Planes, trains, and automobiles: How do you like to get to NYC?

Fly, ride, or drive. Those are some of the ways you can get from Burlington to the Big Apple. As far as the best option goes -- that’s up to the Vermonter
Published: Jul. 29, 2022 at 12:09 AM EDT
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BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) - Fly, ride, or drive. Those are some of the ways folks can get from Burlington to the Big Apple. Now, Amtrak’s Ethan Allen Express is offering new options for Vermonters looking to get away.

“As a lifelong Vermonter, I’m not a seasoned professional New York driver,” said Frank Breen of South Burlington.

Driving to New York City from Burlington is around five and a half hours and nearly 300 miles. That would cost your average Subaru Forester owner around $60 in gas. For some Vermonters, driving to New York City is the best option because they can leave whenever they want. But having a car in the Big Apple comes with its own hassles, like paying for parking and navigating the network of streets.

“You know, it’s a long way and the drivers are very aggressive,” said Celia Kingsbury of Burlington.

Some looking to avoid the open roads will take the new Ethan Allen Express that begins service Friday. For the last weekend in August, the Amtrak website charges $75 each way. The journey is just under eight hours, leaving Burlington at 10:10 a.m. and arriving in New York City at 5:45 p.m. It’s an exciting option for some Vermonters looking for a convenient way to get to New York City.

“I would consider taking the Amtrak from Burlington but not Essex. I live right downtown,” said Kingsbury.

Many tell us they’d board the Ethan Allen Express because they can work on the train, it’s reliable, and has good views. “It’s the joy of the journey,” said Breen.

But not everyone has the ability to spend the whole day travelling by way of train or car. “My favorite way is actually to take the Amtrak, but when I need to get to New York quickly, there’s only one train a day, so sometimes I take it to JFK,” said Eva Pratt of Burlington.

The Burlington International Airport has around 11 flights per day departing for New York area airports, times in the early morning and the evening. Google Flights shows round trips from Burlington to New York airports around $138 for the last weekend in August for multiple airlines. The flight is roughly an hour and a half.

“You can pick numerous times, numerous different airlines to get there at whenever time you’re going to choose, and like I said, usually I’m connecting elsewhere,” said Hailey from Glover.

However, air travel isn’t seamless either. When we were interviewing folks at the airport, two flights to New York were canceled. “It’s happening all over the summer, so you’ll have to deal with it somehow,” said Joe Mirro, a New Yorker headed home from Burlington.

And nearly every Vermonter we spoke with said they choose their transportation based on why they’re traveling. “I guess it depends on how fast I want to get there,” said Mirro.

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