Are you planning to travel but don’t know where to stay outside of New York City? Well, if you are a budget-minded traveler seeking cheaper accommodation with easy access to the Big Apple City, here is your answer.
With over 65.1 million visitors each year, over 20% of which are international travelers, New York is undoubtedly a hub of activities and one of the top tourist destinations in the world.
Popularly known as the Big Apple, the city is an ultimate representation of a cosmopolitan destination, and a true definition of urban living. This has made the cost of living here quite unforgiving, and even the long-time dwellers are increasingly searching for alternatives.
For budget-conscious travelers, staying in NYC during your vacation, therefore, becomes something you should try to avoid. Life here is quite expensive, and accommodation costs won’t spare your wallet. For this reason, you should have an idea of where to stay outside of New York City before you even travel.
New York City comprises 5 boroughs, namely Brooklyn, Manhattan, Queens, Staten Island, and the Bronx. But, when people talk of the high-cost NYC; what they are mostly referring to is Manhattan.
Manhattan is the most expensive of all NYC’s boroughs, and it’s the epicenter of NYC’s economic activities. It also serves as the City’s administrative center, as well as its historical and cultural identifier. When looking for where to stay outside of New York City, you’re probably being pushed away by the high costs in Manhattan.
Located in the vibrant Exchange Place district of Jersey City, this hotel features a rooftop lounge and modern suites with kitchens. All rooms include a flat-screen TV and private bathroom. A complimentary continental breakfast is also included each morning. Full kitchens are in all suites at Hyatt House Jersey City, helping you save time and money on meals during your stay.
Williamsburg Hotel is a stylish hotel, with modern furnishings, located in the heart of Williamsburg. The hotel offers 10-foot views of Manhattan or Brooklyn through custom windows by Michaelis Boyd Studio, a marble and brass bathroom by Waterworks, handmade by Apotheke toiletries and a share friendly dining experience featuring sustainable ingredients from local farmers.
This New Jersey hotel is located 1,250 feet from Newport Center Mall's shopping and dining. The Bistro serves breakfast, dinner and cocktails. There is also an on-site fitness center and 24-hour front desk. Rooms are air-conditioned, though the hotel offers free WiFi in public areas. The nearby Newport Center PATH train offers easy access to New York City.
Best Places to Stay Outside of Manhattan
1. Sunset Park, Brooklyn
This is one of the cool areas to stay outside of Manhattan. It is a beautiful and upcoming neighborhood in Brooklyn, which for decades, has been home to many old families. However, new vibrant, and young residents have also started living in the region some of them have made it their permanent residence.
This stunning waterfront area derives its name from Sunset Park, which is found within the region. It is a good area to relax as you enjoy the sunset or even swim in the community pool.
If you ever travel to Manhattan and are looking for an affordable place outside of New York City with a cool community park, consider Sunset Park, Brooklyn.
Transport to New York City from Sunset Park is not a problem as one can take a subway. It takes around 35 minutes to get to Times Square in New York City, while it might take less than 20 minutes to get to some other parts of the city.
While Wyndham has some of the highest rates with $40 more than the other chain hotels, it has the most positive reviews without any consistent complaints.
The region is suitable for travelers who are on a budget or individuals who want to feel part of the Brooklyn community. The city center is easily accessible from Sunset Park, and hotel costs here are cheaper than in Manhattan and most other parts of Brooklyn.
Where to stay near Sunset Park
- Best Luxury Hotel: Insignia Hotel Ascend Hotel Collection
- Best Mid-Range Hotel: Ace Hotel New York
- Best Budget Hotel: Days Inn by Wyndham Brooklyn
2. Atlantic Avenue, Brooklyn
While most parts of Brooklyn are quite posh and expensive, Atlantic Avenue is one of the regions that will let you stay in Brooklyn without hurting your budget.
Atlantic Avenue is a long street in Brooklyn that has lots of fun places packed along the street. The region is a great spot for visitors and families as it offers several restaurants and access to the Prospect Park Zoo.
