New York City Passes – What is the Best Attraction Pass for You in 2023?

How to Find the Best Sightseeing Pass for NYC

With so many different sightseeing passes out there, it is easy to feel overwhelmed. This New York Pass comparison guide is here to help you easily spot the differences between all major New York attraction passes so that you can quickly determine the very best NYC pass for you.

I have visited New York more than twenty times and have tested every sightseeing pass multiple times on my many visits. None of the pass providers have paid me to write about them; my reviews of New York attraction passes and my experiences are 100% authentic. If you have any questions, always feel free to contact me at

steffen@loving-newyork.com!

In my New York City Pass comparison, I’ll show you which New York Pass is the best for you. With it you will not only save money, but also time!

Looking for a shortcut? Click here to  👉 compare the NYC attraction passes, 👉 see my personal recommendation or 👉 calculate your savings with the New York Attraction Passes.

1. Why should you buy a New York Attraction Pass?

Quite simply, they save you a ton of money! There are nine different New York Sightseeing Passes available which are all slightly different, meaning that you will be able to find one that suits your specific needs. As you will see here, they can make your NYC trip much easier and help you save money & time.

Before my many trips, I often found it hard to know beforehand how much I would save with each of the city passes and whether they would be worth purchasing. Here I will share my knowledge and experience with you so that you don’t have the same issues I had.

2. How do New York Attraction Passes work?

All New York Attraction Passes function identically. After you purchase a pass, you have 12 to 24 months to activate it, which will automatically happen when you visit your first attraction.

You can visit each attraction only once when using a pass; the only exception to this is the New York CityPASS. With this pass, you can visit the Empire State Building twice within the same day!

Once you purchase an NYC pass, you will be able to select from several delivery options. The easiest way to obtain your pass is the mobile pass, as it will be emailed to you right away. To use your pass, simply present it at your selected attraction. Attendants will then scan the QR Code and give you your ticket!

3. How To Find The Best Sightseeing Pass

Finding the right New York attraction pass is not as hard as it looks. Due to the different makeup of each pass, each one serves a specific purpose!

It’s important to understand a key difference: some New York City passes are attraction-based, meaning you choose the number of attractions you can visit beforehand, while others are day-based, meaning that you choose the number of days you can visit attractions beforehand. Besides the type and validity, other differences can be found when it comes to included attractions, advantages, pricing, and discounts.

How to find the best New York City Pass
Day-based vs. attraction-based sightseeing passes

Day-Based Passes

When purchasing NYC day passes, you will select the number of days you would like to go sightseeing in New York City. During the selected time frame, you can visit as many attractions as you want! You could also say that these types of passes are all-inclusive passes.

If you want to see a lot in a short period of time, you should go for a day-based pass!

Please note that day-based NYC passes work on calendar days, rather than 24-hour periods, meaning that if you activate your pass at 7:00 pm, you only have five hours left pn your first day. Your New York Attraction Pass will only be activated when you visit your first attraction.

Pros

  • You can visit as many attractions as you want within the time frame you purchase, which may be 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 or 10 days.
  • All costs are covered
  • Huge savings are possible

Cons

  • The days must be used consecutively.

These are all day-based NYC Tourist Passes that are currently available. For each, I’ll show you which attractions you can visit with it, how much it costs, and if the pass is worth it!

Attraction-Based Passes

Attraction-based passes are sightseeing passes such as the New York Sightseeing Flex Pass, CityPASS, and the Go New York Explorer Pass. They allow you to visit up to twelve attractions and are very flexible in terms of time; from the first use, the passes are valid for up to 60 days.

If you want to be flexible and do your sightseeing spread out over several days, then this type of New York Attraction Pass is the way to go!

Pros

  • Valid up to 60 days
  • You do not commit to see any particular attraction, just the number of attractions you wish to see.
  • Huge savings are possible

Cons

  • Limited to the number of attractions you selected (3 to 12)

Here are all current attraction-based passes for New York City. For each, I’ll show you which attractions you can visit, how much it costs, and if the pass is worth purchasing!


4. Comparison: Which New York Attraction Pass should you choose?

So, what is the best attraction pass for visiting attractions in New York City? Let’s find out by comparing them:

Best Offer
Best Value

My rating

My rating

Customer Reviews

Customer Reviews

NEW

Type

Type

day-based

attraction-based

attraction-based

day-based

day-based

attraction-based

Steffen Kneist Loving New York

My personal review

Steffen Kneist Loving New York

My personal review

For those who want to see as much as possible

If you want to spread the attractions over several days

If you want to spread the attractions over several days

For those who want to see a lot

1:1 copy of famous New York Pass

For those who are first-time visitors and want to explore New York's must-sees

Discount

Discount

Cheapest price even without discount code 👇

up to 42% off with code "LNYOFFER"

-

up to 42% off with code "LNYOFFER"

-
-

Attractions available

Attractions available

110+

100+

100+

100+

110+

8

Valid for

Valid for

1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7 or 10 days

30 days

60 days
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 or 10 days
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7 or 10 days
9 days

Price

Price

from $134

from $67

from $74

from $129

from $134

from $132

Pros

Pros

  • good value
  • many tours
  • Fast-lanes
  • The Edge
  • One World Observatory
  • Empire State Building
  • Top of the Rock
  • Good value
  • The Edge
  • One World Observatory
  • Empire State Building
  • Top of the Rock
  • Statue of Liberty Cruises
  • The Edge
  • One World Observatory
  • Empire State Building
  • Top of the Rock
  • Statue of Liberty Cruises
  • good value
  • many tours
  • Fast-lanes
  • Cheap pass
  • Lots of museums included
  • Empire State Building

Cons

Cons

  • Days must be consecutive
  • Ferry to Statue of Liberty & Ellis Island not included
-
  • Days must be consecutive
  • Days must be consecutive
  • Limited to 5 attractions

