Many people dream of the day when they pack up their things from their hometown and move to New York City. I know I had that dream, but when the time actually came to pack up and move, I was incredibly nervous.
I had heard so many horror stories about living here: the cockroaches, the angry taxi drivers, The Devil Wears Prada-esque bosses, the maze that is the subway system, etc.
After experiencing what it’s like to live in the city for three months, I think I can now accurately dispel and affirm some stereotypes about the city. Coming from someone who is neither a native nor a tourist, I think that I have a pretty unbiased view about what it’s really like to live in New York, New York.
If you’re ever toying with the idea to move to the Big City, here is what you can expect.
Myth: New Yorkers are mean
False. New York is filled with many different people, and it is impossible to categorize them all into one stereotype. Occasionally, there is a rude doorman or you might not be greeted with a smile when you order your morning bagel; for the most part, the city is filled with kind and caring people. For example, if you’re ever looking concerned or confused on the subway, you can always count on someone offering to help you find your way.
Myth: People work non stop
Truth. Typically, the earliest you will get out of work is at 6 p.m. Many people, especially in the fashion industry, stay as late as 9 p.m. if need be. The city is filled with hardworking people, and pulling late hours at work is not out of the ordinary for them.
Myth: Everything is expensive
Truth. New York is one of the most expensive cities to live in on earth. The average rent for a one bedroom apartment is $3,152 dollars, and the least you’ll pay for a drink at a bar is ten dollars. Although everything tends to be pricier in New York, companies pay their employees more money than other states due to the cost of living. This means things tend to even out if you’re living here permanently.
Myth:The city is dirty
Truth. In a city where 8.4 million people live, it’s impossible to keep it looking spotless. Garbage tends to pile up, strange puddles appear on the sidewalks on perfectly sunny days and one subway ride can make you want to jump in the shower. But it’s nothing anyone can’t handle.
Myth: Crime is everywhere
False. New York has million of people living in it, so the statistics for crime are bound to be higher. Living here is not much different than living in another metropolitan city in the United State. It would be wise to always be on guard, stay alert and be prepared. All in all, New York is pretty safe if you stay smart.
Myth: There are celebrities on every corner
False. Occasionally, you’ll see someone you recognize from your old favorite TV show while you’re on your way to Trader Joe’s, but it only happens every once in awhile. Also, if you do happen to see a celebrity, you better keep your cool. New Yorkers are used to seeing celebrities around and never see the need to make a big deal of it.
Myth: Traffic is terrible
Truth. Traffic jams are the norm on the streets of NYC. Taxis and Ubers are always en route. The quickest (and cheapest) way to get around the city is to take the subway. It is a direct shot to where you need to go, and you can avoid sitting in traffic and doubling your commute time.
Myth: Everyone wears black
False. It is true, New Yorkers favor the color black, and they even claim to wear it everyday. Through my observations, most New Yorkers are not in head to toe black at all times. In one of the most fashionable cities in the world, many people branch out and wear different colors.