The Practically Perfect Business Traveller's guide to New York City

Affectionately known as the Big Apple, New York is also known as the city that never sleeps. It’s edgy, vibrant, sexy, a city rich with rich cultural activity; the place where dreamers come to fulfil their destinies.  This city attracts the brightest, the best, and the biggest. Yep, that’s New York!

Getting from the Airport to the City Centre

New York City (NYC) is serviced by three major airports:

JF Kennedy (KEN). This is New York’s major airport. The most economical public transportation option is the Airtrain to the subway, and the subway to your hotel and costs only $7.25 per person. Word of warning: There are a lot of stairs and ground to cover and no one to help with baggage, so only consider this option if you are travelling light. The flat taxi fare one way from JFK to the city centre is $52., plus any tolls and tips.

La Guardia (LGA), La Guardia is also in Queens and like JFK, public transportation from the La Guardia involves a lot of stairs and walking, but is only $2.75 per person after you pay $1.00 for a Metrocard. For a detailed subway map, visit the MTA’s page. A taxi transfer is metered and will set you back at least $50., plus tolls and tip.

Newark International (EWR), is in Newark, New Jersey and you can travel by train between Newark International Airport and Manhattan for as little as $12.50 per person. Catch the Airtrain from your arrival terminal to Airtrain Station where you then can catch a New Jersey Transit train to New York’s Penn Station. A taxi will cost you between $50-$70., plus tolls and tip.

For shuttle service to all 3 airports, check out NYC Airporter and Super Shuttle, and compare their schedules and prices. They often offer online specials, making it even more affordable.

Getting Around New York

This modern metropolis has excellent, efficient public transportation. The city’s rail and bus system are operated by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA). For all you need to know, including maps, routes, and fares, visit their web site.

Taxis are generally easily available and inexpensive compared to other cities and you can flag them down curbside. However, walking is beloved by most New Yorkers who by their very nature tend to have an inherent get up and go gumption and nothing lends itself to that better than a pedestrian-friendly city, like New York. A word of warning: This is not a city for strolling; people walk fast, like they have somewhere to go because yep, they usually have somewhere to go!

If you’d like to leave the pedaling to someone else, try a pedicab! These are also widely available within the city and also known as a “bike taxi” or “bicycle rickshaw”.


Uber and Lyft are car services operated by New Yorkers. You generally need to download the app first, so if you are interested in ride sharing, check out their web sites: Uber and Lyft.

The Practically Perfect Business Traveller's guide to New York City

Local Eateries and Bar Hotspots

The city that never sleeps is a foodanistas extravaganza and you will not only be overwhelmed, but likely feel hungry for everything. Live octopus? Grasshopper tacos? Check. Check. If you can imagine it, New York City serves it, so you can have your pick of how to best impress the client and create the perfect scenario for a lunch/dinner meeting. Nouveau, traditional, ethnic, organic, vegan, you can find it here. But before your mouth starts to water, you need to understand a few things about the food scene in this fabulous city.

Avoid embarrassment when treating clients or colleagues by planning ahead! If an eatery is popular, expect a wait. Unlike many American cities, you can’t just walk in and get a table. Check OpenTable or call the restaurant to see if you can get a reservation. If the restaurant doesn’t take reservations, find out the opening hours and days of operation. If they open at 5pm, consider an early dinner; if you’re in town on a Tuesday or Wednesday, getting that table will be an awful lot easier than on a Friday or Saturday.

Despite there being no foodie rules, you cannot leave NY without eating pizza. I believe there may even be a law stating as such. The choices in pizza are simply staggering. How about a sit-down coal oven spot like John’s of Bleecke? Or the quintessential classic slice joint – Joe’s in Greenwich Village?

For stunning, delectable Mexican food with a celebrity (or two) on the side, try La Esquina on Kenmare Street. Alongside George Clooney and Julia Roberts, indulge in the breathtaking Costillas de Puerco, a charred Chipotle-Guava Glazed Pork Spare Ribs with sweet plantains and escabeche.

