How to Hack Being a Student in NYC

There are countless reasons to make the big decision to move to NYC–a new job, a significant other, or just a taste for adventure. Another major reason people move to New York is for college. Whether for undergrad or graduate school, NYC universities are some of the best in the country. Not to mention, you get to live in the greatest city in the world. This definitely isn’t easy–so Bedly is here to give you the top hacks into surviving (and thriving) as a student in the big apple.  


Step one is simple–go to Bedly for ALL of your housing needs. Seriously. Housing can be an even bigger nightmare for students than for New Yorkers with full time jobs because it can be nearly impossible to get approved for an apartment without a clear source of income. Not to mention, dorm housing prices are sky high. With Bedly, your housing search is simplified quickly. Bedly apartments are fully furnished, you don’t have to deal with landlords, credit checks or broker fees. Bedly will find your roommates–and give you some advice on how to keep those relationships strong. It is totally possible to live in NYC simply and on a budget as a student–and still have an amazing time!

With housing out of the way, the next hurdle for any NYC student is getting to class on time. The commute in NYC is different than your typical college town–and while public transportation is a great (and affordable) option, it’s not always reliable. So you’ll need to make sure to give yourself buffer time to travel so you’re not late to class. Although, even the strictest of NYC professors will be understanding if you get stuck underground with no explanation, because they’ve definitely been there. But it’s always helpful to plan to arrive 10-15 minutes before class starts so you can grab a coffee and brush off any of the commute drama you’ve been dealing with. Tip: always use google maps and make sure you double check the direction of your train–that way you’ll never get lost.

Once you get into your weekly rhythm, take advantage of your cohort! Whether you’re in graduate school or undergrad, you’ll always have a tight bond with the students you study with. As newbies to NYC, this is also an amazing way to form a community (outside of your fabulous roommates) and start making friends. Your cohort will understand all the stresses of your classes, your professors, and also the daily struggle of making it as a student in NYC. You’ll find study buddies, accountability partners, a group to go out with, and maybe even some lifelong friends.

Another key life hack to being a student in NYC is to find your ideal study spot. The libraries on campus have limited space, so take advantage of your off campus options. New York is filled with mom and pop coffee shops, tea shops, and plenty of outdoor space (when it’s warm). Not to mention, there are dozens of study spaces around the city, such as the New York Public Library that offer free wifi and beautiful study spaces. There are also spots around the city that are dedicated “work spaces” such as WeWork, where you can rent space and really get your studying done. These dedicated work spaces are also perfect for group study–especially if it’s at a central location in the city–that way it’s equidistant for all your group members.

Make sure you also find some times and spaces to find your zen. School is always challenging–especially when you’re in a city that is extremely overstimulating with TONS of distractions. So find a way to unwind (besides Netflix) that will help make the stresses of school seem all the more manageable. Most schools have a gym for students that will offer workout classes that you’ll have free access or discounted memberships. Your university will also host tons of events for students (almost always with free food) which will give you a welcome distraction during the most stressful times during the semester.

Take advantage of the student discounts all over the city. Almost every museum in the city offers a student discount, as do the movie theaters and even some restaurants and hair salons (especially the ones around campus). So always carry your student ID with you–you never know when it’ll come in handy!

One of the biggest student life hacks is finding your favorite food (and bars) within your budget. There are dozens of online ordering options (like Seamless and Grubhub), that will give you amazing deals and discounts on your first orders and will deliver affordable food options right to your door. If cooking daily is more your style, then sign up for Blue Apron or Fresh Direct. These services deliver fresh and cooking-prepped food directly to your door. All you have to do is follow simple directions and you’ll have meals before you know it!

Odds are, to support yourself as a student in the city, you’ll need to find a job–even if it’s just part time. While it can be daunting with having to balance your school schedule, the good news is that there are tons of options across the city for people looking for supplemental income. From part time nannying to tutoring to dog walking–the opportunities are endless! And all the better–if you’re a writer or a freelance artist, there are dozens of companies across the city that are looking for part time contributors. You can make your own hours and even work from home. And if you’re having a hard time navigating the NYC job scene, your university career center will absolutely be able to help you! All universities have opportunities for students to work on campus, so make sure you explore those as well!

While it’s never easy navigating NYC, especially as a student, there are countless amazing opportunities that await you. But, as any seasoned New Yorker will tell you, the toughest part of getting settled down in the city is finding the perfect apartment–because there is nothing worse than an apartment horror story. But when you use Bedly there is virtually nothing to be worried about–so make sure to check out their listings now!

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