Quick Guide to New York

New York is known for being as the city that never sleeps, and thanks to featuring in innumerable TV series and films it's instantly recognisable. We know it for its amazing skyline, for the famous bright yellow taxis, the brownstone streets, fabulous shopping and (usually airborne) shots of Central Park. Now it's time to experience it for yourself! New York city break deals don't hang around for long - so if you spot one you should definitely snap it up.

New York Skyline
New York Skyline

To keep an eye on your budget look for package holidays to New York, being sure to keep an eye on your hotel's location. It can often be worth arranging an upgrade so that you are in a more central location, saving you both time and money when it comes to sightseeing - things which locals know are both as valuable as each other, especially if you're only on a short break in New York.

Whether you've got your eye on a shopping break on the Upper East Side, a cheap New York deal to visit historic Coney Island, to dig under the skin of Brooklyn's art and culture, or are simply interested in tucking into a heap of pancakes over brunch in "the Village" (Greenwich), there's so much to do in New York we're sure this won't be your last trip.


What to do in New York

When it comes to listing all the things to do in New York on a cheap break, or even to try to list the must-sees, it's impossible to know where to start! We've tried to put together a quick top ten best of New York here - but see our New York page for more! In no particular order:

New York Central Park
Central Park

1. See the view from the Empire State Building

2. Marvel at Times Square and take in a show

3. Stroll through Central Park

4. Take the boat to Liberty Island to see the Statue of Liberty. Book in advance if you want to go up to the upper observation areas, and make sure you arrive early as there are strict security controls.

5. Visit the Museum of Modern Art

6. Spend time admiring the beauty of Grand Central Station

New York Grand Central Station
Grand Central Station

7. Walk over the Brooklyn Bridge and explore Brooklyn Bridge Park

8. Take a day trip to Coney Island to enjoy the faded grandeur of this seaside resort

9. If you take a break to New York in the Christmas period you MUST visit the Rockefeller tree and ice rink. But what to do in New York for the festive season could be another top 10 in itself!

10. Enjoy some of the amazing shopping, whether it's Macy's or the designer brands on the Upper East Side.

Where to stay in New York

New York has a fine selection of great value hotels, although there are plenty of overpriced offering too. Be sure to read some of the reviews, but be aware of the fact that New York hotel rooms are all tiny, and that people largely go on these sites to complain!

If you're after a New York break on a budget then expect to be a way from Central Park. Midtown is known for all its shops, bars, restaurants and entertainment options, but this also means it's a premium location for visitors. Downtown is a great alternative with its host of trendy boroughs, perfect for finding those out-of-the-way spots people come home raving about, and for taking envy-inducing holiday snaps.

If you're looking to splash the cash a little on a weekend break in New York, then Uptown Manhattan is a great choice. Hotel rooms here are generally larger, and the area is more family friendly. Plus, there will be lots of swish shops and restaurants on your doorstep!

Your final option is to head further afield, with Brooklyn offering plenty of budget-friendly choices, and Long Island is a very upmarket place to lay your head. Brooklyn is popular thanks to its different ethnic districts, and is well known for its delicious food, as well as its hipster-centric entertainment. Long Island is where the wealthy residents of New York have a holiday home. It's a bit of a journey into the centre, but a stay here is the most relaxing way to see the sights.

How to get to New York

All holidays to New York start with a flight across the Atlantic. Expect to be in the air for around seven hours. There is not normally much difference in price between direct and indirect flights so choose one flight, not two to avoid unnecessary travelling time! New York has three airports, so be sure to check which you are landing at and work out a plan for your onward travel. Most flights land at JFK Airport, although if you're on the lookout for a cheaper holiday in New York, you should certainly consider a flight to Newark or LaGuardia as well.

New York Taxi
The famous yellow taxi

Once you arrive in New York, the fastest way to continue your journey is to hail one of the iconic yellow taxis, although if you're keeping an eye on the budget then you'll probably want to consider one of these other options:

Travel from JFK - Get on the air train for the fastest way to the centre. It runs 24 hours a day into Manhattan and connects with the subway. Shuttle buses can take up to 60 minutes, or you could also catch the subway direct from JFK. To join the network, get on the free airport bus to the long stay parking! It's best to avoid this method at peak times, as there is minimal space for luggage in the carriages. If you're travelling light, then the local buses are the best budget option, but no large bags are allowed at all.

LaGuardia - It takes a little more time to get into New York from this airport, as the shuttle bus is your only option if you have large bags. Expect the transfer time to be around 60 minutes, or longer in rush hour. You can also take the bus or the subway, although neither of these are advised with large bags.

Newark International Airport - The air train is again the fastest way to arrive in Manhattan to start you cheap New York break, with shuttle buses the only other option from here. Expect journey times of around 60 minutes by road.