ATTRACTIONS

ATTRACTIONS

included?
included?
included?
included?
included?
included?
Edge Hudson Yards
Edge Hudson Yards
Empire State Building
Empire State Building
Top of the Rock
Top of the Rock
One World Observatory
One World Observatory
SUMMIT One Vanderbilt
SUMMIT One Vanderbilt
9/11 Memorial Museum
9/11 Memorial Museum
American Museum of Natural History
American Museum of Natural History
Museum of Modern Art
Museum of Modern Art
Circle Line Landmarks Cruise
Circle Line Landmarks Cruise
Circle Line Best-of NYC Cruise
Circle Line Best-of NYC Cruise
Statue of Liberty Cruise
Statue of Liberty Cruise
Ferry to Statue of Liberty & Ellis Island
Ferry to Statue of Liberty & Ellis Island

Hop-on Hop-Off?

Hop-on Hop-Off?

Which Museums are included in the New York Sightseeing Passes?

The New York City passes are the best way to save money on entry fees at the NYC attractions. Many museums and exhibitions in New York City like The Museum of Modern Art, the Guggenheim Museum, the 9/11 Memorial and even the Fotografiska New York are included in the different sightseeing passes. But which are the best museum passes for New York City? Here is a quick overview:

Museums included in the New York Attraction Passes

NYC Sightseeing FLEX Pass
New York Pass Price
Sightseeing Pass NYC
Go New York Explorer Pass
New York City Pass

My Rating

My Rating

Museums included

Museums included

23 of 32

27 of 32

23 of 32

17 of 32

5 of 32

9/11 Memorial Museum
9/11 Memorial Museum
American Museum of Natural History
American Museum of Natural History
Brooklyn Children's Museum
Brooklyn Children's Museum
Brooklyn Museum
Brooklyn Museum

Copper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum
Copper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum

El Museo del Barrio
El Museo del Barrio

Fotografiska New York
Fotografiska New York
Fraunces Tavern Museum
Fraunces Tavern Museum
International Center of Photography
International Center of Photography
Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum
Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum
Madame Tussauds
Madame Tussauds
Metropolitan Museum of Art (The Met)
Metropolitan Museum of Art (The Met)

Met Cloisters
Met Cloisters
MoMa
MoMa
MoMA PS1
MoMA PS1
Museum at Eldridge Street
Museum at Eldridge Street
Museum of Arts and Design
Museum of Arts and Design
Museum of Chinese in America
Museum of Chinese in America
Museum of Ice Cream
Museum of Ice Cream
Museum of Jewish Heritage
Museum of Jewish Heritage
Museum of Sex
Museum of Sex
Museum of the City of New York
Museum of the City of New York
New York Historical Society Museum
New York Historical Society Museum
New Museum
New Museum
Skyscraper Museum
Skyscraper Museum
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
South Street Seaport Museum
South Street Seaport Museum
SPYSCAPE
SPYSCAPE
Staten Island Children's Museum
Staten Island Children's Museum
Staten Island Museum
Staten Island Museum
Whitney Museum of American Art
Whitney Museum of American Art
Discount?
Discount?

up to 20% off with code
"LNYOFFER"

Cheapest price even without discount code 👇

up to 30% off with code
"LNYOFFER"

-
-

How can I make reservations at attractions with my New York Pass?

It depends on the attractions and your sightseeing pass. At the Empire State Building, you ALWAYS need a separate ticket (it’s free) because you must commit to a specific time and date. For most attractions, you just go to its location and you will receive the next free time slot. You can also choose the time slot that suits you best. From my experience, I have found that this is always in periods of 15 minutes to 4 hours.

5. My recommendations

I have been to NYC more than twenty times and have tested every attraction pass multiple times, so you can be sure that these are real and honest reviews from me!

My top picks

New York Pass Best Day-Based Pass

For those who want to visit many attractions and plan with a fixed budget, the New York Pass is the best day-based sightseeing pass. With it, you can visit as many attractions as you like and take as many tours as you want.

It is the best “all you can eat” pass in my opinion, also providing the most ‘fast lanes’ and attractions.

Get NEW YORK PASS »

New York Explorer Pass 2023

If you want to spread your visits to attractions out over several days, or you want to take a break from sightseeing for a day, the Explorer Pass New York is perfect. For me, it is the best attraction-based pass because it includes all the major attractions and tours in NYC!

Note: If you don’t want to take the ferry to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, get the New York Sightseeing FLEX Pass with our discount code LNYOffer – it will be much cheaper!

GET Explorer Pass »

You’re still not quite sure? 🤔

Then our New York Pass Savings Calculator is the answer to all your questions! It calculates instantly which New York Pass is the best for you – individually tailored to your sightseeing. He will also show you if a NYC pass is not worth it.

Try NYC Attraction Pass Savings Calculator


Extra tickets are required here

For these attractions, you must book a separate ticket and present it TOGETHER with your respective New York Attraction Pass at the ticket counter:

New York Pass Price

NYC Sightseeing FLEX Pass

Sightseeing Pass NYC

Go New York Explorer Pass

New York City Pass

Extra ticket required?

Extra ticket required?

Extra ticket required?

Extra ticket required?

Extra ticket required?

Extra ticket required?

Empire State Building

Top of the Rock

Edge Hudson Yards

not included

One World Observatory

not included

9/11 Museum

Statue of Liberty & Ellis Island

American Museum of Natural History

Guggenheim Museum

MoMA

not included

6. What is the best New York City Pass?

If you are looking for a shortcut to the best NYC attraction pass right away, here is my list of the best, including alternatives:

#1 The best New York City Pass for first-time visitors

Especially if you are in New York for the first time and want to see as many of the attractions and sights as possible, the day-based passes are a good idea. My favorites are the Sightseeing Pass NYC and the New York Pass.

