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Getting Around NYC: Transportation Tips for Tourists.

Getting Around NYC: Transportation Tips for Tourists.

How to Get Around NYC As a Tourist

Many people visit NYC, plop themselves down in Time Square and never move. But learning the city’s highly logical transportation system is crucial if you want to get around.

Walking is also an option – but be prepared to work up a sweat, especially in summer. Ride sharing apps such as Uber and Lyft are popular in NYC with rates that undercut yellow cabs.


The subway is the best way to get around Manhattan and its outer boroughs. It is easy to navigate and relatively fast. However, you must be prepared to deal with crowds during peak hours. In addition, the subway can experience service disruptions due to a variety of reasons, including signal problems and sick passengers.

Be sure to read the subway map carefully, as it conveys a lot of information in a very dense manner. Most city maps (and Google Maps, if saved offline) will show which subway line(s) will get you closest to your destination.

If you’re planning on taking the subway often, consider purchasing a MetroCard, which has single and unlimited ride options. A swipe of the card at each entry is required to enter the subway system, and you can purchase and refill them at subway station booths and MetroCard vending machines. You can also opt for a combination travel pass that is valid on all modes of transportation in NYC.


If you don’t want to take a subway or taxi, buses are an excellent way to get around New York City. Local buses cover the entire city on a grid, and some offer express routes that eliminate stops for quicker rides. You can purchase a MetroCard before boarding at subway station booths or MetroCard vending machines.

Taxi cabs are one of the most popular ways for tourists to get around New York. Yellow cabs are easy to spot and can be hailed by attracting the driver’s attention with your arm or by waving from street corners. Some apps, like Curb and Waave, let you book rides in advance.

Walking is a great way to explore the streets of New York, but be careful. You’ll be sharing the sidewalks with the residents, and they’re not shy about letting you know what they think of tourists. Be sure to wear comfortable shoes and obey pedestrian signals. If you’re a first-time visitor, consider taking a guided tour of the city or getting an NYC pass to help with your navigation.


Getting around New York City by taxi isn’t difficult. Just look for yellow cabs with their roof lights on, and raise your arm to signal. If the cab is occupied or off-duty, wait until it stops or try another option like Uber or Lyft. Both services are available in NYC and offer competitive rates compared to yellow cabs.

Taxi drivers are required to take passengers to their requested destinations, so be sure to clearly state your destination. Also, remember that the fare is metered and starts at $3. Additional charges for distance, time and tolls are added to the base fare.

Buses are a good option for longer trips, and you can buy tickets online or at subway stations using the MetroCard system. Keep in mind that the buses run on a schedule, so plan your trip accordingly. Also, some lines are express, so your app might tell you to get on the 1 instead of the 2, but it is likely that the two will run in the same direction.


The New York subway is both beloved and reviled, a symphony of underground music that crisscrosses the five boroughs. The subway system is reliable and inexpensive, but the commute can be painfully crowded during rush hour.

Taxis are another popular option, but they can be expensive and difficult to hail at night or in bad weather. You can also use a ride-sharing service like Uber or Lyft, which often offer cheaper rates than traditional yellow taxis.

Hop-on, hop-off bus tours can also be a great way to explore NYC. These tour buses travel on a set route and are often accompanied by knowledgeable guides who can help you learn about the city’s history and culture. Walking the streets of NYC can also be a rewarding experience, providing a personal perspective on the city’s unique sounds and textures. However, it’s important to know the rules of the road before hitting the streets. Always be sure to check traffic patterns before venturing out, and avoid driving during rush hours.

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