Cheap Holidays to New York: Ways to Scrimp and Save

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♫ Cheap holidays to New York, New York!

Wouldn’t we all love to spend Christmas in New York? It’s where Kevin Mccallister spent his in Home Alone 2, and let us not forget the magical Miracle on 34th Street.  From the dramatic Christmas lights to the snowy sights of Central Park, the city is in its element every single year around the festive season, but holidays to New York don’t always come cheap.

But there are so many ways you can scrimp and save to make your trip as cheap as possible. Here’s how:

1. Book your flights seperately  finding your flights seperately can help you save money as it gives you freedom to find your own bargain hotel deals. Always use price comparison sights instead of going straight to the big airlines. Some of my favourite price comparision sites include Dealchecker.co.uk and Skyscanner.net; they’ve saved me so many hard-earned pennies over the years and it’s websites like these that make cheap holidays to New York and other amazing destinations, possible. So thank you Skyscanner and Dealchecker; The Smart Girl’s Travel Guide loves you both!

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2. Don’t stay in the hotspots – choose cheaper areas such as Downtown Manhattan or Brooklyn.  If you stay in Manhattan, you’ll soon fall into the famous New Yorkers’ lifestyle of walking everywhere so it doesn’t matter too much where you stay.  Taxis are easy to find too just in case your feet get a little tired.

3. Hostels ain’t so bad – don’t turn your nose up at hostels just yet!  There are many hostels in New York which have been refurbished to provide you with a perfectly comfortable place to lay your head down at the end of the night.  You’ll be spending most of your time out and about and enjoying the city so sacrificing feather pillows and a jacuzzi bath will be worth it in the end. 

4. Enjoy New York street food – I don’t know about you, but I’ve never been much of a big luncher.  A big breakfast and a big dinner usually means that lunch is very light for me. Christmas time in New York means plenty of comfort street food and you’ll find everything from giant New York bagels and delicious donuts to hot roasted nuts and giant pretzels.  Nibbles and plenty of hot tea and coffee is usually enough to keep me fuelled.

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5. Find the little communities for dinner – there are some fantastically cheap areas for food in the evening if you know where to look.  Try Greenwich Village (also known as ‘The Village’) for a range of cuisines or venture into Downtown Harlem for some real soul food.  Soul food is both comforting and filling and you will find some great places to dine, including Miss Mamie’s Spoonbread Too which made it onto my list of Top Restaurants in the World.

6. The best things in New York are free  – New Yorkers love to walk and the city itself is an experience; the vast and exciting Central Park can take an entire day or even more if you cover every attraction.  New York is full of free museums and galleries, some of which have a suggested donation, so pay what you can afford according to your budget. 

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And don’t forget the must-see sights such as the famous Brooklyn Bridge, the vibrant Times Square, the Flat Iron Building, the Rockefeller Center (pay to go up), the Empire State Building (pay to go up), the Chrysler Building, Greenwich Village and more. 

7. Seek out the promotional freebies – New York must be one of the few great cities to offer so many freebies, some which you wouldn’t believe. Bars such as Alligator Lounge, Anfora, Blind Tiger Ale House, The Brazen Head and Centro Vinoteca offer free nosh when you purchase drinks. So make sure you Google these places to check out their latest promotions before you fly!

Enjoy your stay in New York! x