Walking and using New York City’s Mass transit System is the cheapest and best way to explore the city. New York City has a very reliable and cheap subway and bus system that operates 24-hours a day and 7-days a week. Mass Transit also happens to be the fastest way to get you where you need to go. NYC’s mass transportation system is operated by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA), and contains a vast network of buses, subway and commuter trains. MTA New York City Transit is responsible for New York City’s buses and subways. You can visit their website at www.mta.info for the latest route and fare information.
The New York City Mass Transit System
New York City has one of the most extensive public transportation systems in the world. New York City’s inexpensive public transportation system is comprised of subway trains and buses. The system operates 365 days a year, around the clock. Printed versions of the MTA’s system maps and schedules are available in subway stations, visitor information centers and most hotels.
New York City Buses
Many New York City Transit buses operate 24 hours a day. On weekdays, most bus routes have a bus available every 5 to 15 minutes, but the time varies depending on the bus route and the bus stop. On weekends, the hours are somewhat reduced but the buses still operate. You can learn more about New York City buses by viewing our guide on Getting Around New York City by Bus.
New York City Subways
The New York City subway is the fastest way to get anywhere in New York City. Most subway stations are accessed by descending staircases (and sometime ascending staircases). Once inside the subway station, platform signs indicate which trains stop at the station, Downtown trains are southbound while Uptown trains are northbound. You can learn more about New York City subways by viewing our guide on Getting Around New York City by Subway.
The fare for buses and subways is the same and can be paid using the MetroCard. MetroCard is a system that allows riders to use cards to access the Mass transit system. A MetroCard card stores the value equal to the amount paid to a station booth clerk or to a vending machine. The MetroCard is the only way to access New York City’s mass transit system. The MetroCard also enables transfers between buses and subways, within a two-hour period. You can learn more about the MetroCard by viewing our guide on Using the MTA MetroCard
Additional Bus & Subway Information
You can get bus and subway maps and additional information at most NYC information centers. You can also buy MetroCards at the Times Square Information Center. If you require additional information, you can call the MTA at 718-330-1234 or check out their website at www.mta.info.