Getaway Day Advice for Memorial Day Weekend 2016

As a service to commuters, we provide this getaway advice for those who are exiting NYC (via public transit) for the Memorial Day holiday. Read on for: 

  1. A look back at 2015: “What happened on the Friday evening before Memorial Day Weekend last year?
  2. Clever Commute’s “FIVE T’s” – the key to a stress-free commute on get-away day.

(1) What happened on the Friday before Memorial Day last year?

Commuter Trains Summary 

  • As usual, train riders from Grand Central had an easier “go” of things versus NY Penn Station riders
  • NY Penn Station riders reported crowds as early as 1:30 PM
  • Peak exodus from NYC was in the 2-3:30 PM window
  • People definitely left NYC early…and by 5:30 PM, they generally reported fairly normal conditions 
  • Some trains were delayed in the 6:00 PM hour 


(2) Clever Commute’s “FIVE T’s” – the key to a stress-free commute on get-away day:

1. Tickets – tickets..TicketsTICKETSGet them early!
If you or your traveling companion will need a ticket, get it BEFORE Wednesday afternoon.
Lines are loooooong on get-away days.
HINT: NJ Transit now has an app for tickets. So does NY Waterway! See your app store for details. 

2. Timing is crucial
We expect this year’s commuting pattern to be similar last. So please see the re-cap above. 

3. Timetables and Schedule changes 
Visit your transit provider’s web site for up-to-date schedule…including information about (extra) getaway day service

4. Terminal – Choose wisely
If it is at all within your control, avoid NY Penn Station.

  • NJT riders should consider Hoboken and/or Newark Penn
  • LIRR riders:  try Atlantic Terminal

5. Other Tips: 

  • Dress in layers – the terminal or the trains can be warm
  • Bring water/snacks – save time…save money. Plan ahead.
  • “Baggage strategy” matters – There is going to be lots of luggage around on Friday. Pick/Pack your bad early and lightly! 
  • Make your plan now…Do NOT wait until Friday morning to start thinking about this.

Have a great holiday!

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