New York is a cash-based economy. It might be the financial capital of the world and the birthplace of the credit card, but that doesn’t mean it is easy to use plastic in New York. Shops and bars try to impose minimum purchase amounts or surcharges on credit card users. This practice is illegal, but in New York it is as common as jaywalking. With a little argument, though, you can usually get shopkeepers to back down (they are violating their contract, after all), but if you’re not up for a fight, carry cash.
Starbucks is more than a coffee shop. There are precious few restrooms in the city. Fortunately, there is Starbucks. In the rest of America, Starbucks’ green and white logo is a symbol of high-priced, burnt-tasting coffee. In New York, it means free restrooms. Just be prepared to queue up.
An iPhone is more useful in New York than it was wherever you are from. Its ability to search business listings based on your location makes the iPhone truly priceless here. New York has so many dining and entertainment options that you can never know them all the way you did in your old town. Apps like Yelp! can not only tell you what is close (i.e. your nearest Starbucks when you’ve really gotta go), but also what is good.
You don’t have to be old to do brunch. In the rest of America, brunch is something old ladies do after church. In New York, brunch is served Saturday and Sunday by scads of NYC restaurants. With some offering bottomless mimosas and breakfast for under $20, it’s not just a mid-day meal — it’s the new Thursday night.
Delivery means more than pizza. In most of America, calling for delivery means pizza or Chinese. But in New York, the lack of cars and cut-throat completion means delivers. You want your groceries delivered? No problem. A filet from the steakhouse? Coming right up! Heck, you can even have McDonald’s brought to you.