Affordable Hotels in New York

The best affordable hotels in New York - our real recommendations

Hotel room in Pod 51 in New York

In a nutshell: How to stay on a budget in New York

  • Not only are we real New York experts, but we’re also really good at finding hotels where you don’t have to choose between affordable and nice.
  • In the less popular travel months like January, February, July and August you can find a good but comparatively affordable hotel in Manhattan. Our two personal favorites are The Cloud One and Pod 51.
  • In the main travel season, we recommend a hotel outside Manhattan for a good and affordable night’s stay in New York: Jersey City, Queens or the Bronx.
  • Our three hotel insider tips in these boroughs: Peachtree Suites in Jersey City, LIC Plaza in Queens and Wingate by Wyndham in the Bronx.

Our top tips: affordable hotels in New York

In this article, we’ll explain in great detail what your options are for staying on a budget in New York.

If you just want to have a quick overview, we’ve listed all our tips for affordable hotels in New York in the following table.

Cloud OneBranch of the German Motel One group in New York. Good location downtown.
Pod 51Low-budget hotel near Rockefeller Center
Hotel MimosaSmall, affordable hotel in the middle of Chinatown
Hilton Garden InnAffordable mid-range hotel very near World Trade Center
Jersey City
Peachtree SuitesGreat location, huge rooms. Fantastic value for money.
Canopy by HiltonGood location, refined furnishings, but still affordable
Doubletree by HiltonGood location and furnishings, nice view on Manhattan's skyline
LIC PlazaGood hotel directly at the metro. Just 15 minutes to Times Square.
Hyatt PlaceAlso 15 minutes to Times Square. Refined hotel that sometimes offers affordable prices.
Holiday Inn ExpressVery affordable hotel in Queens. Good furnishings, location not as good as the other ones.
Highbrige HotelGood hotel near Yankee Stadium
Windgate by WyndhamAlso a good hotel directly at the subway

How much does a hotel room cost on average in New York City?

We don’t have to beat around the bush. A good hotel in New York is anything but cheap. It’s expensive, very expensive.

To give you a more accurate idea of hotel prices in New York, we have an example for you:

When looking for a hotel for 4 nights in October in a good location, the cheapest hotel with a double bed in Manhattan costs about 325 dollars a night.

And we weren’t that picky or have done anything wrong during the search. No, we just sorted out the hotels where no normal person with hygiene standards would want to stay.

Is that a reason not to travel to New York? No, of course not. We’ll show you different ways to stay in New York for less money, and we’ll also give you 15 specific places to stay.

What kind of comfort can you expect for a good and affordable hotel in New York City?

When we say that we show you the most affordable hotels in New York, we don ‘t mean cheap and shabby, we really mean affordable and good.

You’ll also find hotels that are a bit cheaper. However, you’d have to make sacrifices not only for the sake of comfort, but also for quality. We don’t know about you, but for us, the feel-good factor is super important when it comes to hotels.

The moment we check into a hotel is incredibly important and contributes to whether a city trip is a success. That’s probably why we’re real pros at tracking down good, but comparatively budget-friendly hotels everywhere.

So what do we mean specifically when we talk about affordable but good hotels in New York City?

  • Good location, but not necessarily the absolute prime location
  • If you pick a hotel outside Manhattan, you’ll have a 15 to 40 minute drive to get there
  • View from the room not necessarily breathtaking
  • Rooms are often relatively small
  • Breakfast is often not included. This is generally the case in New York. However, there are cafes or options for breakfast and a coffee to go everywhere.

Extra tip: New York is big, New York is noisy. It is generally worth sending the hotel a message in advance and asking for a quiet room on the upper floors.

General tips for affordable accommodation in New York

  • It pays to book early. If only because the affordable room categories aren’t fully booked yet.
  • The most affordable month for hotel prices is by far January. Hotels in New York are also less expensive in February, July and August than in the other months. Read also our article on the best time to travel in New York.
  • Hotel prices vary enormously in New York – even from day to day. Therefore, for longer stays, it may even make sense to split your New York vacation between two hotels.
  • Travel with friends or family and share a room with two double beds for four people. This tip is also great for families with children.
  • Cut back on comfort and stay in a private room in a hostel.
  • Stay outside Manhattan. Our suggestions are: Queens, Jersey City and the Bronx.

