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Anything & Everything New York (PART 2) - [please search thread before posting]

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Anything & Everything New York (PART 2) - [please search thread before posting]

edited 6 December 2009 at 11:07PM in Overseas Holidays & Travel Planning
3.4K replies 325K views
M4RKMM4RKM Forumite
5.1K posts
edited 6 December 2009 at 11:07PM in Overseas Holidays & Travel Planning

**UPDATE January 2009 - Searching for Information**

This is the Part 2 of the Anything and Everything New York Thread. There have been over 2000 posts on the previous thread, so we're starting with a clean thread.

However, this doesn't mean that the information is not there. The old thread still has LOTS of useful information in it, and below, are links to useful snippits of information, and also to the whole old thread, which is now locked.

Almost every topic has been covered at some point. To help avoid unnecessary repetition and allow the regulars to best assist you, please search prior to posting, by clicking "Search this Thread" (drop down box at the top right) and enter the search terms. Results will be shown as posts from within the thread.

Anyway, welcome to the New York Q&A Thread - take a look here for guidance on details to include in your post - this makes it easier for the regulars to help you out

For specific queries, use one of the threads below:

Cheap Hotels in New York

Cheap Flights to New York

Shopping in New York

The Original Anything & Everything New York

Information Guides/Threads

Guide to Booking an NYC Holiday

Guide to Travelling in and Around Manhattan

Guide to Sightseeing in Manhattan

Why markymoo doesn't stay in Times Square

Weather in New York

The ESTA Thread - Remember to register before you travel!

The actual ESTA site

General Reviews - Always been added to!

[1207] Hotel: Hampton Inn Manhattan Chelsea Hotel, Sights/Eats: The Rock, Shows, Ground Zero

[1658] Hotel: Colonial House Inn, Chelsea, Sights/Eats: Gershwin, Boathouse, Mariott Marquis, Central Park, Brooklyn Bridge, Staten Island Ferry, Fashion Stores

[1837] Hotel: Cosmos, Sights/Eats: Reade St Pub, Morgan Market Deli, Soda shop, South St Seaport, Heartland Brewery, Staten Island Ferry, Marriot Marquis, Top of the Rock, Chinatown, Little Italy, Canal St, Times Square.

[1838] Hotel: Novotel Times Square Sights/Eats: Macys, NHL Ice Hockey, World Trade Center (Ground Zero), Madame Tussads, Grand Central, Rockerfeller, Central Park, Hard Rock Caf!, Planet Hollywood

US ($) Currency Questions

US Currency Questions & Answers Thread
Current £ : $ exchange rate using a Nationwide Debit Card
Locate a VISA ATM
Locate a Mastercard ATM
Historical exchange rate graphs: 30 days, 90 days, 180 days

Martin's Articles

Travel Money Maximiser: Finds you the cheapest holiday cash in seconds
Cheap Flights: Get the cheapest flights, whenever & wherever you go
Spending Overseas: The cheapest way to pay
How to get a flight upgrade
Compensation for delayed flights

External Useful Links*

HotelConxions - The CHEAPEST place to book the Cosmopolitan Hotel, a MSE favourite!
Music Concert Listings
Big Apple Greeter - FREE local guide to take you on a tour of the area you want!
Carmel Car Service - Cheaper than a taxi from/to airports
Tel Aviv Limo - Same As Above
New York Subway / Trains / Buses Info
Top of the rock tickets

Finally, if you are thinking of booking an apartment to stay in, while on holiday in New York City, please be aware, that these are NOT recommended, and are illegal. Everything will be done to remove posts that state how wonderful illegal apartments are. Please stay in a LEGAL hotel.

Keep reading, keep posting, and this will keep getting updated!


  • edited 7 December 2009 at 12:29AM
    M4RKMM4RKM Forumite
    5.1K posts
    edited 7 December 2009 at 12:29AM
    This bit used to be my signature, but I'll paste it here for easy reference.

    I've travelled to NYC, 11 times already, and my 12th is coming up, since 2001, prices have dropped, gone up, and dropped again, and gone up again.. it is always a moving market, however, this is my opinion only on what kind of price people should be paying for a DIRECT flight from either Manchester, or the London airports.

    Direct Flight

    £000 - £300 = 5*
    £300 - £350 = 4
    £350 - £400 = 3*
    £400 - £450 = 2*
    £450 - £500 = 1*
    Over £500 = 0*

    Over £500 for a return flight isn't money saving.

    Ideally, i'd love to say, if you see a flight UNDER £250, to book it straight away. There are some bargains to be had.

    When it comes to flights that invlove one change, knock £50 off each of the price bandings, and then again you have a good price

    However, when posting this, I feel that the days of sub £200 flights are now gone! :(

    Time for some hints and tips.

    1 - The centre of New York is Manhattan, in a tourist sense.
    2 - You can't have a hotel close to everything, as Manhattan is 2.5 miles wide and 13.5 miles long. If you're near Central Park, you're not near the Staten Island Ferry
    3 - New York is safe. it isn't like the movies or CSI:NY. It is the safest big city in the USA, and i think the 3rd Safest in cities over 100,000 people.
    4 - The Subway is easy to use and safe, and runs 24 hours a day.
    5 - the cheapest way to get from the airport is to walk, However, it is miles away, so public transport is the second cheapest.. ;)
    6 - Times Square is a tourist attraction, not the place to be!

    7 - Apartment Rentals are illegal in New York City for stays under 30 days...

    Here is some more information on the rather delicate subject of point 7 - Apartment Rentals

    There is a lot of information over on TripAdvisor, much more than I can be bothered going through tonight, so I'd suggest people take a look over there if you don't believe what I say. However, I will go through this, logically.

