04 Dec 10 tips to save money on your trip to New York
Today I’m going to talk about New York. That city that captivates us once we have visited it. Full of light, people of all cultures, restaurants and bars on every corner, thousands of things to do and visit … To be exact, I’ll give you 10 tips to save money in New York.
Who has never dreamed of making a trip to New York? Surely many of us. But of course, we start making an estimate of expenses and here comes the shock. New York is a very expensive city and that is a reality. That’s why today I want to give you a hand so that this emblematic city is a little more within reach.
- 1 See the Statue of Liberty for free!
- 2 Rooftops instead of viewpoints
- 3 Save on tickets to Broadway musicals
- 4 Go shopping to the Jersey Gardens Outlet!
- 5 Tips for eating cheap
- 6 How to get from the airport to Manhattan
- 7 Free days in museums or “pay what you wish” / suggested admission
- 8 Free tours
- 9 Choose the season to go
- 10 Go out to party at the “Happy Hour”
See the Statue of Liberty for free!
We could not start somewhere else. One of the biggest icons of New York is the Statue of Liberty, which represents the Independence Day of the United States. When we prepare our trip we usually book a ferry ride to see it, but what if we can save paying for a tourist ferry?
If you only want to see the Statue of Liberty from the ship, there is no need to hire a tour. The Staten Island ferry will make you pass by the monument without having to pay any amount, because yes, it’s free! In addition, you can enjoy fantastic views of the New York Skyline.
Location and schedules
The ferry travels constantly between the Whitehall Terminal at the end of Manhattan to the St. George Terminal on Staten Island. You can even go at night because it works 24 hours a day!
The ferry trip in each direction lasts approximately 25 minutes. You will have to get off at Staten Island and you will be able to join the queue again to get back on the ferry, so you may need at least one hour for the round trip.
The best times to take the ferry are avoiding the rush hour, particularly in the afternoon. If you consult the Facebook page of the Ferry, the most popular hours outside rush hour on daily days are from 12pm to 3pm, with Wednesday being the most popular day.
Where to stand to have the best views
Most people want to see the Statue of Liberty as soon as possible, so when you get on the ferry in Manhattan, go to the right (starboard) side of the ferry and go upstairs to the outside deck.
Find a space on the railing and as far as possible from the back of the boat, this way you will ensure you have the best views of the Statue of Liberty on your trip to Staten Island.
On the return trip you may want to see the other side, so again when boarding the ferry back to Manhattan go to the right side (starboard) and to the upper deck of the ferry. Anyway, there should be a little less people on the side of the Statue of Liberty for the return trip.
For the best views of Lower Manhattan and to be able to take good pictures, you should be at the back of the ferry when leaving Manhattan, and in the front of the ferry when leaving Staten Island.
And if you want to dock on the island or climb the crown?
There is only one authorized ferry company to dock on the island, Statue Cruises. You can take a look at the prices on their website, but know that with the CityPASS or New York Pass tourist cards you also have the Statue of Liberty included with this official company.
Any ticket you buy includes the following: the ferry to Liberty Island and Ellis Island and the free visit to the Ellis Island Immigration Museum. What not all include is access to the interior of the statue.
The most sought after entrance is the one that allows you to climb to the crown of the Statue of Liberty (Crown Access), the highest point, since the torch is closed to the public.
It costs $ 3 more than the basic entrance, but it is not easy since the access to the crown is done in very small groups, and there are limited places. You have to buy them online and pick them up at the box office on the day of the visit.
Rooftops instead of viewpoints
When we plan a trip to New York, the first things we organize are the excursions to the viewpoints, usually the Empire State Building or the Top of the Rock. I have done it too, for the record;).
But when I came back a second time, I realized that there was no need to spend a few dollars to go up to either of these two viewpoints to see the incredible views of Manhattan.
What better plan than to have incredible views of Manhattan while you have a refreshing cocktail or beer? Therefore, today I tell you the two rooftops that I liked most of the city!
