Going to the Big Apple is exciting. Broadway shows, amazing food, rich culture, and impressive museums are among the lures that keep tourists coming back to New York City year after year.
Still, to make the most of your trip and avoid becoming a befuddled tourist, here are six tips to help plan your trip.
Reserve a nice hotel
This seems like an easy thing to do. But how many travel horror stories start with a really bad hotel? Research the best hotels in New York City and choose carefully. Consider how close you want to be to food and attractions, whether you’ll be cabbing it or renting a car, and how much you want to spend before you make your reservation.
Also read reviews and get as much information about the hotel chain as you can, including the neighborhood you’ll be staying in and how clean the place is.
Make your budget
You may think you have enough money for shopping, entertainment, and food. But what about tips, tolls, cabs, parking fees, and emergencies?
Plan for entertainment but also call the venue if possible to see what other fees are associated with it. Do the same for your hotel and any other place you plan to visit. Then make sure you can access cash for emergencies.
Check for coupons
While you’re looking at your budget, remember that you can find deals or coupons for almost everything. As you’re assessing the cost of your trip, look for savings on restaurants, shows, and other activities.
Plan your list of things to do
The best way to look for deals is to know what you want to do while you’re in the Big Apple. Being spontaneous is fun, but you also want to have at least a general idea of where you’d like to go. If you spend all your time trying to decide when you get there, you could lose valuable vacation time.
Also, New York City is a big place. Don’t get caught off-guard planning to visit two places that are on opposite ends of the city — and you have no idea how you’re going to reach both of them. Try to map out your destinations as much as possible, or make sure they’re in the same neighborhood.
Have a plan B
If for some reason you miss the one show you wanted to see or rain threatens your outdoor activity, don’t let it ruin your whole trip. Have backup plans that allow you to still have fun. If you can’t make one play or one exhibit, think of another one you want to see.
If you’re flying to New York City, make sure you know what you can take on the plane. Check the weather so you know what clothes to pack and if you need a jacket or an umbrella.
Make sure you also have the right clothes for your trip. Planning to go the opera and planning a trip to the beach call for very different outfits.
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