Is the New York subway really safe? Here are some tips for beginners traveling to the city
It’s true that crime rates have increased on the subway, but there is a lot that new visitors can do to (safely) travel around New York City.
Visiting New York is an experience that will likely last a lifetime. This city is not easily forgettable, nor is its energy, which is why so many people are drawn to it in the first place. Along with this type of hectic energy and facial rhythm, however, come some concerns for first-time travelers. The biggest question people ask themselves is how safe is the metro? With the following question that follows: “How safe is New York City, in general?” “
The good news is that like any other city, New York has its pros and cons, one of the pros being that its compact nature means visitors are rarely alone. That being said, again, like in any city, there are some things travelers should probably avoid – at least on their first visit there. Here are some insider tips on how to stay safe while visiting the Big Apple.
The metro can be safe, but you don’t need to use it
A common misconception for people visiting the city is that they will have to use the metro to get to where they need to go. While the city is quite large, it is not so huge that the metro is the only option for travel. In most cases, the metro is best when used to travel from one end of the city to the other or to travel to another borough. Chances are, if someone is visiting the city for the first time, they are probably considering staying in the center of the city, AKA Manhattan.
There are many ways to get around the city and while the metro is the most affordable and the fastest, in most cases it is not something that beginners should necessarily try. The metro is not totally dangerous, but crime rates have increased, which you need to be aware of.
Alternative modes of transport
The easiest and best way to navigate the city is to simply walk. It’s not like what you might see in movies and on TV – New Yorkers don’t just recognize and come out and immediately rush to knock them off the sidewalk! The most populous part of the city will always be Midtown since that’s where Times Square is located. Other than that, the city streets are just that – city streets. They aren’t packed to the point where everyone is neck and neck and it’s not as hectic as you might think.
And, believe it or not, there’s room to step aside and check a GPS or map if you don’t know where they’re going. Believe it or not, walking has multiple benefits for beginners:
- Being able to observe the city from a first-hand perspective is really exciting.
- Travelers can move at their own pace and don’t have to worry about taking a subway or a taxi.
- This is the best way to find restaurants, stores, or vendors that visitors might want to explore.
The next option for city travel is the most expensive but also the most reliable. If the metro isn’t an option (we don’t blame you) then a taxi is something to consider. Fares will be high and passengers will have to contend with the comings and goings of the car as it weaves its way through city traffic, but ultimately the honking of the horns will become white noise in the background. It’s a quick way to get from one place to another, and it’s also a safe way to do it, especially at night. In fact, if the distance to the hotel is too great, travelers should still consider a taxi just to be on the safe side.
Before you go, do it when booking
The best thing a first-time visitor to New York City can do is familiarize themselves with the city on a map. Everything is a bit disorienting after hitting the street and not having that aerial view, so it helps to have a general sense of direction before you even arrive.
With an endless number of hotels, hostels, motels, and Airbnbs in the city, there’s no reason travelers can’t find one that’s close to everything they plan to be. to do. This is the best thing to do to ensure that walking will be sufficient transportation and to ensure that if a taxi is needed the cost of use will not be astronomical. When it comes to a trip to New York City, planning ahead is the rule of the game.
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