The hardest part of planning our trip to NYC was getting there once we landed. Most flights from Toronto fly to either Laguardia Airport or Newark Liberty Airport (though just announced today that Air Canada will start service to JFK. West Jet also goes to JFK but it uses American Airlines as it's carrier). This time we decided to fly into Newark. There are a few ways of getting to Manhattan from EWR as stated here but which option gets you there the fastest and the cheapest?
It really depends what time you go. There are a few forum threads going on in TripAdvisor asking this same question. Everyone has their opinion but these are all personal preferences so choosing a way is very difficult. Originally I had booked for a car to pick us up at EWR and to be dropped off at our hotel in Midtown Manhattan. It was the only way I knew. You can take a Taxi there as well but I find that the rates are very similar to taking a Town Car, so I've always opted to take the nicer ride in. The problem this time around was we were arriving during the morning rush hour the last day before Christmas Break. Traffic suddenly became my worries.
I went back to the drawing board, and luckily I found MoreFFmiles on TripAdvisor and out of everyone, he had given the best advice on how to get to and from EWR. So, I took his advice and we are so glad we did. Not only did we save time, he saved us a whole lot of money in the process.
NEWARK LIBERTY AIRPORT TO MANHATTAN
Once we landed, we asked where the AirTrain terminal was and the employee directed us to it's location. When we got there, we went to the kiosk and purchased our tickets which was $12.50 USD per person one way (at this point make sure you keep this ticket as it will be punched once you get on the New Jersey Transit Train.). Once purchased, we went up the escalator and went to the proper platform that brings you to NEW YORK PENN STATION (there are signs that lead you to the right platform or you can simply ask one of the uniformed employees in the station but just remember, KEEP YOUR TICKET )
There are two Penn Stations on this line. Make sure you get off the New York one and NOT the New Jersey one. Once on the train, there will be someone that punches your ticket and he will leave a little white ticket in front of where you are sitting. If you decide to move, make sure you bring this ticket with you cause there will be another employee collecting these.
After about a 20 min ride, you're at New York Penn Station and from there you can either walk, take the subway or taxi to your hotel.
Honestly it's such a simple process. It sounds more confusing when you read it, but it's really simple once you go through the motions.
This site is a good tool to use if you're thinking about this route or if you're a visual person like I am, the video below helped us a lot too in our decision.
MANHATTAN TO NEWARK LIBERTY AIRPORT
I find it important to give yourself enough time to catch your flight home. Last thing you want is to miss your flight at the end of the trip, so for our return to EWR we decided to use a car service. There are plenty of car service companies out there. Make sure you do your research before you book one for yourself. Yelp was a good site and that's how I found WiroLimo.
There are a few things to keep in mind when booking a car service from EWR. The one thing to remember is that you are in New Jersey, not New York so these cars to charge for toll fees. From what I understand, toll fees have increased - the $50 one way car ride that I took with my friends 4 years ago no longer exists. When you see a rate of $45 one way, it really ends up being about $70 or so.
Now WiroLimo charges $90 FLAT from EWR (additional charges are added when using a credit card). It's a bit more than the other companies but it's the most reliable. Reading reviews, I saw that people who booked with other companies missed their flight due to the driver showing up late and running into traffic and a whole bunch of other horror stories.
Booking with William at WiroLimo was painless. It was fast and quick, and if you need to make adjustments on the fly, you can email him and he quickly gets back to you. He will email you instructions on how the driver will contact you and give you a confirmation as well.
On our date of departure, Felipe sent me a text saying that he was downstairs waiting for us and look for the SUV with the flashing blinkers on. He was there 30min before our requested pick up time and he goes at your pace. He was nice and friendly and to my surprise they are equipped with a GPS and an iPad to get them through the city and avoid all the traffic jams. He was polite and honestly one of the best drivers I have ever met!
The next time we go to NYC, we will be taking WiroLimo there and back since we plan on bringing check-in luggage with us this time. The Airtrain option was a good one for us since we only had small carry-on luggage with us but I can't see us maneuvering that way with two big luggages.
I hope this post helps you as I know how confusing and difficult it can be to get to and from Newark Liberty Airport. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us through our email on the side bar or our twitter account.