8 Things to Know Before Traveling to New York City

January 27, 2020

Traveling to a new city, especially one as massive and famous as the Big Apple, can be an intimidating undertaking indeed. Learning how to maneuver around, what sights you should see and bites you should eat can leave you feeling overwhelmed.

But there are a few key things you should know before coming to NYC that’ll you’ll be glad you knew ahead of time. Keep these eight things in your back pocket, and we promise you’ll be ever prepared and confident to take on the concrete jungle!

Use the Subway

If you’re someone who prefers to travel by car, New York City just isn’t the place to do it. We get it, hailing down a yellow taxi like you’ve seen them do in the movies is the romantic way you probably pictured yourself getting around the city. But taxis are actually expensive, and the traffic in the city is terrible. A 20-minute taxi could cost you $40.

Compare that to a $3 subway ride that will get you there in almost the same amount of time. In a city run by public transit, you’ll get to where you need to be in a cheaper, quicker, and more convenient way altogether. Trust us on this!  

Pick Up a Guidebook

When it comes to exploring a new, unfamiliar city, guidebooks are your best bet. One, it keeps everything conveniently bound together should any questions arise while you’re walking through New York City streets, or if you need to find a specific spot in a hurry. Marco Polo guidebooks are a great tool. They provide quality suggestions on entertaining, food & drink, shopping, and sightseeing. They also conveniently come with an interactive app and pull out map!

Be Street Smart

People in New York City walk and think fast. So, it’s a wise idea to be aware of your surroundings at all times. If you’re walking down a seedy looking street after a fun night out on the town, just be conscious to keep your belongings close to you and secure. Also, this one’s for the picture-snapping tourists. If you’re stopping to get a photo, be sure you’re not blocking anyone’s way. You don’t want to get told off by a New Yorker, that’s for sure.

You Can Play Online Casinos

While in New York, you can bet big like a New Yorker. The state doesn’t possess any laws that make it illegal to play online casinos. What’s better are that there are a wide variety of choices, so you will have no problem playing legal games at New York online casinos. Not a lot of the other states allow this, so it’s good idea to take advantage it of it while you can. Who knows, you may win big in the big city!

Visit the Other Boroughs

While Manhattan typically gets all the credit, it’s just the tip of the iceberg in NYC. But there are more boroughs that offer great sites and amazing experiences. Take a trip to Brooklyn, Queens, and Long Island City. Williamsburg in Brooklyn is gets a rep for being one of the hippest, artistic neighborhoods in New York City. While Astoria in Queens is where the cool kids are at.

Eat Local, Avoid Chains

New York City offers some of the best food in the country. When you’re there, make an effort to eat locally whenever you can. Yelp can help let you know the sweet spots that tourists and locals alike are loving. A lot of NYC restaurants are smaller, where you have to walk down a flight of stairs from the street to get inside. But don’t let the lack of size fool you. The intimate atmosphere becomes a bonus when you’re chowing down on food that’s that good.

Avoid People in Costumes/Panhandlers

You might feel tempted to get a selfie with the person dressed up like Spider-Man on the corner of Broadway and 7th, because, you know, you’re living inside Spider-Man’s actual playground! But be warned, these photos ops don’t come free. The folks wearing costumes will normally let you pose and score your photo with them, and then let you know it’ll cost you a few bucks. The same goes the guys handing out mixtapes, some of them are just blank CD’s.

Public Restrooms Are Hard to Come By

Public bathrooms in New York City are few and far between. And for the places that do offer them, you’ll typically have to make a purchase before you can use it. The best way to avoid feeling like you need a bathroom break while strolling the city? Make sure you use the bathroom in your hotel before you leave or any restaurant you go to eat.

If you’re out and about, Starbucks, Grand Central Terminal or Penn Station are safe bets. You could also walk confidently into a bar and score a free toilet that way! In New York, people don’t question the confident ones.

With these essentials in mind, you’ll feel like a pro navigating around the Big Apple. Happy exploring!