United Airlines has kicked off a clever advertising campaign to convince NYC travelers they should fly out of its Newark hub instead of JFK Airport.
The airline has put digital displays on the roofs of 125 New York City taxis showing the estimated travel times to both JFK and Newark – and Newark comes out the winner.
The clever part is that these aren’t average travel times – they’re estimates based on the taxi’s location at the time you see it (the cabs are equipped with GPS software), and real-time traffic conditions in the New York area.
Of course, travel time is one thing and cost is another. The New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission has established a $52 flat fee for trips from Manhattan to JFK (plus tolls and tip). There’s no flat fee to Newark; the meter fare is around $48 from Midtown – but there’s also a $17.50 surcharge for EWR trips that doesn’t apply to JFK.
And then there is the Uber/Lyft option.
We looked up the cost of rides from Times Square to both airports on RideGuru. It put the cost of a taxi ride to EWR at $68, vs. $73 on Lyft and $77 on UberX (with no surge pricing premium). A taxi to JFK came to $54, vs. $45 on UberX and Lyft.
But our favorite way for getting to Newark has to be the New Jersey Transit train service from Penn Station. A ride on the frequent service from Penn Station in Manhattan to EWR takes less than half an hour and costs just $13.
Readers: Which New York airport do you generally fly out of, and how do you get there?