We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Traveling with luggage on the subway

Portage la Prairie...
4 posts
Save Topic
Traveling with luggage on the subway

Me and my mother are going to New York in june. Our flight comes in at La Gaurdia. I dont want to pay for a shuttle or taxi. How hard is it to take the bus and subway from the airport to our hotel at times square with luggage? We arrive at 3pm on a weekday and depart at 3pm on a weekday.

Brooklyn, NY
Destination Expert
for New York City
Level Contributor
24,300 posts
Save Reply
1. Re: Traveling with luggage on the subway

As long as you can carry your luggage up and down stairs, it's not hard. Where exactly is your hotel? Many hotels say they're in Times Square, but may be anywhere within a two square mile area.

Houston, Texas
Level Contributor
4,048 posts
20 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Traveling with luggage on the subway

The question is How much luggage do you have? I'm all for using public transportation in NY, I've only had one cab ride in my four trips there...but while it's pretty easy to schlep a carry on bag around on buses and subways, I wouldn't want to do it with multiple pieces each.

If you can handle that, buy your Unlimited MTA Metrocards at the machine(s) at LGA near the bus stands in Terminal B, get on the M60 bus and take it to the subway stop at Astoria Blvd. There you board the Manhattan bound N or Q train and it will take you to Times Square/42nd St. As BB noted, it would be a good idea to look at a map first and see what the closest station to your hotel is. Google maps show subway stations and what lines serve them. When it shows multiple lines you can do transfers there.

And I highly suggest you download the Hopstop app for your smartphone.

Edited: 3:52 pm, May 22, 2012
Atlanta, Georgia
Level Contributor
5,121 posts
16 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Traveling with luggage on the subway

Bee444, you should be aware that taking up more than a single seat on a NYC subway can lead to a ticket and/or arrest:

nytimes.com/2012/01/07/nyregion/minor-offens…

Personally I would just pay for a taxi.

-JimG

Edited: 6:24 pm, May 22, 2012
Portage la Prairie...
4 posts
Save Reply
4. Re: Traveling with luggage on the subway

its about 3 blocks away from central park. (cant think of the exact adress at the moment)

I will have a backpack and a medium suitcase with me.

NYC / Fire Island...
Level Contributor
7,496 posts
5 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Traveling with luggage on the subway

We are not sure of your ages but we may well be your mother's age (or older) and these days, though we are fit (we walk at least 3-4 miles every day) we never carry luggage on the subway preferring to take a taxi or car service to and from the airports. Your call.

CH

New York NY
Destination Expert
for New York City
Level Contributor
11,144 posts
104 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Traveling with luggage on the subway

I think you need to take your own finances into account. Some of the people giving you the advice to take a taxi may have a bit more disposable income at their discretion.

This is absolutely a decision you should make for yourself.

You can either use the MTA travel planner to punch in LaGuardia Airport and the name of your hotel *or* you can tell us and we'll give you step by step directions.

Shared ride shuttles are horrid in NYC and they'll likely completely ruin your entire trip. Shared ride shuttles should be avoided. The business model only works if they fill the entire van. The driver will take your money and tell you that you're leaving soon. You'll never get that money back. You may be in the van for an hour, three hours, who knows. You sit in traffic cramped in that smelly van and then you start dropping everybody else off at their hotels and before the ordeal is over you wish you had never come to NYC and you hate the place. Forget the shared ride thing.

You have two viable options. Taxi / private sedan for something in the ballpark of $30. - $35. (total - not per person) *or* simply taking one of the two fast / frequent NYC buses to the nearby subway. The M.60 connects the terminals with the N / Q trains at 31st Street / Astoria Blvd. The Q.33 connects the airport with the nearby transportation hub known as 74th Street / Roosevelt / Broadway / Jackson Heights. The Q.33 bus route end points are the airport and the subway so you can not get on the bus going in the wrong direction and you can not miss your stop on the Q.33 (unless you fail to get off when the driver cuts the engine and turns the lights off and everybody else gets off - and even then you'd get kicked off). : )

These neighborhoods are safe and pleasant and you don't have anything to worry about.

Be careful not to take up extra seats as the police do issue summonses for this. You can bring as much luggage as you want on the bus and subway but don't take extra seats on the subway. There are lots of "rules" designed with little more in mind than to keep the police officers busy while they're on patrol in an otherwise safe city (and keeping an eye out for terrorism) and generate a little bit of extra / needed revenue for the cash strapped MTA. There is plenty of room for your bags and there are no issues if you don't put them on the seats.

You can purchase MetroCards at LaGuardia Airport. You can share pay-per-ride MetroCards or you can each purchase your own $29.00 7 day unlimited ride cards. The bus and subway would be included in a 7 day unlimited ride. If you are using a pay-per-ride, you can share a card. Your free transfers between bus and subway are automatically stored on the card. Up to four people can share a MetroCard and when you transfer to the subway, the transfers are stored and it knows that two people are transferring from the bus to the subway.

Any questions?

NYC / Fire Island...
Level Contributor
7,496 posts
5 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Traveling with luggage on the subway

....all that said, we recommend that your mom (and you) take a taxi or car service, especially if she has luggage.

CH

Edited: 9:17 pm, May 22, 2012
New York NY
Destination Expert
for New York City
Level Contributor
11,144 posts
104 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Traveling with luggage on the subway

Yes - just note that this advice is coming from somebody who toggles between their three residences in Mexico, Fire Island and Greenwich Village in Manhattan (some of the most expensive real estate in the world).

It seems very common on the New York City forum for people who are obviously a bit more well-heeled than some of the other visitors to recommend traveling in style when obviously the visitors are trying to assess their options (and manage a budget).

Portage la Prairie...
4 posts
Save Reply
9. Re: Traveling with luggage on the subway

thanks so much. this helps a lot!

New York, NY
Level Contributor
100 posts
333 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Traveling with luggage on the subway

I live in NYC and have different strategies for the different airports - some are easier to travel to via public transportation while carrying luggage than others. The subway does not go to LGA though, so you're looking at at least a bus ride then a subway ride, and maybe also a subway transfer depending on the location of your hotel. And then maybe a walk. But LGA is also the airport closest to the city, so unless you are riding in at rush hour, it should be about $30-35 total for the two of you. I usually recommend taxi to my visitors who arrive or depart from LGA. JFK and EWR make a bit more sense, cost-wise, to use public transportation, in my opinion. But if you're up for carrying the luggage up/down some stairs and diving into the bus/subway system when you first arrive, I'm sure you can manage it!