Tuesday, October 04, 2011

The City That Never Sleeps, NYC

This is my second trip to NYC this year. I decided to fly from Porter on their 30% off deal. Roundtrip ticket total to $299.93 from YTZ to EWR. Note that Newark International Airport is much farther than LaGuardia or JFK Airport. Once in a while, Porter has a 50% off promotion and Air Canada has a fly to USA promotion, both resulting in roundtrip tickets to be approximately $250 with tax. Though Porter seems cheap, you must keep in mind the cost of transportation from airport to hotel in the city (approximately $70 taxi from EWR to Penn Station, one way). So, next time, I think I will just fly on Air Canada, which lands at LaGuardia airport. It will save cost of taxi and time.

Here are somet things I learnt from this trip.

1. Always check the train schedule before you arrive/leave. We were a bit delayed heading out from Newark Airport on the NJ Coast train into the city. This wasted some time for us.

2. Always pack a variety of clothes, just in case of weather changes. We checked the local weather before departing, it forecasted rain all week, however, this was not the case. We packed only fall outfits and rain boots. It was humid and hot instead, just like summer. We ended up buying summer clothes.

3. Always keep an emergency stack of money. On the last day, we had $65 USD dollars left. This was not enough to taxi to the airport, but thank goodness that all yellow cabs accepts all major credit cards.

4. There are no yellow cabs in Brooklyn. If you want to cab out of Brooklyn, you will need to find a "black cab" and negotiate rates with them. I feel like I'm in Asia here =). I was able to cab from Prospect Park in Brooklyn to Times Square around 12:00pm for $28.

So, lastly, to save money on hotel, we downloaded an app called Hotel Tonight on the iphone and itouch. It is basically hotel hopping to the cheapest hotel in NYC South area each night that is offered on the app. We were able to get Night hotel, for $150 + tax = $183 approx. Tripadvisor rating put this hotel at 169/430 hotels, which is not bad. The only complaint I would have is that the hotel room is a tad small, only good for 2 people with little luggages. It was located on 45th street, near Times Square which was very convenient for us. The 2nd night, we checked out and re-checked in because the hotel was offered again on Hotel Tonight. The crappy thing about this app is that some hotel room is available at the rate shown for 1 night, or for 1-4 nights. So, if you want to stay more than a night, you will need to book a hotel that offers 1-4 nights. We were lucky when we checked out of Night hotel, and browsed the app again, it offered the same hotel for $180 + tax = $220. So we checked back in. Seems like a lot of work, but it saves you money.

The one thing I wanted to do last time I was in New York was to visit Central Park but didn't have time to do it. I was a bit short on time this trip also, but decided to walked through Central Park anyways. Central Park is beautiful. I'm glad I skipped out on some shopping time and exhibit time to do this. We started the walk from the entrance by the MET building, and came out where 5th Avenue is. Anyone who plans on visiting New York should definitely make some time to walk through Central Park. We did half the park in about 2 hours, keep in mind that we stopped and took pictures along the way. I'm sure you can jog half the park in about 45 minutes or less.

I never noticed this last time I was in NYC. There seems to be a lot of cupcake vendors and yogurt trucks along the streets. It seems like a great idea of a new business in Toronto =)

So, that's it for now. I hope you find this post useful. Cheers and thank you for reading.


at: October 5, 2011 at 1:23 PM said...

I would also suggest taking a look at City Maps to help with your stay in NY, it is a virtual and interactive map of the city that will prove quite helpful during your stay!


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