A trip to New York City can sometimes be unnecessarily pricey. Between train tickets, subway rides, food costs, and activity prices, a day trip can add up. As college students, even though money is a worry, it shouldn’t stop you from spending an exciting day in the city. These cheap NYC hacks can help you cut costs, leaving your train ride as one of your only major expenses.

1. What to eat

The most popular restaurants in NYC charge for their demand, but there are some cheaper food options available that don't include the beloved dirty water hot dogs. Artichoke Basille's Pizza offers huge slices for only $5 dollars, and has locations all over the city! Their most popular pizza is their cheesy artichoke and spinach slice. It's a combination of spinach artichoke dip and pizza. What more could you want? Here are some other restaurants if you aren't in the mood for pizza.

2. Where to visit

beer, wine
Victoria Murphy

There are so many inexpensive hidden gems to visit around NYC. Many museums have free admission or discounted student prices. One spot that is worth a visit is The Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum. The museum has a variety of interactive design experiences and is also housed in one of Andrew Carnegie's mansions. Free admission is offered to visitors 18 and under, as well as on Saturdays from 6:00 am-9:00 pm. Discounted student prices are also available. You won't regret planning your day, and your Instagram, around this visit.

3. What to Instagram

coffee, beer
Victoria Murphy

If you didn't get a good Instagram out of a day in NYC, did you really achieve much? Take some time to walk around and appreciate how gorgeous Manhattan really is. Whether you stumble upon something photogenic or seek out a graffiti wall, NYC always has a lot of urban beauty to offer. Some places to check out are the roof at the MET, Bethesda Terrace in Central Park, and The High Line, DUMBO (down under the manhattan bridge overpass).

4. What else to do

There are so many free events going on in the city. You can easily locate cheap NYC experiences by downloading the Fever app on your phone. Not only does it let you know what's going on, but it also offers VIP admission to free events and provides discounts to more. You can personalize it for what you are looking for, whether that be music, comedy, fashion, theater and everything in between! Some events include free concerts or something more obscure like corgi puppy day in Central Park. Whatever your mood, the Fever app will come in handy. 

5. Where to shop

How can you go to New York City without checking out a few stores? Since you're on a budget, give window shopping a try. Get in touch with your willpower and visit some of NYC's famous department stores, thrift shops, markets, or stroll down 5th Avenue, wide-eyed. No matter where you go, you will have fun perusing the racks, without dealing out the cash.

Take some time out of your hectic schedule to enjoy Manhattan. There's no need to stress about money when the city has so many cheap or free things to offer! Use these ideas to make the most of your time without emptying your wallet. And don't forget to Instagram your awesome day.