They are quite similar, and you will not go wrong with either one. The good thing about these sightseeing passes is that you can see as many attractions as you want!

#2 The best New York Attractions Pass for selected attractions

If you already know exactly what you want to do in New York City, then I recommend the Sightseeing FLEX Pass, New York Explorer Pass (now called Go New York Explorer Pass) or the CityPASS New York.

All three sightseeing passes are attraction based and you can choose exactly how many attractions you wish to see.

#3 The best NYC Pass for families

In my opinion, the best sightseeing pass for families is the Sightseeing FLEX Pass, which I have used several times with my family. With it, you can be flexible with your time, and it offers a 50% discount on children’s passes.

Still not sure? Calculate your savings here.


7. What are the day-based sightseeing passes for New York?

For each of the passes, I’ll show you which attractions you can visit with, how much it costs, and if the pass is worth purchasing! At the end of the section, you can compare which is the better pass for you in the New York Pass vs. Sightseeing Pass comparison.

NOTE: The newest observation deck SUMMIT One Vanderbilt, is not yet included with any attraction pass for New York. Tickets for the One Vanderbilt observation deck can be purchased here.

New York Pass

New York PassThe New York Pass gives you access to all included attractions during the duration that you select. You can select between 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, or 10 days and choose from over 110 attractions while saving up to 50% compared to regular ticket prices.

What attractions are included in the New York Pass?

The New York Pass includes an extensive list of attractions, museums, walking tours, bus tours, and cruises. The Empire State Building, the 9/11 Memorial Museum, The Edge at Hudson Yards and the One World Observatory are included.

Here is a small selection of the 110+ attractions:

  • Empire State Building
  • One World Observatory
  • Edge Hudson Yards
  • Top of the Rock
  • Ferry to Statue of Liberty & Ellis Island
  • Circle Line Cruises
  • 1-Day Hop on Hop off with BIG BUS (valid for 24 hours)
  • 9/11 Memorial Museum
  • The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
  • American Museum of Natural History

You can find the full list of included attractions here.

How much does the New York Pass cost?

New York Pass prices start at $142 for the 1-day pass and go as high as 369 for the 10-day pass. You save more, the larger your pass is and the more attractions you visit.

New York Pass for
Price Adults
Price Children
(3-12 years)

1 day

$142
$109

2 days

$189
$134

3 days

$229
$169

4 days

$264
$189

5 days

$294
$209

7 days

$334
$249

10 days

$369
$284

Is the New York Pass really worth it?

Yes! If you visit at least 2 attractions a day, the New York Pass will be worth the money. Compared to other passes, the New York Pass offers most fast lanes, including main attractions like the Empire State Building, Top of the Rock, MoMA, and Circle Line Sightseeing Cruises.

Just like the Sightseeing Pass, the New York Pass includes over 100 unique attractions and tours. The biggest advantage you’ll get when you buy the New York Pass is the access to fast lanes. It offers fast tracks for many of New York’s top attractions, such as the Empire State Building and the Top of the Rock.

New York attractions

Price (adults)

Empire State Building

$48

Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour

$59

SoHo, Little Italy & Chinatown Walking Tour

$39

Top of The Rock

$44

The Edge

$46

9/11 Memorial & Museum

$28

One World Observatory

$47

American Museum of Natural History

$23

Circle Line Landmarks Cruise

$37
Woodbury Common Premium Outlets
$47

Total price without pass

$418

New York Pass for 3 days

$229

Savings

$189 (45%!!)

How to use the New York Pass?

The New York Pass is a great unlimited pass option, ideal for seeing a large number of attractions in a short period of time. Purchase the pass online to receive your mobile pass. You can then show this at the counter when entering the attraction in order to receive your entrance tickets – simple!

 BUY NEW YORK PASS


New York Sightseeing DAY Pass

New York Sightseeing DAY PassThe New York Sightseeing DAY Pass gives you access to over 100 attractions during the number of days you purchase. You can choose between 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, or 10 days and save up to 50% compared to regular ticket prices.

On top of that, our promo code LNYOffer can save you up to an additional 40%!

What attractions are included in the New York Sightseeing DAY Pass?

This day-based pass also has a lot to offer; with it you can visit more than 100 of the most popular attractions. You can visit four observation decks, use the hop-on hop-off buses, and visit the American Museum of Modern Art or the 9/11 Memorial Museum.

  • One World Observatory
  • The Edge Hudson Yards
  • Top of the Rock
  • Empire State Building
  • Ferry to Statue of Liberty & Ellis Island
  • Circle Line Cruises
  • Hop on Hop off with BIG BUS (1 Day Classic Ticket, valid for 24 hours)
  • 9/11 Memorial Museum
  • The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
  • American Museum of Natural History

Here you can find the list of all attractions included in the Sightseeing DAY Pass.

How much does the Sightseeing DAY Pass cost?

New York Sightseeing Pass for
Price (adults)
Price children
(3-12 years)

1 day

$129
$104

2 days

$182
$119

3 days

$207
$149

4 days

$239
$169

5 days

$269
$189

6 days

$284
$199

7 days

$299
$219

10 days

$349
$249

Is the New York Sightseeing Pass worth it?

Yes! The New York Sightseeing Pass can save you a ton of money, provides you with a lot of flexibility in terms of attractions, as well as removes a lot of the hassle from your NYC Sightseeing trip. As the pass with the best value for money of the lot, it is definitely worth it if you are planning on up to 10 days of consecutive NYC sightseeing.

In order to get the most out of your sightseeing pass, you should plan on visiting around 2-3 NYC attractions with your pass each day.

