How to Travel From NYC to Atlantic City by Car, Bus, Train, and Helicopter

Bird's eye view of Atlantic City's boardwalk

Karen E. Evans Photography / Getty Images

Atlantic City, 127 miles (204 kilometers) southwest of New York City in Southern New Jersey, makes a popular day trip, offering casinos, a fun boardwalk, and a sandy beach. There are several ways to get between the two cities, including driving, which is the quickest and most economical way to explore on your own. Travelers can also take a bus or train—or even a quick helicopter ride if you have no budgetary concerns.

  Time Cost Best For
Car 2 hours, 15 minutes 127 miles (204 kilometers) Going at your own pace
Bus 2.5 hours From $9 Budget travel
Train 3.75 hours From $40 A comfortable ride
Helicopter 45 minutes From $2775 per group Quick trip

What Is the Cheapest Way to Get From New York City to Atlantic City?

Bus service from New York City to Atlantic City is easy and the most affordable option for visitors, though it is not as comfortable as the train. NJ Transit buses (from $9) take off every hour for the Atlantic City Bus Terminal. The ride lasts about two hours, 35 minutes but can be longer depending on traffic. Greyhound also leaves hourly, offering a roughly two hour, 30 minute trip starting at $19, as well as a "Lucky Streak" service that drops passengers off at a number of different Atlantic City casinos in addition to the Atlantic City Bus Terminal. If you disembark at a casino, round-trip riders often get a "free play" voucher to use at the casino. Buying bus tickets online in advance is recommended for either company; you can also purchase them when departing from the Port Authority bus station.

What Is the Fastest Way to Get From New York City to Atlantic City?

If you've got money to spend and no time to waste, you can charter a helicopter for an exciting ride to Atlantic City. Liberty Helicopters charges around $4,800 to whisk a group of five or six people away to the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City. HeliNY also provides a 45-minute trip, starting at $2,775 for six people. 

How Long Does It Take to Drive?

The fairly direct route from New York City to Atlantic City stretching 127 miles (204 kilometers) along the Garden State Parkway takes two hours, 15 minutes. The time the ride takes will depend on how many stops you make and traffic, which is particularly heavy during beach season. Taking your own car can be a good value if you are traveling with a group, allowing you to create your own schedule. Parking is easy and affordable in Atlantic City; several paid parking lots have spaces that can be reserved online.

Though it is more expensive, if you don't want the hassle of renting a car, you can hire a driver. Most New York City car services can assist, whether you want someone to drive you down and wait a few hours or you want to stay a night or more. Liberty Luxury Limousine's least expensive option is a four-person sedan from $300 one way to Atlantic City. Prices will vary depending on the number of passengers and your plans.

How Long Is the Train Ride?

The comfortable train ride from New York City to Atlantic City takes at least three hours, 45 minutes (it may take longer depending on schedules). However, it isn't the easiest option as you'll need to travel to Philadelphia's 30th Street Train Station from New York Penn Station with Amtrak (leaves hourly, from $27). Passengers will then transfer to the NJ Transit service (every two hours, from $13) and head to the Atlantic City Rail Terminal about half a mile from the Atlantic City Boardwalk. You can purchase tickets in advance with Amtrak or NJ Transit, or in person at Penn Station.

When Is the Best Time to Travel to Atlantic City?

Visitors can enjoy Atlantic City and its casinos at any time of year. In terms of weather, one of the nicest times to take a trip to “America's Playground” is from March to May. Held annually in April, The Atlantic City Beer & Music Festival is a fun three-day event featuring a silent disco, costume contests, and more (ages 21 and up). Another good time to visit is between June and August when the breezes help cool the warm and humid days. However, these are all peak travel months, especially from June through August, so you will encounter more tourists as well as higher costs.

What Is There to Do in Atlantic City?

Atlantic City is a fun resort hot spot known for numerous casinos with performances by famous musicians and comedians. In addition, the coastal city offers popular nightclubs, high-end shops, and restaurants. Visitors also enjoy the beloved historic boardwalk which spans more than 4 miles and features various attractions like piers to explore and rides for children. The city's beaches are ideal for kayaking, surfing, windsurfing, and other water sports.

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