This weekend I traveled to the east coast for a friend’s wedding in Stony Brook. I took a red eye flight Thursday night, attended the wedding in Stony Brook on Friday, + spent the rest of the weekend in New York City. I broke down some of the highlights + things I learned for next time. New York is a huge place so I know everyone’s experience is different, here’s a peek into mine!
1 The Journey Begins: SeaTac -> JFK
- Each seat on the plane had a TV with tons of free movies + TV shows. There went my plan to read on the flight! #ThanksDelta
- There were almost no lines at the airport for a Thursday evening.
- Red eyes are never fun. 6 hour flight at night = 2-3 hours of uncomfortable sleep.
- Fly Delta for long flights!
- I prefer red eyes for long flights, specially ones where the time jumps ahead. I prefer spending daytime hours on the ground rather than in the air, the which makes it worth the hassle.
2 Are We There Yet: JFK -> Stony Brook
- JFK restaurants are fitted with iPads for each seat, so ordering + paying is super easy.
- Once we were on the train, the ride was quick + painless.
Two tickets to Stony Brook, please!
- It was really difficult to find out information about our train. The internet is your friend!
- The 4 hour trip to get to our hotel after taking a 6 hour flight at night. Definitely not fun.
- Look up the train schedule on the day of your trip. The trains can get delayed, cancelled, or rerouted depending on the circumstances.
- Once at the Jamaica station, you need to buy both the AirTran pass + the pass for where you’re headed next.
- The information booth is on the ground floor of the LIRR platform. There’s a real human there to answer your questions!
- Be prepared for a l o n g journey. We ordered an Uber from the Stony Brook station to the hotel that took 25 minutes to get to us.
3 The Wedding: Stony Brook
…was beautiful + wonderful + SO much fun! This was my very first non-Indian wedding + I loved every second of it. I’ll be doing a post in the near future about my experience, so stay tuned!
4 In The Citaaay: New York City
- We caught an earlier train so we got into the city pretty early
- The Loopy Doopy bar in Condren Hilton in Manhattan — so much fun!
- Staying in a penthouse in the middle of Manhattan! Plenty of space for all of us — there were 6 guys + 2 girls.
- We had a great lunch at Chelsea Market in the Meatpacking district. There are tons of restaurants + shops throughout the market + everything is pretty reasonably priced. I had delicious vegan dumplings from Mokbar.
- The travel time again was ridiculously long. It wasn’t a direct train ride, either.
- Waiting 20 minutes for our AirBnb host to get us + give us the key.
- The AirBnb itself wasn’t furnished except for beds + a couch, and the hostess was super sketchy. We never actually met her, she sent several assistants to deal with us.
Get a ticket to One World Trade Center. It’s pricey but very worth it. You’ll get 360 degree views from the tallest building in the Western hemisphere — how cool is that?!
- Loopy Doopy is the rooftop bar in Condren Hilton + is best known for their drinks: an alcohol popsicle in a glass of Prosecco.
- Don’t go to the High Line during peak hours on the weekend. It’s extremely crowded + you can’t really enjoy the views or walk.
- Check your AirBnb ratings + listen to them! If there’s even one bad rating, it’s likely that the host or location has some issues.
5 Going Home: JFK -> SeaTac
- The Delta Sky Club is awesome. Free drinks, buffet, WiFi, TVs, showers, and plenty of lounge space.
- Direct flights back to the West Coast are key since you gain 3 hours. I love flying back in the evening – I still get time in the city that day + can get into bed at a reasonable hour.
- We went to the airport a few hours early so we could watch the EuroCup match + skip some traffic.
- There was still soooo much traffic even though we left at 2pm for our 7pm flight!
- If you have time at the airport + your airline has a club, GO. If you’re a gold member of the airline or have an American Express platinum card, you can usually get in for free. Otherwise, I would recommend buying the pass (it was $60 for non-members, $30 for members without gold status). The club pass will pay for itself with the drinks + food.
- Give yourself at least 1 hour to travel to the airport, maybe even more depending on where in New York you’re leaving from.