Monday, 9 March 2009

New York 2009: Changing plans

I haven't been to New York yet so I don't really have any pictures to represent it! How about a photo of my favourite Brooklyn Bridge print by Henri Silberman? It has pride of place over my mantelpiece and reminds me every day of my dream to go to New York.

I arrive in New York on Sunday 21 June. Through a variety of misfortunes, I am going alone and I no longer have anyone to stay with in New York. I have to stress, the misfortunes are not my own - my best friend from South Africa did not receive a bonus that she had expected and my favourite colleague at work was going to join me but then realised she couldn't really afford it. I was going to stay with old friends in New York but then disaster struck and my poor friend was laid off from his job on Wall Street; it is unlikely that they will be in New York as it looks like they'll be heading off to California now.

So, I'm going alone and I have to find accommodation to stay in. It is scary and exciting at the same time but strangely enough, I am not worried at all about travelling alone. I'm looking forward to it!

There is, however, a good chance that I might not make it at all. Although my ticket is non-refundable and non-alterable, I simply can't justify spending £400 - £500 on hotel rooms. Thankfully, we will know by the end of the month if we are getting bonuses at work and if we do, then I will be able to go. Keep your fingers crossed for me then!



  1. Emm, New York, New York, without doubt my favourite city and I have a great shot of the Brooklyn Bridge taken from a boat on the East River!

    Travel on the circle line boat trip if you get the chance (just google it for more detail).

    Just to wet your appetite try this link!

    For reasonable hotels look around mid-town (44th street-near Empire State building)there are usually deals to be had

  2. Emm, stay in a hostel, not a hotel. Especially seeing as you're going alone.

    I stayed in this one a few years back.

    It's clean, cheap (less than 30 dollars a night) and you'll meet plenty of people - you won't be alone for long. Location wise it's good too.

    There'll be plenty of solo travellers around to hook up with. I am one of the most unsociable people in the world, and if I can find people to hang around with, anyone can!

    Travelling alone is great. I did it for the first time due to 'misfortune' in 2001. After that I went on almost every holiday alone deliberately.

    Just go for it!

  3. hey! I'm from Barcelona and I'm going to NY this friday (alone) and it's my first time and I'm going for an interview at Columbia University. I'm looking for info about the city, I let you know my experience if you want!

  4. You will meet more people going it alone than with a partner or friend, trust me.

  5. I just hope you have a wonderful time when you go. New York City is one of my favorite places in the world :)

  6. @ Mike: I remember that post! I think I didn't reply at the time because I would just have waxed on and on about my dream to go to New York some day!

    @ Gary: Staying in a hostel is a scary idea and I was too snobbish to stay in hostels even when i was 22. However, I actually think I might take your advice and go stay there. You are right - it is the best way to meet people and I don't need to worry about hiding out in my hotel room every night!

    @ veru: Hiya! Thanks for stopping by my blog! Yes - be sure to tell me how your trip is!!

    @ Martin: Heh. I know I sound outgoing on my blog but you have no idea how much of a solo person / recluse I really am!! But yes, Gary suggested a youth hostel and I think I will go for it. I will definitely meet people then and probably have a ball.

    @ Dori: I am really starting to look forward too it! I haven't heard anyone say, "Oh, I didn't really like New York". Most people love it once they have been!

  7. You'll make it Emm! Thanks for your comment today on Angrybutton

  8. Hi Emm,

    Not to worry about having no place to stay for FREE in New York! Try out this site

    A Malaysian blogger, Nicolekiss, tried out this service while she was travelling in Australia and it worked! You can check out her site here where she blogged about her experience.

    Since you're leaving in June, you have plenty of time to find someone with a free bed to share through Couchsurfing! Have fun....I'd love to go to NY too!:-)Angie

  9. Hi Emm,

    Just some details: if you want to read about Nicolekiss's couchsurfing experience, once you're on her site you have to scroll down to almost bottom of the page to look for a post dated Jan 5. The title is Landing in Adelaide: How to Meet Strangers when Travelling?

    I hope this will solve your hotel problem. :-) Angie

  10. Hi Emm,

    You will love New York - it's such a vibrant city with so much to see and do.

    As for a cheap hotel, I would recommend The Plaza Motor Inn in Secaucus, New Jersey. Although it's by no means a luxury hotel, it is good value and you can get a bus into Manhattan if you're not hiring a car. I wrote a review of the hotel here:

    I hope that you have a fabulous time,


  11. I was going to recommend you look at Couch Surfing too, but I see someone has beaten me too it. I might be in two minds about it. It's something of a leap of faith, but it may be worth investigation, with the big plus of being less of a tourist and more access to local information.

  12. Well, friend, you've put the question out into the Universe. I am sure you are listening carefully for the reply :-)

    Hope things work out for you!

    PS We've found some great deals through

  13. Wow, you have a good plan of travel. I love London and NewYork. :)
    By the way, my blog here:

  14. @ Jenny: Hiya! It's a pleasure! I'm really starting to believe I will make it now!

    @ Angie R: You are a legend! Thank you so much for the link to that wonderful blog and thank you for telling me about couch surfing. I will definitely use it both for New York and to find pals closer to home.

    @ Roz: I am really excited for it! Thanks for the details on the hotel - you write a good review! I am thinking of going with couch surfing though now - it sounds like a fab idea!

    @ Sheila: It is a leap of faith but I have found one or two people that have been "vouched" by others and I think I'll go for it. Then maybe I can splash out on a show or a live sporting event (if they have sports at that time of year).

    @ JaPRA: Oh yes! I am listening very carefully. It is so interesting because immediately I learned of two options I wouldn't have considered otherwise (Couch Surfing and staying in a hostel).

    @ Fresh Home: Your blog is awesome. I love seeing how other people live!


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