Insider tips and talking like a local in New York

If you’re planning a group trip to New York, follow our insider tips to make sure it’s a trip to remember.


When to visit – Summer can be sweltering in New York City, while winter can see freezing temperatures and snow storms. If you prefer slightly milder weather, spring or autumn are good times to explore the city.

Getting around – Mention New York City and public transport in the same sentence and people will instantly think of the subway. This underground mass transit system is by far the quickest and easiest way to travel around the city. Alternatively, take a ride in one of New York’s famous yellow taxis.

Plan your route carefully – While the subway is the easiest way to get around New York City, it can also be quite confusing to non-natives. Pay attention to ‘Downtown’ and ‘Uptown’ on entrances, as sometimes the same station will have difference entrances for different directions. Also, sometimes walking a block or two to reach a different station could help you get to a more direct line, saving you time on your journey.

Don’t forget to tip – Tipping is part of American culture, and is not seen as something that is optional. Tips will vary depending on where you are, but are expected anywhere you receive service. In a bar, for example, you should leave at least a dollar after each drink, otherwise bartenders may start to ignore you.

Check TKTS booths for cheap Broadway tickets – If you fancy taking in a Broadway show but don’t want to spend a fortune, the TKTS booth in Times Square and at South Street Seaport release a limited number of same-day tickets for up to 50% off.


Five ways to talk like a local

While the people of New York may not speak a different language, it can sometimes feel as though they do! Here are a few things to keep in mind if you want to sound like a local.

  1. On line, not in line– New Yorkers say on line, instead of in line (e.g. I watched on line for hours to get these tickets)
  2. Subway, not metro – Nobody in New York refers to the underground transport system as the metro. It’s either the subway, or the train.
  3. A slice of pie – In the UK, pizza and pie are two very different things. In New York, however, you can ask for a slice of pie and get hot, delicious pizza instead.
  4. Shop in a bodega – In New York, little corner shops that you might think of calling a deli, grocery or convenience store are referred to as bodegas, instead.
  5. Visiting the city – If you hear a New Yorker refer to “the city”, they’re talking specifically about Manhattan.


If you want to find out more about group study trips to New York, get in touch with our team of travel experts today.