Practical Life in New York City

Shopping in New York City

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Cost of Living in New York

Living in the heart of New York City means living in a vibrant, eclectic, "city never sleeps" place. It also means that your cost of living is roughly double the average cost of living in the United States. New York City is the tenth most expensive place to live in the world.

Nowhere in the USA is property so valuable. Value depends on proximity to downtown and location within a neighbourhood, as while as the condition of the apartment. However, demand far exceeds supply, and the average rent for a 1-bedroom New York City apartment starts at $3,105. Finding a roommate can make apartments much more affordable, with 2 bedrooms costing $4,065 and 3-bedroom apartments around $6,500.

Between May and September, demand is at its highest as people move into the city to begin new jobs as well as the start of the school year. From December till April demand goes down, as do prices.

To get the area you want for a price you can live with, a simple formula may be employed. Divide your monthly income (after tax) income by three. Less than a third of your income should go to rent so you can pay for the cost of living.

Use our cost of living guide to estimate your expenses.

Examples of Cost of Living in NYC

The average consumer prices in New York are significantly higher from average prices in other US states. Some of the examples about the cost of living in New York are:

  • Groceries (on average): Bread costs $7,58/kg, milk $1,13/litre, cheese $15,25/kg, potatoes $3,95/kg
  • Eating Out: A meal in a cheap restaurant costs around $19, and around $80 in a mid-range restaurant. A pint of local beer costs about $10
  • Leisure: A cinema ticket costs approx. $16, and a Fitness Club Monthly fee is about $75
  • Clothing: The price of a chain store pair of jeans is about $50, increasing up to $80 for a branded sport trousers. A mid-range pair of running shoes are $85
  • Transportation & Gas: In New Yok, a one-way public transport ticket costs around $2,75, a monthly ticket costs around $127. A litre of 95-grade fuel costs around $0,79.

Gift Items from New York

New York is an iconic city and there are several specialty gifts or souvenirs people look for when visiting the city.

  • "I love NY" T-shirt
  • NY Yankees Gear: Jerseys, hats, equipment, etc.
  • New York Souvenirs with landmarks reflected on them like the Statue of Liberty, skyline, Brooklyn Bridge, or even yellow taxi cabs. These can be found inexpensively on anything from key chains to coffee mugs to magnets to lighters.
  • Bagels and/or bagel seasoning
  • Chinese spices, trinkets, or remedies from Chinatown
  • Fashion from independent designers, as well as world-class brands. Fans of the show "Project Runway" can visit Mood for fabric.
  • Italian goods from NoLIta or "North of Little Italy".

Shopping in New York

One of the attractions of New York, (besides the Statue of Liberty, Broadway or fabulous restaurants) is shopping. Some of the biggest names, most fashionable celebrities and funkiest stuff can be found on the trendy New York shopping streets. can help the intrepid shopper find tours based around shopping, maps of shop by area and calendar events.

Remember there is a 8.3% sales tax on items you purchase.

Best shopping areas in NYC:

  • Fifth Avenue is possibly the most famous shopping street in the world.
  • Madison Avenue boasts fifteen blocks of celebrity designer shops and flagship fashion house boutiques such as Prada and Chanel. This is the largest shopping district in the country.
  • SoHo hass transformed from artist's dive to posh outdoor mall with shops like Kate Spade and Malandrino. Cobblestone streets and loft-like spaces make the neighbourhood a prettier spot for shopping than the average galleria.
  • Park Slope is known as the "other Fifth Avenue", located in Brooklyn.

Other classic shopping spots in New York that you cannot miss when discovering the city are:

Markets in New York

There is always a market within walking distance in New York City. From organic goods, to bulk clothing, to one-of-a-kind trinkets, there is a market for you.

Supermarkets in New York

There are many supermarket chains in New York, including:

For a complete list of supermarkets in New York visit: Supermarketpage

Another proud NYC shopping tradition is the bodega. These small convenience stores sell basic goods ranging from candy to coffee. With over 10,000 bodegas spread across New York City, they are easy to find and an authentic NYC experience.

Update 13/02/2020


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