The 4 best affordable hotels in Manhattan

Map of Manhattan with the most important sights
Affordable hotels right in Manhattan are hard to find

Admittedly, prices for a hotel in Manhattan never get really affordable.

But it really depends a lot on when you travel to New York. Especially in the less popular travel months of January, February, July and August, you can find an affordable hotel in Manhattan.

We present you our 4 hotel favorites in Manhattan. Your task is to see if there’s a bargain on your travel dates. If not, just keep reading the article.

Don’t worry, by the time you finish reading our article, you’ll be smarter and have found the best accommodation for you.

The Cloud One New York Downtown by the Motel One Group

Hotel room at The Cloud One New York-Downtown
Simple but really stylish rooms await you at Cloud One (© The Cloud One New York-Downtown)

The Cloud One New York-Downtown is a new project of the German Motel One Group. We think it’s really cool, so we’ve put it high on our list of good, affordable hotels in New York.

The hotel is super well thought-out, stylish and has a good location.

With 16 m², the rooms are even relatively large by New York standards. The hotel is located downtown, near the One World Trade Center and Wall Street. So the perfect starting point for your New York sightseeing program.

Oh, and the rooftop terrace with a view of the skyline is not to be underestimated either.

Cloud One’s prices vary extremely from month to month, but also from day to day. In the low season in August, you can get a room for as little as 215 dollars a night.

To the Cloud One New York-Downtown

Pod 51

Hotel room in Pod 51 in New York
The rooms at Pod 51 may not be big, but you’ll definitely have everything you need (© Pod 51)

Pod 51 is a classic among the affordable but good budget hotels in New York. We think it has more of a hostel vibe. But that’s not meant negative at all. On the contrary! You should just be aware of it before booking.

The rooms are tiny, but the little space is used optimally.

There are different rooms and comfort options and depending on that the price varies.

In the low season in January you can get the cheapest 8m² room with a bunk bed and shared bathroom for about 110 dollars. For a room with a double bed and private bathroom you pay about 190 dollars.

The rooftop terrace and the perfect location of the hotel are also cool. Pod 51 is located in Midtown, right around the corner of Rockefeller Center and many other New York attractions.

If you like the concept of the hotel, also check out Pod 39 in Manhattan.

To the Pod 51

Mimosa Hotel in Chinatown

Room in the New York Hotel Mimosa
Hotel Mimosa is located right in Chinatown – we love it! (© Hotel Mimosa)

The Mimosa Hotel in Chinatown is a secret hotel tip for us in New York. It doesn’t belong to a chain, has only 30 rooms and is located in Chinatown. Here, the real New York City feeling is included.

If you don’t feel comfortable in a big city, you might be out of place here. If you ask us: Chinatown is great – because apart from the fact that you have many good authentic and also inexpensive restaurants nearby, Chinatown aborders on many other cool neighborhoods such as the Lower East Side, Little Italy or Nolita and the Brooklyn Bridge is only about 15 minutes away by foot.

Rooms are 12m² small, but nicely decorated, simple, bright, and in the 50s style. In the summer months, the cheapest room costs around 215 dollars a night, and in the top-priced month of January, you can get the night for as little as 110 dollars. 

To Hotel Mimosa

Hilton Garden Inn Financial Center Manhattan Downtown

Hotel room at the Hilton Garden Inn NYC Financial Center
At the Hilton Garden Inn, some rooms have this fantastic view (© Hilton Garden Inn NYC)

Who doesn’t know the Hilton chain? The chain may not stand for the coolest hotels, but it promises you a certain standard.

The Hilton Garden Inn is located in the very south of Manhattan. Most boat tours start there and you can visit the Statue of Liberty.

The location isn’t quite as cool as the other affordable hotels in Manhattan, but it’s far from bad. A small disadvantage is also that you don’t have as many restaurants there.

