Manhattan-Queens transportation

Apr 6th, 2010, 02:21 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 8,218
Manhattan-Queens transportation

We're staying near Times Square and going to Queensborough Community College (56th Ave & Springfield) for a 3PM Sunday concert (with my cousins who live on the UWS), then to LGA for an 8PM flight home.

Hopstop tells me that the QM1A express bus (which takes over an hour and costs $5.50) is the best way to get there; then we would take a car service ($27 is the cheapest I've found) to LGA; my cousins plan to go home via subway.

Another thought that I had was for my cousins to rent a car from Alamo, which is about a block from their apartment, for $71, including taxes. They could pick us up, we'd go to the concert, out for a quick dinner, then they'd take us to LGA, return the car, and walk the block home. Of course, we'd split the cost with them.

Is that an insane plan? I'll call the college to ask (the box office is closed right now), but one concern is whether it would be difficult to find paking nearby--we're hoping not, given that there aren't classes on a Sunday afternoon, but that may just be an irrational fantasy of mine.

My cousin, who doesn't own a car and rarely rents one, is worried abut finding our way to the college and to LGA. We've driven in lots of unfamiliar places, and aren't uncomfortable using our GPS, info from mapquest or google maps, and an actual map. Are we being foolish to think we can do that?

Thanks!
abram is offline  
Apr 6th, 2010, 03:32 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 7,561
Getting a subway train to the area is easy from Times Sq because that's the 7 train terminus. The problem will be connecting with a bus after you get off your stop in Queens (unless the 7 train is walking distance from campus).

And you need to be at LGA at least by 6, so unless the concert is an hour, you're not getting dinner with the cousins.
BigRuss is offline  
Apr 6th, 2010, 03:35 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 10,189
Not at all. The car rental plan sounds perfect to me. You may have to pay for parking and tolls, but it is probably the most time and price sensitive option.

My only hesitation is the same as your cousins ... Namely the difficulty of navigating in unfamiliar territory. I'd probably chance it and use google maps since most of the driving is done during the day. FYI: the price will likely be closer to $100 once everything is added in.
doug_stallings is online now  
Apr 6th, 2010, 03:35 PM
  #4  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 8,218
We don't need to get to LGA until 7--we'll have our boarding passes, and no checked luggage. So, as long as we leave the restaurant by 6:30, we'll be good. We don't want an elaborate, leisurely meal--just a quick bite at a neighborhood ethnic place.

I don't believe that there is a subway stop near campus--maybe that's why hopstop suggested the bus?
abram is offline  
Apr 6th, 2010, 04:03 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 57,890
With the car you need to be prepared to pay for garaging it - street parking is rare - even in Queens. Also, you need to leve time to get the car into and out of a garage.

And you need to check with your airline as to when you have to check in and how long security may take. (I've seen security lines at LGA that were more than 40 minutes at busy times for the flights at a specific terminal.)

And I wouldn't be sure you can make it to LGA in 30 minutes. If there's no traffic fine - but if there are traffic problems (construction, accident etc) travel times can double or triple.

And I thin you may not understand what this community college is. You're in NYC - not in a suburban college campus. Kids don't drive there - they take subway or bus.
nytraveler is offline  
Apr 6th, 2010, 04:14 PM
  #6  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 8,218
I have chcked with the airline--it's the one we always use to/from NYC.

It sounds like the bus to QCC and the car service to LGA may be the way to go.

This is the information from the college's website:
Take the number 7 train to the Flushing – Main Street station. Transfer to the Q27 bus to Queensborough Community College or transfer to the Q12 bus to Cloverdale Boulevard & Northern Boulevard.

Does that sound better or worse than the express bus?
abram is offline  
Apr 6th, 2010, 04:49 PM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 10,189
It looks like you will have a 10-minute walk from the bus stop in Queens to reach the campus.

