I will be about half way through the MBA program when I leave at the end of June to go back home to the USA for a two-week period in the grandiose Big Apple. I've visited New York City (NYC) in the past - but just for a couple of days at a time. My initial impression of the city was that it is massive compared to Paris. Of course, NYC is extremely fast-paced, but also full of life, culture, and new experiences. Each time I've visited the city, it has been a whirlwind and I never really feel like I was actually there until it was time for me to leave. This time around, since I will be attending classes at the Baruch College as part of the ISM MBA program, I will be able to explore the infamous concrete jungle for two whole weeks and I'm really looking forward to getting to know the city.

Most of my friends are or have been obsessed with NYC (like myself with Paris), and they have moved there to pursue their dreams and establish their lives. I've always been intrigued as to what made them fall in love with the city and this upcoming adventure will allow me to find out. In preparation for the trip, I've done some extensive Googling, Pinteresting as well as speaking to some of my friends about what I can expect. I've concluded on the following five major tips:

  1. New York City is HOT in the summer and packed tight. The last time I was there in the summer, I felt like cattle being herded across each little crosswalk. Bringing a great pair of walking shoes is key and layering your clothes according to weather is beneficial for the hot days and cool nights.
  2. Bring a Map or download a NYC transit app to help you get around. NYC is massive and one can easily get lost and confused. I would also encourage people to just ask for directions. Most New Yorkers are pretty nice and would rather give you directions than allow you to take up the precious sidewalk by staring at a map.
  3. Buy the MetroCard. The NYC subway is a great form of transportation and relatively inexpensive. A lot of money does not have to be spent on taxis.
  4. Use websites like couch surfing and Airbnb to find discounted accommodation. Using these websites can help you save, as summer in the city is already expensive so finding hotels to fit your budget can be a bit of a struggle. Taking some time to barter with the people that offer accommodation can also help save on costs because most of the time they as prepared to bargain.
  5. Have fun, explore the city, try new things, but also stay mindful and be respectful of the New Yorkers that aren't on vacation and living their daily lives. Tourism is a great aspect in helping local economies grow, but can also be a pain for those that still have to work and navigate around the crowds. A little research and planning ahead go a long way so you know where you're going, how and when.

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