Double Decker Bus Tours, New York City

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  • Beware, they have some red buses now
    Beware, they have some red buses now
    by 416Guy
  • Double Decker Bus Tours
    by mrgondal
  • Double Decker Bus Tours
    by mrgondal
  • Go New York Tours

    by sandybrower Written May 22, 2014

    I have a bad leg and thought a hop-on, hop-off tour would be the way to see Manhattan. A street vendor convinced us to get a 72-hour pass (even though we would be in the city only 8 hours) because of the extra loops and museum admission included. He assured us a bus would be there every 15-20 minutes. What they DON'T tell you is that every bus is full and you can't get on. We waited 3 hours before giving up and taking a taxi to WTC so as not to waste the entire day. We then tried to get a bus near WTC, waited an hour before giving up again (half our day shot waiting at stops). They refuse to give your money back, even though they sold waaaay too many tickets for the bus seats available. Many, many people gave up and walked away, and customer service was called on the spot many times, but they still deny culpability. It should be illegal to oversell tickets when they are aware they can't accommodate that many people. Not only did we lose half our sightseeing day to these people, but I left the city in excruciating pain from standing so long.

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  • PeterVancouver's Profile Photo

    Tourist NY

    by PeterVancouver Updated Mar 7, 2013
    NY traffic & neon

    The ideal way to see Manhattan and Brooklyn for the first time tourist. The full day bus pass enables you to stop off at numerous places of interest and catch the next bus that comes along. There is always a commentary from a tour guide some of whom are excellent and very entertaining (helps with their tips). From the Broadway area the ride threads its way down to Battery Park for the Statue of liberty plus numerous other areas of interest. These busses are open top, so on a dry day; the top deck is very popular.

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  • etfromnc's Profile Photo

    Double-decker bus tours

    by etfromnc Written Jan 8, 2013

    In recent years I have become increasingly impressed by the very useful "hop on, hop off" tour services offered in more and more tourist attracting cities, but that impression is not based on my experiences in New York. My favorite is probably the Batobus water-borne service on the Seine in Paris but I also really like the one in Savannah.
    These tours are particularly attractive if you are making your first trip to a particular place and/or if you are only going to be there very briefly. Many first-time visitors opt for the double-decker bus tours, such as those offered by Gray Line, where you can hop on/off at key points around the city on various overlapping circuits. It’s a handy introduction to the layout of the city, particularly on your first day. Views from open-top seats on nice days are another bonus, but the service in NYC is certainly not cheap. A day runs from $55 per person. Compare that to an MTA pass on New York subways and buses for $29 – for an entire week.

    More first-timers should really treat the subway as an attraction in itself. Take the subway at least once. Gate/ticket agents hand out free subway and/or bus maps. Be sure to know if you’re going ‘uptown’ (generally, not always, to the north of Manhattan) or ‘downtown’ (to the south). Express trains stop only at specified stations marked with a white circle, as opposed to a black dot. Ask people what line to take and where to get off. (New Yorkers will definitely tell you where to get off.)

    Seriously, just ask – everyone in New York will help you.

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  • 416Guy's Profile Photo

    Sightseeing Ripoff

    by 416Guy Written Sep 15, 2012

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

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    There are two companies which offer double decker sightseeing bus tour throughout the city. Grayline have the red buses, I have not tried them. Citysights have the blue buses, they have people on almost every street corner with yellow shirts who sell tickets to you. Unfortunately, I tried this company.

    It's advertised as a hop on-hop off tour. Be aware that if you lucky enough to get a seat up top, it's almost like getting a great parking spot in front of your building. You don't want to leave because the chances are you won't get one again. The lines to "hop on" theses buses are up the block, the seats downstairs are brutal, no a/c, you can barely see out the windows due to the giants ads on the side of the bus and it is a sweatbox.

    We had a situation where we were asked to hop off the bus and get onto the second bus which was following us and had available seating up top. We hopped off only to have the driver of the second bus wave me off as he drove by and left us on 125th Street. We jumped in a cab and went right to the main office where, at first, we were told that because we purchased our tickets from a street vendor they couldn't give us a refund. I refused to leave, stating that the company had no problem taking my money from these "street vendors" but as soon as there's an issue they distance themselves from them

    Okay, I won't bore you with all the details but it is 5 weeks later, still waiting for the promised refund. I read lots of reviews online after the fact and it seems that refunds are rarely issued and often promised. I'm currently dealing with the NY board of consumer affairs. $108 for a 10 minute sweaty, windowless bus ride.

    Do yourself a favour and avoid this company.

