How to Tour NYC on the Cheap New York City, New York, USA
Take the Subway
Avoid the temptation to travel everywhere by taxicab. While nothing feels more sophisticated than jetting from one New York destination to another in a taxi, opting for the subway can save you serious money. And during rush hour, the subway can actually be faster!
Instead of eating every meal at a restaurant, take advantage of New York's greenmarkets and supermarkets. The Union Square Greenmarket, mentioned above, is a good source of inexpensive lunches. Uptown, places like Citarella and Zabar's offer high quality food you can pick up on your way to Central Park.
Come in Spring or Autumn
If you can, try to time your visit to New York during spring or autumn when the weather is gentle enough to make it pleasant to be outdoors. This way you can spend your days wandering and people-watching (a hallowed New York pastime) instead of holed up in restaurants and other expensive places to escape the cold or the heat.
Be Creative About Lodging
Web sites like Craig's List often have ads from people willing to rent out their apartment on a nightly basis or who are looking to sublet their apartment while they are away on vacation. You should be able to find a place to stay that's cheaper than a hotel and offers a more authentic New York experience in the bargain! Check the sublets/temporary and vacation rental sections of the site.
Hooked on Red Hook
Lately it seems that all the cool parties are happening in Red Hook, a remote corner of Brooklyn barely accessible by public transportation. Women who hardly leave their 3 block square Soho neighborhood are suddenly willing to brave the subway and a hefty walk to explore the sights and sounds of an area previously inhabited exclusively by longshoremen. So what's all the fuss about? New York artists, always searching for more light, more space and less rent, discovered Red Hook a few years ago. Now a few more businesses have moved in and are changing the neighborhood from a remote artists enclave to a gritty, eccentric destination in itself.
A Night Out
Start your evening at Lillie's (46 Beard St) with a beer or whiskey in their backyard garden. When hunger strikes, move on to 360 (360 Van Brunt St) for glorious French food in a friendly space. After dinner, catch a show at The Hook (18 Commerce St, www.thehookmusic.com). After the show, take a romantic walk along the waterfront.