But you can walk to the Wall Street (6 minutes), the 9/11 Museum and the One World Trade Center (15 minutes).

The rooms are huge by New York standards: 20m² with a king-size bed. In the summer months, you can get a room for under 215 dollars, and with a little luck, will offer you a free upgrade to a room with a city or water view in the off-season.

In January, you can even get a room for under 160 dollars. 

To the Hilton Garden Inn

Affordable hotels in New York outside Manhattan

Especially if you’re traveling to New York during the most popular travel months, finding an affordable hotel in Manhattan can be difficult.

The good news is you don’t need a hotel in Manhattan to have a cool time in New York.

We’ll introduce you to three other neighborhoods outside of Manhattan where you can not only stay just as well, but in the best case save quite a bit of money.

Let’s go!

Cheap hotels in Jersey City

Jersey City marked on a map of New York City
Jersey City isn’t New York, but it’s a good tip for finding affordable hotels outside of Manhattan

When you choose an affordable hotel in Jersey City, you’re not staying in New York City, you’re staying in New Jersey. There are advantages and disadvantages to this. The biggest disadvantage is that New Jersey just isn’t as cool as New York.

You may have seen this loving rivalry between the people of New York City and New Jersey in a movie, a series, or somewhere else.

We’d just advise you not to tell anyone, and that’s that. Okay, back to business. Jersey City is west of Manhattan, separated by the Hudson River.

So the cool thing is that from Jersey City you have an amazing view on the New York skyline. So you live in one of the most famous photo spots in New York.

We guess the most important question is: what’s the best way to get from Jersey City to Manhattan? The answer is: Jersey City is very well connected to Manhattan – you have three options: bus, ferry and Path.

The smartest option is the latter. The Path is a train line that will get you to Manhattan in no time. You can choose whether it takes you directly to Midtown near the Empire State Building or downtown to the One World Trade Center. The Path’s one-way ticket costs about 3 dollars. Depending on where your hotel is located and where you want to go in New York, you’ll need to plan 10-25 minutes of travel time.

Our tip: If you decide to stay in a hotel in Jersey City, you should take a closer look at the New York CityPass. Not only are the tickets to many famous sights included, but also the Path rides.

We would like to introduce you to three hotels in Jersey City. The Peachtree Suites Hotel is similar price-wise to the hotels in the Bronx, the other two, the Canopy by Hilton and the Doubletree, are more expensive, but offer excellent value for money.

All hotels in Jersey City

Peachtree Suites

Hotel rooms at the Peachtree Suites in Jersey City
The Peachtree Suites is our insider tip for affordable hotels in New Jersey (© Peachtree Suites)

The Peachtree Suites hotel in Jersey City is our absolute top-secret tip for New Jersey. It’s really good value for money, so even in peak season you’ll often stay under 215 dollars a night.

The hotel is great for families or for 3-4 friends who travel together. Even the cheapest room category “Studio” has an extra bedroom and for a few dollars more there are  two double beds for 4 people in the Deluxe Studio.

By the way, the rooms are about 40m². We have never seen a bigger hotel room in New York.

The location is top, the hotel is right at the Path station Journal Square with which you are in Manhattan in 20 minutes. But it’s a 40-minutes walk from the Hudson River.

The hotel doesn’t offer breakfast, but you have your own small kitchenette in your room and you can easily have breakfast or even dinner there.

Not far from the hotel is a supermarket and you have many affordable and good restaurants and cafés just around the corner.

To the Peachtree Suites

Canopy by Hilton

Hotelzimmer im Canopy By Hilton Jersey City Arts District
We especially like the huge, comfy beds at the Canopy (© Canopy By Hilton Jersey City Arts District)

The Canopy by Hilton in Jersey City is, as the name suggests, part of the Hilton Group. The 4-star hotel is quite new and offers you very good value for money and all the amenities that a Hilton hotel has in stock: upscale furnishings, large comfortable beds, and large rooms of 30-40m².

If you’re about to start your New York city trip or have a travel cancellation insurance and don’t need to cancel the hotel free of charge, the price is noteworthy again.

