New York is a fast-paced, bustling city. Being prepared for it makes the experience that much better. Here are some quick tips for your time spent outside of the conference:
Average May temperatures: 72/55F 22/13C
Late April / early May in New York can bring a variety of varied weather. It can be relatively cool or very warm. While rainfall is not an extremely common occurrence in New York, May is perhaps the wettest month of the year. The good news is typically, if a rainstorm comes, vendors appear in moments selling very inexpensive umbrellas should you forget one.
During the conference, New York City will be on Eastern Daylight Time which is 4 hours behind UTC.
Sunrise will be approximately 05:30, sunset approximately 19:45.
Dialing from the US Internationally requires a “011” + country code and number
Dialing anywhere within the US requires “1” + area code (always three digits) and number (always seven digits)
Emergencies can be handled by dialing 911
Currency: U.S. Dollar – convert currency here
Credit Cards: generally accepted everywhere (have some cash for trips to outer boroughs)
Tipping: See tipping advice here
Most common / easiest method: Walking
Bring comfortable shoes to New York. You do a lot of walking. And while the conference will be handling a lot of transportation for you during events and tours, the lure of the city usually pulls guests out into the streets to explore. Manhattan, the borough of New York the conference will take place in, is mainly a numbered grid. Each point on the grid is a Street and an Avenue. Avenues travel north and south. They are numbered 1-12 (1st being furthest east, 12th being furthest west). Streets run east west and are numbered 1-220 (1st being furthest south, 220th being furthest north). Below 1st Street are the older parts of the city (Greenwich Village, Financial District, Soho etc.) where a map is recommended for walking.
Keep in mind, there are two addresses for every street, East and West. If you are heading to an Avenue that is lower than Fifth Avenue (3rd Avenue, 2nd Avenue etc.), the address will be “East” and the street number. If the Avenue you are traveling to is higher than Fifth Avenue (6th Avenue, 7th Avenue etc.) then the address will be “West” and the street number.
Next most common: Subway (24 hours | cash, credit card)
The cost of a one way trip on the subway, any distance, any time of day or night, is just under $3.00. for distances more than 10 blocks, it is the preferred choice of New Yorkers. Buying a MetroCard is easy at every station. Here is a simple guide to using the oldest subway system in the United States.
New York is known for its unique cab drivers and iconic yellow taxis. You can hail a taxi just about anywhere in New York City any time of day or night. Of course, it gets harder to do based on weather, location and time of day. Which is why Ride Apps such as Uber and Lyft have broken into the market and are widely used. By law taxis must take you to whichever destination you tell them and they must accept credit cards. In any vehicle option, be prepared for famous New York gridlock.
Bicycle: Citibike (credit card)
Citibike is the newest public transit option in the City. Sign up on line for a day pass, multi-day pass or yearly pass. All you need to do is get to a kiosk of bicycles, enter your pass, and off you go. New Yorks newly paved and protected bike lanes offer some great sight-seeing options for cyclists to see the City on a beautiful spring day.