- 230 Fifth: Located on 5th Avenue, almost at the height of Madison Square Park, it is one of the most famous rooftops in New York. Ask for a drink and some snacks while you enjoy the unbeatable views of the Empire State Building. Also if you take a walk you can also see the Chrysler Building and other emblematic buildings.
- Rare Bar View: It has two rooftops: one in Chelsea, with a breathtaking view of Downtown Manhattan and the Empire State Building, and another in Murray Hill, with a beautiful view of the Empire State Building and the Chrysler Building. Unlike other roofs, those of Rare Bar open all the year, with cover for the cold days.
Save on tickets to Broadway musicals
Another inescapable plan in our visit to New York, a Broadway musical. But the tickets are quite expensive, with prices that can exceed $ 100 for the most famous works. So sign up for these tips to get discount Broadway tickets!
If you know what day and what musical you want to see, my advice is to buy the tickets online as soon as possible, as the most popular seats are taken very fast.
My advice is to take a look at these two websites to compare prices:
- Super Boletería: Apart from discounted Broadway tickets, you can find other types of plans, such as NBA or NFL games. Also unmissable!
- BroadwayBox: This website gives you discount codes for different musicals, which you will have to apply on the Ticketmaster or Telecharge purchase page.
FIND DISCOUNT TICKETS AT TKTS Ticket Office
The first time I discovered Times Square I suddenly saw some ticket offices with a lot of people. And what was my surprise when I discovered that you could buy tickets for Broadway musicals at a more than affordable price!
The TKTS office is under the red stairs of Times Square, although, if you want to get rid of the long lines, I recommend going to the Lincoln Center (Upper West Side), the South St Seaport (south of Manhattan) or the of Downtown Brooklyn offices.
They also sell tickets for morning shows the next day. You will find the addresses and the musicals of the day on the TKTS website.
As a recommendation, last year I went to see Miss Saigon’s musical, and incredible!
Go shopping to the Jersey Gardens Outlet!
When we travel to New York, the first walk we all take is by 5th Avenue, Times Square, SoHo … But of course, we can not all afford to go shopping at Macy’s (although it has very good discounts from time to time). So today I am going to recommend an Outlet to which I always go on my trips to New York!
Throughout the year there are many offers, such as the classic sales: -10%, -20% …. and other offers such as 2×1, or a reduction on the second item … To go to Jersey Gardens you need minimum half a day, since only the round trip takes more or less 2 hours, adding 3-4 for shopping.
How to get to Jersey Gardens
You have to take a bus at the Port Authority Bus Station, on 8th Avenue and 41st and 42nd Streets. Once inside, go to the door 223, on the way you will have to buy bus tickets at the ticket office. You’ll have to say you want a roadtrip to Jersey Gardens and it will cost you $ 14. The bus that you will have to catch is 111 at the door 223. Buses n the morning every 10 minutes so do not worry if you see many people!
Arrival at the Outlet
When you arrive at the Outlet, what you have to do is show your passport at the entrance so that they can give you a book with exclusive discounts. Until last year it was free, now they charge you $ 5 :(.
It has more than 200 stores with the main brands such as: Levi’s, Nike, H & M, Calvin Klein, Quicksilver, Nine West, Abercrombie & Fitch, Adidas, Armani Exchange, Vans, Victoria’s Secret …
And, to top it off, here I leave the Outlet website with discounts that you can download before you go!
Tips for eating cheap
Going out to eat in New York can be quite complicated. There are so many options, so many ways to eat, and so many prices, that it is normal to feel a little lost.
I have been to New York 3 times and step by step I have been learning how and where to eat, so I will try to help you with three tips:
- Street Food:The cheaper and faster option! If you don’t want to spend a lot of money and make the most of the time, this will be your preferred way of eating. The food offered at these foodtrucks is usually quite rich and at a minimal price. And do not worry about eating on the street or a park, New Yorkers do it all the time! I usually opted for two types of foodtrucks: The Halal Guys, which offer Middle Eastern food and Pizza stands, where you can buy a slice for $ 1 or $ 2.
