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Twelve life hacks that will make life in New York cheaper and more convenient


Lyudmila Balabay

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Life in New York is difficult and expensive. But there are a few life hacks that will help you visit museums for free, buy cheap Broadway tickets, easily find the right address and the safest subway car. Their list was compiled by Time-out.

1. Wait for trains near the most worn out places on the yellow warning stripes on the subway platform

A person who always knows where the subway doors will stop is not a psychic. He's just smart and observant. The worn areas on the yellow warning stripes mark the places where the doors are most often opened. They were wiped out by passengers who got off the train and entered it.

2. Use OMNY for hassle-free public transport

The days of the MetroCard are numbered, and for good reason! New York moves to OMNY system. Payment for travel with this card is contactless, that is, it will be faster and easier to pass through the turnstiles. You can also use Apple Pay, Apple Cash, or other digital wallets to pay for your subway fare by simply tapping your phone against the turnstile. This makes it easier to move around the city. In addition, those who make more than 12 trips within seven days will automatically receive an unlimited week pass. In practice, this means that passengers who have made 13 or more trips paid through OMNY from Monday midnight to Sunday 23:59 will be charged a flat fee of $33 at the end of the week. Single trips cost $2,75 (i.e. 13 trips cost $35,75).

3. Don't be afraid of the front rows Film Forum

These cinemas have small screens, so viewing from the front row is very convenient here, unlike halls with huge screens.

On the subject: Free and convenient: there is an application that will help you quickly find a parking space on the streets of New York

4. Download these apps

Applications Curb и Arro make calling a taxi easier. You can order a car in advance (reservation is available within 24 hours), as well as pay for the trip via phone. Application Flush Toilet Finder will tell you the nearest open (and clean!) toilet in case of an emergency, and subway time и MyMTA show you when the next train will arrive at your station. Too Good To Go allows you to buy cheap food from restaurants, bakeries and other stores that do not want to just throw away unused products at the end of the day.

5. Discounts on Broadway

Many people know that the bright TKTS booths Times Square is the place to buy discount Broadway tickets. But here everything is decided by time: come at exactly 17:00, when the box office starts selling most of the available tickets for the day. If you come later or in the morning, you may find that discounted tickets for the best shows have already been sold out.

6. Use lampposts to navigate Central Park

Four numbers are written on each pole in the park. The first two indicate the number of the nearest intersection. The larger the second two numbers, the closer you are to the center line of the park when viewed from north to south. Finally, if the last number is even, then you are on the East Side; if odd, on the West Side.

7. Make yourself an IDNYC and culture pass

IDNYC is a citywide ID that all New Yorkers can get. It comes with some great perks, including an annual membership to the American Museum of Natural History, the Prospect Park Zoo, the Metropolitan Opera House, and the Museum of Modern Art.

culture pass available to those with a Brooklyn Public Library, New York Public Library, or Queens Library card. With your reader card, you can reserve a Culture Pass and get free admission to some of New York City's top cultural attractions.

8. Easily find the right address

Drop the last digit of the address first. So 480 Lexington Ave becomes 48. Then divide that number by 2, which leaves us with 24. Now add to that the "magic number" represented in address algorithm table in Manhattan. In this case it would be 22. The result would be 46. Therefore, 480 Lexington Ave is on Lexington Street near 46th Street.

9. Free days at museums

Some of the city's museums (such as the American Folk Art Museum and The Museum at FIT) are always free. The rest of New York's museums have free days or hours.

  • Brooklyn Museum: the first Saturday of each month, from 17:00 to 23:00;
  • The Frick Collection: “pay what you want” on Thursdays from 16:00 to 18:00;
  • Jewish Museum: Saturday, all day free;
  • MOMA: the first Friday of every month, from 16:00 to 20:00;
  • Neue Galerie New York: the first Friday of every month, from 16:00 to 19:00;
  • Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum: “pay what you want” on Thursday-Monday, 17:00-18:00;
  • Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum: Saturday, 16:00–18:00;
  • New Museum of Modern Art: “pay what you want” on Thursday, 19:00-21:00;
  • Museum of Art and Design: two tickets for the price of one on Thursday, 17:00-20:00;
  • Whitney Museum of American Art: “pay what you want” on Friday, 19:00-22:00.

10. Don't overpay for LIRR rides

City Ticket (discounted Metro North or LIRR ticket) for $5 will get you between any two LIRR stations in New York (excluding Far Rockaway) during off-peak hours and weekends.

In addition, LIRR now runs between Central Station and Jamaica, where you can transfer to AirTrain, meaning you can get from downtown New York to the airport for $13.

11. In the library you can borrow not only books for free

New York Libraries is a treasure trove of free resources, from books to digital files to photographs, but there's actually a lot more to be had. Public libraries in New York, Queens, and Brooklyn offer instrument rentals, free seeds, access to a recording studio, language courses, and more.

12. Houses with odd numbers are on the north side of the numbered streets, and with even numbers - on the south

Remember the abbreviation NOSE - north odd south even.

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