GETTING AROUND THE NEIGHBORHOODS ON NYC’S EAST RIVER HAS NEVER BEEN EASIER
Nearest Transportation to Each Ferry Stop?
Frequently Asked Questions re: East River Travel
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What are the ferry stops?
There are currently eight ferry stops. They are:
• E. 34th Street/Midtown
• Wall Street/Pier 11
• Governor’s Island (only Seasonal Weekend Service)
• India Street/Greenpoint
• N. 6th Street/North Williamsburg
• Schaefer Landing/South Williamsburg
• Brooklyn Bridge Park/DUMBO
• Hunters Point South/ Long Island City
There are three new ferry routes—serving South Brooklyn, Astoria and the Rockaways in Queens—launching in June 2017. The new Astoria route will include an express trip from 34th Street to Wall Street. The added ferry routes will also include a stop on Roosevelt Island (home to the new Cornell Tech campus). Additional stops in Brooklyn will include Red Hook, Bay Ridge and the Brooklyn Army Terminal.
How often do the ferries run and where can I get the most up to date schedule?
Service starts at 6:49 A.M. on weekdays, and 9:47 A.M on weekends.
The last ferry departs 34th St./Midtown at 8:20 P.M. on weekdays and 8:47 P.M. on weekends.
On weekdays during rush hour, ferries depart from each terminal every twenty minutes.
During off peak times ferries depart every half hour.
On weekends departure times are every 45 minutes.
Keep in mind that the ferry fills up quickly during rush hour, and if you arrive too close to departure time you may have to wait for the next ferry. Plan ahead and arrive early. On weekends, there can be delays so leave some extra time in your schedule.
For schedule information, click here.
How much does it cost and are there discounted passes?
There are one-way tickets, all-day passes, and monthly passes, but no round-trip tickets. The cost of a single ticket on a weekday is $4; for weekend it is $6. There is $1 bicycle surcharge.
The all-day pass is $12. The monthly, unlimited ticket is $160, or $190 if you plan on bringing your bike.
The routes are popular with tourists and commuters, so ticketing machines can have long lines during rush hours, but don’t think you can slip aboard and pay later. The gate-keeper on the dock won’t let you on, and if you’ve got your bike with you and haven’t paid the dollar extra, will send you back for the bike pass.
Our advice: Use the NY Waterways free mobile app for digital ticket purchasing and real-time alerts.
More information on the Citywide Ferry Service can be found here:
How long does it take to get from stop to stop?
It takes five minutes to get from one stop to the next, but boat traffic can cause delays.
I heard the city is expanding the ferry. What can I expect to see?
Phase I of the plan, scheduled for 2017, will include ferry lines to Rockaway, Astoria and South Brooklyn. Phase II, for 2018, will include the Soundview line connecting the East River to upper Manhattan and the Bronx, as well as a route servicing the Lower East Side. The mayor has voiced interest in a Rockaway shuttle that would bring passengers to and from Rockaway’s ferry terminal, but plans are still unfolding.
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Can I travel via ferry on just the Manhattan side?
Not yet. Right now, the ferry operates between 34th Street/Midtown and Wall Street/Pier 11, but someone getting on at 34th Street will have to cross the river to Queens, then all the Brooklyn terminals before getting to Wall Street/Pier 11.
The good news: Come 2018, passengers will be able to go north and south on the river, just on the Manhattan side.
The Soundview line will connect Wall St./Pier 11 with E. 62nd Street and E. 90th Street.
The Lower East Side line will connect 34th Street/Midtown with 23rd Street, Grand Street and Wall Street/Pier 11.
What about the New York Water Taxi?
While the name might sound like New York’s version of Venice’s private-water taxi system, it’s not. Like the NY Waterway’s East River Ferry, the New York Water Taxi operates on a fixed route to popular tourist destinations, mostly on the West Side, with one stop on Wall Street, then off to Dumbo. The fleet of checkered black and yellow vessels operate out of six piers:
• Pier 79, W39th St.
• Christopher Street
• Battery Park, Slip 6
• Pier 11, Slip A
• Pier 1-Dumbo
• Red Hook Dock, Van Brunt Street
Both the East River Ferry and New York Water Taxi share Pier 11, located on Wall Street. There is also a free NY Waterways shuttle bus that runs between Pier 79 (at West 39th St.) and 42nd St. (at Lexington and Third Avenues) Just signal the NY Waterway Ferry Bus at any city bus location along the 42nd St. route and the shuttle will take you right to the West 39th Street terminal.
All Day Access passes cost $31 for adults and $19 for children. VIP All Day Access tickets are available for $199. Perks include a visit to the top of the Empire State Building before it opens to the rest of the public, a walking tour of Battery Park, and an open-top bus tour.
More information on can be found by clicking here.
Is there a private ferry boat service I can call to take me when and where I want to go?
No, sorry, not unless you want to charter a custom party boat.
What about that charter party boat?
New York Skyport Marina, located on Pier 1 on East 23rd St., houses yacht and cruise chartering services. Many operate along a fixed route from the East River to the Hudson, but Lexington Classic Cruises offers options you can customize. Remember, you can only get on and off where there are existing piers.
Are seaplanes an option?
The East River is the convenient home to New York Skyports, Inc., a seaplane base off of 23rd Street. With the right pilot, what would be a three hour drive to the Hamptons can be just an hour. One operator is Tailwind Air Service, which offers a shuttle plane between New York and Boston (about a 90-minute trip) as well as charter flights.
The Skyports are also home to Fly the Whale, an airline charter company with a motto that is hard to argue with: life is too short for traffic. With Fly the Whale, you can charter the plane of your choice pretty much anywhere, whether it’s a seaplane to the Hamptons or a Gulfstream jet to San Francisco.
Can I take a helicopter?
I’m an Uber lover. How long will it take me from the 34th Street terminal to my appointment in Midtown?
Taking the unpredictables of Manhattan traffic into consideration, here’s what you can expect:
• Grand Central: 7 to 15 minutes
• Port Authority: 8 to 30 minutes
• South Ferry/Terminal: 7 to 15 minutes
• Central Park: 9 to 30 minutes
Can I take the ferry to Martha’s Vineyard, Nantucket and Sandyhook beach?