No laundry in the basement? Or just don't feel like schlepping it downstairs? No problem. Outsource it. But with myriad services that'll do your laundry, fold it and send it out, how do you know which is right for you? We test-drove a few of them so you don’t have to.
Cost: Prices vary. Pickup and delivery are free if your order totals $15 or more, but there’s a $4 surcharge on orders totaling less than $15. There are also extra charges for add-ons, such as eco-friendly detergent, washing whites in a separate machine, and boxing up shirts.
Geographic coverage: Manhattan below 125th Street and northwest areas of Brooklyn like Greenpoint and Williamsburg.
Pros: The app is user-friendly—it even tells you exactly when your pickup will be—and the delivery people are pleasant. You get a free laundry bag with your load. And they have an overnight wash n’ fold service so if you get your laundry in before 11 pm, you could have it delivered as early as 7 am the next day.
Cons: At times, the app can be glitchy, and it doesn’t service every neighborhood in NYC. (Note: Since we reviewed FlyCleaners, there have been lots of Yelp reviews claiming lost laundry.)
Cost: $1.48 per pound. $30 minimum.
Geographic coverage: 19 Manhattan nabes, including the Upper West Side and Upper East Side and down; eight neighborhoods in Brooklyn; and Woodside and Long Island City in Queens.
Pros: A new laundry bag and responsive customer service.
Cons: The $30 minimum is too high. The website could use a redesign. And it can take more than a day to get your laundry back, which is just not that convenient. (There’s a $7 fee for next business day delivery that first-time users don’t have to pay.) Also, pick-ups are in three-hour windows (four hours on the weekend).
Cost: $1.50 per pound.
Geographic coverage: Manhattan only, from Harlem to the West Village and East Harlem to the Lower East Side (not including SoHo and points south).
Pros: The (very polite) pick-up valet weighs the laundry at your door so you’ll know exactly how much you’ll owe. Plus, underwear and socks come in their own wrapped bag to prevent loss.
Cons: One-hour pick-up windows that can be slightly inconvenient (especially during the morning rush). Plus, the 24-hour turnaround time can feel very long.
DISCOUNT DRY CLEANERS
Cost: 99 cents per pound; $1 extra to separate the laundry.
Geographic coverage: East Village, Gramercy Park.
Pros: They offer same-day service if laundry is collected before 9 am. And, at 99 cents a pound, they’re pretty affordable.
Cons: The laundry is simply folded (instead of neatly tucked in department-store style) and socks are often inside out (or just lost). Plus, they’re closed Sundays.
A LOCAL LAUNDROMAT
Cost: $9 for a minimum of eight pounds; $11.20 for 10 pounds. Add $1.10 for each additional pound. $1 charge for fabric softener, and $3 to separate the laundry.
Geographic coverage: Everywhere. If you’re willing to schlep your stuff there, it’ll get done.
Pros: Pick-up and delivery are free. Clothes are nicely folded.
Cons: Pricing can be steep. And it can be a pain to haul your clothes there (if you opt not to sign up for pick-up and delivery).
For more, read “Wash and Learn: Our Testers Take NYC Laundry Services Out for a Spin.”
In Case You Missed It: Every so often, BrickUnderground digs through the archives to find the best advice our experts have shared through the years.