Cost: $2 subway, $5 AirTrain connection
Time: 1 hour, 8 minutes
Summary: The cheapest way of getting to the airport also offers a reliable ETA. Plus, the comfortable and fast new AirTrain takes you directly from the subway to your terminal. But be sure to hop the Far Rockaway A train—the A train to Lefferts doesn’t go to JFK. If you live near the A, it’s a good bet.
Time: 2 hours, 7 minutes
Summary: This door-to- door service avoids the stress of finding a cab and the journey to a bus terminal, but you have no control over the other pickups: It could be an hour, two stops, and eight people before you even leave Manhattan. Expect crunched luggage and not much room if the van is full, too—like it or not, you’ll get to know your fellow passengers.
Time: 1 hour, 23 minutes
Summary: No reservations are needed to hail an open cab, and if you live in Manhattan, there’s probably one around the corner. On the other hand, good luck finding one at 4 p.m., and watch out for drivers running up the fare by choosing traffic-clogged routes. The new price is inching close to Lincoln Town Car luxury rates, too.
New York Airport Service (Bus)
Time: 1 hour, 13 minutes
Summary: Buses stop at Port Authority every twenty minutes, and they leave on time, pausing only for a second pickup at Grand Central. The ride is uncrowded, comfortable, fast, and you’re let off in front of the terminal. You know it’s a good choice when American Airlines stewardesses hop onboard.
First Corporate Sedans
Time: 58 minutes
Summary: The company calls to confirm reservations and estimated pickup time (typically arriving fifteen minutes early). The driver takes the fastest route, and, of course, it’s all door-to-door. The extra cost is worth it for those plush leather Lincoln Town Car seats and the snooze they induce.