Our Favorite Cheap Hotels in Manhattan

Budget hotels in New York

One Manhattan budget hotel option: the West Side YMCA. Photo by Jeff Dobbins

Looking for a cheap hotel in Manhattan? We don’t blame you. With a shortage of hotel rooms, and an “average” room rate of $275 a night, affordable accommodations in New York can be elusive to say the least!

Fortunately, there are a few alternatives to budget-busting hotels. Yes, you’ll usually have to sacrifice room size and amenities (like, um, private bathrooms and elevators), but if cost is a priority, the following places are all clean, convenient, comfy, and a genuine bargain compared to the usual hotel rates for New York City.

Here are some of our favorite cheap hotels in Manhattan! And while you’re here, hopefully you get a chance to take one of our New York walking tours.

Please note: Many of these hotels are small, and should be booked well in advance, especially during high tourist season (mid-November to New Year and summer).

YMCAs: While not actually hotels, three Manhattan YMCAs (like the one shown at top) offer guest rooms that are a great value. Each excellent location is very clean and safe, with minuscule private rooms (some with bunk beds) that share large, immaculate baths. Other perks include access to the fitness facilities and free Wifi. All are close to subways. Rates begin at $82.

Westside YMCA (beside Central Park)
5 West 63rd St. 917.441.8800

Vanderbilt YMCA
224 East 47th St. 212.912-2500

Harlem YMCA
180 W. 135th Street 212.912. 2100 

Broadway Hotel and Hostel: Located in one of the city’s finest neighborhoods (the Upper West Side) with one of the best subway lines close at hand, this is an excellent budget option. The hotel offers “2-bed dorms” (bunk beds) for $60 per person, private rooms with shared bath for $128, and privates with bath for $168. Amenities include stylish common areas (including a shared kitchen), computer room (for a fee), and free wifi. Broadway and 110th St. (212) 865-7710. 

Hotel 17: The lovely Gramercy location (three blocks east of Union Square and subways) makes this small hotel a bargain. The rooms (most quite small) all have shared bath and begin at $79 for a single (up to $175 for a triple). Despite the tacky décor, the hotel receives good guest reviews on Yelp. 225 E 17th St. (212) 475-2845. 

St. Mark’s Hotel: On the rialto of the East Village, this hotel is in the midst of funky restaurants, shops, tattoo and piercing parlors, and convenient to the West Village and subway. Guests have grumbled about the very small, very basic rooms, and lack of elevator (not great with heavy luggage), but with rates from $95 to $145, it’s an undeniable bargain. No credit cards. 2 St. Marks Place. (212) 674-0100.

Americana Inn: This midtown budget hotel is close to Fifth Avenue, the Empire State Building, Macy’s, Times Square, and several subways. Rooms are small and plain, with shared bathrooms and kitchenette on each floor. Prices range from singles from $147, doubles from $225. 69 W. 38th St. (212) 840-6700 or (888) HOTEL58.

Carlton Arms (a.k.a. the Artbreak Hotel): Located in north Gramercy (a couple blocks east of Madison Square Park), each of the 54 rooms is themed and painted by a different artist. There’s no elevator and many rooms have a shared bath, but rates begin at $70, and weekly rates are available. Hardly posh, but it is a unique New York experience. East 25th St. and Third Ave. (212) 679-0680 or (212) 684-8337.

Budget hotel Manhattan

The Jane Hotel, one great budget hotel in New York City. Photo courtesy of the Jane

The Jane: At the end of a charming cobblestone street in the West Village, this waterfront hotel has been completely renovated with stylish décor. The small standard and bunk bed “cabins” are decorated like ship cabins and have shared baths. Larger “Captain’s cabins” have private baths. Amenities include free wifi and use of bicycles. Rates for the small cabins start at $99. 113 Jane St. (212) 924-6700.

The Pod Hotel: This chic, convenient Midtown East hotel features great common areas, including an outdoor café, bar/lounge, and rooftop garden. The “pods” (rooms) are cozy and a mix of private or shared baths. Each features free wifi, LCD TVs, and safes. Rates begin at $75 and vary quite a bit by season. 230 East 51st St. (at 3rd Ave). (800) 742-5945. A new Pod Hotel opened in Murray Hill in 2012.

East Village Bed & Coffee: This boutique guesthouse is really a B&B without the breakfast. Each of the 10 rooms (some quite small) are charming with shared bathrooms. Common spaces on each floor include full kitchens and computers for use, and there’s free wifi and a garden. Rates range from $120 up to $175 for a quad. 110 Avenue C (between East 7th & 8th St.). (917) 816-0071.

Budget hotel near Central Park

At the Astor on the Park, you’re within a stone’s throw of Central Park. Photo by Allan Einhorn

Astor on the Park: Across the street from Central Park (many rooms have Park views) at West 106th Street, this is one budget choice where you won’t have to sacrifice amenities. Rooms are standard size and all come with private baths. Subways are close by and the Upper West Side neighborhood has plenty of convenient stores and restaurants. Rates: $110 to $233. 465 Central Park West.

Comfort Inn Chelsea: Just north of the Flatiron District and beside Madison Square Park, this branch of the Comfort Inns chain has a great location. Standard rooms (all with bath) include free wifi, hot breakfast, and an exercise room. Rates begin at $109 and climb according to season. 18 West 25th St. (212) 645-3990.

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