Getting to JFK airport can be expensive, especially if you need to take a taxi or Uber from Manhattan. Fortunately, there are a couple free shuttle options that provide transportation to JFK airport terminals.

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer to your question: The NYC Airporter shuttle bus and the Q47 and Q48 CitiBus routes offer free transportation to JFK airport from select subway stations in Queens.

In this comprehensive guide, we will cover everything you need to know about taking the free NYC Airporter shuttle bus or CitiBus routes to JFK airport. We’ll discuss pickup and drop off locations, schedules, travel time, luggage allowances, and tips to make using the shuttles easy and stress-free.

NYC Airporter Shuttle Bus Overview

If you’re looking for an affordable and convenient way to get to JFK Airport, the NYC Airporter Shuttle Bus is a fantastic option. This shuttle service provides a reliable transportation solution for both locals and tourists alike.

With its comfortable seating, reliable schedule, and convenient pickup/drop off locations, it’s no wonder why many travelers choose this shuttle as their preferred mode of transport to the airport.

Pickup/Drop Off Locations

The NYC Airporter Shuttle Bus operates from multiple locations throughout New York City, making it easy for passengers to find a pickup point that is convenient for them. Some of the popular pickup locations include Grand Central Terminal, Penn Station, and Port Authority Bus Terminal.

Additionally, there are also drop off points at each terminal of JFK Airport, ensuring a seamless and hassle-free journey for passengers.

Schedule and Frequency

The shuttle bus operates on a frequent schedule, with departures as often as every 30 minutes during peak times. This means that you won’t have to worry about missing a bus and can choose a departure time that suits your travel plans.

The schedule is designed to accommodate passengers throughout the day, making it a convenient option for both early morning and late-night flights.

Travel Time

The travel time on the NYC Airporter Shuttle Bus can vary depending on traffic conditions, but on average, the journey from Manhattan to JFK Airport takes approximately 60-90 minutes. It’s important to plan your journey accordingly, especially during peak hours, to ensure you arrive at the airport with ample time before your flight.

Luggage Allowances

The NYC Airporter Shuttle Bus allows each passenger to bring two pieces of luggage, with a maximum combined weight of 50 pounds. This generous allowance ensures that you can bring all your necessary belongings without any extra fees.

If you have oversized or excessive luggage, it’s recommended to contact the shuttle service in advance to make arrangements.

CitiBus Q47 and Q48 Routes Overview

Pickup/Drop Off Locations

The CitiBus Q47 and Q48 routes are convenient options for travelers looking to get to JFK Airport for free using the shuttle. The Q47 route operates between Jackson Heights and JFK Airport, while the Q48 route operates between Flushing and JFK Airport.

Both routes have multiple pickup and drop off locations along the way, making it easy for passengers to access the shuttle.

Some of the popular pickup/drop off locations for the Q47 route include Jackson Heights-Roosevelt Avenue Subway Station, Woodside-61st Street Subway Station, and the Airport Terminal 5 at JFK Airport.

On the other hand, the Q48 route has pickup/drop off locations such as Flushing-Main Street Subway Station, the Jamaica-179th Street Subway Station, and the Airport Terminal 4 at JFK Airport.

Schedule and Frequency

The CitiBus Q47 and Q48 routes operate on a regular schedule, ensuring that passengers have convenient options to travel to JFK Airport. The buses typically run every 15 to 20 minutes during peak hours, and the frequency may vary during off-peak hours.

It is always recommended to check the official schedule for the most up-to-date information.

The operating hours for the Q47 route start early in the morning and continue until late at night, providing a reliable option for travelers throughout the day. Similarly, the Q48 route also operates from early morning until late at night, accommodating passengers with different travel plans.

Travel Time

The travel time on the CitiBus Q47 and Q48 routes can vary depending on traffic conditions and the distance between the pickup/drop off locations. On average, the journey from Jackson Heights to JFK Airport on the Q47 route takes approximately 30 to 45 minutes, while the travel time from Flushing to JFK Airport on the Q48 route is around 40 to 60 minutes.

It is important to consider the potential traffic congestion during peak hours, especially if you have a tight schedule. Planning ahead and allowing extra time for travel is always a good idea to avoid any potential delays.

Luggage Allowances

When using the CitiBus Q47 and Q48 routes to get to JFK Airport, passengers are allowed to bring their luggage on board. However, it is important to note that there might be restrictions on the size and weight of the bags.

Passengers are advised to bring luggage that can easily fit in the designated storage areas on the bus to ensure a comfortable journey for everyone. It is always a good idea to pack efficiently and avoid bringing oversized or excessive luggage to avoid any inconvenience.

For more information on the CitiBus Q47 and Q48 routes, including the detailed schedule and other guidelines, you can visit the official website of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA).

Tips for Using the Free Shuttles

Allow Extra Time

When using the free shuttles to get to JFK Airport, it’s important to allow yourself some extra time. These shuttles can be popular and may have limited seating, so it’s best to arrive early to ensure you get a spot.

Additionally, traffic conditions can vary, so giving yourself some buffer time can help you avoid any potential delays.

Have Your Flight Information Ready

Before boarding the shuttle, make sure you have your flight information readily available. This includes your airline, flight number, and departure time. Having this information easily accessible will help the shuttle drivers efficiently organize the drop-offs at the various terminals, ensuring a smoother and faster journey for everyone.

Take Note of the Schedule

Each shuttle service has its own schedule, so it’s important to take note of the departure times. Some shuttles run on a fixed schedule, while others operate on a more frequent basis. By knowing the schedule, you can plan your journey accordingly and avoid any unnecessary waiting time.

You can find the shuttle schedules on the official JFK Airport website ( or by contacting the airport information desk.

Pack Light

When using the free shuttles to get to JFK Airport, it’s advisable to pack light. These shuttles often have limited space for luggage, so bringing only essential items will ensure a comfortable and hassle-free journey.

If you have any bulky or oversized luggage, consider alternative transportation options or make arrangements in advance to avoid any inconvenience.


Getting to JFK airport doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive if you take advantage of the free NYC Airporter shuttle bus or CitiBus routes. With convenient pickup locations in Queens, regular schedules, and room for luggage, these shuttles provide a stress-free way to get to JFK airport terminals.

Just be sure to allow enough time, have your flight details handy, and pack light. With this guide, you’ll know exactly how to take the free shuttle to JFK airport on your next trip from New York City.

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