7 Essentials to Being the Perfect NYC Tourist

Let’s face it, moving to New York is a pretty daunting notion. My greatest fear when coming to this vast city was standing out as a tourist, despite the fact that I was a student. I spent so much time researching the things that would shield the fact that I am from a simple Massachusetts suburb. It was not until I arrived in Manhattan that I realized no matter how coy your street walk is, or how well you swipe your Metro card, the trained eye of a New Yorker will always be able to tell who was and was not born here.

With this realization, I began using one of my favorite mantras, “who cares?” Embrace the fact that you are new to a city, and learn from every mistake or embarrassing moment. In fact, own up to your out-of-towner status and use these 7 items when you get here.

1. The “I Love NY” T-Shirt

Gossip Girl‘s Blair Waldorf once said when she was in hiding,  “anything ‘I heart New York’ is the perfect camouflage. A true New Yorker wouldn’t be caught dead in it.” I guess that makes this famous t-shirt the perfect start to this list.

Selfie Stick

2. A Selfie Stick

If you want to be the best tourist you can be, take one of these, and your iPhone to the Brooklyn Bridge. You will know what to do when you get there.

Metro Card

3. A Metro Card

This goes without saying because it is the cheapest (except for walking) and fastest way around the city. And if you have trouble swiping yourself in the first time around, the patrons behind you are (almost) always happy to help.

Hopstop App

4. The Hopstop App

Now that you have a Metro card, you will obviously have to know where you are going and how to get there. Hopstop is the easiest way to do this, so do not waste your time trying to read the subway map.

New York Pass

5. The New York Pass

So, let’s talk about the coolest thing to happen to NYC tourism that did not exist when I first visited this place. This amazing card gives you access to 80 New York attractions at one price. However, there is a 10 day limit on this pass, so it may not be the best investment if you are legitimately moving here.

Flat Shoe/Sneaker

6. A Flat Shoe/Sneaker

You may think that you are Carrie Bradshaw, but you are not. Do not attempt to walk up and down avenues in high heels if you are exploring the city. Lucky for you, sneakers and flats happen to be big trends for Spring and Fall. I live in my Vans, but these H&M sandals will do if your style is a little more girly.

Empire State of Mind

7. Jay-Z’s “Empire State of Mind” on Repeat

The 7th and most essential item on this list is to have this song playing in the background as you adventure around the boroughs. I am the first to admit that each time I come back from a weekend at home, I play this when I see the beautiful skyline passing by my train.

If you still think being touristy is lame after reading this post, just remember that getting noticed should not be a bad thing. It just means that you are interesting.

About Jeffrey Roy Jr.

My name is Jeffrey and I am a Strategic Design and Management student at Parsons School of Design. When I am not posting on Twitter or Instagram, you can often find me perusing the newsstand at Barnes & Noble.

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