All about moving to New York City

Start off on the right foot in this iconic city.

Editorial Team

By Editorial Team

Brick row houses in New York City

Many people aspire to move to New York City for career opportunities, global cuisines, cutting-edge culture, and diversity. Here, you can easily meet people from all walks of life. It’s certainly a unique city, full of hidden gems. Before setting off, there are a few important things to keep in mind. If you’re moving to the Big Apple, this article will help you to start feeling settled right away. 

Test the waters before diving in

Test the waters before committing yourself to a specific borough or neighborhood. One way you can do this is by finding temporary accommodation. Get a feel for the different areas until you find the one that makes you feel at home. It’s important to take your time and test the waters. Where you live can really make or break your New York experience. 

New York Blueground furnished apartment

Ideally, the place you end up living in will be one that suits your lifestyle and priorities. Blueground offers mid to long-term apartments in the most sought-after neighborhoods in the city. From the central business hub of the Financial District and the industrial-chic streets of Tribeca, the hipster outpost of Williamsburg, and more. Flexible lease terms allow you to move between rentals and neighborhoods, so you can feel comfortable while bouncing around and exploring the city. Each beautiful apartment comes fully furnished and completely equipped. They’re all move-in ready so you can feel like a local from the moment you arrive. 

Understanding the living costs

New York City is undoubtedly one of the most expensive cities to live in the country. Work out if you can afford the lifestyle you wish to lead before you move. From the high cost of housing to transit and taxes; income, state and city tax. These are the essentials you have to budget for when moving to New York. 

Groceries and eating out are also pricier here than the national average. Fortunately, though, world-class entertainment and culture can often be found on a budget, or even for free. The national average salary in New York is 19% above the national average so living costs can be relative to income. One way you can seriously save on rent is if you consider coliving with someone. 

Searching for an apartment

When you’re moving to New York and searching for an apartment you have to be realistic about the size. Residential space is a valuable commodity in this city, where small-scale living prevails. Typical household amenities like storage space and washing machines are seen as sought-after. They are considered by many to be a valuable luxury to have inside an apartment.

Locals here live in smaller spaces effectively and in turn, they can get creative with interior design. If you want to get a head start on your apartment search, it’s a good idea to turn to online apartment portals so you can filter your searches to include characteristics that are important to you. Don’t worry, sacrificing space doesn’t have to mean sacrificing style.

Generally though, finding an apartment can also be competitive with places getting snapped up quickly. You want to be in a position to act fast and lock down a lease as soon as you know you’re interested. Be prepared to pay a broker’s fee and shell out for a security deposit upfront. Keep in mind that there are some companies, like Blueground for example, that don’t require brokers’ fees at all.

Getting from place to place

A subway car in new york city

Most people get around via the city’s excellent public transit options. With a rechargeable MetroCard, you can hop on any public bus as well as ride on New York’s expansive Subway anytime. The subway serves four out of the five boroughs across 36 lines and operates twenty-four hours a dayOther ways to get around include the commuter-focused rail service and the NYC Ferry (connecting Manhattan with Brooklyn). Of course, you can always explore on a bike and on foot too. New York is a very walkable city. So it’s easy (and often preferable) to get around car-free.

There’s A LOT going on

Carnegie Hall in New York City

When moving to New York City, you’ll soon discover the easily accessible world-class culture and entertainment options galore. From exemplary museums and art galleries to off-Broadway theatre productions and diverse culinary scenes. Live music of all genres is always playing, at stadium-sized events, local historic concert halls, and legendary pop-ups. You really are spoilt for choice with cool things when you live here.

Discovering the nature

Bridge in Central Park NYC


Even in the concrete jungle, there are still pockets of nature and serene spaces. This city has some of the most incredible parks, like Central Park, the High Line, and Brooklyn Bridge Park, just to name a few. It’s common to come across outdoor film screenings, food festivals, and tons of other activities. Everything from ice skating to basketball courts happens in these parks. For a real escape from urban life, hiking is only a couple of hours away. Plus there are easy-to-reach day-trip destinations like Greenbelt Nature Center in Staten Island, which makes the bustling streets of the city feel worlds away. 

Hire professionals to help

A man is taping up a cardboard box while a girl is packing a cardboard box up with items.

Do yourself a favor and get a helping hand from a professional moving company to make your start in the city a lot smoother. They can do it all. Pack, transport, and unpack your belongings, even from/to overseas. Which is sometimes much more economical than trying to handle everything by yourself. But if riding solo is your style, then there are plenty of places where you can find moving boxes. Relocating also gives you the opportunity to clear out the excess junk and travel lightly. Since apartment living in NYC means smaller spaces, you may want to donate your furniture to charity and embrace the minimalist design trend. 

Editorial Team

Editorial Team

The Blueground editorial team covers the best things to see, do, and experience in our cities around the world.