New York City can be a challenging place to go out in (take it from a native who knows). Fortunately, I’ve learned the ins and outs of navigating the going out scene here, so you don’t have to the hard way. Here’s what you must keep in mind before hitting the streets!
1. Make sure you know where you’re going beforehand
Whenever I’m coordinating plans, I always make sure I have a few places in mind, gathered from thorough research and word-of-mouth recommendations. From personal experience, it’s imperative that you and your crew are aligned with where you’ll all be partying (pre, during, and postgame). The last thing you want to be doing is aimlessly roaming the streets without a clue. Plus, Ubers and taxis are expensive (and I’m not exactly a huge advocate of taking the subway after a certain hour), so you need to be strategic and agree on a place(s).
2. Carry cash
The world of Venmo and credit cards can sometimes be messy. Things happen, and you can lose your coveted card en route, or be scrambling for hard cash when it’s time to leave a tip. It’s pit-city when that world comes crashing down; believe me, I’ve been there more than once. So always hit up a nearby ATM (preferably your bank so you don’t have to expend extra fees) and stash your money. Best case scenario, you don’t end up using it and have some coffee money for the following week. Second best-case scenario, you do end up using the cash, and subsequently can enjoy a sigh of relief. Worst case scenario, you’re freaking out at the door because you cannot pay the $10 cover fee. Don’t be that guy.
3. Stay Hydrated throughout the day and the next
Hangovers are the worst; and by the time you’re 23, they’re unbearable, sometimes lasting for days at a time. As a working gal in New York City, I certainly do not have time for that kind of hell, which is why my friends and I always drink a ton of water before, during, and after a crazy night out. Drinking water before, during, and after consuming alcohol will help prevent dehydration and flush out toxins lingering in your system; and better yet, lead to a speedy recovery. A quick recovery means you’ll actually be productive AND (maybe) get to the laundry that’s been mounting on your bed for weeks.
4. Save your phone battery
A mandatory night-out rule in New York City is, your battery NEEDS to be ON all night. If you don’t listen to any of the advice listed in this article, then at least take heed to this tip. Ladies, I hate to break it to you, but this city isn’t exactly like the CW’s Gossip Girl. When the sun sets, this place becomes increasingly more dangerous and if you aren’t careful, bad things can happen. For this obvious reason, you and your battery need to be present at all times. That way, you can alert your network and ensure everyone is in the know about your current plans. I always follow the general protocol of bringing my charger everywhere because you’re bound to find an outlet.
5. Wear comfortable shoes
This goes against the classic adage, but it needs to be said: beauty shouldn’t have to be painful. In New York City, you must ditch the high heels, the tight boots, and the wobbly booties. They’re not only straight-up uncomfortable, but they’re highly unreliable. Your horrible pair of shoes may break while you’re walking from one bar to the next; or even worse, they’ll leave your feet battered and blistered the next morning. Ouch. To avoid this, stick to shoes that feel like home or at the very least, bring very little discomfort. Luckily, there are many affordable and stylish options on the market, which is awesome for both you and your bank account.
6. If possible, avoid the subway
As I previously mentioned, I don’t like taking the New York City subway during nighttime. Of course, you may not have any other choice, but if you do, I’d choose that method of transportation instead. The subway lines can get sketchy, and you don’t want to encounter a situation that may become precarious. That’s why I typically don’t take any trains after 9-9:30 p.m., which is pretty standard among my friend groups as well.
7. Practice the buddy system
Seriously guys, don’t run amok solo. This is New York City. Don’t hook up with a rando alone. Don’t leave the bar/club/pregame/whatever alone. Don’t post-game at Artichoke’s alone. And definitely, never, ever take a taxi or Uber alone. Pick a buddy and stick by that person. Make a pact with that individual to always know where the other is located. I know this may sound juvenile to some (we are adults after all), but in this day and age, it’s better to be safe than sorry.
8. Don’t go out on an empty stomach: food is fuel
Once upon a time, I didn’t eat dinner on New Year’s Eve and wound up having an embarrassingly sloppy night. I’m talking falling in the middle of the dance floor and dragging myself out of the Uber, sloppy. Thankfully, I didn’t vomit, but I did become “the talk of the town,” which is never an ideal position. Don’t be like me on NYE: load up on the meals and keep your wits about you. With the right amount of food in your system, you’ll be able to enjoy your time out in New York City without the shame and sickness.
9. Share your location with someone who isn’t with you
‘Find my friends’ should be your best friend when you’re out. Make sure your family and friends can receive notifications about your whereabouts. Yes, it sounds a bit intrusive, but you don’t want to become the girl on the milk carton, now don’t you? Obviously not.
10. Make sure the license plate matches the one on your Uber order
After a shot or seven, you may be out of it–we’ve all been there. However, you must keep it together by the time your Uber rolls around, so you can be sure that it’s the one you ordered. This year alone, there have been countless stories circulating the internet about young women getting in the wrong car, and the mistake costing them their lives. A night out should never, ever end in fatal consequences, so be proactive, and examine your Uber order and Uber vehicle thoroughly.
11. Be aware of your surroundings
This may seem like common sense, but when alcohol is involved, it becomes murky. No matter how wasted you are, always be alert and on your A-game. I cannot stress this is enough: you’re in New York City, and you When you’re alert, you won’t become susceptible to risky situations. It’s really that simple. My best advice here is, don’t over drink and if you do, your buddy (part of the buddy system) will hopefully give you a lending hand.
12. Don’t overdo it, but don’t be boring either
This is a delicate balance. There’s no need to be taking 17 shots at the pregame, but you don’t want to be sulking in the corner either. You can be part of the party and make it memorable, without necessarily having to be the center of attention (for good or bad reasons). All in all, just be yourself and have fun.
Comment below with the going out tips and tricks you’ve learned in your city!
Featured Image Source: https://dancingastronaut.com/2019/01/new-york-nightlife-sector-unsurprisingly-booming-according-new-economic-impact-study-city-nightlife-mayors-office/
I'm Dom, and I believe life's most simple pleasures are Chipotle, a good eyeshadow palette, and a group-chat worthy meme.