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What to Know for Your First New York City Trip

What to Know for Your First New York City Trip

New York City is called the Big Apple for a reason. The city is massive and can be a little overwhelming for first-time visitors. If it’s your first time stepping into the big city, you’re going to want to know what to expect throughout your trip. Luckily, locals will always be there to help you out. They’ve picked up on all the tips and tricks you’ll need to succeed during your visit. Take a look at what you can expect once you arrive in New York City.

Tips For New York City Travelers

Pack comfortable shoes.

The main hub of New York City takes up an entire island that is filled with things to do at every corner. Your destination may seem like it’s close by, but you’ll actually be doing a lot more walking than you’d expect. If you’re thinking of wearing some flip-flops or stylish sandals to match your city look, they may not be the most practical choice once you hit the streets. When you start packing your suitcase for your trip, make sure that a pair of sneakers or comfortable flat shoes are a part of your wardrobe. You’ll be doing your feet a favor in the long run.

View From Brooklyn Bridge (©Colton Duke)
View From Brooklyn Bridge (©Colton Duke)

Keep right.

New York City’s sidewalks are similar to the roads you’ll find when you’re driving. Most of the action happens on the right side. It may seem like you can walk down the middle and take a straight path to where you want to go, but be careful. Too many people walking in the middle might cause a sidewalk buildup that actually slows down your walk. If you have to walk in the middle, only do it if you’re trying to move around someone. You’ll want to avoid the left side as well, as that’s for people walking in the opposite direction. The quickest way to move through the city is by walking on the right side since that will give you the clearest path.

NYC Skyline (©Florian Wehde)
NYC Skyline (©Florian Wehde)

Know where you’re going.

New York City is an easy place to get lost in if you don’t live there or are a frequent visitor. The street names can get confusing sometimes, and each block tends to resemble the one before it. Before you set off on your trip, make sure you figure out how to get to where you’re going beforehand. Map apps such as Google Maps are handy for helping to plot out the quickest and easiest path to take through the city streets. You’ll also want to pay attention to your surroundings when you’re walking, as certain landmarks or attractions can become a reference point to help you get where you need to go.

NYC Subway (©Branden Skell)
NYC Subway (©Branden Skell)

Purchase a New York Pass.

One thing you’ll notice about New York City when you arrive is that everything is a little more expensive than it is back home. Most of its fun can come at a costly price, but there is a way for visitors to make the most of it. City passes such as a New York Pass provide discounts to tourists on some of the most popular attractions and tours in Manhattan. They can find deals as low as 50% off on normal prices, and passes are good for up to 10 days. If you want to make the most of your city visit, be sure to take your New York Pass with you wherever you go.

NYC Sunset View (©Luca Bravo)
NYC Sunset View (©Luca Bravo)

Take the road less traveled.

The heart of New York City’s action can be found in Midtown and Times Square. Thanks to sitting in the center of the city, they’re the places where some of the flashiest attractions and the most people tend to gather. However, there’s much more to the Big Apple than those two hotspots. There are a variety of different neighborhoods filled with hidden gems on every block that hold a world of culture, history and fun for every visitor. During your visit, try to step out of your comfort zone once and explore a different neighborhood or even borough that other tourists may not be experiencing.

Live in the moment.

New Yorkers always seem like they’re in a rush to get where they need to go, causing the day to rush by as well. It’s easy to get caught up in it and forget how much time you actually have to get things done. While you may want to cram as much as you can in a day, try to let your trip last for as long as you can. Make sure you take some pictures to savor it all but also have fun and relax. New York City may seem intimidating at first glance, but try not to let it scare you off from having a good time.

NYC at Night (©Matteo Catanese)
NYC at Night (©Matteo Catanese)
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