very good. There is a left luggage counter at Penn, western / Amtrak side of the terminal. Take the EWR AirTrain+NJ Transit service into Penn (which is at 34th & 7th/8th -- lower Midtown), have your spin around Manhattan, then be back at Penn by 130pm or so. Collect your luggage and get a Queens-bound E subway (the platform for which is also found under the western side of the complex). Eight stops or so and you're at Roosevelt Avenue. Exit, come upstairs, go outside to the little bus-bay area, buy a $2.75 chit from the kiosk to board the Q70 bus, and you're en route to LaGuardia. You should be inside the Delta terminal by 230p.

Originally Posted by jbfield
My normal preference, anywhere in the world, would be to take a train over a bus because it's got a known schedule and duration. But does the train actually run regularly to schedule or is it often late? And do the security lines at EWR outweigh any time saving during the commute?
Everything can vary. Trains in and out of Penn Station are delay-prone. This matters less to you when you're inbound to Manhattan than when you're trying to catch a plane. Subways suffer delays also but the E runs frequently and is heavily used.
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Old Mar 6, 19, 11:09 am
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Originally Posted by BearX220 View Post
Very good. There is a left luggage counter at Penn, western / Amtrak side of the terminal. Take the EWR AirTrain+NJ Transit service into Penn (which is at 34th & 7th/8th -- lower Midtown), have your spin around Manhattan, then be back at Penn by 130pm or so.
Amtrak at Penn Station now charges $10/bag for day-checking an item, and requires an Amtrak or NJTransit rail ticket to do so. I don't know how strictly the latter requirement is enforced, but if the OP buys an NJTransit rail ticket from EWR Rail Station to New York Penn, the train conductor will punch and collect that ticket en route to NYC. The work-around is to buy a rail ticket from EWR Rail Station to Newark Penn Station, and then pay the "change-in-terminal" fee in cash to the conductor to stay on the train to Manhattan. The conductor will issue a paper ticket and receipt for the change-in-terminal fee, which should satisfy the Amtrak baggage agent if a ticket is demanded.
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Old Mar 6, 19, 12:46 pm
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One more option if you want to see something downtown > use the path from the WTC > Newark Penn > EWR

If you decide on downtown (and If I'm working that Friday) I'll offer to buy you a beer and a burger for lunch
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Old Mar 6, 19, 1:53 pm
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Originally Posted by Blumie View Post

I disagree with this. Even when I lived in Chelsea, I chose LGA over EWR every time. The E or F to the Q70 bus is great. The train to Newark Airport Station is fine, but if the EWR AirTrain were any slower it would be going backwards.

That said, the difference is not so substantial to make that the basis of your decision.
I live in Chelsea as well (6 blocks from Penn Station), so using NJT simply solidifies making it a no-brainer. I also did this when I lived in Murray Hill.

LGA is the absolute pits and dumps, and I would only deign to fly out of it if it's a 6 AM flight for work and I was being forced to do so.
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Old Mar 7, 19, 7:36 am
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Originally Posted by PsiFighter37 View Post
LGA is the absolute pits and dumps, and I would only deign to fly out of it...
"Deign"?

You're UA 1K. Your bias for EWR may not be based entirely on ground transit characteristics.
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Old Jul 23, 19, 5:59 am
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After all that WestJet cancelled my connecting flight from Boston so my departure from LGA is no longer feasible (they instead routed me two hours earlier with a 2 hr transit in Toronto or an overnight somewhere else).

So I have instead booked a new ticket for a direct flight from EWR (on UA) later in the evening. Will at least be able to try and route my baggage through from SQ and get lounge access now.
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