How many of you are traveling together? Are there 4 in your group (2 "we" + 2 "cousins" = 4?) so you would spend $22 for bus tickets. I suspect a regular yellow cab to that area would cost $40-$50. Combining that door-to-door taxi fare with the car service to LGA comes out almost the same as the car rental. From Googlemaps, it looks like the college has parking lots.
ellenem is offline  
Apr 6th, 2010, 06:10 PM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 1,941
If you go by car there is parking on the campus - and there is a visitor's parking area - but check with the college re availability of that parking - since it is on a sunday (no classes) parking should not be a problem. If you google the college you will get driving directions - easy enough to locate - I remember driving there a number of years ago for some sort of conference - parked on the campus - since this is a concert parking arrangements most likely have been made for the audience the vast majority of whom will arrive by car. For your particular logistics - a car is the best bet - and you can pull into the lot of a diner for a quick bite.
jroth is offline  
Apr 6th, 2010, 06:11 PM
  #9  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 8,218
Hopstop says the walk is 5 minutes, but your info may be better, ellenem. You're right--there are four of us.

If we take the bus, my husband and I will spend $42 (bus + car service)or so, but my cousins will only spend $22, as they'll (I think) take the bus back to Manhattan. Renting a car will save us a little, but cost them significantly more, which I wouldn't want to do to them.

I haven't proiced a car service from Manhattan to QCC; it's $33 to LGA from Manhattan, but to QCCmay be more as there's not much possibility of a return passenger.
abram is offline  
Apr 6th, 2010, 06:49 PM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 10,189
I got 8 minutes on Hopstop and added time to cross the campus to the actual location of the theater--perhaps I was wrong. I also know you'll be dealing with walking across traffic as you cross the service roads on each side of the LI Expressway early in your walk. As you have discovered, it is an awkward location to reach from Manhattan.

If you end up eating somewhere along Northern Blvd, your cousins may find it more convenient to return to Manhattan via the Long Island Railroad from the Bayside station rather than walk all the way back to the bus stop.
ellenem is offline  
Apr 6th, 2010, 07:20 PM
  #11  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 8,218
ellenem, isn't it funny that hopstop gave each of us different info? I would have allowed more time, anyway--especially since we haven't been there before.
abram is offline  
Apr 7th, 2010, 05:07 AM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 10,189
Car service to LGA will probably cost $28, not including tip. If you don't want to drive, then I'd take a car service both ways. Meet up at your cousin's apt on the UWS and all travel together. And arrange to have the car service meet up with you at a pre-arranged time after the concert for the trip to LGA (your cousins can take the bus and subway home to save some money).

Remember that you need to deal with luggage, and NYC express and city buses just aren't good at that because they get crowded (Express buses are better, though, because they are more like Greyhound buses).
doug_stallings is online now  
Apr 8th, 2010, 08:00 AM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 16,715
Frankly, the whole plan sounds incovenient and ill conceived. You're going to 2 locations in Queens (or possibly 3 with dinner), not particularly near each other and neither is convenient to public transportation. Driving does make the most sense for you, but it's YOU, not your cousin, who should rent the car (and pay for it) because it's YOU who will benefit from it. Your cousin is only going to the concert and back and doesn't have luggage and clearly doesn't want to drive.

If you rent a car in Manhattan and drive to the college (with or without your cousin), park and then drive yourself to LGA and return the car there, you'll have some place to put your luggage (the fact that you're not checking it doesn't negate the fact that it exists and will be a nuisance for you and others at the concert) and door to door transportation. I wonder whether you'll even have time to squeeze dinner in after the concert. Sunday traffic can be terrible. I wouldn't chance it.

If you don't want to rent the car or can't find a decent price to pick up in Manhattan and drop off at LGA, I think you have to start thinking about what's good for you and your cousin separately. Maybe traveling together doesn't make sense for THEM. Don't inconvenience them on your own account.
mclaurie is offline  
Apr 8th, 2010, 09:27 AM
  #14  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 8,218
mclaurie, of course I don't want to inconvenience my cousin. It was her suggestion that we take the subway to the concert (although I can't find a route that doesn't also include a bus) and use a car service to LGA, which we've done many times. She would NEVER permit me to pay for a rental car if we're both going to use it, and I don't think she'd go for the idea of our getting from Manhattan to the concert separately.

I haven't priced renting a car near our hotel in Manahttan and dropping it off at LGA--that's often significantly more expensive, but I'll look into it.

