The Last Push! A Dash Across Queens, Manhattan towards Newark

The Last Push! The Final 700 Tier Points to BA Gold!
A Dash Across Manhattan to Newark



After exting the plane there were two priorities: a toilet and picking up my luggage. The former was an easy task (as the toilet block was next door to the gate). It was then a matter of exiting the terminal and heading to baggage claim

Some art to help ease the soul.

When I got to the luggage belt, delivery had not even started. Once it did, it took 30 minutes from docking to my bag finally being spat out onto the carasol. Not a very timely delivery at all, and had decreased the comfort time zone that the early arrival had given me.

With the bag finally spat out of the luggage delivery machine, my next task overall task was to get to Newark Airport. There’s two main ways of doing this:

  1. Use the Airport Porter bus service
  2. Take the train, changing at Jamaica, New York Pennsylvania Station and Newark Airport.

I decided on the train (there’s also the minor issue of the last time I took the Airporter from JFK to Grand Central, the driver was more interested in eating potatoes chips from a bag rather than driving… with some wild driving around the back-end of JFK). There was also the matter that rush hour was going to be starting soon, and I didn’t fancy an evening fighting traffic all the way to Newark.

My timing was pretty much perfect for the AirTrain to Jamaica station, with a shuttle departing within a few minutes of arriving. Whilst it was standing room only to Jamaica it did the job getting me from JFK T8 to the Long Island Rail Road station.

After paying the $6 fine for using the AirTrain ($5 for the gate exit fee, $1 for the fare media… bit cheeky to charge for a fare card…), it was across the bridge to the Long Island Rail Road ticket office to get a ticket to Penn Station. Another $5.50, and another stroke of good timing indicated that a direct service to Penn station was about to arrive.

Sometimes, things do fall in the right places for me.

The ride from Jamaica to Penn Station was a quick one as the train passed through suburban Queens and under the East River, eventually pulling into Penn Station.

The train was pretty empty going into the city.

Amtrak yard, readying for the evening rush

Eventually after crossing Queens, the train dipped into the dark to cross under the East River and to Penn Station

The train pulled into Penn Station, and in reasonable time too, with the door I was at also a reasonable exit into Penn Station.

Not bad at all, and reasonably priced. However, my next challenge was in front of me: navigating New York Penn Station. And I’m going to be very impolite about this place – it’s a dark rabbits warren when trying to find the NJ Transit section of the station.

Eventually, I found the ticket machines for NJ transit and a waiting area. Another $11.25 and the machine spat out a ticket which inculded the Newark Airport Monorail gateway pass.

Trains also to Newark Airport were not what I’d call plentiful, with a 30-minute wait for a service. During this time I struck up a conversation with a person about travel… to find they were learning Korean by using a children’s book to learn. Interesting way round to learn….

The time now clicking toward 5pm – there’s no nice way to say this – the train were packed. Even these double-decker trains were having fun carrying everyone this evening.

I picked a carriage at random, and thankfully found some space in the top deck. This suited me for the 30 minute ride to Newark Airport, leaving the tunnels of New York and the Hudson, surfacing in New Jersey, crossing through New Jersey Penn Station and finally Newark Airport station.

The double decker train was pretty packed, this being the start of the rush hour, but I managed to find a seat for the journey.

Watching the evieng go past


Yup. Right direction

On the top deck.

One of the things I’ve been working on when travelling the Underground in the UK is “Which carriage to be on so I get off first”.

Well the instinct and training in me is paying off as I popped out right next door to the stairs to the transfer deck.

After fighting with the ticket machine to be let through (better markings on the machines next time please NJ Transit), it was off to the Monorail.

And we all know what that means. Cue “The Simpsons” Monorail” song 😉

Gliding around like a cloud…

Monorail… Monorail… Monorail! Mono…D’OH!

Once the Monorail glided as softly as a cloud to Terminal B, I took my leave and headed for the BA Check in area… which was on the bottom deck. Oh heck… one of these “well designed” airport terminals here?

Indeed it seems as check in was in a segment in level 0, with security at level 2.

Sigh. Here we go….

On the plus side, the transit was one of the easiest going – a case of following the signs, paying the tickets as you go – without dealing with bus drivers that seemingly want to eat rather than drive. The longest wait was the 30 minutes at New York Penn station, and an interesting trip.

Next: BA Galleries Lounge Newark Airport, OpenSkies EC8004 Newark to Paris-Orly


  1. mcdullhk88 says

    And can I safely assume your transit was faster than taking the bus, too, given the usual amount of traffic in Manhattan?

  2. mcdullhk88 says

    And what’s your method of finding the right train carriage to sit in? I’d like to do the same too.

    • says

      A mixture of luck, learning about trains and sheer luck. There’s also the fact when in London, I use an app called “TubePro” allowing me to board the correct carriage to the nearest exit. This is teaching me more travel tricks…

      Experience matters in this case…

  3. BKFlowerMound says

    Great report! Minor error. When crossing from Queens into Manhattan, you cross under the East River not the Hudson.

  4. seth t. says

    I hope you played the lottery on the way with that sort of transit karma.

    And hang onto that Metrocard for your next trip into NYC — it’s refillable. Works on PATH trains as well.

    • says

      Karma bit me in the backside later… more to be revealed in the next couple of days – suffice to say, the transit card was lost…

      … along with more important things :(

  5. Carl says

    If you have ample time and want the cheapest way from JFK to EWR, take Airtrain to terminal 4 (free), get a Metrocard with $5 loaded on it, take the Q10 bus, get off on Lefferts Blvd at the A train station, take the A train to World Trade Center, switch to the PATH train to Newark (Penn Station). There you can take the NJT route 62 bus to EWR for $1.50 cash. Total cost is $6.50, and you avoid the extortionate fees added on by the Port for transit access. All services run 24 hours/day, but it will likely take a good deal longer than your route.