NYC Trip Planning Checklist

Hello ladies! In one week we take our annual family trip to New York City! We’ll be sightseeing, seeing a show, and visiting some relatives out there. The whole gang is excited to go.

Since I’m planning everything now, I figured I would share my planning checklist for anyone else who is going as well.

Hope you enjoy! 

Planning an NYC Trip

When you’re planning for a trip, there’s no doubt that it can be a pretty hectic and stressful time. You have to arrange for travel and accommodations, you may create a plan for what you want to do once you’re there, and you have to get everything packed and ready to go. There’s a lot of stuff to take care of before you leave and you still have to make sure you make it out the door on time.

If you happen to be planning a trip to NYC, we’ve got you covered with a few things you won’t want to forget about. They’re sure to make your planning and your overall trip go much, much more smoothly!

Start Planning Your Trip Before You Leave

New York City is a very busy place with a lot of sights to see. There are so many shops, restaurants, and shows to see that you will likely have a packed scheduled during your stay if you’re trying to fit everything in. To make it a little easier and to ensure your trip goes well, you should really plan everything before you catch that plane or train to the Big Apple.

So, are there any New York City hotspots that you’d like to see while you’re here? Make a list of all the places you would like to visit. You might want to do the touristy things like check out the Statue of Liberty or go to the top of the Empire State Building. You may want to dine at some of the city’s finest restaurants or shop at some of the best stores. A great NYC resource (and one of my favorite sites) is Gothamist.

No matter what you’re planning to do during your stay, it would be worthwhile to plan everything in advance. You can create your own itinerary and block off time for certain adventures each day to make sure you can fit everything in. (And if you can’t, it’s all the more reason to come back for another stay, right?) Also, if you hope to visit any popular restaurants, you will want to make a reservation before you arrive just to be sure you can get a table when you want one. And if you’re dying to see that Broadway show, secure your tickets prior to the trip!

Get a CityPass to See Popular Destinations

There are quite a few popular tourist destinations in New York and if you’re planning to visit any, you might want to look into getting a CityPass. For NYC, the CityPass has two options for visitors. You can get a pass that will allow you to visit six destinations, three of which will be chosen for you and the other three will be your own choice. This pass allows you to visit the Empire State Building, the American Museum of Natural History, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. You will then have a choice between the Top of the Rock Observation Deck or the Guggenheim Museum, the Statute of Liberty and Ellis Island or Circle Line Sightseeing Cruises, the 9/11 Memorial and Museum or the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum.

The other CityPass option allows you to see three destinations of your choice from the ones listed above. It provides an affordable option for you to see some of the city’s most popular destinations.

Arrange for Luggage Storage

Do you really want to drag your suitcase, backpack, or any other luggage around the busy and crowded streets of New York City? Of course not! Instead of having the added stress of carrying your luggage around and worrying about it all day long, there’s a much easier option you should go for.

Be sure to check out my friends over at City CoPilot, they provide safe and affordable luggage storage for people traveling to NYC. So, let’s say you’ve arrived in the city, but there are still hours before your check-in time at your hotel or AirBnB. You don’t have to worry about taking your luggage with you everywhere while you kill time. You can drop off your belongings at one of their luggage storage facilities all over NYC. They have locations in the Lower East Side, Times Square, and Brooklyn!

You can feel secure knowing your personal items are safe in one of our facilities. Plus, you don’t have to worry about taking your luggage into stores or restaurants where they might get in the way or could be misplaced. Everything will be safe and sound in one of our locations for you to come back and collect later on.

Know How You’ll Get Around the City

While many things are within walking distance of where you’ll be staying, odds are that you will have to catch a a taxi or take the subway at some point. It’s a good idea to know how you’ll be getting around before you get there so you can set some money aside in your travel budget for transportation. You can choose to take a taxi cab, ride on the subway, or even order an Uber or Lyft. If you’re planning to use Uber or Lyft, you’ll want to make sure you have downloaded and familiarized yourself with the apps beforehand! On my last trip to NYC I hadn’t downloaded or used either app on my iPhone and had to spend 30 minutes setting it up so we could finally get a ride. Ugh!

You may also want to download a NYC transit apps to help you locate trains, find schedules, and more. It’s sure to make getting around the city much easier!

Let Your Bank Know You’ll be Traveling

There’s nothing worse than traveling somewhere, going to use your debit or credit card, and having it get declined by your bank due to suspicious activity. To avoid this happening, before you arrive in New York City, let your bank know that you will be traveling. Tell them which days you’ll be out of town and where you will be so they don’t flag legitimate usage as fraudulent.

Personal story… On a trip to California I hadn’t told my bank that we were traveling and they froze our card after we used it once! It was a real headache to figure out.

Pack Smart

And of course, you will need to get all of your belongings packed before you head out to catch your transportation to New York. In order to pack the right items for your trip, there are a couple of things to consider. What will the weather be like during your stay? Check the weather for the time that you’ll be in the city and pack the appropriate clothes for the weather.

You’ll also want to consider what you will be doing while you’re here. Do you have any fancier events to attend? Make sure you pack a dressy outfit that would be appropriate to wear. Also, if you’re planning to do a lot of walking, you’ll want to make sure you pack your most comfortable shoes so you can focus on just enjoying your trip and avoid any unnecessary foot pain.

And you just might want to leave a little extra room in your suitcase for all the shopping you’ll likely do during your stay!