CUNY Libraries Offer Free Access to New York Times

Update (12/21/2015): The NYTimes Academic Pass now also includes free access to the NYTimes tablet apps! If you’re just creating your account now, eligibility for the tablet apps is included. If you signed up for your pass in the past and don’t have access to the tablet apps, you must deactivate and reactivate your pass. Learn more.

The Graduate Center Library is thrilled to announce that we, along with our fellow CUNY libraries, have subscribed to the NYTimes Academic Pass. This means that anyone with a valid CUNY email address can sign up for free access to the website and smartphone apps! It also means that you can cancel your personal subscription to! (But first, read the “Restrictions” section below to make sure you want to cancel.)


How to Register for Your Free Academic Pass:

  1. Go to
  2. Click “Create Account” to create a account using your or email address. If you already have a NYTimes account (free or paid) tied to your CUNY email, you need to unlink your CUNY email from that account before signing up for your Academic Pass. Log in to, click your username in the top right corner, select “My Account,” and replace your CUNY address with a non-CUNY one. You can then use your CUNY address to register for your pass.
  3. After creating your account, you will be prompted to check your email. Look for the confirmation message, which should arrive within 15 minutes.
  4. Click the link in the confirmation email. This will simultaneously verify your eligibility and grant your Academic Pass, which will provide access to for 52 weeks.
  5. If you don’t get the confirmation email, check your spam filter. If you still do not receive it, send an email from your CUNY email account to

Annual Renewals and Ongoing Use: Once you have activated your Academic Pass, you should have full access for 52 weeks (364 days) with no further action on your part. If you see a message that you are reaching the limit of free articles on the site, you’re probably not logged in. Simply log back in and this will activate another renewal for an additional 364 day cycle.

Smartphone Apps: Your Academic Pass includes access to the NYTimes smartphone apps. Also, once you have registered your Academic Pass, you can access on most web-capable devices.


  • Academic Passes do not include print copies, e-reader editions, Premium Crosswords, or the NYTimes Crosswords app.
  • Academic Passes offer very limited access to articles from 1923 to 1980. However, the Graduate Center community has access to that content through the library’s subscription to the New York Times Archive database, accessible on the library website.
  • If you have a personal subscription that includes features not available through the Academic Pass, you may not want to cancel your subscription. (Or you might want to cancel only part of your subscription.)

Canceling a Personal Subscription: To cancel your personal subscription, call NYTimes customer service at 1-800-NYTIMES or, if you subscribed through iTunes, follow these instructions. There may be other things you have to do, depending on the device you have been using to read the NYTimes. If you had an annual subscription, you will receive a refund for the unused portion of the year. If you had a monthly subscription, you will not receive a refund for the month in which you cancel.

Please take advantage of this fantastic offer, and spread the word among your CUNY colleagues! If you have questions, contact the Graduate Center Library at 212-817-7077 or via chat.

About the Author

Jill Cirasella is the Scholarly Communication Librarian and University Liaison at the CUNY Graduate Center.