A Mini-Guide to NYC's Port Authority Bus Terminal

Find out all you need to know about America's busiest bus terminal

An entrance to the Port Authority Bus Terminal
••• Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Located just a block from Times Square on the western side of Midtown, the Port Authority Bus Terminal is the largest and busiest bus terminal in the United States. With a steady stream of over 225,000 commuters, visitors, and residents each day, the terminal offers a variety of bus carriers and transportation options, as well as stores, delis, and restaurants.

Check out everything you need to know to ensure that your next trip to the Port Authority Bus Terminal is a seamless one, from start to finish.

Getting to Port Authority Terminal

The main entrance to the Port Authority Bus Terminal is located at 625 8th Avenue. The terminal occupies the space between 8th and 9th avenues and stretches from 40th to 42nd streets.

The Port Authority is easily accessible by subway via the A, C, E subway trains to 42nd Street, which takes you directly to the terminal. Underground tunnels connect the N, Q, R, S, 1, 2, 3, and 7 trains at Times Square to the terminal.

Bus Carriers

About two dozen bus carriers operate at the terminal, including buses run by Greyhound, NJ Transit, Adirondack Trailways, and more. View the full list of bus companies that stop at Port Authority.

The Layout of the Terminal

The Port Authority’s layout can be somewhat confusing, especially if it is rush hour and you are in a rush to catch a bus about to leave the terminal. Learn more about the six levels of the terminal.

Lower Level

The lowest level has more than 50 bus gates, ticketing for the Express Bus "Jitney" Service, and a snack stand.

Subway Level

The subway level has the entrance to the subway, Greyhound offices and ticket centers, an Au Bon Pain, Hudson Newsstand, and ticket centers for Adirondack Trailways, Martz Trailways, Peter Pan Trailways, and Susquehanna bus carriers.

Main Floor

The main floor features a variety of shops, stores, and food options like Au Bon Pain, Jamba Juice, and Heartland Brewery, among others.

You can also find a branch of the post office and PNC Bank, as well as the Port Authority police station. This is also the site of the main ticket plaza, where you can purchase tickets and obtain bus schedules and itineraries.

Second Floor

The second floor allows travelers access to bus gates and has several bus ticket vending machines. Stores and restaurants on the second floor include Hallmark, Hudson News, Book Corner, Sak's Florist, Café Metro, McAnn’s Pub, and more. There is even a bowling alley, Frames Bowling Lounge NYC, so you can bowl a few games before your bus leaves.

Third and Fourth Floors

The third and fourth floors each have a Hudson Newsstand and two dozen more bus gates.

History

On December 15, 1950, after a construction period of close to two years and an investment of $24 million, the Port Authority Bus Terminal was unveiled to consolidate the bus congestion that was occurring at numerous bus terminal points throughout the city.