Ask me anything about New York and Manhattan (NYC)
I don't claim to be an expert on NYC at all. Just trying to be helpful here and I'm sure lots of people will be able to chime in. I'll try and keep the OP updated with links and info as much as I can as well as I seem to be browsing the travel forum a lot more than the hot deals forum lately.
Here's a great overview of NYC from one of my fave travel sites
Driving to Manhattan from Toronto can be done pretty easily and is very cost effective if you have even 4 people and a rental car. The most often quoted route is the default route given by Mapquest and Google Maps. This route will take you from Toronto -> Niagara -> NYC. The alternative route that I prefer is Toronto -> Kingston/100 Islands -> NYC. I find it more scenic and the flow of traffic much faster on the 401 than the US Interstates.
Parking your car in Manhattan is going to be expensive. Period. I recommend not driving into Manhattan if at all possible. If you HAVE to drive into Manhattan try www.iconparking.com or www.bestparking.com to see what kind of rates you can get in your neighborhood.
User CCHIU had this to say about cheap parking in Manhattan:
"While it is expensive on weekdays, on weekends it is not and you may even be able to find free parking if you go several blocks away from Times Square...say, 57th and 8th. If you want something closer, you can use paid street parking. It's not terribly expensive ($12 for 6 hours I believe)."
I've also recommended that if you're driving to NYC to try and leave your car at a SECURE lot at one of the outer boroughs, or at one of the 3 airports that surround Manhattan. It's not necessarily safer than parking in Manhattan but it will be cheaper! Keep in mind if you're outside Manhattan and are driving in daily that you'll have bridge tolls to pay.
Flying to NYC is relatively expensive compared to flying to say Europe. That said, if it's a trip for a couple, flying is probably the best way to go. A way to fly cheaply is to drive to Buffalo airport and hop on JetBlue or another US carrier.
Gangstarr has provided a VERY helpful post on how to travel from Toronto to Buffalo airport to take advantage of those cheap flights to NYC.
http://www.redflagdeals.com/forums/show ... p?t=533376
There are bus tours that go to NYc fairly cheaply. I only really know of the Tai Pan bus tours but greyhound may be an option. I'll fill this section out more as people chime in.
Here's a very detailed review of the Greyhound NEON experience
http://www.redflagdeals.com/forums/show ... tcount=415
There is a very good post HERE on how to best get to NYC from Toronto by flying out of Buffalo
The train is prolly a good option for a solo traveller or a pair of people if you want a nice relaxing route that I hear goes through some scenic areas. I've just gotten more current info on the train. The wikipedia page for the Maple Leaf route is quite detailed and has direct links to both the VIA Rail website and the AMTrak website
Taxi (From airport)
My only experience first hand with a Taxi from the airport is from LaGuardia airport (LGA). It's about $30-$35 USD for the taxi ride depending on traffice. Make sure to pack money for the bridge toll which is about $2 if I remember correctly.
EDIT: On my last trip to NYC on Sept/07 the cabbie is now supposed to pay for the toll and add the price to the final cost of the trip. They are also supposed to use the quick pay lane and pass along the savings to you. You can of course opt to pay the toll in cash to the driver in advance but there's no real need. All this is detailed on the back seat of NY cabs. Whether or not New Jersey cabs follow this convention is unknown to me at this point.