Skip Navigation

NYC At Christmas

Travel Forums North America NYC At Christmas

1. Posted by BeckyFC (Budding Member 3 posts) 1y

Hey Everyone :)

I wondered if anyone has been to New York over Xmas?! Thinking of going over Xmas and New Year, is it crazily expensive during this time?

Any advice is welcome :)

Thanks!

2. Posted by Jonell (Budding Member 24 posts) 1y

I think it is crazy expensive all of the time, but they might raise rates during this period. All the same, it would be an extraordinary experience as you would get to experience a whole lot of beautiful scenes, not to mention New Years in Time Square.

3. Posted by BeckyFC (Budding Member 3 posts) 1y

Yeah, I think I'm going to have to try it out!

4. Posted by jackkent (Budding Member 23 posts) 1y

I think most places around the world will be expensive to travel to specially if it's Christmas and New Year holidays. Those will be the peak season of the year so accommodations, travel fare would be higher than usual. That means New York will be very expensive too if you're planning to spend your holidays there, I suggest you book flights and hotels earlier than your planned date as there might be promos. I am pretty sure hotels are easily get fully book on holidays. Spending your holidays at New York will be a memorable one ;0).

[ Edit: Edited on 27-Aug-2013, at 02:48 by jackkent ]

5. Posted by Calcruzer (Moderator 1884 posts) 1y

As my wife's parents live just outside of NYC and both the companies we work for shut down at Xmas, we travel to see her folks every holiday season--and have for the past 15 straight years or so.

NYC at Xmas is lots of fun, if frenetic (meaning fast and hectic in a rather wild and uncontrolled way). Tens, if not hundreds of thousands descend on the city to see it in its glory and, in many locations, in its beauty. The city and its residents put out is Xmas best for guests in the shops, in the main parks and museums, and in its general meeting areas (Rockefeller Square, the park near the library, Central Park, Soho, Little Italy, etc.).

This is also the place where shoppers go crazy--Americans usually spend more money just prior to the Christmas holiday than at any other time of the year. Retailers, knowing they need to either make their money now--or risk not making it at all--do all they can to get shoppers to their stores. Thus, don't be surprised to see some stores putting out free hot chocolate, cookies, or tea at their entrances to help shoppers fight the bitter cold, or others (like Macy's) having elaborate displays of moving dolls in Christmas scenes in the windows, or others advertising gigantic discount sales, or others contributing to local events (like putting up a gigantic ice skating rink in the middle of the shopping district--Rockefeller Square--just blocks from the diamond district, or 5th Avenue high-end shops. It is much like London in this regard, but with a little more for the low-end tourist, as well as for the high-end one.

Yes, the hotels also jack up their rates. One of the main things about Xmas is that it gets quite difficult to get in and out of the city--because of the swarms going there for shopping or to see shows (about half of all new Broadway releases come out just a month or so prior to Christmas, or just for the Xmas spirit. Being that it is difficult to get in and out--and that everyone wants to go, limited supply of hotels along with high demand for them drives the prices quite over the edge. This especially applies during the week between Christmas and New Years--as many people want to be in the city for New Years Eve--either to spend it at Times Square, or to attend one of the other 200+ parties at a club in town.

You need to know that it snows about one out of every three Xmases in New York--and when it doesn't snow it can either be 10 degrees F (around -12 C) or it can be 45 F (around 6 C) with the average usually being halfway between these two extremes--and the temperature won't vary much between the daytime and nighttime hours. For me, I like going to New York, but the hassle (and cost) in getting in and out of the city, plus the extreme weather--and the fact that even simple things like getting a coffee at Starbucks or finding a public toilet is difficult because of the crowds, usually keeps me in New Jersey for most of my stay, with only a day or two each year spent in NYC itself. It can be fun, though, to go into NYC--especially for a first timer--and especially if you can somehow find a way to beat the crowds to some of the key spots. In this regard, let me tell you that taking a train or subway into town is the only way to go, as the roads (in particular the New Jersey turnpike) will get backed up for HOURS. Do not attempt to get in or out of town by car, bus or taxi if you are sane. Once in town, taxis and subways are the best way to get around (although taxis can be a bit pricey and walking is not bad if you stay in the better areas (between 33rd street and 70th street (north to south) and between 8th avenue and 4th avenue (west to east), but realize the blocks are extremely short if you are going north and south through the city--and extremely long if you are going east or west).

Go, enjoy, and have fun--but be ready for the crowds.

[ Edit: Edited on 27-Aug-2013, at 06:58 by Calcruzer ]

6. Posted by KezJona (Budding Member 4 posts) 1y

Me and my boyfriend were going to stay at the Room Mate Grace Hotel for Christmas and New Year but the price was easily a couple of thousand £££. We decided to alter some dates and arriving at the hotel on 24th Dec and leaving on 28th Dec we paid £600 for the both of us. We really wanted to spend NYE in New York but can't really justify that price as it is a bit ridiculous! Plus our Visas run out on 28th Dec as we start out trip in Orlando on 1st Oct :-D

7. Posted by BeckyFC (Budding Member 3 posts) 1y

Hey :)

Thanks for all the advice! I'm so torn! I don't know if I'll have enough money saved, but I'd love to experience it at Xmas.

The weather does worry me as I'm from the UK, but I'll be coming over from Australia, so pretty hot! I may not survive the cold weather!

Do you think it will be difficult to see the attractions with so many crowds?

Thanks!

8. Posted by KezJona (Budding Member 4 posts) 1y

Hi Becky!

Coming from Oz I bet it would be freezing in NYC! We are starting in Florida, going West, then North and East so we can at least gradually get used to the cold hehe!

Deffo try and get to NYC for xmas though, I've told loads of people we will be there on Xmas day and a lot of people wish they could do something like that, so would be a once in a lifetime opportunity! I can't wait

Keith

9. Posted by Sylvester1 (Budding Member 20 posts) 1y

I went to new York a few years ago for NYE was amazing going again for this NYE.
I think you will struggle to see all of the sites unless you don't mind queuing for hours. When I went last time there was a 2 hour wait to get up the Empire State building likewise with Statue of Liberty, luckily had already done them from a previous trip. Is amazing that time of year though definitely recommend it. Is definitely cold as well even going from London we froze out there.

Sylvester