The longer you purchase the pass for the fewer attractions you need to visit per day to make sure the pass is worth the money. If you purchase a Sightseeing Pass for 6 days for example (~$284), you get unlimited sightseeing for ~$48 per day, which is below the price of many attractions tickets purchased on their own. This means that you only need to visit one attraction a day for 7 days to make this pass worth it! This is what makes this the best value for money pass of the bunch.

New York attractions

Price (per adult)

DAY 1
DAY 1

Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour

$59

Empire State Building

$48

The Edge

$46
DAY 2
DAY 2

Ferry to Statue of Liberty & Ellis Island

$24

9/11 Memorial & Museum

$28

One World Observatory

$47

DAY 3
DAY 3

American Museum of Natural History

$23
Radio City Music Hall Stage Door Tour
$31

Circle Line Landmarks Cruise

$37

Top of The Rock

$44

TOTAL SINGLE TICKETS

$387

New York Sightseeing DAY Pass for 3 days

$207

Your savings

$180 (47%!!!)

How to use the NYC Sightseeing Pass?

The NYC Sightseeing Pass is a piece of cake to use! After purchasing the pass online, you will receive an email with your pass. You can from here print the pass or save it to your phone. Once you are in NYC and ready to go sightseeing with your New York tourist pass, choose which attraction you want to visit on the go and head towards it with your Sightseeing Pass in hand. Choose as you go, simply show your Pass at each attraction for free admission; easy!

Buy Sightseeing Day Pass

Don’t forget using my exclusive discount code “LNYOffer”!


New York Pass vs. Sightseeing Pass

I often get the question whether the New York Pass or the New York Sightseeing Pass is better. While there are differences, both passes are worth the money and you won’t go wrong with either of them.

For both New York Day Passes, the attractions and included tours are almost identical. You can visit all the major attractions, except for SUMMIT One Vanderbilt and The Met. Both include a 1 Day Classic Hop-on Hop-off bus ticket and many of the boat and walking tours!

So, what are the differences between the two? New York Pass is a little better in terms of boat tours because it’s the only one that includes the Circle Line Best-Of Cruise (which takes you all the way around the island of Manhattan). The Sightseeing Pass is better in two aspects: first, it is cheaper than the New York Pass with our exclusive discount code (as you can see in the table), and it’s also available in a 6-day version!

Attractions
+100
+110
Included ...

... in Sightseeing Pass NYC?

... in New York Pass?

Hop-on Hop-off 1 Day

Edge Hudson Yards

Empire State Building

Top of the Rock


FAST LANE

One World Observatory

9/11 Memorial Museum

American Museum of Natural History

Museum of Modern Art

Statue of Liberty Cruise

Landmarks Cruise

Best-of Cruise

PRICE FOR

Price with my discount

Price

1 day

$129

$142

2 days

$182

$189

3 days

$207

$229

4 days

$239

$264

5 days

$269

$294

6 days

$284

7 days

$299

$334

10 days

$349

$369

Sightseeing NYC Day Pass vs New York Pass

New York Pass or Sightseeing Day Pass

Discount code?
No

New York All-Inclusive Pass

The All-Inclusive Pass is managed by the same company as the New York Pass. It functions the same as the New York Pass in how it works, the available attractions and tours, and prices. Since it is quite new compared to the New York Pass, I would recommend the original.


8. What are the attraction-based sightseeing passes for New York?

Note: The newest observation deck, SUMMIT One Vanderbilt, is not yet included with any NYC pass. Tickets for the One Vanderbilt observation deck can be purchased here.

New York Sightseeing FLEX Pass

New York Sightseeing FLEX PassThe New York Sightseeing FLEX Pass can be used as a pass to visit 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 10, or 12 attractions from a list of over 100. It is a great option for visitors to NYC who are looking to spend non-consecutive days sightseeing in NYC. The NYC Sightseeing FLEX Pass is a great option if you are interested in visiting major attractions, museums, or taking the hop-on hop-off buses.

It also gives you a large amount of flexibility since you do not need to decide on which attractions to visit beforehand. All that you have to do is show your Sightseeing Pass at the first attraction (included in your pass) that you wish to visit.

Attractions included in New York Sightseeing FLEX Pass

These are what I consider to be the top attractions and tours you can visit with the Sightseeing Pass FLEX (there are over 100 in total):

  • One World Observatory
  • The Edge Hudson Yards
  • Top of the Rock
  • Empire State Building
  • Circle Line Cruises
  • Hop on Hop off with BIG BUS (1 Day Classic Ticket, valid for 24 hours)
  • 9/11 Memorial Museum
  • The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
  • American Museum of Natural History

Here you can find the list of all attractions included in the Sightseeing FLEX Pass.

How much does the Flex Pass cost?

Sightseeing FLEX Pass for
Price Adult
Price Children
(3-12 Years)

2 Attractions

$67
$50

3 Attractions

$94
$71

4 Attractions

$125
$93

5 Attractions

$148
$104

6 Attractions

$166
$118

7 Attractions

$184
$140

10 Attractions

$229
$168

12 Attractions

$256
$197

    BUY NYC SIGHTSEEING FLEX PASS

Don’t forget using my exclusive discount code “LNYOffer”!

Is the New York Sightseeing FLEX Pass worth it?

The NYC Sightseeing Flex Pass is most definitely worth it if you are looking to visit up to 12 NYC attractions on non-consecutive days, all while saving money and remaining flexible during your trip. If you visit all of the attractions you have purchased with your pass, it is definitely worth it alone for the amount of money you can save. It is however also extremely worth it because of the flexibility that the New York tourist pass gives you. Choose as you go, simply show your NYC Sightseeing Pass at each attraction for free admission, for as many attractions as you purchased!

Compared to the cost of tickets individually, you save over 40% with the Sightseeing Flex Pass for 10 attractions. This is quite relaxed possible, because you have 30 days to visit these attractions.

