cheap, budget, food and transportation.
I have lived in NY my whole life and it wasn't until I budgeted a South America Trip that I learned I could budget NYC as well. The thing about NY is that it is expensive to live there and do all the touristy things. However, if you look hard enough you can find cheaper deals here than anywhere else in THE STATES! Imagine that!
It is key to know someone or to have a place to stay. I have a few friends so I always crash on their couches. You can check out Couchsurfing.com for some more cheap tricks on accommodation in the city. There are many hostels around too that aren't incredibly cheap but for NYC they are well worth it. If you choose to go the luxuries route than you will have no problem finding a place to stay. But I highly doubt anyone looking at the Ritz Carlton is reading this blog.
Because NYC is a marquee city of the states in demonstrating capitalism hard at work, there are soo many restaurants and delis competing for you service. As a result: competitive prices. once you get out of time Square there are deli's on every corner. A deli can provide you with breakfast lunch and dinner at any given time of day. A bacon egg and cheese (a common New Yorkers breakfast) will cost you about $2.50. Add a small coffee for a dollar and you are ready to rush around the city like the rest of us.
Transportation: getting from place to place in the city can be a hassle. Luckily, NYC has one of the most extensive transit systems in the world. The subways are fast and efficient and most importantly, they are cheap! A metro card cost 2 dollars per entry. Each entry allows you to utilize all the tracks in the area so long as you don't exit. Be sure to read the signs of what exit your using. It s easy to get caught up in the rush of people and exit unintentionally, so these signs are helpful. It always helps to step to the side and out of peoples way. You can you purchase and unlimited ride the week for just 25 dollars. If you plan on exploring most of the city I suggest you purchase this card. Taxis are nice especially when it is cold out but they can be very expensive. Some, but not all taxi drivers will try to scam you and take you on a tour to run up the meter a little higher. Try to act like you know where you are going and your just in a rush to get there.The meter will start at a $2.50 fare but during the hours of 4-8pm they will start at $4.50. Don't let them tell you it is broken. You an report them if they do.
Your best bet is to avoid the tourist traps. Times Square, Famous restaurants and tour busses are not what real New Yorkers do. We hustle and try to get around our day by spending as little as possible. We don't eat at trendy cafe's that serve $6 coffee or read a $5 magazine. Street coffee and a New York Post work fine.
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