New York might be cheaper than Singapore and Hong Kong but it does fall into the top 10 most expensive cities to live in the world, as ranked by the most recent Economist Intelligence Unit’s Worldwide Cost of Living Report 2017. New York was the only USA city to fall into the top 10 – coming in tie with Denmark’s Copenhagen at 9th and 10th place – so if you’re immigrating to the USA, you might consider another city if you want to enjoy a lower cost of living. However, if you have your heart set on the Big Apple, here are some strategies you can employ to keep your dollars in your pocket.
Money saving tips for expats living in New York City
All New York’s boroughs are not equal
If you want to live in New York and keep your costs down, don’t aim for Manhattan, rather consider a less expensive borough like Brooklyn. To make things more affordable, aim to live in an apartment. As a tenant in New York, you’ll only have to pay the electricity as the water and gas bills will be taken care of by your landlord. Housing costs are more expensive, but you can share a house with one or two roommates and then split the costs accordingly.
Stick to public transport
Yellow cabs are everywhere, but rather choose to commute using the affordable public transport system, which connects all five boroughs of New York. The public transport is so effective that as an expat you won’t need to own a car – and if the place you are heading to is off the grid, grab a bus, which are also relatively affordable. If you are planning on staying in the city, consider buying an unlimited monthly MetroCard, which enables you to use the public system as often as you like within the month your card covers.
Don’t do ‘takeout’
New York has a take away or deli on every corner, but try and avoid buying pre-made food. The cheapest option is always to cook for yourself. Pack yourself lunches for works – especially if you work in a business district where the delis know they have a ‘trapped’ market and charge exorbitant prices for lunches. New York’s happy hours can be very generous – so if you are heading out for drinks, time it so you can at least enjoy some of your drinks at half price or even less.
Choose your healthcare wisely
If you have children, you can choose Child Health Plus which is a New York State health insurance plan for children. Based on your income, this may be subsidised by the state. There are also many free or low cost clinics you can visit for your healthcare needs including New York University’s Kriser Dental Centre where your dental work will be far cheaper than a private dentist.
Find free entertainment
New York is filled with entertaining sights – from street entertainers to renowned museums, which usually offer free entry. Visit the Statue of Liberty, stroll in Central Park, walk across Brooklyn Bridge and look out for special deals like free visits to the zoo for children.
The Top 10 most expensive cities based on 2017’s Worldwide Cost of Living Report
If you thinking of immigrating to the USA and need any advice about your financial migration, contact us today and we’ll help you on the path to financial freedom in your new home.
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