Where to Look for Maps & Routes of the Public Transportation System
Where are there easy online answers to the question, “How do I get from Point A to Point B in New York?” Here are a few places to start in the search.
For those visiting or new to New York City, navigating the public transportation system may seem like a daunting task. Fortunately, it is not as difficult as it looks, and there are plenty of resources online to help travelers and newcomers find their way around the city. Here are some websites that are great for planning ahead, from figuring out the best routes to basic information about public transport.
New York’s Public Transportation Websites
For maps of the bus and subway systems, as well as timetables and other relevant information, New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) homepage is the premier source for those looking for answers about getting around New York. Regional rail and bus information is also available, which is helpful for those coming into the city via public transport. The New York State website also has some helpful public transportation links.
Planning Out Routes in New York
Another wonderful resource is HopStop, a website that allows visitors to either click on Point A and Point B on a map of the city, or to enter addresses in specific boroughs, and the best public transportation route is charted by the site. There is also an option to create alternate routes, a wise planning source in terms of anticipating potential changes in subway schedules due to maintenance. The HopStop website also includes travel time estimates, maps, and city guides as an added bonus.
Other Websites with Information on Getting Around the City
Basic travel directions sites, such as Google Maps, Yahoo Maps, MapQuest, and so on are also worth checking out; there is usually an option to select for travel on foot or by public transportation in the preferences. These sites, like HopStop, include travel time estimates. Though Google’s Street-view feature is somewhat controversial, it can also be helpful to show visitors what to look for when arriving at a particular bus stop or area. When unfamiliar with a place, having something visual to go on can be extremely useful.
While New York City’s public transportation system may at first appear confusing or overwhelming, the above resources can serve as a valuable preparation tool to make travel much easier and less stressful. Of course, there is always the option of hailing a taxi and having someone else do the navigating, but forms of public transportation like the bus or subway are much more economical, and with the Internet, finding one’s own way around has never been easier.