New York City: Pros and Cons
For the next few posts I’ll be looking at a few of the most popular cities for college and post-college living- cities like Boston, New York, L.A. and Chicago- to help give anyone in college a good examination of the city they might be living in now or what city they might like to visit or move to later. These aren’t rigid but are more to help as a cheat sheet for anyone interested.
New York City. The City that Never Sleeps, The Big Apple, other ones, probably: New York has a well deserved reputation as America’s most famous city. People trying to make it go to New York City, in life and in any work of art. New York is home to down and out underdogs, Wall Street fat-cats, artists, insufferable aspiring artists, kids with more swag than you’ll ever have and weirdos in bathing suits in December on the train at three in the morning eating pastries. Whatever you’re looking for and many things you hoped never to see are in New York: the range of people is only matched by the activities and options available.
The Pros: New York is a classic for a lot of reasons. Let’s start with the simple one: New York City can do whatever it is you want to do, only better. Let’s start with examining how a night out drinking looks in New York. Drinking in New York is very college friendly, with bars easily accessible by public transit (No designated driver) and are open late with very lax carding policies, especially compared to Boston. The people are fantastically beautiful and the areas cool and plentiful and, finally, the late night food options are fantastic, with legendary pizza cheap and readily available, or, if you’re a little more well to do, brunch places dot New York with breakfasts so good you’ll swear off cereal forever. And that’s just one example. Anything you like, New York has the best version of it.
The Cons: This is going to cost you an awful lot of money. Public transit is fairly expensive and completely necessary, so while it’s nice not to have gas bills to pay, $20 a week for the pleasure of waiting for trains isn’t the best. Drinks are more expensive than anywhere else in America and so is everything else: dinners, movie tickets, vitamin waters, whatever: New York overpays. And while fantastic cheap fare abounds, it can be tough to see excess so readily available and temptation abounds. A taxi back from brunch together will cost you $50 before you can blink, and your crammed apartment in a dangerous area could buy a house in another area. It’s crowded, dirty, sweaty, and pricey and the constant action can also drive you to madness or at least a whole set of anxieties. Better add that therapist to your NYC bill.
Overall: New York is a fantastic city, with excesses in both directions; it has the best stuff but the most tiny drawbacks. Fantastic nights, food, and adventure at all hours means you can’t afford a place with a lawn, any personal space, room, air, or calmness. If you can handle hectic activity, if you love people, and if you can handle stress without missing nature or deep breaths, New York City is the place for you. If not, keep looking.