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  • mrgondal's Profile Photo

    Free Bus Travel in Downtown NYC

    by mrgondal Written Oct 15, 2008
    1 more image

    The Downtown Connection® bus is a free bus service connects South Street Seaport with Battery Park City, making stops at many important destinations from river to river. It's the most convenient way to explore Downtown's businesses, shops, restaurants and attractions. And since it's FREE, you can hop on and off as often as you like.it runs 7days.

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  • Jenniflower's Profile Photo

    NY City hop-on, hop-off double-decker Bus Tour

    by Jenniflower Updated Aug 26, 2008

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    I would recommend the Bus Tour that goes around New York. There are a few routes to choose from and we had a 2 day ticket.

    We sat on the top of the bus as we usually do, to get a good view of the city, plus to take photos.

    It was lovely on top, but absolutely freezing! The weather dipped to –13 degrees celcius, and we could barely feel our noses!

    We got on and off at places we wished to visit. This is really handy, as they take you straight to the main sites.

    The next morning we bought a blanket, knowing the top would be really cold, and they actually closed the top of the bus and would only let us sit inside for health and safety reasons, which was understandable... it was freezing!

    There was something we really did NOT enjoy when hopping on and off these buses. The people working on them kept asking for money and tips from the people on the bus.

    We had paid a hefty price for the tickets themselves and felt we were bombarded to give more money in tips, not only from the guys on the bus though, from waiters and waitresses too.. so it must be a New York thing.

    We are good tippers but do not like being asked every 5 minutes to tip. On principal we never gave the chaps on the bus a tip.

    We saw a lot on the bus - Times Square, Fifth Avenue, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Union Square shopping district, Rockefeller Center, the World Trade Center site, The Guggenheim, Museum of Modern Art, Apollo Theater, Central Park, Chinatown, Empire State Building, Greenwich Village, SoHo and Brooklyn Bridge to mention a few places.

    It's handy to jump on and off at destinations you would like to explore further.

    In the photo we are sitting on top of the bus after dark - it was FREEZING cold, but is the best place to take photos!

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  • MoNewcamp's Profile Photo

    City Sights NY Double Decker Bus

    by MoNewcamp Written Feb 12, 2008

    Hop on Hop off on the double decker bus, great way to see the city!
    City Sights offers different packages to fit your needs.
    You can get off an sight see and get back on the next bus or stay on the bus and take in the views.

    Some guides are more interesting than others and the microphone didn't always work.
    But would recommend this form of transportation when visiting the city.

    We just bought our tickets on the street corner at a stop close to the hotel.

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    • Seniors

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  • MoNewcamp's Profile Photo

    City Sights NY Double Decker Bus

    by MoNewcamp Written Feb 12, 2008

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Hop on Hop off on the double decker bus, great way to see the city!
    City Sights offers different packages to fit your needs.
    You can get off an sight see and get back on the next bus or stay on the bus and take in the views.

    Some guides are more interesting than others and the mircophone didn't always work.
    But would recommend this form of transportation when visiting the city.

    We just bought our tickets on the street corner at a stop close to the hotel.

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    • Family Travel

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  • HarmoniousBotch's Profile Photo

    Choosing the right double-decker bus tour

    by HarmoniousBotch Updated Jun 6, 2007

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    I paid for a package deal from Grey Line bus tours. They advertise that you can get off at any stop, see stuff, and then get back on the next one of their busses that comes by. That is not how it happens.

    When you get off, you are not guaranteed that you can get on the next bus. When I got off to see something, I had to stand in line waiting for an average of 3 busses to get on. I spent more time standing in line at the tourist spots than I did seeing them.

    We often found our lines right beside the lines for the competitor - City Sights bus company. Their lines were about as long, but when one of their busses came by there was room for all of their customers. So, if you are taking a bus tour of NY, use City Sights, not Grey Line.

    Regardless of which company you take, before you buy tickets ask them questions like:
    *How long does the tour really take? ( NY traffic is bad. Our driver admitted that our route could only be done in the advertised time if it were done in the dead of night on a Sunday )
    *What happens if it rains when I'm in an open top bus and the lower deck is full?
    *When does your last bus come by, and what happens if there is no room for me?
    *How many busses will I have to wait for when I want to get back on?

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  • acemj's Profile Photo

    Sightseeing bus

    by acemj Updated Sep 2, 2003

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Well, I've never done this (not my style), but my friend Elizabeth who works in NYC took this tour with her coworkers and told me it's pretty fun especially if the weather's cooperative. It's also a great alternative if your feet are tired (after all, this city is huge!!). Go to the website below for all the options (just click on the option to get the details).

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  • bct341's Profile Photo

    See New York via the Sightseeing bus

    by bct341 Written Apr 11, 2004

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    NYC Sightseeing

    Check out the sights of the city during the day or night. There are different packages to suit your needs...

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