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Any recommendations for Tours of New York, Niagra, etc?

United Kingdom
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Any recommendations for Tours of New York, Niagra, etc?

Hi,

We are planning a week in New York in May, from the UK, and would appreciate some advice on tours of New York, Washington, Niagra, etc.

We did come across the following USA company that offers tours:

tours4fun.com

Which initially looked fantastic, as they do a 3 day tour, and book accommodation around it for us, BUT, when looking at reviews on their company/tours, they were not that great, and many people complaining about them.

Any advice would be highly appreciated, as basically (apart from the 2 flying days there and back), we will spend 5 whole days in New York, and would like a tour for 3 days, etc.

Thanks in advance.

Steven

New York NY
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for New York City
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1. Re: Any recommendations for Tours of New York, Niagra, etc?

Terrible terrible idea to book a packaged tour like that. I think you'd find it miserable, like so many people seem to. People seem to feel very ripped off. If they take you by bus, you spend more time on the road, in traffic and stopping at places where these outfits get kickbacks on your purchases.

The way to do Niagara Falls is simply to fly jetBlue between New York and Buffalo.

Washington is easily done on the train.

The smartest thing for you to do is fly United Airlines for your overseas. United flies between Manchester and both Washington Dulles and New York Newark.

You should purchase what is called an open jaw ticket - this is the most economical. This is where you fly Manchester to Washington Dulles and then you fly back to Manchester direct from New York Newark.

Or you fly Manchester to New York Newark and you fly back to Manchester from Washington Dulles.

Then you purchase a single / one-way from Washington D.C (Southwest Airlines has economical fares and excellent service with free checked baggage on Baltimore - Washington International (BWI) to Buffalo NY (for Niagara Falls).

Then jetBlue does Buffalo (for Niagara Falls) to New York.

Or the reverse would be jetBlue from NYC to Buffalo and Southwest from Buffalo to BWI.

You must stay overnight in Washington D.C.

Niagara Falls is lovely but the town of Niagara Falls NY is not great. I'd try to get a full day for the falls and minimize your additional time there unless you are going to go into Ontario wine country on the Canadian side.

New York City, New...
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2. Re: Any recommendations for Tours of New York, Niagra, etc?

What MoreFFMiles said. Avoid these companies - you spend too much time on a bus. No fun at all.

United Kingdom
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3. Re: Any recommendations for Tours of New York, Niagra, etc?

Ah, OK, Thanks for the input.

We are planning on flying out 25th May for 5 full days there (and 2 days flying so 7 nights away), and just thought it easier, not having been to the USA before, that such a tour would be adequate, especially with two teenage boys who get easily bored.

We were going to just go to NY, statue of Liberty, Empire state building, check out around NY area, but then we thought it better to also see what is surrounding the area, see the White house, Niagra falls, etc. without wasting too much time working out how to do it, you know what I mean?

Just need to find an ideal way of doing it.

Edited: 8:14 am, January 22, 2013
Melbourne
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4. Re: Any recommendations for Tours of New York, Niagra, etc?

Also agree don't bother with tours, it is easy to travel between these places on your own.

You're only away for a very short amount of time...have you considered spending the whole time in NYC? You will easily fill 5 full days in the city.

Manchester, United...
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5. Re: Any recommendations for Tours of New York, Niagra, etc?

Niagra is not the surrounding area - its over 400 miles away.

I would just spend the time in NYC

United Kingdom
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6. Re: Any recommendations for Tours of New York, Niagra, etc?

OK, thanks.

What could you do for 5 full days in New York, with 2 teenage lads, and the Mrs?

Serious question of course, we just have no awareness of the US at all, and are booking it as a holiday for my 40th.

Thanks.

Manchester, United...
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7. Re: Any recommendations for Tours of New York, Niagra, etc?

get a good guidebook, read the forum, trip reports and faq's for ideas.

Melbourne
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8. Re: Any recommendations for Tours of New York, Niagra, etc?

It completely depends on what your interests are.

I would suggest getting a guide book, reading some trip reports on the forum, reading the list of 'must do' things under the FAQ and simply Google "things to do in NYC". Decide what sounds interesting to you and get your wife and kids to do the same thing.

There are the typical tourist attractions, a ton of museums, general exploring of neighbourhoods, visiting Brooklyn, Broadway shows, sporting events...I spent 2 full weeks in NYC in 2010 and there were a number of things/places I didn't manage to do/see. Now I'm coming back in May this year!

Edited: 8:28 am, January 22, 2013
United Kingdom
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9. Re: Any recommendations for Tours of New York, Niagra, etc?

Thanks everyone. I will get reading.

One more question if you don't mind, and probably one you may roll your eyes at, if you have been to New York many times:

Checking flights, I found one with Virgin Atlantic for around £2200 economy, From Manchester UK, 1 stop in London, and for 4 of us, to JFK, which I am assuming is the correct airport, and nearest when visiting NYC?

Thanks.

Edited: 8:43 am, January 22, 2013
Manchester, United...
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10. Re: Any recommendations for Tours of New York, Niagra, etc?

JFK & Newark handle the new york area international flights - I prefer JFK