The airport is located in Kenner, about 15 miles outside of the CBD and French Quarter areas (i.e.Downtown).
The most economical way to get to the Downtown area is by airport shuttle. The shuttle costs $10.00 one way, and drop-offs are at area hotels in the CBD, French Quarter and along St. Charles Ave.
Depending on how many people are on the shuttle, you could be looking at up to a 45-50 minute transit time (although it's really only about a 20 minute drive from the airport to the French Quarter, with moderate traffic).
The shuttle runs approximately every 15 minutes until the last flight of the night.
For more info, you can call the Louisiana Transit Company (number below).
To get from the Airport to the French Quarter we used the Airport Shuttle service. There are a couple desks at the airport downstairs at Baggage Claim. Only $23 for a round trip ticket. They scheduled a pickup time for our return flight and they were on time! The drivers on both trips were funny and we had some great conversations.
Since our hotel was at the far end of the French Quarter (Frenchmen Hotel) we were dropped off near the end but this gave us a chance see some of the French Quarter and meet other tourists. The vans were air conditioned and comfortable.
Picture borrowed from the Airport Shuttle web site.
I knew there were 4 ways to get into town (21 miles)
======1) Taxi ($28 for two)
======2) Limo ($35 for two - most expensive)
======4) Regular bus ($1.50 each).
We ruled out the regular bus on two grounds:
a) Unfamiliarity with the city
b) We had luggage..
On the internet the shuttle was $13 one way for one person or $24 each round trip for two people. So we went to the shuttle booth and they charged us $22.50 round trip - at least that's what the ticket said.
They brought us right to the door, and Bob tipped the
Then on the return trip, they picked us up right outside the hotel door and took us back to the airport. We wanted to go to the rental car counter which was on the lower concourse. He wouldn't let us off down there, and told us to go down the escalator. But the escalator was out of order, so we had to walk the length of the airport and go down the elevator.
Airport Shuttle- $20 round trip, will deliver and pick you up at your hotel. Tell them when your flight is leaving, and they pick you up in plenty of to make your flight. It nice to not have to worry about it. They have a kiosk at the main entrance to the airport building.
If you're on a tight schedule, or there's more than one of you, get a cab to and from the airport in New Orleans. I was the last to be dropped off on arrival on the shuttle, and on return was deposited at the airport over 2.5 hours before my flight. I had even rung to ask if a later shuttle was possible, to which the answer was a firm 'no'. Particularly galling as I could have spent another hour in the sun at the Crescent City blues festival instead of sitting outside Popeyes in New Orleans airport.
This was a great way to get to New Orleans from the airport and back to the airport when you leave. They have a booth set up by the taxi stand to take you directly to your hotel and pick you up when you leave. I beleive it was $45 per person round trip. This may sound like a lot, but a taxi would be 2-3 times more and I didn't see any buses. Parts of New Orleans is unsafe so it is a way to get safely to your hotel as you start your trip. As you are with other people (bus seats about 9-11 passengers) you will see other parts of NO as people are dropped off. It was an efficient way to get to your hotel then back to the airport.
From the airport baggage claim area (you do not need a reservation), you can pay for a shuttle van to your hotel. It's $20 roundtrip, you have to tell them when you will be leaving New Orleans so they can schedule a pickup for you.