New York City is an exciting, fast-paced city and one of the most popular business travel destinations in the United States. Known for its bright yellow cabs and iconic skyline, NYC offers plenty to enjoy during your next business trip, beyond the typical tourist sites and in spite of your busy work schedule.
Before each trip, you can create a predictive budget with TravelBank to forecast how much it will cost. My business trip to NYC in April was for 3 days and 3 nights with a total budget of $1731.11.
Next week we are publishing a breakdown of exactly what I spent, and how I saved. Overall, I came in $557.22 under budget, earning 27,861 points that I can redeem through the TravelBank Rewards store with services like Uber, Lyft, RedAwning and Airbnb.
For this business trip I flew from San Francisco to New York City. The airlines that offer direct options from SFO to NYC are Delta, Alaska, Virgin America, JetBlue, American and United (EWR only).
My coworker and I flew Delta from SFO to JFK because they offered an early morning flight. I was able to purchase a day pass for inflight wireless beforehand to save a little money and get work done on the flight. I was also really happy with the selection of inflight entertainment.
I returned on Virgin from EWR to SFO. I took bus 126 from the Port Authority to Hoboken, spent the night at a friend’s place and then took an Uber to airport in the morning. I thought the drive to the Newark airport was much easier than the drive into the city from JFK.
As a pro tip, booking two one-way flights is sometimes less expensive than a single round trip ticket. And in this case it provided me flexibility since I wasn’t sure which airport I’d want to fly back out from.
Where to Stay
I stayed at the Cosmopolitan Hotel Tribeca, an affordable boutique hotel downtown. They offer amazing rates and amenities for business travelers. Wifi is complimentary and as an added perk they preference corporate travelers for room upgrades based on availability.
Since I was traveling with a coworker we were able to split a deluxe room with two double beds and save even more on our budgets. There was plenty of space for the two of us, more than I’ve seen in other NYC hotels!
Eventually the restaurant Serafina will be open and providing room service but in the meantime, if your schedule is busy, the hotel works with The Palm to offer room service deliveries.
Good Cheap Eats
New York City has so many great options for where to eat, but it can add up fast. The West Village is a great neighborhood to hang out in, and is close to the hustle and bustle of downtown. We asked a local insider for the best spots to wine and dine in that neighborhood, and the restaurants she recommends serve up some delicious options within the $74 per diem budgeted for food in NYC.
Of the restaurants I tried, Malatesta Trattoria was my favorite for dinner, Aria Wine Bar was my favorite spot to grab a drink and tapas, Rosemary’s was my favorite place to take a client and the Butcher’s Daughter was my favorite spot to grab brunch.
My coworker Lauren who makes numerous business trips to NYC each year says the one thing you shouldn’t miss is Levain Bakery. She recommends grabbing some cookies or an ensemble of baked goods and enjoying them in Central Park on your down time.
Where to work
Sometimes working out of a coffee shop just won’t do. Enter the flexible coworking space. During my trip I spent a morning working in the Rise NY coworking space with Croissant. Croissant offers coworking seats by the hour making it a convenient option for business travelers. Their service shows you a map of real time availability and highlights amenities like free coffee and printing.
What to See & Do
If you have time between meetings, there’s plenty to enjoy in the area. The Chelsea market has a variety of food and retail vendors, and it’s fun to wander through. Outside of the Chelsea market you can climb up to the Highline for an urban outdoor walk.
Head up towards Central Park if the weather is nice. Nearby you can take in the grandeur of the Plaza Hotel. The Plaza also has a food hall and shops for exploring downstairs. Outside, the Grand Army Plaza offers an iconic photo op of the city, or you could take it all in from above in the BG Cafe. Since it was particularly rainy during my trip, we hopped inside BG Cafe to enjoy tea while we waited out the rain.
If you eat dinner at Malatesta Trattoria, you can walk along the Hudson River around sunset to see the city take in those golden hour hues.