In the low season you can get a room for about 270 dollars a night, in January it’s even less. For families appreciating an upscale hotel like the Canopy by Hilton, there’s also a room with two double beds.

The location is great. The Grove Street Path station is right outside the door and it’s only a 10-minute walk to the Hudson River.

To the Canopy By Hilton Jersey City Arts District

Doubletree by Hilton

Hotelzimmer im DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel in Jersey City
The DoubleTree’s decor is elegant and clean (© DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel & Suites)

Another hotel in the Hilton chain. Everything we wrote about the Canopy by Hilton applies to the DoubleTree, except that the DoubleTree is a few years older.

The DoubleTree has some rooms with a really great view of New York’s skyline, because it’s only a few meters away from the Hudson River and no other big building blocks the view from the upper floors.

To the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel & Suites

Cheap hotels in Queens

Queens marked on a map of New York City
In Queens you can find comparatively affordable hotels and be in Manhattan in no time

The borough of Queens is east of Manhattan on the other side of the East River. So even from Queens you have a great view of the Manhattan skyline. 

Maybe you know Queens from King of Queens? Then you can imagine what it looks like.

If you don’t know King of Queens: It’s the largest of New York’s five boroughs, so of course it depends on where exactly you are in Queens. Think of it as the more chilled-out Manhattan – a mix of residential neighborhoods with traditional row houses and modern skyscrapers.

So what are the advantages to staying in Queens? Quite simply, the accommodations are cheaper than in Manhattan, you get great value for your money, and you’re still close to all of New York’s major attractions.

Another thing in favor of a hotel in Queens is the fact that two of New York’s airports are located there: JFK and La Guardia.

Here are three hotels that differ in location and price.

All hotels in Queens

LIC Plaza

Rooms at the LIC Plaza Hotel in Queens
You’ll have an affordable and nice stay at the LIC Plaza Hotel in Queens (© LIC Plaza Hotel)

The LIC Plaza in Queens is a good mid-range hotel without unnecessary knick-knacks in a very good location, with quite stable hotel rates around 215-270 dollars a night including breakfast.

The hotel is located near 3 subway lines. So it’s super uncomplicated and quick to get everywhere in Manhattan. To put it in perspective: you only need 15 minutes to the Times Square.

At the same time, you have a perfect infrastructure right on your doorstep: supermarkets, delis, restaurants, cafes. It’s all there!

To the LIC Plaza Hotel

Hyatt Place

Hotel room at the Hyatt Place Long Island
The value for money at Hyatt Place is amazing (© Hyatt Place Long Island)

The Hyatt Place in Queens is the most expensive of the three hotels we’re showing you for the borough. However, we really wanted to include it because it’s an amazing value for money.

The prices of the hotel fluctuate from month to month, also from day to day. But if you’re lucky, you can get a really good hotel for 215-325 dollars a night. 

The location is awesome. You have everything you need. And with three subway stations around the corner, you’re at Times Square in 15 minutes and JFK in 50 minutes.

To the Hyatt Place Long Island City

Holiday Inn Express Suites

Hotel room at the Holiday Inn Express & Suites
If you’re looking for a budget hotel in Queens, check out the Holiday Inn (© Holiday Inn Express & Suites)

The Holiday Inn Express & Suites is a bit deeper in Queens than the other two hotels.

It takes you about 30-40 minutes to get to the Times Square in Midtown. It’ll take you 40 minutes to JFK, and there’s a free shuttle to La Guardia.

The hotel is located on a major street, so it’s not quite as cozy as the other two. Nevertheless, the value for money is good.

In the low season you get a standard room from 170 dollars a night and even in the high season you stay with a little luck under 215 dollars. Breakfast is included.

To the Holiday Inn Express & Suites

Cheap hotels in the Bronx

The Bronx borough marked on a map of New York City
In the Bronx you can find comparatively affordable hotels with great value for money

You’re probably thinking “Are you guys crazy? I’m not staying overnight in the Bronx.”

And yes, we can understand that initial reaction. You may know the Bronx from movies – a run-down neighborhood, a social hot spot with a high crime rate.

