Getting from LaGuardia to Manhattan and vice versa can be simple if you know your options. Whether you prefer public transportation or private transfers, this article lists your options including info on transfer durations and prices.
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How to get from LaGuardia to Manhattan
With a distance of about eight miles, LaGuardia Airport in Queens is the closest airport to Manhattan. Compared to JFK and Newark airport, LGA mostly services domestic flights. If you fly internationally, you are more likely to land at JFK or Newark.
LaGuardia is well-connected to Manhattan and because of its proximity, it is the most convenient airport to fly into. Getting from LGA to Manhattan is not difficult at all but the abundance of options can be overwhelming. That’s why I have created a table that compares all your options followed by more detailed information on every transfer option.
Did you know? A proposed AirTrain LGA could provide 30-min travel to and from Midtown Manhattan as soon as 2022. The LaGuardia AirTrain will transportation travelers to Willets Point, where they have access to subway and LIRR services.
1. Use Public Transportation
If your plan is to use public transportation from LGA to Manhattan, you have three options: Bus lines Q70 or M60 Bus followed by the subway and the New York Airport Express Bus.
Q70 SBS (Select Bus Service)
The bus links LaGuardia terminals B, C and D with the subway in Jackson Heights and Woodside and the Long Island Railroad (LIRR). These are the only stops outside of LGA, offering you a quick connection. Jackson Heights connects to subway lines EFMR7 and Woodside Subway brings you to line 7 as well as the LIRR.
The bus runs 24/7, 7 days a week and only costs $2.75, the price of a subway fare. Out of all options, it is the cheapest way to get from LaGuardia Airport to Manhattan. Because of its low fare, the Q70 bus is a great option unless you carry a lot of luggage with you. At Jackson Heights or Woodside, you also have to transfer to the subway in order to get to your destination in Manhattan. The transfer between the bus and the subway is free.
To board Bus Q70, you need to have a ticket. You can purchase it at machines inside the terminals or pay the fare with a MetroCard if you already have one.
- The total cost for this transfer is $2.75 per person
M60 SBS (Select Bus Service)
MTA bus line M60 will take you as far as 106th Street in Manhattan and also only costs $2.75 per person. Compared to Q70, it has many more stops and doesn’t lead you to Midtown Manhattan. Instead, it runs to Harlem, north of Central Park. Many stops along the M60 Bus route are connected to the subway, so you won’t have any trouble getting to your hotel or accommodation in Manhattan. The transfer between the bus and the subway is free. Check the stops along the M60 route and subway connections before boarding the bus. Taking this bus only makes sense if your hotel is in Uptown Manhattan. Otherwise, you are better off taking the Q70 line.
In order to board M60 SBS, you need to have a ticket. You can collect it at the machine outside the bus stop or, if you already have a MetroCard, use your MetroCard to pay the fare.
- The total cost for this transfer is $2.75 per person
New York Airporter Bus
The New York Airporter Bus operates every 30 minutes between 11 am and 7 pm. Compared to the M60 Bus, however, it is more expensive. It is only worth it if your hotel is located in proximity to one of the stops. The NYC airport shuttle bus stops at three locations in Midtown. You can get off at the following stations:
- Grand Central Terminal
- Port Authority Bus Terminal
- Times Square
The Airporter bus departs at LaGuardia Airport terminals B, C and D. You will need to get a ticket before boarding the bus. Simply look for red “Express Bus” signs at the baggage claim or reserve it online.
- The total cost for this transfer is $16 per person (+ $2.75 for a subway ride, if applicable)
2. Reserve a Private Transfer
A more convenient way to get from LGA to Manhattan is by scheduling a private airport transfer. They are available 24/7 and will drop you off at your hotel or address of choice in Manhattan. Upon arriving at LaGuardia Airport, you will need to call the number given on your booking confirmation (which you will receive immediately) and your car will arrive promptly.
Prices for the private transfer vary by group size. It will cost you $52 if you travel alone, but only $14 per person if you travel in a party of five. That being said, the transfer may not be the best option if you are traveling alone or as a couple. It’s great, however, for three to five people, making it a great and family-friendly airport transfer from LaGuardia to Manhattan. Do not be surprised, however, if your fare ends up a few dollars higher. That is because the prepaid amount does not include tolls and tip.
- The total cost for this transfer varies between $14 – $52 person
3. Get on a Shuttle Bus
Airport shuttles can accommodate up to 15 people at $22 per person. They are only worth it, however, if you are traveling as a group and want to stick together or if you are traveling alone or as a couple. Before you book a shuttle for 4 people ($88), you may as well book a private transfer instead! Compared to the shuttle, a private transfer will save you not only money but also time. The shuttle plans its route based on the hotels of each passenger, meaning you could potentially be the last one to be dropped off.