DAY 1

Price per adult

Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour

$59

Empire State Building

$48

Circle Line Landmarks Cruise

$37

American Museum of Natural History

$23

Top of The Rock

$44

SoHo, Little Italy & Chinatown Walking Tour

$39

The Edge

$46
Guggenheim Museum
$25

9/11 Memorial & Museum

$28

One World Observatory

$47

TOTAL INDIVIDUAL TICKETS

$396

FLEX Pass for 10 Attractions

$229

Savings per person

$167, you save 42%

How to use the NYC Sightseeing FLEX Pass?

The NYC Sightseeing Flex Pass is super simple to use. Once you have purchased the pass you will receive an email with a QR code (that you can either print or save to your phone), which you can then scan at attractions to gain free entry.

Does the NY Sightseeing FLEX Pass include the NY Sightseeing Bus (Hop-On Hop-Off) Tours?

Yes! The New York Sightseeing FLEX Pass includes the Hop-on Hop-off Bus Tours (Uptown & Downtown Bus Loops) which count as just one choice and are valid for 24 hours.


Go New York Explorer Pass

Go New York Explorer PassThe Go New York Explorer Pass is a great option if you already know how many attractions you want to visit. Choosing between 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, or 10 attractions from the list of over 100, this New York City Pass gives you a 60-day window to visit the number of attractions you selected. The New York Go Explorer pass gives you the freedom to explore New York at your own pace, choosing from an extensive list of NYC attractions and tours.

Attractions included in Go New York Explorer Pass

With the Explorer Pass, you can visit many amazing attractions like the Empire State Building, the Top of the Rock, and the observation deck Edge Hudson Yards, as well as take walking tours, the hop-on hop-off bus tours, and boat tours.

Also included are major museums like MoMA, the Guggenheim, the 9/11 Memorial Museum, and the American Museum of Natural History. Here is a selection of the most popular attractions and tours you can visit with the Explorer Pass (there are over 110 in total):

  • Empire State Building
  • Top of the Rock
  • Edge Hudson Yards
  • One World Observatory
  • Circle Line Cruises
  • 20+ Walking Tours
  • Hop on Hop off with BIG BUS (1 Day Classic-Ticket, valid for 24 hours)
  • 9/11 Memorial Museum
  • The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
  • American Museum of Natural History

Here you can find the list of all attractions included in the Go New York Explorer Pass.

How much does the Go New York Explorer Pass cost?

The prices depend on the number of attractions you want to visit with it:

Go New York Explorer Pass for
Prices (Adults)
Prices (Child)
(3-12 years)

2 Attractions

$74
$59

3 Attractions

$104
$84

4 Attractions

$139
$104

5 Attractions

$164
$124

6 Attractions

$184
$139

7 Attractions

$204
$154

10 Attractions

$249
$199

Is the New York Explorer Pass worth it?

The Go New York Explorer Pass also pays off pretty quickly, in the example I spread 10 paid attractions over 3 days (and a few free ones too) – saving you $146 per person compared to the single tickets. You could also spread them over even more days, after all you have 60 days to use the Explorer Pass in New York.

TAG 1

Preis pro Erwachsener

Travel Plan for Day 1
Price

Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour

$59

Times Square
-
Macy's
-
Flatiron Building & 5th Avenue
-

Empire State Building

$48

Travel Plan for Day 2
Price

Circle Line Landmarks Cruise

$37
Central Park
-

American Museum of Natural History

$23

Top of The Rock

$44

SoHo, Little Italy & Chinatown Walking Tour

$39

The Edge

$46
Little Island
-
Travel Plan for Day 3
Price
Ferry to Statue of Liberty & Ellis Island
$24

9/11 Memorial & Museum

$28

One World Observatory

$47

TOTAL Single Tickets

$395

Go New York Explorer Pass for 10 Attractions

$249

Savings per Person

$146, you save 37%

How to use the New York Explorer Pass?

After deciding on how many attractions you would like to purchase the Explorer pass for, you can make the purchase online for your desired pass. You do not need to decide beforehand which attractions you would like to visit!

GET EXPLORER PASS


New York CityPASS

New York CityPASSThe New York CityPASS allows you to save money on admissions to New York’s main attractions. In fact, with the CityPASS, you can save up to 44% on entry tickets. The New York CityPASS is valid for 9 consecutive days following the first day of use, meaning you can visit the 5 attractions at your own leisure.

Attractions included in Go New York Explorer Pass

You can choose 5 out of 8 attractions:

  • Empire State Building
  • American Museum of Natural History
  • Top of the Rock OR Guggenheim Museum
  • Ferry to Statue of Liberty & Ellis Island OR Circle Line Cruises
  • 9/11 Memorial Museum OR Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum

How much does the New York City Pass cost?

The New York CityPASS costs $129 for adults, meaning that you pay an average of $26 per attraction. For kids from 6 – 17 years, the CityPASS costs $109. A CityPASS is likely not worth it for kids younger than 6, as many attractions will be free for them anyway. Because the pass is already heavily discounted, there is no further New York City Pass promo.

Is the New York CityPASS worth it?

If you want to focus on museums, the New York CityPASS is an option for you. It is limited to the most important attractions and is also quite affordable. If you also want to do hop-on hop-off bus tours or more boat tours, then the New York Pass, Sightseeing Pass NYC and the Explorer Pass are better.

GET New York CityPASS


9. Other NYC attraction passes

In addition to the options mentioned so far, there are three other sightseeing passes that I’ll briefly name here for the purpose of being a comprehensive NYC Pass Guide. I can’t really recommend any of them, because they don’t offer you more than the New York Pass, DAY Pass, Explorer Pass, FLEX Pass and the CityPASS.

It is rather the other way around: with them you are less flexible, if you change your sightseeing program on the trip. The reasons can be manifold: maybe the weather is worse or better than planned or you spontaneously feel like visiting another sight!

