Activities & Resources
Buses050in New York (citywide), NY
The MTA website also offers a handy Trip Planner at http://travel.mtanyct.info. Many bus lines run at all times, but some suspend service during late-night hours, and others have limited scheduling. Check with the MTA if you have questions about specific lines.
In general, Manhattan buses run north (10th, 8th, Columbus, Madison, 3rd, 1st, and York Avenues, Riverside Drive and parts of Broadway), south (11th, 9th, 7th, Amsterdam, 5th, Lexington and 2nd Avenues, Riverside Drive and Broadway), and east and west on the major cross streets (14th, 23rd, 34th, 42nd, 57th, 72nd, 79th, 86th, 96th, 110th, 116th, and 125th).
The east-west buses are known as crosstown buses. The subway is almost always a faster way of getting around, but the bus offers better sightseeing and wonderful distraction opportunities for small children. A stroller can be folded up and brought onto the bus, but it's not easy during the rush hour (Mon-Fri, approx. 7-10am and 4-7pm). In fact, peak rush hour (approx. 8:30-9:30am and 5-6pm) is best avoided if possible when traveling on MTA buses with small children, especially in midtown (between 34th and 59th Streets).
Only exact change is accepted (no dollar bills; coins only), but the preferred currency is the MetroCard, which is dipped into a slot as you enter the bus. The MetroCard also offers some better deals: "Unlimited" MetroCards allow you to ride all you want for one price (there are 7-Day Unlimited, 30-Day Unlimited, and 1-Day Fun Pass); with a Pay-Per-Ride MetroCard, you buy the number of rides you want, and you get a free ride every time you buy 10 rides at once. You can also transfer for free from bus to subway, subway to bus, and from one bus line to another (you must use these transfer opportunities within two hours of the first ride). Metrocards are widely available in subway stations, newstands, and convenience stores.