Simply because there are so many choices, from stunning up-scale Michelin-rated dining establishments, to fantastic pizza slices out of a truck, you should do your homework and ask your New York City colleagues for their recommendations. Eateries go in and out of business quickly in this city so what’s hot today may be not and done and dead by the time you hit town. Some of the best sites to familiarize yourself with the eats in this city include: Refinery 29; the eponymous Zagat’s; Epicurious.

After a night of clubbing, try L’Express, a French bistro on Park Avenue South that serves all night hearty fare, or Minetta Tavern on MacDougal, serving a buzzy vibe and scrumptious late night desserts.

For that VIP client, Eater NY features the latest (July 2016), hippest, hottest eateries in the city that never sleeps. This is the site you consult when you have someone you need to impress.

The Practically Perfect Business Traveller's guide to New York City

Evening Entertainment

New York presents a big problem for evening activities – you are seriously spoilt for choice: What to do? A Broadway play? An opera? The ballet? A concert? A symphony? A comedy club? How about some sultry, soothing jazz? Where to begin your evening? A better question might be: Where will your evening end? Remember that New York is called the city that never sleeps.

Generally speaking, the Lower East Side and East Village are famous for its hip scene and vibe that includes cosy live music clubs and buzzy bars that stay open until the wee hours. Soho is the epicentre of cool, with its upscale bars that attract models, poseurs, media types, celebrities and wannabes. In the 20s, on the east side, Gramercy has a unique selection of sultry, velvet-rope cocktail lounges. The city’s hippest nightclubs are in and around the Meatpacking District.

For the Health and Fitness Conscious

If you can’t start your work day without a run, or need it to unwind after a busy day, offers hundreds of running routes with maps, elevations and distances, so you can plan, track, analyse and share your journey. Download the free app today because it covers just about anywhere your trainers will take you!

You can hit a gym in any town and while most might look the same inside, New York definitely features some world-class facilities and fortunately, some offer day passes and discounts to visitors:

Crunch offers a guest pass for 1 visit to any Crunch location for any first time visitors. Sign up on their website.

YMCA will email you a free day pass and has locations in all five boroughs. These gyms offer the full package as well as classes and other activities.

BFX Chelsea is new, hip and high-end club best known for its spinning classes. A daypass is $29.95 but does not include classes. However, the club features a state-of-the-art training area specifically for those exercising solo. This is the place to go for more than your average workout experience.

Retail Therapy

The shopping in New York City will actually cause physical pain. Here’s why: You can shop till you drop and you won’t even come close to experiencing all the retail therapy this shopping meccas has to offer. You will also experience physical angst because no matter how deep your pockets, you will never, never ever have enough money to even put a dent in your shopping desires. Remember Sex in the City? An $800 pair of shoes? Yes, that was shot in Manhattan! You will love it; you will hate it. Bring credit cards. Bring cash. And bring tissues, for both your tears of anguish and your bleeding blisters.

Here you’ll find many of the best department stores in the world, including Bloomingdale’s, Macy’s NYC, endless Fifth Avenue boutique shops, such as Gucci, Tiffany’s, and Apple, among many more. Discover lively open air markets like the Green Flea Market.

Vintage and consignment shopping is both art and sport in New York. Chic and upscale is hard to manage when rents are equivalent to what many families pay for a monthly home mortgage, so the trendy gals shop with élan in the city’s myriad vintage and consignment shops. Refinery 29 offers this superb guide.

Fancy Something a Bit Different?

Vintage and consignment shopping is both art and sport in New York. Chic and upscale is hard to manage when rents are equivalent to what many families pay for a monthly home mortgage, so the trendy gals shop with élan in the city’s myriad vintage and consignment shops. Refinery 29 offers this superb guide.

As for New York City, it is a place apart. There is not its match in any other country in the world.

Pearl S. Buck

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Looking for the inside track on all of US highlights? Download our Ultimate US City Guide for Business Travellers. We’ve covered all the main business capitals and we’re adding a new city every week. If you know someone who travels a lot on business, download it below for free and share it with them!

The Practically Perfect Business Traveller's guide to New York City

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