5 Live Show Tapings to See in New York City for Free

by  Zachary Laks | Feb 2, 2015
New York City
New York City / Joecho-16/iStock

[Updated May 2016]

One of New York City’s best in-the-know entertainment offerings won’t cost you even a cent. For your next trip, why not be part of the audience for one of your favorite daytime TV shows? Many popular programs are filmed in NYC and welcome studio audiences for free. As an audience member, you’ll get an eye-opening glimpse at what goes on beyond the cameras. Plus, you can see some of your favorite shows, as well as some A-list stars. This is a great way to spend a budget-friendly morning in New York, and if you’re lucky, you may even walk away with some swag. Come prepared to laugh, and look your best – after all, you’re going to be on national TV.

And if you're looking for even more ideas for attending free live tapings in both New York and Los Angeles, check out our previous list.

Good Morning America (ABC)
Good Morning America, with anchors Robin Roberts, Lara Spencer, George Stephanopoulos, and Michael Strahan, films in the heart of Times Square. Be prepared to get up extra early: a 6 a.m. arrival is required for audience members who reserve spots in advance. Live news studios like the one at GMA are small and have limited space, so be sure to book up to three months prior to your desired date. Audience spots in the studio are standing room only, so consider that when forming your party. With a taping that lasts two hours from 7 to 9 a.m., a visit to the Good Morning America studio is a great way to start a day in New York.

Ticket reservations: 212-580-5176
Location: Times Square at Broadway and West 44th Street
Schedule: Monday through Friday

Today (NBC)
Join the crowd gathered around Rockefeller Plaza every weekday morning for the Today show, NBC’s long-running morning program anchored by Matt Lauer and Savannah Guthrie. Utilizing the many open-air gathering spots at Rockefeller Plaza, the Today hosts and correspondents are known for interacting with the audience on air. Though no reservations are required, take the time to fill out this form to let producers know you are coming, as alerting them of your intended visit can lead to greater access. Come prepared with colorful signs and shoutouts, as you will most certainly have your moment on national television.

Ticket reservations: No tickets are necessary; RSVP with this form.
Location: 30 Rockefeller Plaza at West 48th Street between Fifth and Sixth Avenue
Schedule: Monday through Friday, 7-11 a.m; Saturday, 7-9 a.m.; Sunday 8-9 a.m.

Related: How to Score Free Tickets to the Biggest TV Tapings in NYC & LA (Think: Jimmy Fallon and Ellen)

The Rachael Ray Show (syndicated)
Rachael Ray’s affable personality creates a lively atmosphere at her Chelsea-based TV studio (pictured above). Admire the chef-turned-lifestyle-guru’s attractive kitchen and hope for tastings from her celebrity-chef guests. Expect to see movie stars and popular musicians stop by to chat and stir up goodies in the kitchen with Rachael. Reservations are required, and be prepared to wait up to an hour and a half before the taping begins.

Ticket reservations: Available online
Location: Chelsea Television Studios; 221 West 26th Street between Seventh and Eighth avenues
Schedule: Tuesday through Thursday at 11 a.m., 2:30 p.m., and 4:15 p.m. Audiences must arrive an hour prior to the taping.

The View (ABC)
The legendary roundtable of female power players welcomes a live studio audience daily to delight in discussions on headlines and celebrity gossip. As a long-running daytime staple, nearly all of Hollywood’s A-list makes its way to The View to promote, catch up, and have a laugh. With an incredibly high demand for tickets to the show, plan up to a year in advance when making reservations to increase your chances of securing a studio seat.

Ticket reservations: Available online
Location: 320 West 66th Street between West End Avenue and Freedom Place
Schedule: Monday through Thursday 11 a.m. to noon with an additional show taping during the week to be aired on Friday; Audiences must arrive by 9:30 a.m.

Live! with Kelly (syndicated)
The perfect kick-start to your day, Live! with Kelly, hosted by Kelly Ripa, continues its run as a morning TV phenomenon, filmed in front of its boisterous studio audience. Ripa knows how to make an audience feel special, as she's known to regularly interact with attendees on and off camera.

Ticket reservations: Available online
Location: 7 Lincoln Square off of Columbus Avenue and West 67th Street
Schedule: Monday through Friday, 9-10 a.m. weekdays; Audiences must arrive by 7:45 a.m.

Find The Best Cruises
Find a cruise

Find the best deals!

Click on multiple sites to get the lowest prices

Click on multiple sites to get the lowest prices