New York can be one of the busiest and most expensive places to travel to and around, but do not panic as there are always ways that you can save money when traveling. Planning what you want to do and see in advance and visiting tourist hotspots off-peak will ensure that you get the most bang for your buck. As New York is so large and vast, it can feel overwhelming knowing where to start to save money, especially when you are on a tight budget.
Avoid Large Chains
Large chains of providers from hotels to eateries all cost money, and when you are on a budget, no matter how tight, you will want to ensure that you can get the best value possible. Larger chains have more expenses and overheads to pay for, so where you can, try to stick to local smaller run locations, this includes everything from your accommodation to where you eat and shop. The large shops can be nice to look around, but they often carry large, even hefty price tags too, which can blow your budget without even realizing it.
Book in Advance
When you book in advance, you can, and you will save money. Booking in advance for everything from JFK airport parking to tickets on Broadway will save you money. Larger discounts can be had for booking weeks, even months in advance, so try and plan as far ahead as you can and book accordingly. The savings you make when you book activities and travel in advance can then be spent on other things, so you will find a bit of extra planning well worth your while.
Even if you are traveling on your own or as part of a small group, you can still take advantage of group discounts. Joining up with other travelers to purchase tickets in advance will save you money. Group discounts and discount codes are well worth your while as you can often save as much as 20% on an original ticket price. If you are not traveling in a group or as part of a family unit, then look on social media for other travelers wanting to join forces to get bigger and better discounts.
Avoid Rush Hours
New York City is always busy, but there are inevitably periods that are busier than others. Key working times can add a premium to travel, food and drink, so be wary and always check the time before you go for a bit to eat or hail a cab.
Watch the Locals
Quite often, when visiting New York and surrounding areas, people forget that it is a bustling working city and not just a tourist hotspot. A bit of people watching will help you save money, especially when you watch what locals do as they are going about their business. For example, are they buying subway tickets in advance, are they using certain takeaway food stops to get a bite to eat? The residents know their area better than you do, so do not be afraid to seek advice or guidance.
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