Hopstop (which could be wrong) tells me that there are several restaurants within a six minute walk of the theater, so that doesn't really seem like an additional stop to me.
abram is offline  
Apr 8th, 2010, 09:51 AM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 16,715
My point was, for your cousins, public transportation may be fine but for you with luggage and needing to go to LGA, it's not. Here are the directions from the theater's own website. ALL involve a subway and bus.
http://www.qcc.cuny.edu/QPAC/directions.html
Notice they say nothing about parking. There is a link with nearby restaurants but the one or two I checked were over a mile away and in Bayside, not an area served by the subway.
http://www.qcc.cuny.edu/QPAC/nearby.html

I'd be curious to know what restaurants you found and if you have an exact location for the theater? The campus covers a large area. It seems to me a better plan would be to have a nice brunch before the performance and then head to LGA after and grab a snack there before getting on the plane, unless you have knowledge of a really close place AND are sure the concert is not more than 2 hrs. Btw, I'm assuming your flight is at 8:30 or later that you say you only have to be there are 7.
mclaurie is offline  
Apr 8th, 2010, 11:43 AM
  #16  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 8,218
The restaurants that Hopstop says are a six minute walk are at/near the intersection of Springfield and Horace Harding (which looks to be the equivalent of 60th Ave, about four blocks from campus). I don't have my list with me, but seem to remember Patoug, Arigato, China Girl, Samdado; there were others.

I have seen the information from QCC's website (and posted a quote earlier), and thought it was interesting that Hopstop sugeested a different (one bus) route. We never planned to use public transportation to get to LGA; we have always used a car service before.

The intersection in my OP (56th Ave/Springfield) is the location of the theater, which is why I mentioned it. I had called and confirmed that with the box office. There is free parking next to the theater, which would certainly make renting a car easier, but we'd have to get to the airport earlier to return it.

The running time of the show is 2 hours, so if it takes us 10 minutes to get out of the theater, and 10 minutes to take the 6 minute walk, we'd be at a restaurant by 5:20, have an hour to eat, and be at the airport well before 7--we're comfortable with that timing. If we rent a car, we'd probably have to grab take out to eat at the airport, which isn't my husband's favorite thing, but every choice involves compromises.
abram is offline  
Apr 8th, 2010, 11:48 AM
  #17  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 8,218
And on the other hand, if my cousins rented the car a block from their apaertment, as was my original plan, and drove us to LGA after the concert, neither we nor they would have to rely on public transportation or a car service, we'd have a place to store our luggage, and have time to eat together.

I didn't feel inconvenienced last month when I drove to the airport to pick up my cousin and drove back again to drop her off when she flew home.
abram is offline  
Apr 8th, 2010, 12:02 PM
  #18  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 10,189
Those restaurants seem to be in a shopping center right by the QM1A bus stop so it will be very convenient for your cousins to catch a return bus.

Here's a map that shows the theater location within the complex.

http://www.qcc.cuny.edu/VirtualTour/
ellenem is offline  
Apr 8th, 2010, 12:12 PM
  #19  
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 1,941
If you rent a car near your cousin's apartment - why return it to LaGuardia? Just let her drop you off - and there would be no charge for returning it another location. I'd rather rely on myself driving rather than expect a car service to be on time for pick ups.
jroth is offline  
Apr 8th, 2010, 01:31 PM
  #20  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 8,218
My cousin isn't crazy about the idea of renting a car; if we do the renting, we'd return the car to LGA and they'd take public transportation home. But I don't think she'd like our renting a car when she thinks renting isn't a good plan.

I had already downloaded the QCC map, but thanks, anyway.

My husband and I still like the idea of my cousins renting the car (Alamo is one block from their apartment) picking us up on 47th St, taking 42nd St into the Queens Midtown Tunnel, which looks like it merges with I495, which takes us right to QCC. After the concert, we could drive to the restaurant (a shopping center would have parking, I assume), they could drop us at LGA and drive home.

But the plan has to work for everyone, and if we need to do the bus or subway & bus to QCC, and use a car service to LGA, so be it.

Any thoughts on why QCC recommends Subway #7 to Main St., Flushing, then the Q27 bus to Springfield Blvd. and 56th Ave and Hopstop recommends the QM1A express bus? Could the subway & bus take less time because subways are often quicker than buses? Or is it because the Q27 bus stops right at campus and the QM1A involves a 10 minutes walk? Or some other reason?
abram is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -

FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 12:27 PM.