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The New York Explorer Pass is a smart card that tourists can purchase in order to gain discounted cash-free entry into 3, 5, 7, or 10 of New York’s top attractions. In many ways a “make your own NYC tourist pass” option, the New York Explorer pass is a flexible way to see some of New York’s greatest sights over a long or short period of time at a discounted price. There is no need to determine the exact sights that you plan to visit ahead of time, you need only decide upon how many you want to see.
The New York Explorer Pass is accepted at approximately 75 different locations throughout the city, providing you no shortage of exciting sights, tours, and museums to choose from. Acquaint yourself with the splendors of the New York City skyline from the top of the Empire State Building, the Top of the Rock Observatory, and One World Observatory. Art lovers won’t want to miss out on the many masterpieces found within the galleries of world-class museums like the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in Manhattan, and the Whitney Museum of Modern Art. Or, if you’re in the market for a guided tour, the New York Explorer Pass comes loaded with options that’ll get you up close and personal with the Statue of Liberty, St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Central Park, and so much more. No matter which attractions sound most appealing to you, your New York Explorer Pass will get you in their doors—all while you don’t pay a single cent out of pocket at the gate!
Top Included New York Attractions
- Empire State Building
- Top of the Rock Observatory
- Statue Of Liberty and Ellis Island Ferry
- Museum of Modern Art
- Big Bus Hop On Hop Off: 1-Day Classic Ticket
- The Metropolitan Museum of Art
- American Museum of Natural History
- 9/11 Memorial and Museum
See the complete list of available attractions and tours in the sidebar, divided by type of activity.
How the New York Explorer Pass Works
The New York Explorer Pass is a digital pass covering your admission to nearly 75 of New York City’s iconic attractions. With your Explorer Pass in hand, there’s no need to wait in long lines at the attraction to buy a ticket. Instead, you can walk right up to the gate and get your pass scanned in hardly any time at all.
The New York Explorer Pass lets you pick 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, or 10 unique attractions from a list of around 75 different attractions. You select how many attractions you desire to visit when you purchase the pass, and you can’t make changes to the pass at a later date.
The New York Explorer Pass is designed to work best with the Go City app. This free app allows you to download the Explorer Pass straight to your smartphone, eliminating the need to carry around paper tickets.
Once you purchase your New York Explorer Pass, you have 2 whole years to activate it. Once you’ve activated it, you then have 60 days to use it. This gives you a nice long time to get every last bit of value out of your pass.
What’s the New York Explorer Pass Does Well
Because the New York Explorer Pass is a digital product, you don’t need to stress out trying to remember where you put all your different paper tickets. As long as you’ve got your smartphone with you, you’ve got your Explorer Pass with you.
Likewise, because the New York Explorer Pass is all-digital, you don’t need to sit around waiting for it to arrive in the mail. You can have your Explorer Pass downloaded to your smartphone on the Go City app within seconds after clicking buy.
With so much to see and do in New York City, it can be a real challenge to stick to a budget. The New York Explorer Pass lets you pay one flat sum for all your attraction tickets in advance of your visit. You won’t need to keep track of how much you’ve paid for this or that attraction as you travel—you’ll have paid for all your admission tickets ahead of time in the form of a single attraction pass.
The New York Explorer Pass also allows you to be super flexible with your travel plans. No matter when you buy your pass, you’ve got 2 years to start using it. And once you start using it, you have a 60-day window to maximize your savings.
What Could Get Better?
Currently there is no upgrade option available for the New York Explorer Pass. This means that if you purchase a 4-attraction pass only to later decide you’d love to have a 7-attraction pass, you’re unfortunately out of luck.
The New York Explorer Pass comes loaded with a great selection of museums suitable for visitors with all sorts of different interests. However, if there’s a special exhibit running at one of these fine institutions, it’s possible that your Explorer Pass won’t cover it. You might have to pay out of pocket for that type of thing.
Get Your Money’s Worth with a New York Explorer Pass
When attempting to maximize how much money you can save with your New York Explorer Pass, the most important strategy to remember is this: first and foremost, always use your Explorer Pass at those attractions featuring the most expensive admission prices. This ensures that if you use up your entire Explorer Pass only to realize there’s still more you want to see and do—and this happens all the time in New York City—you can simply pay out of pocket at the remaining less-expensive attractions.
The Go City New York website has some helpful information regarding sample itineraries that could help you visualize how to put together a New York City adventure that maximizes your savings. For example, if you bought a 5-attraction New York Explorer Pass for $140 and used it on the Empire State Building, the Big Bus Hop On Hop Off 1-Day Classic Ticket, a Central Park Bike Tour, a Circle Line Sightseeing Best of NYC Cruise, and SPYSCAPE, you’d save almost 45%. This is because paying out of pocket at each of the above attractions would cost you approximately $255.
Also, if you have some flexibility when planning your trip, monitor the Go City New York website periodically for the latest pricing information. Go City occasionally runs sales, or offers promotions that could you see you save even more money when buying your Explorer Pass.
New York Explorer Pass Insider Tips
A fair number of New York City attractions require you to make reservations in advance of your visit. These include the American Museum of Natural History, the New York Historical Society Museum, a significant number of the available guided tours, and many others. You won’t need to pay more to visit these attractions, you’ll just need to book your spot ahead of time. When in doubt, check each attraction’s website for more details.
Some New York City attractions have special, exclusive relationships with Go City. These include such attractions as SKYSCAPE, Unlimited Biking’s Central Park Bike Tour, and more. Depending on the attraction, this might entitle you to an additional perk or two—like, say, a discount at the attraction’s gift shop. Keep this in mind as you plan your itinerary.
Last but not least, if for any reason you find that you need to change your plans, it’s important to know that you can return your New York Explorer Pass for a full refund up to 90 days after the time you purchase it (so long as you haven’t yet activated it). This generous policy helps you feel that extra peace of mind as you go about arranging your visit.
Where to Buy a New York Explorer Pass
The New York Explorer Pass is available online or over the phone directly from Go City.