If you ask us, the Bronx just has a really bad reputation and yes, there are still parts we wouldn’t recommend you to visit as a tourist.

But other than that, crime in the Bronx, just like all other parts of New York, has been decreasing since the 90s.

And aside from all the gangsters and gangs you see there, the Bronx has some really cool sights, like the Yankee Stadium, the Bronx Zoo, and the New York Botanical Garden. 

On top of that, staying in the Bronx gives you the opportunity to immerse yourself in the real life of typical New Yorkers.

We don’t want to persuade you to find a hotel in the Bronx. But it’s a possibility we’d like to show you.

The reason: Here, you can still find real hotel bargains.

We’d like to introduce you to two hotels that we’d book for ourselves.

Both were opened just a few years ago and are located near a metro station with which you’re in Midtown within 30-40 minutes. Breakfast is included and you almost always end up with a price under 215 dollars, sometimes even less.

Only in the absolute high season months you need to expect 270 dollars a night. Compared to the prices in Manhattan itself, this is still a great price in the high season.

Highbridge Hotel: not far from Yankees Stadium, directly at a subway station, breakfast included, about 35 minutes to Midtown.

Wingate by Wyndham: north of Harlem River, right at a subway station, breakfast included, about 25 minutes to Midtown.

The alternative: Stay even more affordable in New York in a hostel

Room at Nap York Central Park Sleep Station
Nap York is our top pick for a cool, modern hostel in New York (© Nap York Central Park Sleep Station)

Staying in a hostel in New York is out of the question for you? We understand you very well – our first thought is also always “Phew, we’re actually out of that age.”

But there are really good reasons for staying in a hostel in New York.

A hostel is a great alternative if:

  • you’re traveling alone
  • you’re traveling with friends – you can share a dorm room with 4 people, for example
  • you like the hostel feeling
  • you can do without a double bed in order to save a little money

If staying in a private room is important to you, the price difference between a cheap hotel with a double bed or a private room in a hostel is often not big enough to give up the comfort of a hotel.

We can recommend the following hostels in Manhattan:

Nap York: Good hostel in Midtown, just south of Central Park. It’s especially good for first-time visitors, because you have a great starting point for all the sights of the city. Cool, modern design and most privacy due to the pod-style of the beds.

American Dream New York: Not far from New York University (NYU), so in one of the trendiest neighborhoods of the city. 2-bed room with shared bathroom including breakfast from 185 dollars.

HI New York City Hostel: If we only look at the cheapest price, it would be this hostel in the Upper West Side, west of Central Park. There you can stay for about 65 dollars per person in a dorm room or as a group of 4 for about 215 dollars in a private room with 4 beds.

Affordable accommodation in New York with Airbnb?

On Airbnb, you can often find apartments that are sometimes cheaper than comparable hotel rooms. Nevertheless, we’d like to advise you against staying in an Airbnb apartment in New York. For one reason:

Airbnb has been illegal in New York since October 2016 (with exceptions).

Things have always been bad for affordable housing in New York. Of course, it didn’t help that the city was full of apartments rented solely through Airbnb.

To give you a rough idea of prices and the state of the New York housing market, a small shared room (a window is luxury!) with a private bathroom in Manhattan starts at 1700 dollars and ends at 3500 dollars.

It’s no wonder New Yorkers spend an average of 60 percent of their income on their rent.

Airbnb has made the situation worse in recent years, so they’ve adopted stricter guidelines.

This means that renting out apartments for short periods of time (less than a month) is illegal – regardless of whether it’s actually a private apartment that’s only rented out once in a while or an apartment that’s rented exclusively for rent.

The only exception is if only one room in an apartment is rented out and the actual owner of the apartment is also on site.

Since the introduction of the strict guidelines, tough controls have also been introduced. You yourself, as a visitor, are not threatened with any punishment. But it happens again and again that apartments were cancelled at short notice because there was a control. We’d not want to take the risk.

Do you have any tips for affordable accommodation in New York?

Have you found a good, affordable hotel in New York that you can recommend? Do you have any other tips or questions about staying in New York? Then we’d love to hear your comments!