    99% of apartments are not "Transient" accommodation in NYC, and therefore illegal. There have been recent events that illegal hostels and hotels have been closed down, and hundreds of tourists, who just book wherever is cheap, end up on the street.

    Seriously, If it ain't a scam, it'll be illegal. There are very few legal apartment rentals for under 30 days in New York City.

    Feel free to search the address on

    if it doesn't come up as a

    Department of Finance Building Classification: H9-HOTELS

    on the first page, then it isn't the right classification for a transient hotel. That is one quick check, the next one is to check the certificate of occupancy, Click on View Certificates of Occupancy, and then choose one from the list. I pick a known legal hotel, and it comes up as a J-1 Transient Hotel. Now, I've picked a known illegal apartment rental, and the certificate of occupancy states, 2 Family Dwelling and Accessory Office.

    So, if you are a not living there permanently, within a unit that is designed for a family, (and obviously that is not the case, because it has been illegally converted to 3 (three) apartments), then it is illegal, but the many websites don't give a crap what they have on their site, because they are getting their commission. There is no point asking them, they don't vet, or are required to vet what goes on the site.

    If you decide to use one then you are really depriving someone living in NYC in an affordable room, just because you don't want to stay in a hotel, which is what they are designed for. Hotels, transients, apartments, residents.

    If you want the apartment style, so you can cook a meal, have a living area etc etc, then choose a suitehotel, which there are a number of, Eastgate Tower in Midtown Manhattan is reasonable, and you can get a 1 bed studio, 1 bed suite, or a 2 bed suite etc etc. This is the closest you'll get to staying at an apartment in NYC legally.
  • edited 25 April 2009 at 9:24AM
    M4RKMM4RKM Forumite
    5.1K posts
    edited 25 April 2009 at 9:24AM
    Thought I'd share this link with you all
  • KarenG wrote: »
    Well, I know that Marky's expert advice advocates the three month rule but I am going to go against that in this instance for two reasons - one is that I think you have a great price there for PE and two because the M&M fares can sell out.

    I am by no means an expert but just my opinion, FWIW.

    I can't help with the hotel question as I don't know it (or that area) hugely well, sorry!

    What a fab place to spend your 30th :T

    I know its a fab price but, on closer look, its for the current offer for travel 1-30 Sep so, get rubbing your crystal ball people, what's the likelihood of a similar sale for dates at the start of December. I'm imagining the high Xmas rates kick in probably the following week so here's hoping?
  • OK so going to annoy everyone and repost on this new thread so I don't get lost in it.
    Its official as of today that I'm going (for the first time) to NYC for my 30th!!!
    Now its not until December but I'm allowed to be excited, and also want to make it perfect so getting very organised!
    There will therefore be more posts over the coming months but here's my opener:
    Flight plan is Virgin PE as its my bday so want a bit more style! (using the miles + money deal - currently around £460 each - but dont know when is best to book, given the credit crunch and hoping prices will fall but if more airlines go bust so there's less competition...
    Was going to mention that I'm the birthday girl at check-in/on booking - anyone know of any extra treats from Mr B's team?
    And when is best time to book?
    Now hotel wise it HAS TO BE Central Park (as bizarre but want to go for a jog in Central Park on bday morning - then make up the "lost calories" at the Magnolia bakery but I digress...)
    Quick hunt about on hotelconxions came up with Astor on the Park, Central Park West, 3* and seems to tick all our boxes for $551 for the 3 nights (Fri, Sat, Sun) - I thought it was too early to book but am tempted to snap this up pronto? Is it likely I could get a better deal nearer the time or by ringing the hotel directly (i.e. early bird discount?). Also anyone know about this particular hotel or any overlooking the park?
    BTW Dates are Out Friday 4th Dec Back Monday 7th (my bday)

    PS the M+M fare I see is an offer for travel in Sept so obviously no good but what is the likelihood of a Virgin/BA price war for the first week of December - guessing that the high Xmas season is probably from the following week???

    But really want to know about this hotel ASAP please
  • M4RKMM4RKM Forumite
    5.1K posts
    people start thinking about going to NYC for christmas anytime from october onwards.

    From this point on, the airfares suprisingly are higher, right from the beginning of november, until the 1st week of jan

    personally, i know i love the 3 month rule, (flying march 5th, booked hotel Jan 1st, Booked Flight Fri 9th Jan), it occasionally doesn't apply
  • becky_rtwbecky_rtw Forumite
    8.2K posts
    Part of the Furniture Combo Breaker
    Ooo I also meant to say - if you're into sweets or have kids to buy for when in NY go to Dylans Candy Bar - WOW - I was sugared up for about three days after my visit but be warned I spent $25 in there and didnt even buy much :D

    And LES - please I might be moneysaving, but I'm still a park princess!
    Love running, love parkrun - simples!
  • M4RKMM4RKM Forumite
    5.1K posts
    becky.. if we were ever in NYC at the same time, we'd never bump into each other..

    LES FTW!
  • becky_rtwbecky_rtw Forumite
    8.2K posts
    Part of the Furniture Combo Breaker
    Well the good news Mark is - I love NY so much - I'm already thinking about buying some flights in the BA sale for later in the year :D
    Love running, love parkrun - simples!
  • greenfacegreenface Forumite
    4.9K posts
    Mortgage-free Glee!
    greenface clocking on into new thread subs paid cheques in the post ready to serve.
    :cool: hard as nails on the internet . wimp in the real world :cool:
  • M4RKMM4RKM Forumite
    5.1K posts
    yeah.. maybe next time you go you'll see that LES is much better than UES...

    yeah ok.. maybe never
This discussion has been closed.

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