Since people really appreciated our tips on how to get to JFK airport, I thought I should also share some my thoughts on the options for traveling between Manhattan and Newark Airport (EWR).  Sometimes the best flight options involve travel from EWR.  However, getting to EWR is more difficult and more expensive than going to JFK, so you should take that into consideration when selecting your flight.  While Newark Liberty Airport is less than 20 miles from midtown Manhattan, traffic across the Hudson River regardless of what crossing you use can be a bit unpredictable, so always leave extra time.

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A rainy sunset as seen from a plane at Newark Airport. - "The Best Options for Traveling Between Manhattan and Newark Airport (EWR)" - Two Traveling Texans
A rainy sunset as seen from a plane at Newark Airport.

The best way to get to EWR is going to depend on your situation.  Are you pressed for time? Are you trying to save money? Do you have a lot of bags?  What terminal are you going to? Will you be traveling to EWR during rush hour (7-9 am or 4-7pm)? You could choose from New Jersey Transit Train, bus, taxi, and uber/car service.  I thought it might be helpful if I shared the pros and cons of each option.

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New Jersey Transit Train

You can take NJ Transit trains from Penn Station to the Newark Airport Rail Station, which takes less than 30 minutes.  Then you will need to take the Air Train to your terminal.  The ticket for the AirTrain is included in the price of your train ticket, but you need to use the NJ Transit train ticket to board the Air Train.   Some trains will also stop at Newark Penn Station – do NOT get off there, it is not the airport stop.  

Please get to Penn Station early enough to allow for extra time to purchase the ticket (lines can be long) and figure out what platform the train will be on.  Going on the train with luggage can be difficult especially during peak hours.   Luckily there are escalators so you don’t have to worry about carrying luggage up or down stairs.

Inside Penn Station you can catch a NJ Transit Train to Newark Airport Rail Station. -"The Best Options for Traveling Between Manhattan and Newark Airport (EWR)" - Two Traveling Texans
Inside Penn Station you can catch a NJ Transit Train to Newark Airport Rail Station.

Also, I have to warn you about the reliability of the AirTrain.  I have probably taken it 10 times and have had problems twice.  Maybe I am just unlucky?  Well, both times I was really thankful I had time to spare.

Cost: From Penn Station it is $13 each way peak.

Newark Airport Express Bus

The Newark Airport Express bus can be a good option to get to EWR, especially if you are close to one of the stops and have a lot of bags.  I pick up the bus at Bryant Park (42nd St. between 5th and 6th Avenues) but there are also stops by Grand Central and the Port Authority Bus Terminal.  It is cheaper than a car, and you can buy tickets on the bus.  However, the Newark Liberty Airport Express bus only runs every 20-30 minutes and can be delayed if there is traffic.  I would recommend getting to the bus stop 2 hours before you need to be at the airport to allow for delays and traffic.  The bus to Newark Airport does have free WIFI, although it has never worked that well for me.  

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Note: Beginning on August 1, 2017, a downtown route for the Newark Airport Express was added.  There are now buses that run direct from Freeman Plaza West (Hudson St. between Canal St. and Broome St) to Newark airport every 30 minutes.  The hours it will run is limited though, so please check the Newark Airport Express website for more details.  I think this could be a great option if you are trying to go from lower Manhattan to Newark Airport during peak hours.

The bus is a great option to get to Newark, but they don't always stay on schedule. - "The Best Options for Traveling Between Manhattan and Newark Airport (EWR)" - Two Traveling Texans
The bus is a great option to get to Newark, but they don’t always stay on schedule.

Cost: $29 round trip or $17 each way


Of course, you can just get a taxi to Newark Airport from NYC if you are in a pinch, but I would not recommend it.  It will cost you whatever the meter reads plus tolls ($10.50 – $15.00) and the Newark surcharge ($17.50).  Additionally, I would say getting a taxi from Newark to Manhattan should be your last resort.  Coming from EWR to the city you will have to use a Newark Taxi instead of an NYC one.  The fares range $50 to $70 but also be prepared for lots of extra fees like surcharges for using a credit card ($5.50),  traveling during rush hour ($5), and for bags over 24 inches.  You will also be charged for the toll ($10.50 – $15.00) and of course gratuity is not included.  

Cost: $65 – $105 depending on the time of day and where in Manhattan you are going.

Uber/Car Service

As long as it is not rush hour and there are no accidents, this will be the fastest way to get to or from the airport, but it can be pricey.  You are paying to save time and not have to worry about carrying your bags around.   It’s so nice to have a driver meet you at baggage claim when you land.   Seeing my name on a sign, makes me feel important!

A car service to Newark airport will vary a lot in price and many need advance booking.  (Check here to see if you can find a discounted price on groupon).  I should mention you should never accept a ride from the drivers that come up to you in the airport and ask you if you need a taxi.  This is against the law and many of these drivers may not be properly insured.   

Uber pricing can vary greatly depending on the demand.  A couple times, I have been lucky and have been able to get an Uber pool for $29 from Newark to my apartment in midtown.  Both times this happened, I didn’t even have to share a ride with anyone.  However, you cannot count on being able to get that price and I have not seen any deals going to Newark Airport from Manhattan.   If you haven’t signed up for uber yet, use this link and you can get $20 off your next ride!

Cost: Quotes for fares do not include tax or tip.  The fare for taking a car to EWR can range from $40 – $150 depending on where exactly you are coming from, what type of car, and if you are able to get a discount.  However, you can split the cost when traveling with others, there are no fees for additional passengers.

Door to Door Newark Airport Shuttle

Go Airlink NYC offers a shuttle service which picks you up at your door and takes you directly to Newark Airport.   Most likely you will also be making stops to pick up other passengers, so it is not going to be the fastest option.  It could make things a lot easier if you have a lot of luggage, so the extra time might be worth it.  You can make a reservation for the Newark Airport Shuttle online here.

Cost: Prices for the Newark Airport Shuttle start at $17 per person each way.  I have found this to be cheaper than Super Shuttle.

The Verdict

So in summary, when I am traveling between Manhattan and Newark Airport for work, I like to take a car service or taxi, unless it is during rush hour.  However, if I am trying to be frugal or it is rush hour, I will take the train to Newark Airport.  If I have a lot of luggage and want to be frugal I would take the bus.  If I have extra time and don’t want to deal with my luggage at all, I would take the Newark Airport Shuttle.

Regardless of what option you choose, please make sure you leave extra time when traveling between Manhattan and Newark Airport.  So what do you think is the best way to get to EWR from Manhattan? Have a safe flight!


Expert Tips for Traveling Between Newark Airport and Manhattan:

  • Your priorities dictate the best option for traveling between Manhattan and EWR.
  • The cheapest way to get to EWR is the train.
  • The fastest way to get to EWR is a taxi/uber/car service as long as it is not rush hour.  During rush hour the train is probably the fastest.
  • If you have a lot of luggage, you should consider either a car, shared van or the bus.
  • You may be able to get a great deal using Uber Pool from Newark Airport to Manhattan.
  • Try to leave extra time to get to the airport whenever possible. You never know when there can be traffic or train delays and I don’t want you to miss your flight!

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The Weekly Postcard

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Two Traveling Texans

The Best Options for Traveling Between Manhattan and Newark Airport (EWR)

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