I treasure my MOMA membership. It enables me to visit any time without ticket lines, go to members exhibition previews and early hours, visit exhibitions that require timed ticketing without timed tickets, get 10 and sometimes 20 percent off at the gift shop, get 10 percent off at the cafes (I love the one on the second floor. I still haven't been to the fancy restaurant and bar but someday I will go), bring up to 5 guests for 5 dollars each and see all MOMA movies for FREE. I can also visit PS 1.
If I am NOT stopping in for a particular exhibit or movie, I like to start at the TOP (6th floor) where the special exhibits are, move to floors 5 and 4 where "old friends" and favorite pieces from the permanent collection can be found and spot art I think I've never seen (the collection is vast and pieces are rotated), and move down to floors 3 and 2 for photography, design, architectural, video and other special exhibits.
Last week, on my way down, I discovered the temporary Sanja Iveković: Sweet Violence and realized I needed to spend more time here. I will be back before it closes at the end of March.
If you have a smartphone, you will find many ways to use it to enhance your visit.
In nice weather, the sculpture garden (see left and notice "water tower" art piece in the upper right) becomes an oasis if I am in midtown with some time on my hands.
Now for the MATH part. At 85 dollars for a membership and 5 dollars each for up to 5 guest fees, if 4 adults are visiting you break even on your first visit and get major discounts in the MOMA gift shops. If there are more than 4 adults, you save money.
If you are spending time or staying with a friend who lives in the New York area, a membership is a thank you gift that keeps on giving.
If you live, work or visit mid-town Manhattan frequently, this membership is a no brainer. If you are a movie buff who likes watching movies in a theatre, the membership pays for itself in 8 movies.
If you are someone who gets "museumed" out and are visiting for several days, you can stop in for short visits whenever you want. So? What's taking you so long? I hope to see you at MOMA soon.