Taking the Free Q70 LaGuardia Link Bus to the Subway

by joeheg

On our recent trip to New York, we did something we’d never done before. Since we might have to do it again in the future, we decided to give it a try. We took the bus from LaGuardia Airport to connect to the subway.

The plans to connect LaGuardia airport to the subway system via a train link were originally proposed as part of a larger infrastructure improvement project for New York City’s transportation system. However, these plans were later canceled by the governor of New York, citing concerns over the high cost of the project and potential disruption to local neighborhoods. This decision has left many travelers to and from LaGuardia airport with limited options for public transportation, as buses are currently the only available means of connecting to the subway system.

Shortly thereafter, it was announced that the Q70 bus, also called the LaGuardia Link, would be available for free for passengers. This bus runs between the airport and Jackson Heights-Roosevelt Avenue station, where riders can catch the E, F, M, R, and 7 trains, as well as Woodside Ave-61st Street station that connects to all LIRR commuter rail lines as well as the 7 train. Buses run every 10 minutes during the day and stop at the B and C terminals of the airport.

We liked flying into LaGuardia, even when it wasn’t a very nice airport. It’s the closest one to Manhattan and was only a short NYC taxi ride to our hotel. However, depending on traffic, that ride could still take a while and the meter would keep running. Unlike other airports, rides from LaGuardia are meter fares and not a set price.

When we’re in New York, we like taking the subway because it’s cheap and often the quickest way to get around. So, we decided to take the bus from the airport to the subway to check it out.

We arrived at Terminal B and went to pick up our bags from baggage claim. There were signs on the baggage carousel advertising the LaGuardia Link bus.

a sign in a building

On the screens, there was also a place where they listed the time when the next bus was due to arrive.

a sign on a wall

We followed the signs to Taxis, Parking, Buses, Hotel & Rental Car Shuttles

a sign in a building

Once we were at the end of the baggage claim area, we followed the signs for the Q70 bus.

a sign with text and images on it

This will take you to a door that leads outside. It’s a 3-minute walk to the pick-up spot for the Q70 bus. At Terminal B, it was just past a curve in the road. Depending on what other buses and shuttles are parked in the area, the bus might not stop at the sign.

When the bus comes to a stop, wait for the passengers to exit before getting on the bus through any available door. During our ride, many passengers who were traveling to the airport and boarded from the subway station were going to Terminal C, so the bus did not empty out completely. We managed to get onto the bus, but we couldn’t reach the luggage racks to store our bags, which meant we had to stack them and hold them for the ride to Terminal C. Fortunately when we arrived at Terminal C, many passengers exited the bus, making our ride to the subway station a bit more comfortable.

There was some traffic on the local streets, so the ride to the Jackson Heights-Roosevelt Avenue station took about 15 minutes or slightly longer.

Although this approach may not be the most convenient option for those carrying multiple pieces of baggage, it’s still unbeatable in terms of cost-effectiveness. With a fare of only $2.90 per person, travelers can enjoy the convenience of a subway ride to any destination within New York City.

If I need to go to Manhattan, I would decide between two options – either taking a taxi or taking the Q70 bus to the subway. There are a few things that I would consider before making the decision, such as how much time I have, how much I am willing to spend, who I am traveling with, and what we are carrying with us.

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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary


Michael December 14, 2023 - 12:25 am

Literally one of the best kept secrets. Exactly correct, 15 mins to subway. Three (3) stops later you are in midtown Manhattan. You have to carry your luggage, but my last Uber driver made me load my own bags too.

TravelPoints101.com December 14, 2023 - 2:36 pm

Yes. This was great on my last trip to NYC in March.

Larry December 17, 2023 - 2:29 pm

One key is taking the right subway: E and F are fastest, E to the west side, F to Midtown. R is slower but hits almost every stop in Manhattan, #7 (local) which is best for Grand Central. M (when it returns) for Williamsburg, Bushwick. If you are worried about subway crowds with luggage, or are going to Long Island, stay on the Q70 to Woodside for the LIRR, faster but more expensive to Penn Station and Grand Central, and over 100 places on Long Island.


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