We had a great time visiting New York City in the summer, staying in a hotel and spending a few days seeing the sights. Going to the USA on holiday is quite an expensive trip so we were looking for ways to save money and came up with these tips for family travelers.
1. Use the Hotel Fridge
Book a hotel room with a little fridge. Summer in New York can be hot and buying drinks for the whole family every couple of hours really adds up. We bought a multi-pack in the supermarket and kept cool drinks handy in the fridge. We also bought milk, cereal, plastic bowls and spoons, saving a fortune on breakfasts. Stalls selling fresh fruit are on many corners of Manhattan, so the fridge was useful for these healthy snacks too.
2. Take the Subway
Pick a hotel a little further away and travel in by subway. We didn’t realize how cheap and convenient the subway would be. Travelling off-peak it was never crowded and the trains are frequent. Some station stops are right inside the main attractions, like at the American Museum of Natural History. We stayed centrally and paid more for that, but now we know we could easily stay further out and quickly travel in on the subway. I’ve been looking at New York on the Holiday Gems website where there is plenty of choice for hotels over a wide area.
3. Supermarket Meals
Eat from the hot buffet in the supermarket. On a trip to New York City you don’t want to miss out on the experience of eating in a great diner or restaurant. We did that too, but it was too costly to do it every night. American supermarkets quite often have hot buffet food sold by weight. They also sell plastic cutlery and paper plates. We had a great meal from Morton Williams on West 57th Street, where an adult portion cost under ten dollars.
4. Broadway Bargains
Get cheap tickets for a Broadway show. Now, we didn’t try this as we had too much jet-lag for evenings out. I was told that if you hang out near the theatres on Broadway around 5pm, you can get in line for cheap show tickets. A member of staff will open up the box office and a queue will form in a flash. Be ready! I do know someone who has done this and got almost 40% off the ticket price. Read more about how to take part in one of these musical theatre lotteries here.
5. Flea Market Finds
Buy a unique souvenir from the Flea Market in Hell’s Kitchen or Chelsea. Of course, shops selling baseball caps, t-shirts and key rings printed with NYC are everywhere. Instead, hunt for a bit of unique American cultural memorabilia at the Flea Markets. They are open every Saturday and Sunday selling antiques and bric-a-brac. Hell’s Kitchen Flea Market is a short walk from Times Square and is easily found on Google maps.
Have you ever tried any of these tips, or do you have any to add? Perhaps you are planning a trip to New York City. Please let me know in the comments!
This is a collaborative post.