21 Stupid Mistakes I Made On My Very First Trip to New York City (So You Don’t Have To)

Nathan Congleton
Nathan Congleton

Author Disclaimer: I’m poking fun at myself here. Please don’t take me too seriously. 😝

1. If you wander the streets of NYC with zero clue as to where you are or where you’re going, you will definitely end up lost in a not-so-good area at some point.

2. Not going to charge your phone before you head out? At least remember your friend’s address…or phone number…or something to help when you’re stranded in who-knows-where-Brooklyn.

3. PSA: If you daydream on the subway, no one will remind you to get off at the right stop and you’ll probably miss it at least once. Or twice. Or pretty much every time.

4. Thinking about casually wandering the streets for a good place to eat? You should probably calibrate your GPS first so you aren’t walking in circles for an hour.

5. If it’s 1AM and you’re a few drinks in, ordering the cheesiest, melt-in-your-mouthiest artichoke pizza might seem worth the calories…but not if you won’t remember how amazing it actually was the next morning.

6. If you’re going to take the scenic night route through the city, at least walk with a purpose. Looking super confused and helpless at a street corner is like wearing a neon sign on your back: ‘TOURIST THAT DOESN’T KNOW WHERE SHE IS. MURDER ME NOW.’

7. Asking a New Yorker how to get places when they have headphones in and are obviously trying to get somewhere quickly and efficiently will result in annoyed looks and immediate judgement.

8. If you’re broke as a joke, don’t order anything but the house wine.

9. But don’t. I repeat. Don’t be a cheapa$$ and ask the price of all the wines on the menu.

10. You should probably know the difference between 14th Street and 14th Ave because they are most definitely not the same thing.

11. If you’re going out with friends, it would be smart to bring a credit card that is actually accepted most places…or bring more than one card with you when you leave the hotel.

12. Planning on being touristy and taking the train? Make sure you know the difference between Uptown and Downtown.

13. Getting in a cab to head home? Say the city with the address. Otherwise you’ll end up somewhere in Jersey, penniless and confused.

14. Never assume that just because it’s an organic, NY original smoothie it’s going to taste good. Because it probably won’t. But at least it’s still good for you.

15. If you’re going to order a drink to look all cool and sophisticated, make sure you have the money to pay for it.

16. Never leave the hotel without an umbrella. Ever.

17. Taking a cool photo? At least stop somewhere that isn’t the middle of the road.

18. Going out in mid-December? You should probably bring a coat.

19. If you’re going to walk 20 miles…high heels might not be the best option.

20. PSA: New York has these things called boroughs. It’d be a good idea to know what that means/what they are.

21. Visiting NYC for the first time? Don’t assume you know what you’re doing. Because you probably don’t. Thought Catalog Logo Mark


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