New York City

New York City (NYC or simply New York) is the city with the largest population in the US (c.19m in its metropolitan area). With over 50m tourists every year, it is also the most visited city of the country. The city is an international center for culture and arts, fashion, music, business and finance; and its skyscrapers skyline, numerous landmarks and museums attracts many visitors. New York is the safest large metropolis of the US, with a crime rate per inhabitant even lower than the national average. However, given its status as the most visited city in the US, petty theft against tourists is not uncommon. The city also have some rough neighborhoods which are unadvised for tourists. SafeAround has compiled information from numerous sources make sure you have a safe trip while in NYC and be aware of all potential dangers.

SAFETY INDEX

Warnings & Dangers

Mid Priority-96 OVERALL RISK : MEDIUM

New York is a very safe city. With a rating of 69%, the US is ranked 51th out of 162 on the ranking of the safest and most dangerous countries.

Mid Priority-96 PICKPOCKETS RISK : MEDIUM

There is some pickpocket-related risk in New York. Be careful around crowded Midtown streets, packed subway cars. A few simple precautions will minimize your chances of being pickpocketed.

Mid Priority-96 MUGGING RISK : LOW

New York is a safe city regarding mugging and kidnapping risks, although some areas are best to be avoided at night.

Mid Priority-96 SCAMS RISK : LOW

As in any touristic place, there may be people trying to scam you in New York. Be aware of “gold ring” tricks, fake petitions, groups of teenagers acting strangely or trying to distract you; and people offering help with your luggage.

Mid Priority-96 TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK : LOW

Transports and taxis are generally very safe in New York.

Mid Priority-96 NATURAL DISASTERS RISK : LOW

There can be some occasional natural hazards (blizzard or floods) in New York.

Mid Priority-96 TERRORISM RISK : MEDIUM

New York has not recently been targeted by terrorist attacks, but it is best to stay alert.

Mid Priority-96 WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK : LOW

New York is generally very safe for women travelers.

Carte

WHAT TO DO?

Manhattan

New York City’s most famous island, Manhattan is one of the five boroughs of the city. It is commonly divided in three sections, Downtown, Midtown and Uptown. It is the most densely populated part of the city, and is home to iconic neighborhoods such as Times Squares, SoHo, the Greenwich Village, Wall Street, or the most famous park of the city, Central Park. Most of the city’s touristic sights, stores, famous buildings or museums are located in Manhattan, mostly downtown or midtown, and there is an extensive subway and bus networking to travel to every part of the city. 2016’s Manhattan is the safest large city in the US, the crime rate has been divided by 5 from the mid-80’s. However, as a tourist, it is better to stay cautious particularly on the subway during rush hour, or in the tourist crowded streets near Times Squares or Broadway. Some pickpockets gangs are currently (2016) operating in Chinatown, as well as in large department stores such as Macy’s. Do not venture in unsafe areas of Upper Harlem during the night.

Brooklyn

Located across East River and connected to Manhattan with 3 bridges (including the famous Brooklyn Bridge) and one tunnel, Brooklyn is the most populated borough of New York City. Compared to Manhattan, it is more residential and laid-back, with areas such as Williamsburg famous for their artistic and hipster communities. Brooklyn is mostly safe for travelers, although some areas such as Crown Heights, Brownsville or East New York are neighborhoods with a higher crime index.

Useful Information

The US has one of the harshest entry policy, sometimes asking for an interview even for a tourist visa. Prepare to pay fees up to USD 160 for your application. Some countries like the ones from the EU or Australia have a visa waiver program (ESTA) which can be filled online. See https://travel.state.gov/content/visas/en.html for more information. Strong custom regulations also apply (see the CPB website for more details), and the Travel Safety Administration can open your luggage without your presence. www.doyouneedvisa.com is a useful website that can help you know if you need a visa or not based on your nationality and the country you’re visiting.
The currency in the United States is the US Dollar. Credit and debit cards are widely accepted countrywide, and ATMs are found nearly in every city. The costs can vary widely between the states, but it is fair to assume a $100 budget per day on average, $150 if you rent a car and around $300 for top end accomodation. A 10% service tipping is customary in many sectors such as airport and hotel bag porters, bartenders , hotel maids, restaurant servers and taxi drivers.
The weather in the US varies greatly between the states : from the mediterranean weather of California to the Glaciers of Alaska or the subtropical Florida, each region has its best time to visit; although major cities can be visited all year round. This graph can be useful for finding the best time to travel.
The main international airports are in Atlanta, Los Angeles, Chicago, New York, Dallas, Denver and San Francisco. If you’re looking fore cheap flight deals, you can find some on JetRadar
As in any country, we advise travelers to get a travel insurance that covers not only medical problems but also theft and loss of personal items. Learn more on our travel insurance page