IDNYC Offers Students Affordable Perks Across the City


Grace Halio

A government-issued identification card, IDNYC grants New York City residents access to public libraries, schools, and city services.

Téa Kvetenadze, Contributing Writer

In an effort to continue the university’s affordability efforts, NYU has partnered with IDNYC, a program that provides free government-issued identification cards for New York City residents. The move comes as part of NYU’s Affordability Steering Committee’s fall report to the University Senate.

NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio launched IDNYC in January 2015, and it has since become the largest identification program in the country. It was designed as a way to administer identification to communities in NYC that may have had difficulties obtaining photo identifications otherwise: undocumented immigrants, formerly incarcerated people, people experiencing homeless and the elderly.

Students can begin capitalizing on IDNYC benefits now — the card not only provides a source of identification, but it also yields citywide perks, including various discounts and memberships.

NYU plans to host pop-up enrollment centers on campus in the spring to encourage all students to sign up for the program.

Director of NYU Government Affairs Jennifer Pautz said the university will be working with the program to ensure that all students living on campus will be able to receive this identification, regardless of their New York residency.

“Students living on campus come from all over and are not always able to produce proof of residency at their dorm address,” Pautz said. “We are working with the city to ensure that students living on campus can provide proof of residency through documents our residence life office is able to provide. This proof of residency is important for our students just arriving in New York and will enable them to sign up for IDNYC and receive benefits.”

Despite efforts by NYU to spread the word about the program during a citywide “Day of Action” in September, many students remain unaware of the existence of IDNYC and its benefits.

NYU tried spreading the word about this program during a citywide “Day of Action” in September. However, students such as CAS senior Mike Sabarese are skeptical of the extent to which this identification can benefit NYU students.

“Being an NYU student I had a lot of access to similar perks,” he said. But he thinks this identification can benefit him as he prepares to graduate this year.

Those interested in applying for the cards can learn more here. Below are some of the highlights this card has to offer.


Cardholders have access to 40 participating museums, zoos, theaters and cultural institutions across all five boroughs. While some, such as the MoMa and the Museum of the Moving Image, are already free with an NYU ID, IDNYC covers many other ones: the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the public garden at Wave Hill and many more.


IDNYC members are granted 25 percent off The New York Pass, which provides free access to over 80 tourist attractions, such as the Statue of Liberty and the Empire State Building.


IDNYC provides movie tickets for as little as $8 and also gives discounts to ballets, operas and many more shows. Sports fans can also save on tickets to see a variety of New York teams.


IDNYC cardholders also have access to a number of health and fitness benefits, including free or reduced gym memberships to fitness venues such as YMCA and Modell’s Sporting Goods. The card also allows students to save 15 percent on first-year Citi Bike membership. IDNYC also provides access to BigAppleRx, NYC’s official prescription drug discount card.

Email Téa Kvetenadze at [email protected].