Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Tuesday Tip: How Not To Look Like A Tourist In New York City

Last Friday, my sister Kim and I went on our road trip to Madison Square Garden to see Pearl Jam. Kim sent me an email with a link to familiarize myself with the trains. Our plan was to drive to Hoboken and take the train to Manhattan. We both have been to NYC before but this was the first time we would be taking the train late at night. In preparation for our trip, I decided to research how not to look like a tourist.

I found many sites detailing what visitors should and should not do.

What Not to Do as a Tourist in New York City
Ten Things Not to Do in New York City
How To Avoid Looking Like a Tourist in New York City

On the drive to Hoboken, I shared the information I found with my sister. A few points that stuck out were:

1. Do not gawk.
2. Do not stop in the middle of the sidewalk to look at a map.
3. Wear black but do not wear shorts.
4. Know the lingo. The city = Manhattan. The train = the subway.
5. Think of the sidewalk as if you were driving.
6. Walk fast and look like you know where you are going. It is better to take three lefts than to stop and look lost.
7. Do not complain about the prices.
8. Jay walking is expected and necessary.
9. Keep you wallet in your front pocket and don't get money out in public.
10. Maintain your personal space even if you are on a crowded subway.

So...how did we do?

Upon arriving in Hoboken, Kim stopped the car and asked about the train to the city. The man looked at her and asked "Do you mean Manhattan?" I wore jeans and a black shirt. My sister opted for shorts. I told her about the no shorts rule and she looked skeptical. Fifteen minutes off the train and she said "You were right about the shorts". Walking fast without stopping on the sidewalk was no problem. We arrived in Manhattan just in time for Friday rush hour. The jay walking was challenging at first. Everyone ignored those flashing signs that told you to walk or don't walk. My biggest faux pas was footwear. I noticed that New Yorkers wear fashionable (yet extremely uncomfortable looking) shoes. I think my sneakers may have screamed "tourist".

The Pearl Jam concert was excellent.

I will leave you with the Pearl Jam video Just Breathe.


Sis said...

Love that video. Ready for more PJ concerts.

Michele said...

Count me in!

Felicia said...

Sounds like you had good time - and an interesting trip! Many of those tips sound like they are straight out of a "common sense self-defense" manual!

Michele said...

Felicia...You're right!