C3 Pass by CityPASS

Recently, the company behind CityPASS New York has started offering two more options: the C3 Pass (limited to 3 attractions) and the C-All Pass, which lets you visit 10 attractions. The C3 Pass is – once activated in NYC – valid for 9 days. You can save up to 36% (depending on the attractions and tours you choose).

Attractions included in C3 Pass

You can choose 3 attractions from these 10:

  • Empire State Building
  • The Edge at Hudson Yards
  • American Museum of Natural History
  • Top of the Rock Observation Deck
  • Guggenheim Museum
  • Ferry Access to Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island
  • Circle Line Sightseeing Cruises
  • 9/11 Memorial & Museum
  • Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum
  • The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
  • City Cruises

How much does the C 3 Pass cost?

The C 3 Pass costs $92 for adults (13+), the price for children (5-12 years) is $72.

Is the C 3 Pass worth it?

It depends! If you select the attractions whose regular ticket price is the highest with the C3 Pass, you can save up to 36% with it.

However, I personally recommend another NYC Pass – either the Sightseeing FLEX Pass or the Go New York Explorer Pass. Why? Both have a much larger selection of attractions and the popular hop-on hop-off buses are also included. Plus, both alternatives are at least as reasonably priced.

If you’re not sure whether the C3, Explorer Pass or Sightseeing FLEX Pass is right for you, just try my free New York Pass savings calculator! It will calculate in a few seconds which one will save you the most!


C-All Pass by CityPASS

The C-All pass is a bit of a cheat because its name is misleading. With this pass you can visit up to 10 attractions. You can choose from 11 attractions and boat tours, which are these:

Attractions included in C-All Pass

You can choose 10 attractions from these 11:

  • Empire State Building
  • The Edge at Hudson Yards
  • Top of the Rock Observation Deck
  • Guggenheim Museum
  • Ferry Access to Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island
  • Circle Line Sightseeing Cruises
  • 9/11 Memorial & Museum
  • Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum
  • The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
  • City Cruises

How much does the C-All-Pass cost?

The C-All Pass costs $189 for adults (13+), the price for children (5-12 years) is $139.

My tip

These Sightseeing Passes are better

As with the C 3 Pass, however, I recommend other NYC Passes for the same reasons.

With up to 10 attractions, both the day-based and attraction-based passes are an option for you. It’s best to try my free New York Pass savings calculator!


Are the New York City Passes worth purchasing?

I’ve put together two very common itineraries for a visit to New York City that will help you see if a New York sightseeing pass is worth purchasing, and which would be best.

New York City in Two Days

This itinerary includes seven attractions that I spread over two days.

New York attractions

Price (per adult)

9/11 Memorial & Museum

$28

Empire State Building

$48

Ferry to Statue of Liberty & Ellis Island

$24

Museum of Modern Art

$25

One World Observatory

$47

The Edge

$46

Top of The Rock

$44

TOTAL PRICE WITHOUT PASS

$262

#1 New York Pass for 2 days

You save $73 (27%)

#1 Sightseeing DAY Pass for 2 days

You save $66 (25%)

#1 Sightseeing DAY Pass for 3 days (!)

You save $59 (23%)

#1 New York Pass for 3 days (!)

You save $59 (23%)

#1 New York Explorer Pass for 7 attractions

You save $54 (21%)

Several of the sightseeing passes are worth purchasing – you can customize and recalculate here, and here is my itinerary for two days in New York City in full detail.

New York City in Three Days

This itinerary includes eight attractions that I spread out over three days.

New York attractions

Price (per adult)

9/11 Memorial & Museum

$28
Circle Line Landmarks Cruise (1,5 hours)
$36

Empire State Building

$48

Ferry to Statue of Liberty & Ellis Island

$24

Museum of Modern Art

$25

One World Observatory

$47

The Edge

$46

Top of The Rock

$44

TOTAL PRICE WITHOUT PASS

$298

#1 Sightseeing DAY Pass for 3 days

You save $91 (31%)

#1 New York Pass for 3 days

You save $69 (31%)

With a three-day itinerary, several New York passes are worthwhile – you can customize and recalculate here, and here is my itinerary for three days New York City in full detail.


FAQ

Is the New York Metro Card included in the New York Pass?

In many cities, the discount passes also include free use of public transportation. Unfortunately, this is not the case with the New York Passes. They cover the tourist attractions and tours, but not fares for the subway and buses. For public transportation use, you need an OMNY account, the new digital version of the MetroCard.

What about fast lanes at attractions?

Attraction passes primarily focus on price, not on time. That being said, the passes do include a few fast lanes that allow you to skip the standard waiting line. However, there are not that many of them, and the CityPASS does not offer any fast lanes. You can, however, upgrade your tickets at the attractions for an additional cost.

Sightseeing Flex Pass

Sightseeing Day Pass

New York Pass

Go NY Explorer Pass

NYC Sightseeing FLEX Pass

NYC Sightseeing Pass

New York Pass

  • Madame Tussauds
  • St. Patrick's Cathedral Tour
  • Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum
  • Madame Tussauds
  • St. Patrick's Cathedral Tour
  • Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum
  • Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
  • Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
  • Top of the Rock Observatory
  • Madame Tussauds New York
  • Empire State Building

Which hop-on hop-off buses are included with New York passes?

We often get the question which hop-on hop-off bus tour providers are included with the sightseeing passes and which loops you can take.

Since Covid, there is only one provider: BIG BUS! All sightseeing passes (except the CityPASS New York) include the 1 Day Classic Ticket. This allows you to do both the Uptown and Downtown loops within 24 hours. Taking both loops counts as one attraction, not as two.

Which New York passes are available in 2023?

