If you call it The Big Apple, New York, NYC or the city that never sleeps, you’re pretty much correct.
I have been visiting New York for over 30 times and every time I am here, I just can’t stop enjoying everything vibrant the city has on offer.
Whether it’s a walk in Times Square, grabbing a bagel at Dunken Donuts, munching wings at Hooters or simply strolling around in Queens, you will find the friendliness of the New Yorkers in the air.
Here are 10 secretly simple tips I found about, that will make your holiday in the city a one to remember:
1 – Stay with Airbnb
We booked a really good and affordable Airbnb apartment in the heart of Queens. We did the research and got ourselves a cheap, clean, all amenities included, and close to the subway and shops, 3 bedroom flat.
The flat could take up to 8 people comfortably; all rooms had double king sized-beds and the living rooms had two sofa beds; you could bring your whole football team in there.
Total cost per night was $150 divided by 8 equals $18.75.
You can never find a cheaper place including free coffee, tea and peace of mind for that price in the so called “expensive city, to spend your holiday.
2- Get a Multi-use Metro Card
We got a 7 day metro card with unlimited rides for only $31.
You will travel daily with the subway at least 2 or 3 times. Each one way journey costs $2.50, so if you do the math, you will save bucks.
You also get unlimited bus rides and your wallet will very much appreciate this on your behalf.
3- Shop At Woodbury Common.
Do not shop in Manhatten or Times Square, whether you’re after souvenirs, cloths or tech, you’re better off with renting a car and driving to an outlet.
We headed to Hertz.com and booked a really cool and spacious Sonata with GPS for only $40 and drove to Woodbury outlet.
It’s about an hour and a half drive, but I guarantee you, you will not feel it; The views of the mountains along the high way will take your breath away.
With a quick stop at Dunken Donuts and a bite of their delicious Boston Creme Donut and coffee, you will have a holiday to remember.
There you will find all top designers brands with at least 50-70 % off the Retail price.
Make sure you bring your suit case with you as you will be dazzled with the prices and quality of shopping.
4- Always eat out.
Don’t waste your time grocery shopping and then cooking at home.
It turns out that eating out in New York, is way cheaper, more delicious and of course hassle freer than eating and staying in.
We would have breakfast, lunch and dinner every day at some diner, and there’s nothing more outspread in the city, than diners.
A great one is Pete’s Diner Grill, where you will get a full American breakfast including unlimited tea or coffee along with fresh juice for around $10.
A friendly and warm smile is also included from the staff at no extra cost.
5- Get a Mobile Tourist Plan
Head to T-Mobile to load up on those minutes, texts and data for very good offer that will make you worry free about your roaming charges.
Make sure you ask for the tourist holiday deal as they change frequently.
We got 2GB of internet data, unlimited minutes and texts nation wide for 3 weeks at only $30.
The data will be more than enough, but if you are the sort of person who posts on social media HD videos every half hour, don’ panic.
New York streets are now equipped with Lynksys stands that provide fast and free wifi.
So you will be most likely connected in the big apple at most, if not, all times.
6 – Be careful when booking national Airline tickets
If you’re flying domestically in the land of the free; a good tip is not to get deluded by the cheap air tickets.
Cheap online tickets mean they most likely have a nasty catch.
To avoid falling in the trap I fell in, paying $50 for my checked in baggage; Always check if you get free checked in bags and carry on before your make a booking.
If you do get charged extra for those, it’s always cheaper to book the baggage online.
I flew with Spirit airlines (which I wouldn’t really recommend) and got charged $50 for a 37 pound hold suitcase on top of the $120 I paid for my ticket plus their customer service is not going to make your holiday.
Try JetBlue or Southwest Airlines, which have the best deals and services through personal experience.
7 – Attend a Live Stand-Up Comedy to get a better sense of New York and what people are like.
We have been to The Broadway comedy Club; it was only $10 entry plus you have to buy two drinks.
But the experience will not give you a chance to think about the money because you will laugh your soul off for 2 and half hours.
They feature really talented stand-ups; we witnessed utter laughter from about 5-7 different comedians who made our night out.
You will also learn a lot about New Yorkers, the way they talk, their accents, new information about the city and how to boost the friendliness out of you.
You’re confidence levels will get boosted and considering a career in comedy will be spinning in your head for the next days.
8 – Try and avoid JFK airport if you can.
We had to wait over 2 hours to get through immigration and security.
The airport is so ridiculously busy; with more and more security tightness, it takes ages and long queues to get through and out of the airport.
You have the option of Newark or La Guardia airports and they are not far from the city, roughly around 30 minutes to get into town from those airports.
Or if you have to travel to JFK, make sure you land somewhere in the middle of the night rather than during the day to avoid airport congestions.
9 – Americans are the friendliest people on earth.
They will always make your day simply by giving you a smile and a service like no other.
When at a restaurant or a cafe, ask nicely for a discount; I ask for military discount and I get it almost 90% of the time; some places, if they don’t do military discount, they would give you seniors discount just for being nice.
I didn’t even have to show my military id on many occasions; a smile and a friendly manner will save you bucks.
10 – New York will make you a better person.
James Altucher said in his Choose Yourself Book “You are the average of the 5 guys you spend most of your time with.”
Spending time in New York with New Yorkers will transform your physiological state to the better; As if you are meditating.
There’s so much vibe in the sleepless city with more smiles displayed on people’s faces, even on Mondays, than in any other city; It’s almost impossible not to feel good and have a positive outlook of the whole world all together.
Here’s a vlog I created showcasing the gems of New York; Hope you like it