Visitors to New York City often ask which ticket they should buy for visiting the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island or if they even need one. And the answer is not simple. Visiting the Ellis Island Immigration Museum and the Statue of Liberty is free, but you need to buy a ticket for the ferry that will bring you to the islands where they are both located. You'll save a ton of time if you buy your tickets in advance, but you can also buy tickets on location if that makes more sense for you. When you purchase your ticket for the ferry, it will include your chosen options for the places you are visiting on the island.
Tickets for Your Visit
First, you need to decide if you want to visit the Crown and/or Museum/Pedestal at the Statue of Liberty:
- Visit The Crown
- Visiting the Statue of Liberty crown costs an additional $3 and requires participants to climb up and down 354 steps. On warm days, it can be up to 20 degrees warmer in the Statue of Liberty's crown, so visitors are advised to drink plenty of water if they plan to climb to the top of the crown. It is a strenuous walk and not advised for children under 4 feet tall or visitors with heart and respiratory conditions, mobility impairments, claustrophobia (fear of confined spaces), acrophobia (fear of heights) or vertigo (dizziness).
- Visit The Museum/Pedestal
- If you know you want to go inside the Statue of Liberty to see the museum, the Statue's interior, and to walk along the Statue's pedestal, you'll need a ticket with Pedestal/Museum Access. These are free, but there is a limited number available. (All Crown access tickets also include access to the Pedestal/Museum.)
You'll also need to know whether you plan to take the ferry from Battery Park in Manhattan or from Liberty State Park in New Jersey. The Manhattan departure point is ideal for people staying in Manhattan who want to use public transportation to get to the ferry. The New Jersey departure point offers extensive parking, so it's a good choice for large groups and others driving to the ferry departure.
The audio tour is free and included with all tickets. Crown visitors pay $3 extra in addition to their ferry fare and that ticket option will reflect the additional fee. Advance tickets cost no more than same day tickets, but they will save you the time of waiting in line for tickets once you arrive in Battery Park. You will be able to go straight to security and bypass the first (and often very long) line.
Advance Ticket Options
- Ferry Fee (includes Pedestal/Museum Access): $18.50; $14 for seniors; $9 for children 4-12 and free for 0-3 years. (make your Pedestal/Museum reservation as access is limited)
- Additional Fee to visit the Crown: $3
- Hard Hat Tours of the old immigrant hospitals on the South Side of Ellis Island are open only to visitors over the age of 13 and the tickets are subject to availability. Additional cost includes a donation to the restoration of the buildings.
- Statue Cruises is the only authorized official provider of tickets and tours to the Statue of Liberty National Monument and Ellis Island.
If you know you want to visit the Crown, the Museum or the Pedestal at the Statue of Liberty and have a good idea of when you're going to visit the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, you should buy a ticket in advance. These tickets have a specific time for arrival at security and by booking in advance, you can secure the access you want for your visit.
All ferry tickets include access to Ellis Island. If you plan to visit both islands in one day, the National Park Service recommends an early ferry departure so you have adequate time.
Illegal Ticket Sellers
The National Park Service warns you that there are "many aggressive, unauthorized ticket sellers who will try to sell tickets to the Statue of Liberty near Battery Park in NYC." These people will most likely overcharge you or give you a fake ticket. To avoid confusion the NPS recommends that tickets be purchased in advance from Statue Cruises. The only on-site ticket office is the Statue Cruises official ticket office inside Castle Clinton in Battery Park. Advance tickets are available online or by Phone: 1-877-LADY-TIX (877-523-9849) or 201-604-2800.
Audio Tours Are Included
All tickets include an audio tour that covers both Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty. Tours are available in Arabic, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin, Russian and Spanish. For people who enjoy audio tours or don't speak English, these are a great option, but the free Ranger-Guided Tours of both Liberty Island and Ellis Island are fantastic. (Ellis Island's tour lasts about 45 minutes and leaves every hour, the schedule for Liberty Island tours varies.)
Children ages 6-10 will enjoy an audio tour geared specifically to them, narrated by fictional characters and offered in five languages.
If you don't plan in advance to go to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, you can buy tickets at the ticket booth in Castle Clinton National Monument inside Battery Park. Arrive early in the day in order to avoid a long wait for ticket purchases.
Ticket Changes and Refunds
You can get a refund or change your ticket as long as you do so at least 24 hours in advance of your scheduled departure. The best way to make changes is to call 201-432-6321 with your confirmation number. Refunds will also be made if the islands are closed for security, safety, or weather reasons.
New York City Attraction Passes
If you are a CityPass, New York Pass, or New York City Explorer Pass bring your card to the prepaid ticket window in order to get your ferry ticket.