Frequently Asked Questions
Before you hop on the plane, train or into your automobile, here are some FAQ’s to get a head start on your exploration of the Big Apple:
Why is New York called the Big Apple?
In the 19th century, the phrase meant “something regarded as the most significant of its kind; an object of desire and ambition.” What better description of New York City. In the 1920’s journalists and jazz musicians started referring to New York City as the Big Apple.
What’s the population of New York City?
About 8.5 million in all five boroughs.
Manhattan has 1.9 million inhabitants. By 09:00 each workday, commuters swell the population to 3.9 million
How many taxis are there?
What about Uber, Lyft and the other services?
Who’s the mayor?
What’s the tallest building?
On World Trade Center, the Freedom Tower. 1776 feet.
The tallest apartment building is 432 Park Avenue: 1396 feet. You can’t miss it. The skinny tower with no comparable neighbors, yet.
How much do apartments cost?
To rent: A studio apartment: $2700 a month
To buy: The average price per square foot is $1886. That’s almost $2,000 for a space the size of a standard sheet of paper. It brings the price of an 800 square foot apartment to about $1.6 million.
The most expensive apartment on the market now is a triplex at 220 Central Park South:
Asking price: $250 million.
Does the noise bother you?
Do you miss nature?
We have Central Park.
Is it safe? Yes. Just keep to the lighted areas at night. As in any other city.
Central Park is open 6am - 1am. One of the few urban parks to boast this honor.
Is New York safe?
The safest major city in America.
Are things different after 9/11?
Yes. We now share the feeling of vulnerability with the rest of the world.
Why isn’t tax included on the price tag?
Just isn’t. Our sales tax is 8.875%. About a third less than in most European countries. And there is no tax on clothing and shoes priced under $110.
How late are stores open?
Depends on the season, but generally until 19:00.
Are stores open on Sunday?
What about tipping?
In restaurants, it’s customary to double the tax to get the appropriate gratuity. Sounds like a lot, but restaurant wait staff are usually paid a “tip salary,” a rate that calculates that, with tips, the personnel will make a decent living.
At a bar, the tip is usually about $2 a drink, $1 per beer.
Always read your check carefully. Some restaurants now do include the tip.
Are sales taxes refunded at the airport for those flying internationally.
How much is a subway or bus ride:
$2.75. $1.35 for seniors.
How do you get to Carnegie Hall?
On the Q, R and W subway, and the 57th Street buses.
You are now ready for your trip to the Big Apple.
For more basic stuff: