New York City Passes

What’s a New York City Pass?

A New York city pass is a sightseeing pass that allows you to visit numerous attractions in New York without having to buy additional tickets. Some city passes include 100+ attractions that you can visit for free, including top sights such as the Empire State Building, Top of the Rock at Rockefeller Center, and a ferry to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island.

Many museums are also covered by major New York passes, including the 9/11 Memorial & Museum, Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum, Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) and many others. At some of these museums and attractions, a city pass allows you to skip the lines at the box office.

A New York city pass can often be used for sightseeing tours on the Hop-on Hop-off buses, ferries and cruise ships. Most city passes also cover a variety of walking and cycling tours. However, unlike in other cities, no New York city pass includes a public transportation ticket.

New York City Pass: Time-based vs. Attraction-based

The most important city passes show great similarities with each other. However, there is a big difference between time-based and attraction-based passes.

Time-based means: Visit as many attractions as you like in a limited time of one to ten calendar days:

These passes cost between $131.00 and $490.00. The longer they are valid, the more expensive the passes are. However, there are often discount offers, so you will rarely pay the full price for these two city passes.

Attraction-based means: When you buy the pass, choose the number of attractions you want to visit. You will never be pressed for time:

These passes cost between $65.00 and $264.00. The more attractions you can visit with a pass, the more expensive they are. In general, attraction-based passes are cheaper than time-based passes – but you can do far less sightseeing with them.

Where Do I Get a New York City Pass?

You can buy any NYC city pass on the Internet. Some are also available in local stores in New York, but it’s usually worth buying online as you’ll benefit from frequent discount promotions. It also gives you more time to make your reservations for guided tours.

Often there is an app and/or a travel guide available for purchase to help you plan your trip. The better you prepare your trip, the more you will benefit from a city pass.

You can use all major New York passes digitally on your phone. This means, after the purchase, you can get started right away.

This page contains partner links. This means that we receive a commission when you buy a product through an affiliate link (e.g. a NYC city pass). This does not make the product more expensive for you.

When Is a New York City Pass Worthwhile?

  • When You’re in New York for the first time

    A New York city pass is most worthwhile for visitors who are visiting the city for the first time. All passes cover New York’s top attractions and only if you visit at least some of those will a city pass be worthwhile for you.

  • When you’d like to do intensive sightseeing

    Especially the two time-based city passes (New York Pass and New York Sightseeing Pass) are suitable for doing a lot of sightseeing in a short time. The more attractions you visit in the time available, the more worthwhile a New York city pass is.

  • When you spend several days in New York

    Although the purchase price increases with the duration of a pass, the price per day decreases considerably. Therefore, the longer the validity of the time-based New York city passes, the more worthwhile they are. The same applies to the attraction-based passes: they are also more worthwhile the more attractions you can visit with a pass. In addition, sightseeing with these passes is more relaxed because they allow you plenty of time.

  • When You’re Interested in Museums

    All New York city passes include the city’s major museums: 9/11 Memorial & Museum, MoMA, The Met, the Museum of Natural History and many others can be visited with a New York pass. The passes are especially worthwhile for the expensive museums.

  • When You Enjoy Hop-on Hop-of Buses

    Tourist Hop-on Hop-off buses are a key element in some passes, as they can be very expensive if you buy individual tickets. With city passes, on the other hand, you pay nothing extra for the buses. The Sightseeing DAY Pass even lets you ride the Hop-on Hop-off buses within Manhattan for as long as your pass is valid (that’s up to 10 days).

  • When You Like to Join Walking Tours

    With three out of four New York passes, you can take part in a wide range of walking tours. These are often quite expensive if you book them individually. But with the passes they are free of charge. You still have to make a reservation online in advance to secure your spot.

  • When You Know What You’d Like to See

    All New York city passes are most worthwhile if you prepare your trip well and know exactly what you want to see in the Big Apple. Because this way you can calculate exactly how much the trip will cost you with and without a city pass. This way you can avoid disappointment and use your city pass as efficiently as possible.

  • When You Travel Unprepared

    Some customers do not aim to save money with a New York city Pass. Rather, they use their all-inclusive sightseeing pass to be inspired. That’s because the time-based passes with 100+ attractions include many sights and tours that not everyone has heard of yet. So you might find something that will surprise you.

  • When You Don’t Want to Buy Single Tickets

    Whether you’re saving money or getting inspired by what a pass has to offer, a New York city pass is a very convenient product. With just one purchase you’ll get a ticket for up to 100 sights, bus and boat rides and walking tours in New York City and you can use this ticket conveniently on your smartphone.

All New York City Passes at a Glance

In the following section we briefly introduce the four most important tourist cards for New York.

Please click on the respective icon.