Long Weekend in NYC for the US Open: A 5-Day Itinerary

Travel Advisor Juli Hall sitting outdoors on stairs in denim shirt.
Curated By

Juli Hall

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  • USA

  • New York

  • New York City

  • Domestic Travel

  • Tennis

  • Sports Travel

  • Sightseeing

large crowded tennis stadium during daytime
Curator’s statement

The US Open is the final grand slam tournament in professional tennis and it is hosted every year in New York City. If you love tennis and the energy of Manhattan, then you should absolutely consider attending the US Open for a long weekend! The US Open starts in late August and runs for two weeks. The tournament is fast-paced, and energetic, and is all tennis, day and night. The US Open is held at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows, which is located in Queens, a borough of New York City. It truly makes for a perfect balance of sporting event and fun in the city. I've attended the US Open three times so far and it is truly one of my favorite tennis events. Steeped in tradition and excitement for the sport, it is absolutely an event every tennis fan should experience at least once! In this guide, I will share a suggested long weekend itinerary and some tips and tricks to make your visit to the US Open and New York City stress-free and fun!

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Where to stay

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Kimpton Hotel Eventi

Stylish high-rise property in New York City with locally-decorated, upscale rooms and suites.

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Lotte New York Palace

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The Chatwal, New York City

Set in Midtown Manhattan, this luxury boutique hotel offers a city refuge: a renowned spa, an indoor saltwater pool and a trendy restaurant - all just steps from the action-packed streets of New York.

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Day 1: Arrive in NYC

aerial view of skyscrapers and park next to body of water during daytime

Before coming to the US Open for a long weekend, you need to be sure you get your tickets in advance. They sell out every year and are very hard to come by, especially as the tournament progresses. Tickets go on sale in April and the tournament offers individual tickets as well as packages. If you are coming for a long weekend and plan to attend multiple days of the tournament, a package might be your best deal.

One tip: if you are buying individual tickets on back-to-back days, alternate between day and night if you want to see a variety of players. You can always go early or stay late and watch matches on the smaller courts or practice courts.

If at all possible, I recommend flying into LaGuardia International Airport, you'll see why later on in this guide!

On your first day, I recommend you head to your hotel and enjoy dinner in the city. There are endless options to choose from and it may depend on where you stay but some of my favorites are Baker & Co in the West Village or Butter in Midtown.

Day 2: Catch a day or night match (or both!)

two people facing a tennis court in a crowded stadium

If you are in the city for the US Open, chances are you will want to go to the US Open. If you have day tickets, give yourself at least an hour to get to Flushing Meadows. There are two ways to get there, either by subway or by Long Island Railroad.

Do not try to take a ride-share or taxi - the traffic will be terrible and will cost you a fortune. In New York City, public transportation is the absolute best way to commute.

If you have day tickets, I strongly encourage you to get breakfast in the city before jumping on your train. The food in the tennis complex is extremely expensive and much of it is just ok, so grab a good breakfast to jumpstart your day.

A few of my favorites are Friedman's, Essa-a-Bagel or Brooklyn Bagel & Coffe Co. All have a variety of locations in the city.

If you are spending the morning in the city, it would be a great time to walk around since you'll be sitting for hours later. Some of my favorite spots to explore are Chelsea Market, Little Island or Hudson Yards.

Hanging out in the Chelsea neighborhood will give you easy access to Penn Station where you can grab a train to head to the night matches.

Day 3: Enjoy a full day of matches

blue tennis racket on a court with two tennis balls

The US Open is a scene within itself. If you can spend all day there, I'd recommend it!

Morning matches start at 11am and evening matches start at 7pm. Getting tickets gives you the freedom to explore everything the US Open has to offer, including but not limited to, art displays, outdoor seating with giant televisions, sit down restaurants, shopping, and games and activities presented by USTA and other sponsors.

You can also watch matches on smaller courts, try to catch a glimpse of your favorite player on the practice courts during the downtimes between matches. No matter what give yourself extra time and be sure to walk the grounds and take it all in. The US Open does an amazing job of creating a safe, clean, welcoming environment. Even if you aren't watching a match, the energy there is contagious.

If half-days are more your style, that works too, since there is so much to do in the city. The key to a successful New York City visit is to focus on one neighborhood or area at a time. You'll see more and walk less.

If this is your first trip to Manhattan, be sure to visit lower Manhattan and explore SoHo, Little Italy and Chinatown, walk over the Brooklyn Bridge, visit the 9/11 Museum and if time permits wander through Greenwich Village or perhaps stop there for dinner and drinks. There are so many options in this area!

Day 4: Take a tennis break to explore the city

yellow taxis on street next to buildings

Need a break from sports? The good news is the city is filled with endless options for theater and the arts. Whether you want to spend the day on visiting museums such as MOMA, The Guggenheim, The American Museum of Natural History or The Metropolitan Museum of Art, there is no doubt you'll find something to inspire you.

More of a theater person? On Sundays, Broadway offers two shows, a matinee and an evening show. Performances on Broadway vary so be sure to check out the current list of shows that running.

Exploring the arts in the city will likely keep you between Central Park and Times Square. This is a great area to spend a day, offering a mix of shopping, dining and time outside. Don't miss a walk through the park - on a beautiful fall day, you will truly feel a part of the city.

Need a sweet treat to keep you energized? Do not miss grabbing a chocolate chip cookie at LeVain Bakery. They might be the best chocolate chip cookies I've ever eaten. I get (at least) one every time I'm in the city.

Day 5: Catch a final match and fly home

aerial view of large, crowded tennis stadium

Let's circle back to flying into LaGuardia, if you are going day matches and flying out in the evening, you'll want to book your tickets in and out of LaGuardia because the Billie Jean King Tennis Center and the airport are both in Queens and from the tennis complex you can take a bus to the airport.

You might be thinking, "What about my suitcase?". No worries, the US Open has that covered with a baggage check available for luggage. Baggage checks are located by the South and East Gates. You'll check them before entering the grounds. There is a small fee for checking a bag but it's totally worth it for the ease and convenience of not having to go back into the city.

One tip: give yourself plenty of time, it's likely many people will have the same plan so lines to grab your luggage and catch a bus can be long so you don't want to cut it too close.

Need to Know

For more city travel tips, check out 3 Family-Friendly Days in Barcelona.

Travel Advisor Juli Hall sitting outdoors on stairs in denim shirt.

Travel Advisor

Juli Hall

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This guide is part of our ongoing series on travel to New York City.