- Eat at fast food restaurants: For most tourists, fast food restaurants are the best option. Although they are a bit more expensive than street foodtrucks, you can sit down and at least you have the feeling of eating in a restaurant.
- Traditional restaurants: Choosing lunch at a restaurant instead of dinner can save a lot of money in New York. The same restaurant can offer you the same menu for both meals, but it will be a much more expensive for dinner. One positive thing is that, in general, the portions are much larger than what an average person can eat, so share or order the famous “doggy bag” to take away if you have something left over!
How to get from the airport to Manhattan
- By metro: It is the cheapest option. It makes a combination of the Air Train and the subway. The price of the Air Train is $ 5 plus the cost of the subway which is $ 2.75, so the total transportation is $ 7.75.
- In private transport: If you are between 4 and 12 people you can get a good price choosing this option. You can find it for less than € 20 (tips and taxes included), per person. In this case, you must book the transport in advance.
- By taxi: It is a much more comfortable option than the metro, but also more expensive. The fare from the airport to Manhattan is fixed, $ 52, to which you must add the fees and tip, which in total can cost you about $ 70. When you exit the terminal you will find the row of taxis in front of you.
- In Uber: Something cheaper than taxi transport, since the total amount you pay will be about $ 65. Simply download the app for your mobile and when you leave the terminal ask for an Uber. It will not take more than 5 minutes.
Free days in museums or “pay what you wish” / suggested admission
Most people go to museums without knowing that there are hours when you enter for free or many others who have the famous “pay what you wiss”. Also keep in mind that with the City Pass – New York Pass you have several museums included.
Main museums with free admission hours
- 9/11 Museum: Tuesday fom 5pm to 8pm
- Museum of Modern Art (MoMa): Friday from 4pm to 8pm
MAIN MUSEUMS WITH “PAY WHAT YOU WISH” OR SUGGESTED ADMISSION
- American Museum of Natural History
- Guggenheim Museum: Saturdays from 5.45pm to 19.45pm
You can find information about all the museums on the website NYC-ARTS.
I’m a super fan of free tours. First because as its name suggests, they are free; and second, because it allows you to meet many people who speak your same language.
I personally always go to free tours with Civitatis, that for those who do not know this company, is dedicated to carrying out activities, transfers, guided tours and excursions in Spanish all over the world.
FREE TOUR IN NUEVA YORK WITH CIVITATIS
On this tour, you will be given an overview of the history of the city and its global importance as you walk along Wall Street, the World Trade Center, the Stock Exchange, the controversial Trump Building, Broadway and Battery Park. The duration is 2 hours and the price is the tip you want to give to the guide.
Choose the season to go
There are several factors that determine which is the best time to travel to New York, among others, the price, the weather or the amount of tourists there may be.
- The climate of New York is very cold in winter and very warm in summer. According to this factor, the best time to visit is in the intermediate seasons such as spring and autumn. The best months would be September, October, April and May.
- As for the price, traveling to New York is expensive at all times of the year. The only time in which prices really increase, especially in accommodation and flights, is Christmas and New Year. It is true that New York in that time is more than impressive, but it depends on your pocket;)
- Tourist saturation normally decreases in May and October, and that means you will find lower prices. Both for flights and accommodation, and for shopping. Everything goes down in these months.
Go out to party at the “Happy Hour”
If you want to go out for drinks in New York the same thing will happen as with meals, prepare your wallet because it is also very expensive to go out for a drink. The average price of a beer is usually $7, $12 a glass of wine and about $14 a glass or cocktail. To which you must add the tip, of course!
That’s why “happy hour” is so important, usually between 2 and 8 pm, with half-price drinks and other promotions.
And here it finishes the post of today! Is there any advice that you can add?
Here ends the post of today! I hope I’ve helped you save money in New York!
If you want to plan a trip to NYC and you don’t know where to begin the planning, visit our travel consulting service!