Layover In New York – The Ultimate Guide 2021

Published by: Bounce19 August, 2022

International travelers landing in New York for a layover will find themselves arriving at the John F Kennedy International Airport. It's an enormous airport with six terminals located in the Queens district of the city. Used by more than sixty million passengers every year, it ranks number one in the list of America's busiest airports.

Getting through the normal airport chaos of immigration, security, and baggage collection is going to consume much of the time on a short layover. With the airport around twenty miles from Downtown Manhattan and Downtown Brooklyn, an eight or ten-hour stopover will disappear in a flash the moment you start to use any form of public transport to move around. Subway links into either downtown area can take up to an hour and you'll need to catch the Jamaica or Howard Beach AirTrain from the airport to get to the station so you can board the train.

6 hour layover in New York

A six-hour layover in New York isn't time enough to head out of the airport to go sightseeing. If you manage to get through all the required immigration and security procedures in time to check-in for your connecting flight without getting stressed, give yourself a pat on the back. If by some miracle you find yourself with an hour to spare, treat yourself to a coffee and doughnut, a quick meal, or have a wander through the duty-free shops in the departure lounge to help pass the time.

  • If you find your New York connection takes off from a different terminal to the one you landed in you can go between terminals using the free shuttle bus or the AirTrain.

  • When you're really bored, try standing at a window to see if you can catch a glimpse of New York in the distance. It's a lot easier to see at night so hope for a short layover that falls late in the day.

8 hour layover in New York

On an eight-hour layover at JFK you might feel you've time to see at least one sight before heading for the check-in desk again and you'd be right. After you've dropped your bags at an NYC luggage storage service, jump on the train and head for Downtown Brooklyn. Make your way to Pebble Beach in the Brooklyn Bridge Park and you'll be able to get a good look at Brooklyn Bridge. It's a great spot for taking photos too so don't leave your camera in the airport.

  • If you're a quick walker you may want to consider walking over Brooklyn Bridge and back again. The walk is about a mile each way so only you will know if you have time enough or not.

  • Be a kid again and ride Jane's Carousel. You'll get panoramic views of Brooklyn as you spin around.

10 hour layover in New York

Whether your New York layover is during the day or in the evening one place not to miss is the Kimoto Rooftop Lounge. It's a superb spot to chill out after the stress of flying with incredible views across Downtown Brooklyn. You can sample Japanese food there or just have a drink. If you prefer something closer to the ground head for the DeKalb Market Hall. There are pop-up food stalls serving cuisines from all over the world and frequent live music performances too.

  • With extra time on your hands, you'll be able to slot in a visit to the Brooklyn Museum or get a breath of reasonably fresh air by taking a stroll around the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens.

  • If you're on a layover with kids you can keep them occupied for a while at the Brooklyn Children's Museum.

10 hour layover in New York

Whether your New York layover is during the day or in the evening one place not to miss is the Kimoto Rooftop Lounge. It's a superb spot to chill out after the stress of flying with incredible views across Downtown Brooklyn. You can sample Japanese food there or just have a drink. If you prefer something closer to the ground head for the DeKalb Market Hall. There are pop-up food stalls serving cuisines from all over the world and frequent live music performances too.

  • With extra time on your hands, you'll be able to slot in a visit to the Brooklyn Museum or get a breath of reasonably fresh air by taking a stroll around the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens.

  • If you're on a layover with kids you can keep them occupied for a while at the Brooklyn Children's Museum.

24 hour layover in New York

When you have an overnight layover in New York, getting to see the Statue of Liberty has to be a priority. The ferry sailing over to Liberty Island doesn't take long but you'll want to have a browse around the museum while you're there, so allow extra time for that. Times Square is a must-do too and much more fun at night than it is during the day. To get panoramic views of New York, make your way up to the 102nd floor of the One World Observatory from where you can see for miles and miles if you're lucky and it's a clear day.

  • One spectacular way to see New York at night is by taking a dinner cruise on the East River. It's a VIP experience that's not cheap but the food and views are worth it.

  • If you've got cash to blow then take a helicopter flight over the city. It's pricey but totally sensational.

Get the Bounce Luggage Storage App

Instantly find locations nearby to drop off your luggage wherever you go

download on androiddownload on ios