There are six main sightseeing passes: the New York Pass, the Explorer Pass, the CityPASS New York, the Sightseeing FLEX Pass, the Sightseeing DAY Pass, and the New York All-Inclusive Pass. In addition, there are three more to choose from with the C 3 Pass, C-All Pass, and the Turbopass New York, but I can’t recommend them to you without some hesitation.

Which New York Pass is best to buy for one day?

Many may recommend the New York Pass for one day, and while it is a good option, I recommend its main competitor, the New York Sightseeing DAY Pass. With it, you can do just as much as with the New York Pass, but is much cheaper ($129 compared to $142) with my discount code: LNYOffer!

You can buy the Sightseeing Pass for one day in New York cheap here.

Best New York Pass for 1 Day? The Sightseeing DAY Pass!

Is the Sightseeing Pass for New York worth it?

Absolutely! The New York Sightseeing Pass is available in two options, suitable for every type of travel. The FLEX Pass is an attraction-based pass, which I have used on my last four visits to New York. The day-based version is the DAY Pass. With either pass, many major attractions and tours are included, and you can save a lot of money. With my exclusive discount code, LNYOffer, you can save even more!

You can buy the Sightseeing Pass for New York here.

Where can you buy the New York Pass?

You can now only get the New York Pass online (with a discount!). I strongly recommend that you buy the New York Pass online in advance; on the official site, there are additional discount promotions that will help you to save even more.

Is a New York Pass worth it for you?

In general, the more paid attractions you want to visit, the faster a New York Pass will pay off for you. You can easily visit two to three attractions per day without any added stress.

Furthermore, the longer that the New York Pass is valid, the cheaper it will be for you. Most of the attractions cost between $30 and $60, and with a New York Pass valid for seven days or more, you only need to visit one attraction per day to make it worth your while. The most popular New York Pass is the New York Pass for five days, making each day cost just under $50.

My tip: Here you can calculate if and which New York Pass is useful.

Can I visit an attraction more than once with the New York Passes?

With the New York Pass, the Go New York Explorer Pass, the Sightseeing DAY Pass, and the FLEX Pass, you can visit each attraction exactly once. Only with the CityPASS New York can you visit the Empire State Building on the same day; once during the day and again in the evening.

Are the New York Passes activated at the time of purchase?

No; all sightseeing passes are not activated at the time of purchase. They will activate when you use them for the first time at one of the valid attractions and are valid for 1 to 60 days, depending on the type of NYC pass.

Profilbild Steffen Kneist
About the author
Steffen

I'm a true New York fan! Not only have I visited the city over 20 times but also have I spent several months here at a time. On my blog I show you the best and most beautiful spots of the city, so that you have a really good time! You can also find lots of insider tips in our New York travel guide. Also check out my hotel finder for New York!

Did you like this article?

28 Comments

Gary Anderson

When a statement with explorer pass says skip the lines does that mean at each attraction there is a line for people with passes and those in a line to get an individual ticket for that ONE attraction? THANKS PLEASE HURRY WITH ANSWER IF Possible!!

Moritz

Hi Gary! There are several attractions which have fast track lines. You can check the full list here: http://loving-newyork.com/new-york-explorer-pass/

Angela

Hi, On this website it says the New York Sightseeing FlexPass is valid for 30 days after the first use, however in the Guide Book it says you have 7 days to enjoy all of the attractions for the Flex Pass. Could you please clarify this before I purchase.
Thanks for your help.

Moritz

Hi Angela!

The New York Sightseeing Flex Pass is valid for 30 days after you first use it. The guidebooks are sadly not updated as often as they should be, meaning that some of the information may be outdated.

Hope this helps! – Mo

Jim Robinson

Hi. Is there a pass that includes the Beast Speedboat Ride, Empire State Building, Top of the Rock, and Madame Tussaud’s?

Moritz

Hi Jim! These are some of the most popular attractions and are included in every pass except the CityPASS. Check out the table above for more details! If these are the attractions you are most interested in I would recommend checking out the Explorer Pass and Sightseeing Pass in more detail.

Hope this helps 🙂
– Moritz

Jeroen

Hi, When I select 9 attractions and get advise to buy the flexpass with 6 attractions, why isn’t it adviced to buy 10 attractions Flexpass?
With Flexpass for 6 attractions I still have to buy 3 sepatate and then It’s not cheaper comparing it with an 10 attraction Flex pass.
Thanks for your answer.

Maureen Steinert

Hi Jereon,

would you mind letting us know which 9 attractions you are interested in so that we can have a look? My guess is that one or more selected sights are not included in the pass. Feel free to contact me directly → maureen@lovingnewyork.de.

Have a great Tuesday,
Maureen

Sam Hakosem

When buying the “NYC Sightseeing FLEX Pass” – do we need to select the desired attractions beforehead or simply arrive to site and exploit an attraction upon entrance?

Also, does it shorten the lines for entrance (or any other pass, e.g., for one trade center observatory)?

Maureen Steinert

Hi Sam,

you don’t need to select your attraction beforehand, you can decide as you go! The only thing that matters is that you don’t exceed the total number of attractions. Simply head to an attraction, present your pass and you’ll get a ticket.
Unfortunately, there are not too many fast lanes included in the passes. They rather focus on price & flexibility. If you wish to have priority access or similar, we’d suggest you purchase tickets separately. Otherwise just make sure you show up early 🙂

Have a wonderful time in New York and let us know if you have any other questions!
Maureen

Paola

Hi Sam,
I was under the impression the $40 credit from NY sightseeing pass can be applied to buy the Empire State Building access, but it is NOT! from the link send out with the $40 code via email, the link is for additional products and when I tried to select Empire state bldg under attraction, the $40 won’t work. Is there any other way to use the $40 credit to get the empire state bldg access as you mentioned at the beginning of the article?
Thanks very much!

