How to get from New York to New Orleans 

Exploring cities like New York and New Orleans should be high on everyone's travel bucket list but exploring them on the same vacation is a once-in-a-lifetime adventure you don't want to miss out on. Super popular among travellers looking for the excitement of a big city mixed with the laidback, easy-going nature of another, a New York to New Orleans trip is filled with bright lights, historical places, national parks, and more music than you can possibly listen to. While embarking on a road trip between the two iconic destinations is definitely the best way to experience as much as possible, there are a few other ways to get from New York to New Orleans; either by flying or catching the train. 

Flying from New York to New Orleans

Flying from John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) in New York to Louis Armstrong International Airport (MSY) in New Orleans is the quickest and easiest way to travel between the two destinations. Although you won't get to experience cities like Memphis or stop off at iconic locations such as Graceland along the way, you'll have plenty of time to explore the Big Apple and the Big Easy (and you're going to need as much time as you can get). 

Flying between the two destinations takes approximately 3 and a half hours and will set you back anywhere from USD$75 to $164 (one way) depending on what airline you're travelling with, what season you're travelling in, and how far in advance you booked your tickets. There are several airlines to choose from including United Airlines, Spirit Airlines, American Airlines, and Delta, so you're sure to find a flight, and a price, that works for you. 

Catching a train from New York to New Orleans

Travelling by train from New York to New Orleans is another great way to move between the two cities easily and efficiently. 

While it's not the quickest form of transportation (the journey will take you around 32 hours direct), it does allow for you to stop at destinations that pique your interest along the way, such as Philadelphia in Pennsylvania or Charlotte in North Carolina. These services are operated by Amtrack via the Crescent route. 

However, Amtrack also offers direct services if you prefer to spend the majority of your time between the two cities instead of stopping off at other stations. A train fare will set you back roughly USD$174 (one way) but this price is subject to change during peak seasons. You can also book a room on the train if you're looking for a more comfortable way to spend the 30hour+ journey with prices starting at USD$478. 

Amtrack operates trains that run daily from Moynihan Train Hall at Penn Station in New York to Union Passenger Terminal in New Orleans so make sure you book your tickets in advance to avoid any disruptions or delays. 

Driving from New York to New Orleans

Driving from New York to New Orleans is one of the best ways to experience both destinations and still have time to explore several other cities and famous landmarks along the way. Driving gives you the freedom to stop whenever you want to (and how long for) while also being quicker than taking the train. If you were to drive direct from New York to New Orleans, the trip would take you roughly 18 hours but it could take longer if there are unforeseen traffic issues or weather conditions. 

There are a few ways you can drive the 2100km+ depending on where you might want to stop and explore. See below the three different routes recommended for driving between the two destinations:

  • the first route will take you through Pennsylvania, Ohio, Tennesee, Kentucky, and then down through Alabama and Mississippi, and into Louisiana via the I-80 W and I-65 S. This will take 20 hours direct. 
  • the second route will take you through Pennsylvania, Virginia, Tennesee, Georgia, Alabama, and then Mississippi through to New Orleans via the I-85 S, I-59 S. This will take 18 hours direct. 
  • the third route will take you through New Jersey, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Alabama, before moving through Mississippi and into New Orleans via the I-95 S and I-85 S. This will take you 18 hours and 6 minutes direct. 

All of these routes feature toll roads so be mindful of that when planning out your road trip. 

Click to read more about what to pack for a trip from New York to New Orleans

Click to return to the New York to New Orleans FAQs

Read more about the United States