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Planning a New York City Vacation

Staten Island Ferry

New York is a popular destination for visitors from around the United States and the world. The city is rife with history, laden with museums and art galleries, boasts unparalleled shopping opportunities and offers lodging to fit any budget. In fact, there is so much to see and do that a week may not be long enough. Take the time to plan and create a New York vacation that suits your preferences and your budget.

Determine your interests. You likely have several, but try to narrow it down to one or two. This will help you zero in on the sites and locations you plan to visit. Some possible interests specific to New York City include outdoors and sports, food and wine, fine arts, shopping and culture. Check out the official New York State Tourism site for ideas on places to visit and sites to see that appeal to you.

Decide when you want to take a vacation to New York. There are seasonal sites and events that should not be missed. In the spring, you might want to catch the Tribeca Film Festival. In summer, you can take in a gondola ride in Central Park. Autumn is a wonderful time to catch a parade, such as the Veteran’s Day Parade or the famous Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. In winter, you might not want to miss the tree in Rockefeller Center.

Settle on a budget. Knowing how much you have to spend will help you plan everything from your lodging choice to dining out to what attractions you can visit. Fortunately, New York offers many free or affordable attractions, such as the Staten Island Ferry, the Statue of Liberty and Times Square. One way to save is by purchasing a New York Pass. For as little as $55.00 per child and $75.00 for an adult, you can get in to over fifty New York City attractions at no additional charge. In addition, you get to skip ahead of other visitors waiting in line for many of these destinations. Check out the 7-day pass for the best savings, currently going for around $150.

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Consider your travel companions, because this will greatly affect your choices for lodging, transportation and more. If you are vacationing solo or as a couple, find a budget room and spend more time seeing the sites. Traveling as part of a group? Consider pooling your resources and renting a vacation home. You can prepare most of your own meals, which will save you a bundle. 1800Roommates.com has an extensive listing of all types of available New York City lodging.

Create an itinerary in a notebook or day planner. Schedule the sites and attractions you want to visit each day of your vacation. Make sure to leave time for travel and spur-of-the-moment ideas. Write must-visit locations in ink and possibilities in pencil. Being flexible will allow you to fully enjoy all that New York has to offer.