Maureen Steinert

Hi Paola,

unfortunately the Empire State is no longer part of the program. Sightseeing Pass only allowed customers to redeem their voucher by 12/5. It may be back as a regular attraction soon, but as of right now it is not included. You can still visit any other attractions, like the Top of the Rock from which you’ll have the best view (if you ask us)!

Best,
Maureen

Lora Smith

I had almost decided on the Sightseeing Pass but most of the reviews are rather negative. I try to take reviews with an open perspective but it seems the overall majority are negative. The New York Pass is my second choice but there are perks with the Sightseeing Pass like the Eat and Play Discount Card, the $40 credit and $20 off Broadway shows that I didn’t see with The New York Pass. I think most of the bad reviews are directed toward the Hop on/off buses which does not concern me because I do not plan for that to be a main source of transportation on my trip. I just don’t want to be disappointed with having to wait longer for attractions and being denied access to the attractions I plan to do. Also have a room booked at Hotel Edison says 2 queens with courtyard views. However, I just scored a times square view room at the Crown Plaza Times Square for basically the same price. Which would you choose?

Maureen Steinert

Hi Lora,

you are right. Negative reviews typically mention the attractions themselves, particularly the hop on hop off buses. They can be very crowded and you may have to wait a little to get onto the next bus, which is also the case in other cities. If somebody’s done it before, they’ll know what to expect, though! I’ve never heard anything bad about the passes themselves and we also still use them from time to time to keep you up to date! My advice would be to really just focus on the differences in the offers of the passes. Not sure if you have discovered our Savings Calculator yet?

As for the hotel options, I would go for the Crowne Plaza. Both are in great locations, but you’ll probably hear some noise due to the proximity to Times Square. However, the Crowne Plaza is more spacious, which is nice. It doesn’t mean it’ll be the largest room there is, but as you may imagine most Manhattan hotel rooms are tiny!

Best,
Maureen

Terri

Hi,
My husband is going to take me to New York for my 60th birthday on 8/30 thru 9/8, with 8 days of sightseeing. This will be our first trip to New York and we would like to get as much info and planning to make our trip fun and stress free. Which pass would you recommend? We also would like to go to the Empire State bldg. Which area would you recommend us to stay, that is centrally located to all and easy access to transportation?
Thank you for your help and suggestions

Maureen Steinert

Hi Terri,

I understand that the wealth of information can be overwhelming! Choosing the right pass is probably the most difficult part of planning a trip to New York. Have you discovered our Savings Calculator yet? You can just select the attractions you’re interested in and the best pass will automatically be calculated for you! It’s surely the easiest way to save the most money. Once you purchase a pass, you can still choose your attractions flexibly. Your selection is just needed to see what would be worth it for you!
I’d recommend YOTEL Times Square if you want to stay in a central location. It’s located in Midtown, but not directly at Times Square which helps a little with the noise. You’ll be just a few minutes away from Port Authority – a major hub connecting you with 3 subway lines. Overall, it’s got everything you need for your stay and it’s also affordable!

Let me know if you have any other questions! We hope you’ll have a fantastic time in New York!!
Best, Maureen

Anton Engels

Hi,
Good site!
How do I get the tickets with a pass. Have I only to show the pass?
Thanx, Anton

Maureen Steinert

Hi Anton,

exactly! You present your pass at the ticket counter, it will be scanned, and you’ll receive a ticket. That’s it!

Best,
Maureen

Keith

What does the large passes include for Statue of Liberty, what do we need to do to visit the Crown?

Maureen Steinert

Hi Keith,

most passes include the ferry to Liberty Island, but no access to the pedestal or the crown. You can get crown tickets over the official website only. Be sure to get them well in advance as they sell out quickly (spaces are limited!).

Best,
Maureen

Fran

Where do you input the discount code for new york sightseeing pass??

Maureen Steinert

Hi Fran,

you can enter it BEFORE choosing a pass. Once you enter the code below the sightseeing pass options the prices will adjust and then you can select your pass and continue to checkout.

Maureen

Jay Shah

Hey Maureen,
Hope you’re doing good 🙂
I’ll be in NY for about 3/4 days..
Just want to cover the major sites. Top of the Rock, Statue of Liberty, Central Park, Walk down the Wall Street and Hop n Hop Off are the major ones. Would you recommend me to buy a pass? If yes, which one? I was thinking the Flex 7 attraction one.l considering that there are free Statue of Liberty ships so I wouldn’t need to use the pass there. It’d be a bonus if there’s something which would cover some restaurants, maybe clubs or transfer to JFK from Midtown Manhattan.
Thanks in advance 🙂

Jay Shah

Also, shen should I buy one? The trip is going to be in June.

Maureen Steinert

Hi Jay,

have you tried the Savings Calculator yet? You can select all the attractions you want to see and the best pass will automatically be calculated.

We created the same for the transfers. Take a look here.

The free ferry you are talking about is probably the Staten Island Ferry. Please note that it does NOT stop at Liberty Island. It just passes the statue.

Have a great time!

viri

Thank you so much for this info!! I’ve been in NY many times and it’s always confusing (and time consuming) trying to figure it out what is the best option. I love this website and I’ll keep reading your NY tips!

Rose

Hi great information and made choosing a pass really clear.

I wanted to take advantage of your discount with the coupon code. However there was no place to do this on the NYC sightseeing pass. Could you advise how to do it?

Steffen

Hi Rose,
you can enter the code at the prices pages here.

All the best and please let me know if it worked 🙂

Steffen

Comments are closed.

Log in Register

myNY – your own New York travel planner

Log into myNY and start planning your New York trip. Don’t have an account? Register now - it’s free!

5 reasons why myNY will make creating your itinerary easy!

Reset your password

Please enter your email address to reset your password.

myNY – your own New York travel planner

Register for myNY now and start planning the perfect trip to New York City!