Sunday, 29 April 2012

Top 10 New York City Tips

I thought I would just kind of summarize everything from my three trips to NYC (not that I'm by any means a pro). But here are my 10 tips for the average tourist:

1.  Get some kind of attraction pass - This time we got the Explorer pass and were able to add the attractions that we wanted onto it and get about a 22% discount over all.  Last time I went I got the New York Pass.  You can get it for 1, 2, 3 or 7 days and you just do as many of the attractions in those days as you can.  It's great if you have a lot that you want to get done. 
Our New York Pass included a tour of Madison Square Gardens
2.  Spend time in Central Park - It's free, beautiful and the best part (in my opinion) of the city.

3.  Go to a comedy show - Although we didn't go to one this time, I did the past two times.  They often sell tickets in Times Square and its a fun activity.  There is usually a 2 drink minimum or $20 once you get in, but it's well worth it. 

4.  Get an unlimited Metro pass - We got the 7 day unlimited metro pass.  I'm not sure that we saved too much money on it, but we never thought twice about jumping on the subway, so it was worth it for that reason alone. 

5.  Mix your day up with walking and non-walking activities - The walking is tiring.  So make sure that you have scheduled time and activities where you can sit down.

6.  Get cheap Broadway tickets - Again, we didn't do Broadway this time around, but if you are going to do it, there is no need to pay full price for tickets! The first time I went we stood in line at the TKTS booth in Times Square and they have discount tickets for the day of a performance.  Apparently there is also a booth at the South Street Seaport that isn't as busy.  Last time I found discounted Chicago tickets online and we bought them ahead.  Travelzoo.com seems to have a lot of discounted Broadway tickets.

7.  Don't eat at chains - Starbucks is my exception here.  Probably because it's a treat for me.  But other than that, New York is full of amazing restaurants and delis.  Take full advantage of trying something new.


8.  Wear comfortable shoes - I'm not sure how the real New Yorkers wear their flats or heels, maybe their feet are used to the walking.  Your feet will not be.  I recommend comfortable shoes that don't cause blisters.

9.  Don't feel like you have to do everything - after all, if you don't then you have an excuse to go back.

10.  Do what's right for you - If you like museums then spend hours in them, if you don't, then why waste the time or money?  If you want to go to New York and just wander around and experience the city then that's fine too.  Follow your own travel rules, not anybody elses.

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