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NYC ON A BUDGET

Visiting the greatest city in the world can be expensive but if you plan ahead and stay on top of your game there are plenty of ways to make the most of your money. Here are a few tips:

TRANSPORTATION
New Yorkers pride on having one of the best public transportation systems on the planet but it’s not cheap, $2.50 a ride. The site nycmetrocardcalculator helps you plan on how much money to add to your Metrocard so there’s not a penny left when you leave the city. Yellow cabs are a New York institution but there are cheaper ways to get around. When planning your arrival or departure from the airport, consider the shuttle services. Some apps offer cheaper alternatives to cabs like Lyft and Uber, they’ll even give you a discount the first time you use it. Make sure to download it and play around before you actually need it because they’re enrollment process can take a while. You might need a working phone number to use it but if you don’t have an internet connection fear not, just stand in one of the many NYC Parks or outside a Starbucks as most of these places provide free Wi-Fi.
MUSEUMS
New York City is the American capital of culture and that can be free. Most museums offer a free or pay-as-you-wish day. Admission is free to the 9/11 Memorial & Museum on Tuesdays from 5pm ‐ 7pm on Fridays from 4pm ‐ 8pm admission is free to the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA). Remember its New York City and there will be lines so arrive early and take your patient pills.
THEATRE
Broadway theatres are quite big, holding up to 1,500 seats and the cast and crew for those shows are huge. That’s why they’re so expensive to see and why the house must be always full. There are a few ways to get cheaper tickets, starting at only $30! Most tourists use TKTS where you can get same-day theatre tickets around $40 at three locations, Downtown Brooklyn, South Street Seaport, and Times Square (the one with the longest lines). You can also skip the lines at TKTS for same-day tickets a little bit cheaper but you’ll have to arrive early in the morning at the desired theatre box office for rush tickets. Some shows offer student rush tickets and online deal websites like Groupon and Living Social. The best way to get cheap tickets is by trying your luck in a lottery. Some shows, like Aladdin and The Book of Mormon, have a lottery for left over tickets starting at $30. For more information on which shows offer lottery tickets, visit Playbill.
OTHER WALLET FRIENDLY HINTS
If you play smart, you can do a lot in New York City for free. Everyday there are free art gallery openings, comedy shows, movie showings etc. Check out theskint, they put together a list of free and cheap things to do in the city everyday at around 2 pm. You can also enjoy views similar to the ones you get from the observation deck at the Rockefeller Center and Empire State Building for free by going to one of the city’s many rooftop bars.
By: Robin Siteneski

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