When you’re new to NYC, the city can seem a bit overwhelming to navigate. Knowing where you’re going and how to get there can be confusing. Keep the following information in mind to make it easier for you to get around the city with ease.
You don’t have to memorize all or even most of the streets in NYC to figure out where you’re going. A big part of NYC is conveniently laid out in a grid style that’s easy to get the hang of.
- Streets from south to north in parts of lower, midtown and uptown Manhattan go in numerical order, starting with 1st Street in lower Manhattan.
- Streets from east to west generally go from 1st to 11th Avenue, but there’s also Lexington, Park and Madison Avenues, which lie between 3rd and 5th Avenues.
- If you venture farther into lower Manhattan or over to the Bronx, Brooklyn or Queens, you might need to check maps or GPS on your phone until you’re more familiar with these streets.
Buses and Trains
Buses and trains can get you where you need to go, which is ideal if you’re not entirely sure how to get to where you’re going. Just keep in mind that taking certain buses during rush hour might actually be slower than walking. Buses, such as the 34th Street MTA bus, slow to a crawl during these times from heavy traffic. Taking the subway or train is usually faster, but you’ll have to deal with large crowds and occasional delays that can slow you down. In order to ride either of these, you’ll need to purchase a MetroCard at subway stations.
- MTA buses run throughout Manhattan and the outer boroughs. You can also catch express buses that run to and from Manhattan and the Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island. Port Authority buses can get you to and from Manhattan and NJ.
- MTA subways or trains also run throughout Manhattan and the outer boroughs. Major train stations include Penn Station and Grand Central in midtown Manhattan.
Taxi Cabs and Ride Share Services
Taxi cabs offer a convenient way to get back to your apartment you don’t want to wait for a bus or train, although they do cost a bit more than public transportation and sometimes traffic can make it slower than taking the subway. You can hail a cab on any street in NYC, but keep in mind that you might have a harder time finding one during busy times, such as during rush hour or when it’s raining. Rideshare services, such as Uber and Lyft, offer a more cost-effective car ride through NYC. Via even offers $5 rides all around Manhattan.
Sometimes one of the fastest, cheapest (and most fun) way to get around is by utilizing NYC’s CitiBike program. There are a ton of convenient bike docks throughout New Jersey Brooklyn, and Manhattan that you can find using the CitiBike mobile app. With a yearly membership (currently $163/year) you can use the bikes for commutes under 45 minutes an unlimited amount of time for no extra charge. That’s much less expensive and healthier for you than dealing with the subway! Plus in our experience, these bikes are one of the quickest ways to zip across town.
CitiBike is available at discounted rates through many employers in the NYC area – including Bedly! Check with your employer to see if they have a discount they can offer you.