ACF Nationals Planning

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Panayot Hitov
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ACF Nationals Planning

Post by Panayot Hitov » Wed Mar 01, 2017 2:07 am

Hi everyone,
Carleton College is going to ACF Nationals! :party:
ACF Nationals is in New York City!
I am having a hard time figuring out what to do re: lodging in NYC Hotels nearby are expensive, hostels nearby are cheap, hotels far away are cheap.
BUT: It occured to me that some people on the forums might have some advice/experience!
So...does anyone have suggestions/plans/advice for where to stay for ACF Nationals? Any response would be greatly appreciated!

Thanks!
Paul Kirk-Davidoff
Oakland Mills High School '14
Carleton College '18

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grapesmoker
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Re: ACF Nationals Planning

Post by grapesmoker » Wed Mar 01, 2017 12:59 pm

All of this obviously depends on your budget but here's the basic rundown:

Anything in Manhattan is going to be more expensive, as a rule, than anything not in Manhattan. The closer you are to downtown, the more expensive things are likely to be. A more reasonable thing to do is to look at Brooklyn and Queens, which are likely to be substantially less expensive, Queens being less expensive than Brooklyn. If you're considering Brooklyn, your trip to Columbia will likely involve transferring to the 1, 2, 3, or D trains somewhere around downtown/midtown. If you're thinking Queens, you'll probably take something like the N or W into Manhattan and transfer to one of the aforementioned lines around 34th St. Queens might be better if you're flying into LaGuardia, whereas Brooklyn is more convenient if you're coming to JFK. Another option would be to stay in New Jersey, in which case you'll be taking the PATH train into Manhattan to 34th St and transferring as above; this makes sense if you're flying to Newark. You could also stay in upper Manhattan if you find something there; it'll be more convenient for getting to the tournament but less so for getting to the airport.

Whatever you do, you should budget about an hour of transit from hotel to tournament site, as well as from airport to hotel and back. The good news is that most of these locations are very accessible by public transit, so you don't need to do much other than chill on a train. We'll update you with last-minute transportation details the week of the tournament, as line schedules are frequently shifted around due to repair work and such.
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Skepticism and Animal Feed
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Re: ACF Nationals Planning

Post by Skepticism and Animal Feed » Wed Mar 01, 2017 3:19 pm

In the past, large groups of quizbowl players have stayed in hotels in Secaucus, NJ for tournaments held at Columbia, and then taken the commuter rail from there into New York City. My knowledge of New York City area geography is hazy, but I believe this is on the same rail line as Newark International Airport, which is quietly becoming one of the major air travel hubs on the east coast and now serves more flights daily than LaGuardia.
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Re: ACF Nationals Planning

Post by alexdz » Wed Mar 01, 2017 3:27 pm

Skepticism and Animal Feed wrote:In the past, large groups of quizbowl players have stayed in hotels in Secaucus, NJ for tournaments held at Columbia, and then taken the commuter rail from there into New York City. My knowledge of New York City area geography is hazy, but I believe this is on the same rail line as Newark International Airport, which is quietly becoming one of the major air travel hubs on the east coast and now serves more flights daily than LaGuardia.
I believe Secaucus is in fact on the line between Newark and the city.
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Re: ACF Nationals Planning

Post by grapesmoker » Wed Mar 01, 2017 4:16 pm

The relationship between the various transit lines connecting Newark to the rest of the world is somewhat confusing; I believe this map represents our civilization's most advanced understanding of this space-time puzzle.
Jerry Vinokurov
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lumosityfan
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Re: ACF Nationals Planning

Post by lumosityfan » Wed Mar 01, 2017 4:24 pm

I can confirm that Secaucus is on the line that connects Newark to New York City. Speaking of which, if you were to arrive at Newark, I would also recommend as another option taking the NJ Transit Northeast Corridor line from Newark Airport to 1) wherever you're staying and 2) to New York Penn Station and then transferring as aforementioned. Also, Jerry's map of the AirTrain Newark is very useful as well.
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Re: ACF Nationals Planning

Post by jonpin » Wed Mar 01, 2017 6:07 pm

Another possibility is various hotels in the Fort Lee / Edgewater / Englewood area that are on the west side of the George Washington Bridge. There are a number of buses that can take you to the GW Bus Terminal, from which it is a short ride south to Columbia. The downside is that it's harder to get to this hotels upon arrival (Fort Lee and vicinity are not on any rail lines).
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Re: ACF Nationals Planning

Post by Ethnic history of the Vilnius region » Thu Mar 02, 2017 10:05 am

I wanted to give an idea of what driving into town was like for my team. Our team stayed at some cheap hotels in Secaucus. For a variety of reasons, we drove into town. In case anyone is driving into Manhattan from NJ or the outer boroughs, I found that traffic wasn't too bad. The tolls are expensive. There was street parking. I avoided getting ticketed 3/4 days, but I did get a ticket one day because they were street cleaning (even though a meter maid said it would be ok to park there. Sigh.).

Ultimately, I'd recommend taking a train mainly because it's cheaper and you can avoid parking issues. But if you have to drive out of necessity like we did, it worked out without too much incident.
Eric D.
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ryanrosenberg
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Re: ACF Nationals Planning

Post by ryanrosenberg » Thu Mar 02, 2017 10:13 am

Parking-wise, there is metered parking on 120th St between Broadway and Amsterdam (probably the safest bet, and not too expensive). There is free street parking on 121st and 122nd, but make sure, as Eric notes, to check that there's no cleaning going on and you can park there.
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Re: ACF Nationals Planning

Post by Steeve Ho You Fat » Thu Mar 02, 2017 8:45 pm

When MSU went, we stayed in a hostel at Amsterdam and 103rd. I found the hostel to be reasonably priced and fairly pleasant, not anything super crazy but clean and friendly, just bring earplugs. It is within walking distance of Columbia and a bus stop for the M60 bus that runs directly between LaGuardia and the Upper West Side. If you fly into JFK, you can take the A train to within a few blocks from the Howard Beach station.
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