New York City Guide - Useful tips & info

Things to do in New York

ABOUT NEW YORK

The epitome of the American dream, the city that never sleeps; it’s easy to feel like you’re at the center of the universe when you’re in New York. Indeed, there is no other city on Earth where you can feel the atmosphere equally as strongly as you can see the sites or hear the excitement. With a population of 8.5 million, and over 60 million visitors per year, we know you’ll love the irrepressible spirit of New York – and New Yorkers – just as much as we do.

Ready to fall in love with New York? Start with our Free Tour of New York, which gives you an overview of the city’s history and main attractions.

 

ONE DAY IN NEW YORK

GOOD TO KNOW

SANDEMANs Travel Gudies

Airport transfer

Depending on where you’re staying, which airport you need and how heavy your bags are, you might want to travel to the airport with public transport

If not, you should check out the NYC Airporter buses. To JFK for $18 or LaGuardia for $15, and with departures every 30 minutes, they leave from major interchanges like Grand Central and Penn Station. Book through our website for a $2 discount!

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Public transportation

The quintessential yellow cab is iconic, but not the fastest and definitely not the cheapest form of transport. Uber is huge in NYC, so you won’t be waiting long for a ride, while the subway is climate controlled (yes!) with some lines running 24 hours a day. An unlimited travel MetroCard covers subways and local buses, and is a bargain at $32 for a week.

THE STATEN ISLAND FERRY ...is free! And used by locals and visitors alike! With great views of the Statue of Liberty, New York Harbor and Lower Manhattan, this is an easy activity that won’t break the bank.

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Tipping

For those not familiar with the US tipping culture, it can be hard to figure out when you’re being overly generous, or accidentally stingy. Here are the generally accepted NYC tipping rules:

HOTELS: Porters and bellhops – $1-$2 per bag / Doormen hailing cabs – $1/ Housekeeping – $1-$5 per day of your visit

BARS AND RESTAURANTS: Waiters – 15-20% of your total bill / Bartenders (if you’re sitting at the bar) – at least $1 per drink

OTHER SERVICES: Taxi drivers – 15-20% of your total fare / Hairdressers – 15-20% of your total / Theater ushers, coat check staff, etc., will also appreciate a dollar or two

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Safety

Those old myths about New York being a dangerous city firmly belong back in the ‘80s. In fact, NYC is now ranked as one of the safest big cities in the entire US of A. While you’ll still want to use the common sense techniques you’d use in any city – not making yourself or your belongings an easy target for pick-pockets, avoiding panhandlers, and not walking alone by yourself in unlit areas at night – safety need not be one of your main concerns while you’re planning your trip.  

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Currency

New York uses the US Dollar. Do be aware though that NYC prices on goods and services typically DON’T include sales tax (although SANDEMANs New York’s paid tours do!), which is 8.875%. However, there are no taxes on clothing or footwear under $110, food items purchased at grocery stores, or on prescription drugs.

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Emergency number

911

THINGS TO DO IN NEW YORK

TOP TIPS

CHELSEA MARKET

(75 9th Ave)
Enclosed urban food court and shopping mall.

ROOSEVELT ISLAND TRAM

(59th St & 2nd Ave)
This aerial tramway spans the East River. Use your MTA MetroCard to climb aboard!

ARTISTS AND FLEAS

(70 North 7th St)
Markets and events for local art, design, fashion and food.

BROOKLYN BOWL

(61 Wythe Ave)
Bowling made awesome with high tech lanes, live music and great food.

HOUSE OF YES

(2 Wycoff Ave)
Dance, circus, theater and cabaret in a former ice warehouse.

NITEHAWK CINEMA

(136 Metropolitan Ave)
Independent films, incredible food and craft cocktails – what a combo!

ROUGH TRADE RECORDS

(64 North 9th St)
Independent record store, with a bar and live music.

We offer an array of different walking tours and activities in New York; from the original free walking tour to the Midtown and Central Park tours – all led by expert, local guides. If you are looking for a fun, informative and unique way to discover New York and all its secrets, you can join us on any of the tours below.

TOURS & ACTIVITIES IN NEW YORK

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