Observatory Visitor Tips
Updated March 6, 2013
To get the most out of your visit to our iconic attraction, we suggest you consider the following:
- We're open! The Observatory is open from 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 a.m. daily.
- Buy your tickets inside the Empire State Building or on our website. The Empire State Building is not affiliated with any street sales agents who approach visitors outside the building.
- At present, we are experiencing wait times ranging from 10-30 minutes to the 86th Floor Observation Deck; our wait times will increase during the holiday period. If you want the shortest wait time, we recommend you avoid the following hours: 10:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. and visit us either first thing in the morning or after 11:00 p.m.
- Pressed for time? Purchase an Express Pass. Consider purchasing our Express Pass, which allows you to bypass all lines up and down. Visit the Buy Tickets page for ticket options.
- Buy your tickets online and print them at home or at your hotel. Purchase your tickets online, print them, and bring them with you. You will save time by skipping the ticket line. Visit the Buy Tickets page.
- Travel light. Consider not bringing luggage, large bags and strollers to the Observatory. This will save you time in security, and you will be happy you are not carrying items.
- Dress warmly. While we feature climate-controlled indoor viewing galleries, experiencing the views from our outdoor exterior deck on the 86th floor is not to be missed.
We look forward to welcoming you to New York and to the unparalleled 360° viewing experience at the Empire State Building. Enjoy the views!