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If you’re flying into the Poughkeepsie area, you can use one of the three major New York airports—Kennedy, LaGuardia, or Newark—but the ride from all three to Poughkeepsie is at least two hours long. There are a couple of local airports to choose from, namely Stewart Airport (SWF), located in Newburgh, NY, which is just 30 minutes from Poughkeepsie. Stewart receives flights from several airlines, including Air Tran, Delta, Jet Blue, Northwest, and USAir. Flight information can be found at www.swfny.com. There is also the smaller Dutchess County Airport in Wappingers Falls, just 15 minutes from Poughkeepsie, which receives privately owned planes.
Overall, Stewart is your best bet. From there you can get a taxi at Visconti Ground Transport Service, near the baggage claim area, from 6 a.m. until midnight. You can also catch a shuttle from the airport into the city of Newburgh, where you can then transfer to a Shortline Bus, or, during morning and evening commuting hours, take a ferry across the Hudson to the Metro North train station in Beacon.
If you prefer to rent a car—and it’s helpful to have a car in Poughkeepsie—there are a few agencies located right at Stewart, including Avis, Hertz, and Enterprise.
If you’re driving in from the North or South, take Interstate 87 (New York State Thruway) to Exit 18. Turn right onto Route 299, and take that to Route 9W South. Cross the Mid-Hudson Bridge and follow that road into town. If you want to avoid the Thruway, there are two alternatives. You can take Interstate 84 East to Exit 13, which is Route 9. Head north for 15 miles and you will be in Poughkeepsie. To avoid the numerous traffic lights on Route 9, take Exit 10 off Interstate 84 in Newburgh (the last exit before the Newburgh-Beacon Bridge) and head North on Route 9W to the Mid-Hudson Bridge. Both bridge tolls are $1 for those heading West. There is no toll collected when traveling East.
A new Exit 5A onto and off of Interstate 84 now makes a direct connection to Stewart.