Besides, the street is home to the Brooklyn Children’s Museum which happens to be among the oldest children’s Museums. It also hosts the annual Atlantic Antic festival where families and couples come to celebrate the neighborhood with music, food, drinks, and much fun.
This makes Atlantic Avenue one of the best places to stay outside Manhattan. Atlantic Avenue is a 40-minute ride using the Subway from Midtown Manhattan and has cheaper accommodations compared to Manhattan.
The average rate of hotels here is about $176 per night. Check prices now via Booking.com to get the lowest price.
Where to stay near Atlantic Avenue
- Best Luxury Hotel: New York Marriot at Brooklyn Bridge
- Best Mid-Range Hotel: Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriot New York Brooklyn
- Best Budget Hotel: Hampton Inn Brooklyn/Downtown, NY
3. Jersey City
Jersey City is one of the top places to stay outside of NYC. It is a city in New Jersey, but it’s rapidly becoming one of the popular neighborhoods for people working in Manhattan.
Although it is in a different state, Jersey City’s proximity to Manhattan has made it a perfect neighborhood for people who want to live outside the city. With the heavy commuter traffic in Jersey City, it means that the best things to do are around the PATH stations.
From various regions of Jersey City, one can easily get to Manhattan within 20 minutes via the PATH. Besides, there are various options to get to Manhattan as you can use a public bus, subway, ferry, train, or hotel shuttle.
Most people, including travelers and locals, prefer staying in this area since it is close to the city but cheaper than staying in Manhattan. There are several hotels in the area that offer accommodation, but you can start your search by checking out Candlewood Suites and Marriott by Courtyard, which is near the Hudson River.
The two hotels are elegant and offer quality services. While the accommodation rates over the weekends are comparable at both hotels, Candlewood Suites is $100 cheaper over weeknights.
Where to stay in Jersey City
- Best Luxury Hotel: Global Luxury Suites at The Convention Center
- Best Mid-Range Hotel: The Westin Jersey City Newport
- Best Budget Hotel: Bluebird Suites near the PATH
See Related: New York Pass Review
Edgewater is another incredible town that should be on your list of where to stay outside of New York City. It is next to Jersey City, just across the Hudson River from Upper Manhattan.
From Edgewater, one can enjoy the sweeping views of Manhattan, thus making it a perfect area to chill out among other surrounding areas. While in Edgewater, you don’t need to go to Manhattan to enjoy what NYC has to offer. The small town has a few of its attractions, such as playing tennis at Binghamton Racquet Club or taking a walk along the Hudson River Waterfront Trail.
Most residents within the region prefer staying within the tiny borough due to its proximity to the city as well as its calm and serene environment. One can easily commute from Edgewater using public buses or a 15-minute ride on a ferry to Manhattan.
However, it is advisable to take note of the ferry’s schedule as it is usually not in service over the weekends and late evenings. Among the various hotels in the region, I would advise budget-minded travelers to check out the Comfort Inn.
Although it’s quite basic, it is also comfortable, clean, and has all the requirements, with an average accommodation rate of $139/night.
Where to stay in Edgewater
- Best Luxury Hotel: Courtyard by Marriot Edgewater NYC Area
- Best Mid-Range Hotel: Homewood Suites by Hilton Edgewater-NYC Area
- Best Budget Hotel: Comfort Inn Edge on Hudson River
See Related: Best Museums in the United States
Another neighborhood in New Jersey yet close to New York City is Rutherford. Rutherford is a booming city that is just ten miles away from Manhattan. Over recent years, the region has won the hearts of many visitors with various sporting events, performing arts events, as well as good restaurants.
Most families within New York City find Rutherford quite a peaceful and calm place to live in. It is a comfortable yet inexpensive suburban that offers easy access to New York City.
It only takes 30 minutes to get to Midtown New York using the New Jersey Transit.
A car might be necessary to get around Rutherford as it covers quite a large area. But, to get to Manhattan, it is highly advisable to use the New Jersey Transit trains that will get you to New York Penn Station.
From the station, you can then take the Subway or Amtrak to other parts of the city.
With Rutherford on your list, you won’t have to worry much about where to stay outside of New York City.
