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New York City is one of the best tourist destinations in the world, a city that has something new to offer every time I visit. But it is also one of the most expensive destinations. If you have been planning a trip to the Big Apple for some time and you still can’t make it because your budget is too tight, here are some ideas on how to save.
Although many of the activities in New York City are expensive, the city also has a variety of free alternatives. These are some places that you can visit without paying a penny and take some of the best photos of the city:
- Brooklyn Bridge
- Brooklyn Bridge Park
- Central Park
- Staten Island Ferry (one of the best views of the Statue of Liberty)
- Little Island
- DUMBO (On Washington Street you can take one of the most iconic photos)
- The Highline
- The Oculus
- The Vessel (Although it is no longer possible to climb the famous structure, the best photos can be taken from below, and it is freely accessible).
- Times Square
- The Harry Potter store (the largest in the world)
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How can you save on paid activities?
There are several passes that allow you to visit many of the most famous attractions in the city at great discounts.
One option is the New York Sightseeing Pass, which allows you to go to more than 100 places of interest for as little as $35 a day. Among them are several of its most famous viewpoints such as The Edge, in Hudson Yards, Rockefeller Center, the Empire State Building and One World.
If you want to save even more, online portals offer discounts on the price of the pass. Nuevayork.com gives you up to a 39% discount.
Another strategy is to monitor event pages to identify discounts. For example, in New York Restaurant Week season, you can get great discounts at restaurants all over the city.
Savings on accommodations
One of the most expensive parts of a trip to New York is getting a good accommodation. There are excellent tools for identifying offers. Remember we always recommend you search at least three websites (such as Expedia, Hotels.com, Hotwire, HotelsCombined, Priceline, among others) so you can compare prices.
A very important piece of advice: Remember that New York City is not just Manhattan. In neighborhoods like Brooklyn, Queens and even on the other side of the river in New Jersey, you can find accommodations at great prices and still be very close by subway or bus to areas like Times Square.
If you stay in the Astoria area of Queens, you can be in Times Square in a few minutes by taking the train, which could be less time than staying in other areas of Manhattan. Other areas you can consider, if the prices of lodging in Manhattan are very high, are Williamsburg in Brooklyn; Long Island City in Brooklyn; and Hoboken, New Jersey.
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Savings on transportation
The MTA system is probably the best way to explore the city. If you are going for a short time, you should consider buying a multiday pass that allows you to save on the train.
There are passes for a week for less than $40. Even if it is very difficult to buy it, you should know that you can pay for the metro with Apple Pay or Google Pay. After 12 trips in a week, the rest of the trips are free.
If you wanted to go to New York and you were looking to save money without sacrificing your experience, these are several tools that will help you have a memorable trip to the Big Apple.
Wilson “Wil” Santiago Burgos is founder of Mochileando.com, one of the largest travel platforms in Puerto Rico and the Latin American market in the U.S.