If you choose to take the shuttle from LaGuardia to Manhattan, simply head to the Ground Transportation Desk and present your booking confirmation. You will then be assigned to the next departing shuttle that drops you off at your hotel. With lots of luggage, it’s more convenient than public transportation, even if it may take a few minutes longer. The airport shuttle offers door-to-door service, meaning you won’t have to worry about directions.
- The total cost for this transfer is $22 per person
4. Take a Taxi
There is no flat fare for your taxi ride from LaGuardia to Manhattan. You will be charged the standard metered fare, which will be around $40 + tolls and tip. When exiting the airport, simply head towards the Yellow Cabs standing outside. You won’t be able to miss the taxi stand!
Some individuals may approach you offering you a taxi. Do not ride with them!
In order to operate as a taxi in NYC, a taxi medallion is required. The downside of taxing a taxi from LGA to Manhattan is that you may have to wait in line, depending on demand. Taxis are queued up in front of every terminal and the taxi stand has an attendant who will steer you to the next taxi in line.
- The total cost for this transfer varies between $35 – $50.
5. Book a Rideshare
Rideshares can oftentimes save you money. If you want to use rideshare from LGA to Manhattan, you have two options: LGA Connect or conventional ride-hailing companies like Uber and Lyft.
At the end of 2019, Port Authority launched the “LGA Connect” airport rideshare service in collaboration with Via. The pilot-program offers flat-rate shared rides from LGA to all five boroughs, including Manhattan. working to reduce congestion by providing affordable ride shares. A ride to Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Queens costs $15 while a ride to Staten Island or the Bronx costs $20.
You can book LGA Connect rides 7 days a week between 8 am and 1 am via the app. There is a designated LGA Connect pickup point outside of terminals C and D. Once booked, you will be matched with passengers headed in the same direction. You can expect to depart within 10 minutes. If you don’t have the app yet, you can download it here:
- The total cost for this transfer is $15.
No matter where you are in New York City, you can always call an Uber (or Lyft). That also applies to your transfer from LaGuardia to Manhattan. Simply download the app and request a ride. If you’re new to UBER, you can sign up using the promo code “selwynt1” that takes $5 off your first ride. Before you even book the ride, you will see a fare estimate based on distance and the selection you’ve made (pool or private). Once you book your ride, your driver will pick you up within minutes. The UBER app will take care of the payment via the credit card details you submitted. If you want to get a feel for Uber’s pricing before traveling to New York, check out their fare estimate tool.
Taking an Uber lets you be flexible, however, depending on demand, prices may surge and you end up paying more than you expected.
- The total cost for this transfer varies between $45 – $60.
My personal pick
I am a big fan of public transportation and always use the subway or bus system where available. Once you’ve read where to catch the bus and where to change into the subway, it’s really not too difficult. If you do carry heavy luggage or are traveling with children, however, public transportation may be quite tiring and I wouldn’t necessarily recommend it.
Traveling alone or as a couple? ➡️ Shuttle
Traveling as a party of 3-5? ➡️ Private transfer
Traveling as a party > 5? ➡️ Multiple private transfers or a shuttle
Traveling with kids? ➡️ Private transfer
Getting from Manhattan to LaGuardia
Getting to LaGuardia from Manhattan is easy. All you have to do is choose an option above and do it in reverse. In order to get from Manhattan to LGA, you have the following options:
- taxi directly to the airport
- private transfer directly to the airport
- shuttle bus directly to the airport
- subway, followed by bus
- rideshares (like Via, Uber or Lyft) directly to the airport
Always be sure to allow some extra time when getting to the airport. Generally speaking, you should be at the airport two hours before your departure when catching a domestic flight and three hours before departure before an international flight.
How far is LaGuardia from Manhattan?
LaGuardia is the closest airport to Manhattan. It is only 8 miles away, making it the most convenient airport to fly into. Nevertheless, more flights land and depart from JFK and EWR as these are larger airports. Especially, if you are taking an international flight, you will probably be flying into JFK or Newark Airport.
How long does it take to get from LaGuardia Airport to Manhattan?
Depending on the transfer you choose and where your hotel is located, your trip from LGA to Manhattan can take anything from 20 minutes to one hour.
How much does it cost to get from LGA to Manhattan?
Your transfer from Manhattan to LGA or the other way around can cost anything from $3 to 20 per person, depending on the transfer you select.
Is there a flat rate from LaGuardia to Manhattan?
No. LGA is so close to Manhattan that the standard metered fare applies to all taxi rides from LaGuardia Airport to Manhattan. You can expect to pay about $25.
Is there a subway to LaGuardia Airport?
No, but you can take a bus! Your best option is to take MTA’s M60 Bus. It will only cost you $2.75 and is, therefore, the cheapest transfer from LGA to Manhattan.
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Oh, how lucky I am… always at the pulse of the greatest city in the world – what could be better? New York City is my passion and I’m happy to be able to share my experiences along with insider tips and helpful tricks with you. With me by your side, you’ll never miss a beat!