New York City was one of those places that had always intrigued me. Not gonna lie, films had a big part to play in it. The problem was how does anyone do it on a budget? So I managed to spend under £500 for 6 day’s once flight and accommodation was paid for.
My absolute favourite airline now is Norwegian Airline. This is the first time I have flown with them so I highly recommend them. Flights were not too expensive and there are always deals you can look out for. You can book a meal and a seat beforehand and I would recommend you do so. Vegan meal and leg roomy seat booked (FYI row 6), I was all set. You can probably get away with a smallish onboard bag and handbag before paying for a checked in bag – I did see passengers with all sorts of small wheeled luggage boarding. I did kind of think ‘how the hell did that get through’? On the flight back we even arrived an hour earlier than expected. Yep so it’s a fav airline now, based on those facts anyway.
Hotels are super expensive in New York so I was struggling to find something decent. Never used Airbnb before but found a great deal in Brooklyn for what worked out to under £37 ppm (there were 3 of us). We booked a really nice and clean master suite room with 2 Queen size beds. The set up was really clever because as the host did not live there, he had an electronic lock on the door. I had downloaded an app called August which unlocked and locked the front door for us (quite clever I thought).
3. Getting around
The best and most useful purchase I made during my stay was the 7 day Metro card. It cost me $31 and gave me access to the subway and buses for the whole week. Brilliant value for money. Used the subway every day hoping from one line to the next to and from Manhattan. Do make note of which subway say downtown and which one is uptown as it is not always easy to change once on the platform. Now I admit the subway could do with air conditioning and a cleanup, but functionally it works fine. Needless to say I will never complain about the London Tube again. The streets are pretty dirty too so remember not to wear white shoes/trainers.
Managed to walk 42.5 miles in total though thanks to my friend’s Fitbit. That was a lot of walking.
I am absolutely in love with Wholefoods in New York. Life for me would be so much easier if London has this in every borough. This place is insane. The salads are fresh and tasty. I am sure I’ve been before but in London I think they are not on this large scale. If wholefoods stores could replace every supermarket chain I would be happy. They seem to be healthier in general and as a vegan, I can always find something to eat.
This was such a find as my friends are omnivores. I really wanted to test out the impossible burger at Bareburger and it didn’t disappoint. It was delicious and even my friends enjoyed a taste. They had a amazing meat burger deal which was a burger/fries/drink for $13.95. Mine was slightly more expensive but sooooooo worth it.
6. Travel Money
As not to overspend, I ordered a Post Office Travel Money Card. So easy to use abroad with no charges except if you take cash out there is a small charge. It works like a normal credit card with a pin. There was also an app to download so that you can check your balance. Surprisingly, I had some US Dollars still left on my card so I rang them up and transferred it to Pounds so that I can use it in the UK. That was the week’s food shopping taken care of then.
7. Sights visited for free
The best way to save money is not to spend any at all. So here are a few places to visit at no cost while you are in the Big Apple.
National September 11 Memorial and Museum – 180 Greenwich St
The New York Public Library – 5th Ave and 42nd Street
Grand Central Terminal – 52nd Street
The High Line – Gansevoort to 30th Street
Central Park – Can’t miss it!
Brooklyn Bridge – Park Row
The Statue Of Liberty via the free Staten Island Ferry
For me, one of my absolute favourite things to do is to listen to live music. So I managed to book a gig with Sofarsounds in New York for a night of music, beer and socialising. The venue was in an old Pfizer building on flushing avenue who Square Roots run their business from. They grow leafy greens in Brooklyn and in containers. I know quite mad hey. Here’s more information about it on the link below.
As always, it was such a great night at Sofarsounds – check it out.
So this was an amazing trip for me. It’s a great and interesting City but definitely invest in a good pair of shoes/trainers because the city is very busy and there are loads of things to see.