Best Time to See Shows
If you are into shows, then the easiest to find show tickets are during the quieter months of January and February, and in the early fall once the summer tourists have gone home. 2-for-1 tickets to over twenty of Broadway’s most popular shows are available during Broadway Week, which is held twice yearly in September and January.
Tourists travelling in summer will be lucky over the Fourth of July weekend, which generally sees a massive drop in tickets sales. During the last two weeks of the year, show tickets are hardest to find, when blockbusters are constantly sold out.
Broadway season starts in September, which makes the month of September a great time to score tickets to new shows that have not generated a lot of buzz.
Typically, theatres are closed on Mondays, and travellers who hope to attend a live TV show taping should note that many late night shows go on hiatus in mid-to-late August and April.
Best time for Shopping
If you are a shopaholic, then visiting New York City is a great destination due to the shopping bargains which are found all year round. Sale seasons at high-end boutiques occur twice annually, in November-December and April-May while outlet stores namely Century 21, Loehmann’s and Filene’s Basement offer discounted designer goods daily.
Other retailer shops, stick to a dependable seasonal schedule: in November and December, fall and winter items get discounted, while in April and May the spring apparel are at their lowest prices and finally, around July Fourth, summer clothing sales begin.
International travellers take note, if you show your passport and ask for it, you receive a 10% discount at Bloomingdales, Macy’s and Lord& Taylor all year long.
Best time for Museums
If you are visiting New York City at around Christmas time or New Year’s, then expect the museums to be at their most crowded times during these holidays. The heavily travelled days around Thanksgiving and Christmas can be particularly packed, due to the museums which are closed at that period of time. The slight lull in tourism in January and February means quieter galleries and shorter lines. In the early fall, once the summer throngs have subsided, special exhibitions are commonly debuted, which makes October a great time to explore NYC museums and galleries.
Best time for Restaurants
Along with the slow mid-winter tourism months, reservation at New York’s best restaurants can be surprisingly easy to come by in July and August, which is when locals escape the city on the weekends. On the other hand, travellers who tend to travel in December, will find it all but impossible to get a good table without reserving well in advance. At more than 300 of the city’s finest eateries during New York’s Restaurant Week, great deals and special menus can be found, this is held twice a year in late January/early February and late July/early August.
Best Time for Holiday Displays
Stores along 5th Avenue which begins unveiling their holiday window displays in mid-November, with all the decorations put up by Thanksgiving. The Spectacular Christmas tree at Rockefeller Centre is not lit until the Wednesday following Thanksgiving, which is when tourism crowds are at their peak. If you are looking to enjoy New York’s holiday atmosphere, then the best time to visit is during the week before Christmas, when festivity is high but hotel and airfare rates take a slight dip. Christmas decorations and displays stay up through early January.
Best Time for Kids and Families
Summer is a particularly popular time for families to visit New York City. Even though there is not the tourism lull which you will find in January and February, crowds are much thinner than during the school holidays at Thanksgiving and Christmas. Additionally, airfare and hotel rates will also be lower.
New York City offers loads for kids to do during the summer, from outdoor concerts and movies, to bike rentals, boating and playgrounds in Central park. While the busy holiday season can be magical for kids, the hordes of travellers can make Times Squarer Overwhelming and also impossible to navigate with a stroller.
Best time to avoid crowds
Your best chance to see the city without being mobbed by tourists is during the deep winter months of January through early March, tough you will trade lower airfare and hotel rates for frigid temperatures. Despite the increase in family tourism, the summer months can also be surprisingly quite, as many locals tend to head for the coast. Memorial Day and Labour Day weekends are best bets for calmer crowds minus the cold.
High Season (June-August & November-December)
The summer months is one of the most popular times to visit New York due to vacationing families and European travellers on extended holidays. During this time, many locals leave the city, which however means that it can feel less crowded even while tourism is high. The Thanksgiving-New Year holiday season is a huge draw for tourists, festivity is high and the city is at its most packed. During both of these busy tourism period, expect airfare and hotels rates to be at their peak and availability to be low, thereby, book well in advance.
Shoulder Season (March-May & September-October)
Even though, during these months, tourism is not quite peaking, but they are still incredibly popular times to visit New York. The mild weather makes the spring and fall seasons ideal for exploring the city on foot, whether to a backdrop of blooms and open air markets in the springtime or the changing colours of Central park trees in the fall. It is to be expected that high prices and low availability for both flights and hotels.
Low Season (January-Early March)
During these cold mid-winter months, when snow is common and temperatures hover between 1 and 4°C, New York City is at its quietest. Hotel occupancy rates dip below 90%, and restaurant reservations and theatre tickets come by easier. The drop in temperature means a drop in both airfare and hotel rates, which makes this a great time to visit NYC if you are looking for a bargain and are not bothered by a little cold.
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