Best Helicopter Ride Over New York - Tino & SteffenA helicopter tour is one of the best things you can do during your stay in NYC. There is a reason why you will see multiple choppers flying up and down the Hudson River at all times. However, one question remains; which of the many tours on offer is the best?

Picking the best helicopter tour in NYC is not an easy task, especially if you have no idea what to look for. Luckily for you, we have tried and tested them all! In this article, we will compare all of the best helicopter tours in NYC as well as recommend to you our absolute favorite, which is in our opinion has the best value for money.

Check out the best helicopter tours in NYC here!

Which is the helicopter tour NYC?

Depending on what you are looking for, there are three categories of helicopter rides over New York City: Short helicopter rides, medium helicopter rides, and long helicopter rides. Which one of these is best for you will depend on your budget and how long you want to spend taking in the sights of NYC from above. We have broken the helicopter flights down, in order to give you a choice in each category.

Our personal favorite is the Manhattan Scenic Helicopter tour. This one strikes the perfect balance between length and cost and provides you with an excellent experience for the price. If we had to pick one, this would be our best helicopter tour in NYC!


Manhattan Sky Tour


Manhattan Scenic Helicopter Ride

Grand Island Tour

Manhattan Sky Tour Helicopter Ride

Manhattan Scenic Helicopter Ride

Grand Island Helicopter Tour


Certificate of Excellence Helicopter Ride

Certificate of Excellence Helicopter Ride

Certificate of Excellence Helicopter Ride




12 minutes
18 minutes
25 minutes


Average rating

Statue of Liberty

Times Square

Empire State Building

Chrysler Building

Rockefeller Center

Brooklyn Bridge

One World Trade Center

Ellis Island

Chelsea Piers

USS Intrepid

George Washington Bridge

Manhattan Bridge

Central Park

Yankee Stadium

Palisades of New Jersey

Colombia University

Coney Island

Northern tip of Manhattan

Verrazano Bridge



Best helicopter tour routes 

See the different routes you can fly below and what main attractions you will be able to see. Choose between a short (green), medium (blue), or long (red) helicopter tour.

Pictures from our favorite tour: The Manhattan Scenic Helicopter Tour

Where to start a ride and which route do they fly?

New York City has four main providers of helicopter rides. You can recognize them by their different colors:  The red ones are New York Helicopter & Liberty Helicopter and the black helicopters are owned by Zip Aviation. Each of them has the same departure location (Downtown Manhattan heliport) however fly slightly different routes over the city.

How do I book a helicopter tour online?

The process is secure, easy, and convenient. We speak from experience as this is how we bought all of our own tickets. It’s cheaper to buy them online than in New York City and you are also guaranteed to find a flight that fits your schedule, which is not always the case if you leave it until you are there. This is due to the fact that helicopter tours over New York are very popular and often sell out.

Our tipbook your tickets 1 – 2 weeks in advance – you will have a fairly accurate weather forecast by then!

How to buy your tickets online:

  1. Select the helicopter ride you would like to purchase. To see the differences again you can use the handy table we created at the top of the page.
  2. Next, choose the date and how many tickets you need. You can choose your departure time after you click “check availability”
  3. Follow the remaining steps to complete your booking. At this stage you will receive a confirmation of your purchase – if you don’t see it, check your junk mail folder.
  4. The confirmation email will contain the contact information of the respective operator and contain any further instructions should there be any.
  5. You can either print the PDF voucher you receive or take it with you on your phone. Done!
  6. PLEASE NOTE: Be at the Downtown Manhattan Heliport 45 minutes prior to departure and present your PDF voucher at check-in. You will also need to pay the remaining security fee here of $35 which is not included in the ticket price.

Review Helicopter Flights

Changing the date of your helicopter ride

It is entirely possible that your travel plans for New York change last minute. Don’t worry, this is not a problem as the date and time of your helicopter tour can be changed up to 24 hours prior to departure! All you need is your confirmation email and the phone number of the local operator (also in the email). Make sure to have your reservation number handy to change the time and date od your helicopter tour.

Pictures of New York City helicopter flights

You’re still not convinced to go ahead and book a New York helicopter tour? – Check out the pictures of one of the Manhattan Scenic Helicopter tour below. This is what you are going to see during your flight over Manhattan. Enjoy your view of the famous landmarks like the Statue of Liberty, Central Park, the Empire State Building, or the popular Yankee Stadium.

The Best Helicopter Tour NYC
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Do you have availability for 2 people for a helicopter tour on Friday 30th December in the morning?


Hi Lee, yes – there are some flights available: please check here! Have fun 🙂


Hi, what is the youngest age you allow to fly? Tia


Hi Lindsey! There is no minimum age – Children under 2 years old and under 35lbs fly for FREE when sitting on an adults lap (at pilots discretion).

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