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How much spending money should i take with me

Glasgow, Scotland
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How much spending money should i take with me

I am coming to NYC for 2 weeks in August and as i am coming on my own after my friend had to pull out i am not sure how much spending money i need to save

I am from the UK and i will mainly be sightseeing and doing a bit of shopping but since i am alone i wont be going out at night to restauarants and bars etc

How much do you think i need

South of England
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38 reviews
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1. Re: How much spending money should i take with me

You're going to miss out on half the fun if you lock yourself in at night, August is a long way off can't you find someone in that time to go with you? New York is best shared

Maryland
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for Baltimore
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2. Re: How much spending money should i take with me

Hard to say--but on top of your hotel and air costs, I'd put a bare-bones NYC spending money daily budget at about $60.

$20 admissions

$5 breakfast

$10 lunch

$15 dinner

$10 transit

$?? shopping--you know better than anyone.

Oakville, Ontario
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3. Re: How much spending money should i take with me

I agree with WestieGirl.....that is what my girlfriend and I spent last April when we were in NY for 4 1/2 days.......ate simply; saw two shows TKTS; she bought an outfit...I did not but thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. TOP ROCK/SOL/ELLIS/UNION SQUARE/CENTRAL PARK/MOMA/PIZZA TOUR BROOKLYN(prebought online at home);WALKED ACROSS BROOKLYN BRIDGE;SOUP/SANDWICH sitting in BRYANT PARK/window shopped and window shopped/GRAND CENTRAL STATION/IRISH MEMORIAL/WALL STREET etc. etc. You can do it BIG or you can do it small..............

NYC/Israel
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for Israel
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4. Re: How much spending money should i take with me

$5 breakfast, $10 lunch and $15 dinner is eating very very cheaply! What/where did you eat? There is a huge difference between fancy restaurants and street food. If you spend $15 for dinner before tax and tip that is around $12--which is next to nothing!

County Cork, Ireland
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5. Re: How much spending money should i take with me

I would budget at least $100.00 a day for your trip. You may have something left over but it is better to have enough with you rather than running short and having a miserable holiday. Also if you are going shopping, I would have around $500.00 aside for this. The shopping is fantastic in New York and you will get great value.

Maryland
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for Baltimore
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5,699 posts
22 reviews
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6. Re: How much spending money should i take with me

RQLady,

Let's be fair. The OP doesn't give any indication of her budget or preferences of fancy restaurants or street food. Of course she could easily spend $100/day on nice restaurants if she wanted to. She could also eat on under $10/day restricting herself to Grey's Papays or the dollar menu at McDonald's.

I suspect the real answer is somewhere in between, and I simply took a shot towards the lower end of that in-between range that still provides some NYC uniqueness.

So here's my sample budget menu for the day:

$5 breakfast--Zabar's--bagel with lox & cream cheese, coffee and fresh OJ.

$10 lunch--burger, accoutrements and drink from Shake Shack or Burger Joint.

$15 dinner--sushi, Chinese or pasta on the UWS, sitting down, with a waiter.

All a step above street food IMHO, but of course that has its own following, too (including me). I'd be very content to do this sort of menu every day, but that's just my own preference. Maybe the OP can clarify her budget and culinary preferences.

Oakville, Ontario
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30 reviews
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7. Re: How much spending money should i take with me

I have a salad or soup and bun at Cosi's if I remember right; sometimes a slice of pizza and water; bagel/coffee am; dinner big salad/bread/water. I did not scrimp; saw 2 plays TKTS; went to WHOLE FOODS and bought bananas/yogurt and put in room fridge. I dont shop here, so dont shop in NY...........I shop when I need too, like a wedding/big event etc. much to my 19 yearold daughters dismay............

NYC
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8. Re: How much spending money should i take with me

You should definitely not decide to not go out at night, even if you're alone. That's just ridiculous. There's no stigma to a woman being alone at dinner or even in bars - I know, I'm often alone. So don't let that limit you. This doesn't mean that you have to spend alot of money - I'm not good at setting budgets so I can't tell you how much money to bring. But definitely do go out to resetaurants and other places at night.

New Orleans...
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9. Re: How much spending money should i take with me

"So here's my sample budget menu for the day:

$5 breakfast--Zabar's--bagel with lox & cream cheese, coffee and fresh OJ.

$10 lunch--burger, accoutrements and drink from Shake Shack or Burger Joint.

$15 dinner--sushi, Chinese or pasta on the UWS, sitting down, with a waiter."

Sorry, but even these prices are seriously underestimated. I'd love to see how anyone could pick up any of the things mentioned for these prices, and also know why anyone would go out of their way to eat bargain pasta on the Upper West Side.

I agree that you can eat cheaply, but up the prices for lunch and breakfast by $5, and dinner by $10- now you're looking at a minimum.

Vancouver, Canada
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10. Re: How much spending money should i take with me

I'm planning on budgeting $60-$70 a day for food, beverages and snacks when I visit New York in December. Some days, certain meals will be cheaper and on other days they will be more expensive.

Most tourists won't be eating $5 breakfasts and $10 lunches every single day, but I suppose a few cheap meals during a trip or one cheap meal per day isn't unrealistic. On the average, I think $60-$70 is a reasonable figure and I'm a student, so its important for me to stay on a budget.

A few tips to help you stay on budget for food:

- choose a hotel that includes a complimentary breakfast

- some hotels offer free coffee, hot chocolate, cookies, fruit, snacks, etc, throughout the day or at certain times

- opt for a fridge and microwave in your hotel room for your leftovers, or to stock up on food items on your own. some hotels charge for this, while others include it for free if you ask and there is availability. it never hurts to ask, if you're unsure...

- buy a case of bottled water and other snacks, instead of buying them individually on the go or even worse in your hotel room (hotels are notorious for overcharging for bottled water and their snacks)

- don't drink alcohol or at least limit your drinking. yes, its a nice way to unwind, but it can easily eat into your budget. Ordering drinks in hotels and restaurants is costly in New York, with some places charging $10-$20 per drink!

- Learn to share: Go to places where you can share meals. A whole large pizza can easily feed 3 or more adults.

- Avoid ordering appetizers! Usually they aren't very good anyways! (of course, there are exceptions..) How many times have you told yourself after receiving your meal or not being able to finish it: "we shouldn't have ordered the appetizer!"

- If filling up on the smallest possible budget is your goal, then eat at buffets or restaurants such as olive garden which serve unlimited bread sticks, soup or salad with your meal. (yes, it's touristy and a chain restaurant, but it sure does hit the spot!)

- Eat at places where you serve yourself, this way, you can save %15 by not having to tip, although a small tip is still usually appreciated

- Avoid eating at the overpriced hotel restaurants, whenever possible. Often they are overpriced for the food they are serving and many claim the food isn't anything special (of course, there are exceptions).

- Keep busy between meals and you might not even have the time or think of stopping for all those in-between snacks and treats

I'm sure people who live in New York can add to this list, as there are many other creative ideas to save money. I have used many of these strategies myself in the past to save money and it has allowed me to afford eating at a few nicer places during my trip that normally would have been too expensive.