New york living

Tips on Frugal Living in New York City

Thecost of living for a single person in New York City is approximately $4,400. That too without taking expenses like eating out, partying, electricity bills, cable bill, etc into account. How do you plan to spend this much amount and also save for your future?

There are lots of ways you can live frugally even in a big city like New York. It is the only place where you can buy a slice of premium pizza for a buck. Public transport is quite outdated but still works fine.

To live your life frugally, you also need the environment to support you. And the hustle-bustle of a city that never sleeps is the perfect environment for you to live comfortably without having to spend a fortune.

Here are a few tips on frugal living in New York City.

1. Rent an apartment away from the city center

If you have ever visited New York, you will know that the real estate prices are crazy. Per square meter rate of an apartment in the city center is 14,009.35 $. But it also makes sense. The city is booming and is one of the economic hubs of the nation.

To live frugally in New York, you will have to rent an apartment away from places like Manhattan. Rates per square meter away from the city center are almost half of that of the rates within the main area. They are approximately 6,288.28 $ per square meter.

2. Stay with a roommate

Sharing your house with another person may seem like a compromise to the ones who are self-independent. But it is not if you find the right roommate. Interview your potential roommate before narrowing down to one person that fits the bill.

You don’t have to go door to door to find the right roommate in New York. Apps like Roomi are great when it comes to finding a roommate to split the rent with. People claim to have found roommates within a couple of weeks from downloading this app.

3. Cook at home

Eating out in an inexpensive restaurant in New York costs 20.00 $. You can argue that 20 bucks is quite affordable but think about how it adds up monthly. If you eat twice a day, your monthly expense on food will be 1200 $. Which is quite a huge amount? Plus, eating out is also not healthy and sanitary.

4. Befriend other frugal people

Whatever you put around yourself, you will be the mirror of it. Surround yourself with things you love.” Marcel Wanders

This is one of the most effective tips when it comes to frugal living. No matter what city or town you stay in, surround yourself with people you share common values with. It keeps you from feeling isolated/lonely and also motivates you to achieve your goals. No matter how much you are saving currently if you let ignorant people in your life, you are doomed to become like them. The bottom line: You slowly transition into something that others want you to be.

5. Take the subway

The subway offers a MetroCard which you can recharge on a 7-Day unlimited or per ride basis. The unlimited card costs just 33 $. This card can be great for people with non-office jobs. You can travel as much as you want.


The pay-per-ride card is more suitable for the average office goer. If you work in an office, you won’t need the card more than 2 times in a single day. There is no point in buying an unlimited card in this case. One ride costs 3 $. Moreover, you can also share the same card with three other people. You can also use the same MetroCard for the buses in New York.


The statistic used in this post is taken from a trusted and reputed source called Numbeo. The rates of an apartment(rent), food, transit, etc vary depending on the location you stay(in New York).

To save more money, try to stay as far away from the city center. Small towns around New York City have a far more relaxed lifestyle are also cheaper.

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