It offers numerous affordable hotels to suit your budget, such as the Homewood Suites, which is a walking distance of Rutherford Station.
The hotel has an indoor pool, and complimentary breakfast, and the suites have kitchenettes, thus making them great for business and family travelers.
Where to stay in Rutherford
- Best Luxury Hotel: The Chatwal, a Luxury Collection Hotel, New York
- Best Mid-Range Hotel: Residence Inn by Marriott East Rutherford Meadowlands
- Best Budget Hotel: Lic Hotel
See Related: London vs. New York
6. Fort Lee
Still can’t figure out where to stay outside of New York City? Fort Lee might also be a good consideration. The region is across the George Washington Bridge from New York and is easily accessible from I-95. Fort Lee is quite famous for its beautiful waterfront areas on the Hudson River.
Also, the area is known for its heavy traffic as it is one of the main routes to get in and out of New York City. However, don’t let the heavy traffic make you frown, as the region also boasts of a diverse neighborhood with inexpensive rent and easy access to Manhattan.
Fort Lee has a large Koreatown with a large population of Koreans, which makes it a perfect spot for enjoying great exotic food and shopping. In addition to the Korean community, there is also a Russian community and a rich history of Italian and Greek immigrants. It is a great area for those who want to stay in a suburban setting and interact with a diverse community.
If you are staying at a hotel in Fort Lee, most of them offer shuttle service to Midtown Manhattan; hence transport is not a bother. You can also drive or take a bus to the city’s epicenter, but a subway train is the best option. However, if you just want to tour around the city and enjoy the view from the region, a car would be the best option.
I would recommend travelers check out the DoubleTree hotel that is within the region as it has pocket-friendly accommodation rates of around $142 per night. The DoubleTree by Hilton has a reliable shuttle service, offering transport to NYC eight times per day.
Where to stay in Fort Lee
- Best Luxury Hotel: Hyatt Place Fort Lee/George Washington Bridge
- Best Mid-Range Hotel: DoubleTree by Hilton Fort Lee – George Washington Bridge
- Best Budget Hotel: Opera House Hotel
See Related: Best Parks in New York
7. New Rochelle
New Rochelle is a tiny city located in Westchester County, New York. The neighborhood has a diverse and close-knit community. Most of the families consist of individuals who work in Manhattan but wish to raise their families outside the large city. The small city is easily accessible from Manhattan as it is only a 40-minute drive from Midtown Manhattan.
Else, you can use the transit train to commute to Manhattan as most residents do. A car would be suitable to move around New Rochelle or to Manhattan as it would allow you to explore other towns and see the most. In New Rochelle, two hotels offer accommodation near the train station, which is suitable for new visitors who are not very familiar with the region.
They include the Radisson and the Residence Inn, with Radisson having slightly lower rates on most days. It has been a quiet region, but new restaurants are popping up from various corners as travelers flock to visit the area.
New Rochelle has some cool parks that are great for both adults’ and kids’ amusement. Therefore, if you’re yet to decide on where to stay outside of New York City, you should consider New Rochelle.
Where to stay in New Rochelle
- Best Luxury Hotel: Residence Inn by Marriot New Rochelle
- Best Mid-Range Hotel: The Local
- Best Budget Hotel: Ravel Hotel, Trademark Collection by Wyndham
Is It Better to Stay in Manhattan or Outside?
Besides being the heart of NYC’s economic activities, Manhattan also has numerous attractions for tourists. This means that it’s ever flocked with people working there, as well as the numerous tourists frequenting the city.
But is it worth staying in Manhattan? Well, the answer depends on various factors such as your budget and proximity to the city center. Accommodation costs in Manhattan are a bit pricy while staying outside Manhattan might require you to make longer commutes and transport arrangements to the city center.
Nonetheless, cost-conscious travelers should consider staying in the cool neighborhoods surrounding Manhattan that are a bit budget-friendly as transport in New York is not a problem.
These neighborhoods allow you to enjoy the breathtaking views of iconic skyscrapers lining the horizon, as well as burgeoning art without incurring high accommodation costs.