New York is the largest city in the country and has one of the highest living costs as well, but are there shortcuts to living at The Big Apple while still a student?

As much as it is a shared dream by most of the population, the cost of living in NYC increases by the year, sending many individuals back home every day. This is the case for most, but here are some things an average student can do for a living and enjoy their dream in this beautiful city.

Choose your neighborhood

This is a tricky one, most people will be tempted to live in downtown Manhattan and enjoy life as a millionaire, but you’re not quite there yet, so let’s start by talking about the cheapest and hippest places to live being who you are today.

  • Bedford-Stuyvesant: This can be the cheapest option you’ll find in Brooklyn, really close to major public transport lines. This is typically an African-American neighborhood (used to be Michael Jordan’s home) that has been growing exponentially in the last few years. You might find something here starting at $1800.
  • Flatbush: Following real close to Bed-Stuy, this diversely populated neighborhood is really growing fast and becoming a great option. You can get something clean and nice here for $1850.
  • Sunset Park: This truly beautiful neighborhood keeps most of its magic because no buildings taller than 80ft are allowed and hence all the housing is real old-school and escaped the luxury condo boom. A nice place in this growing neighborhood will cost you around $1900.

Find yourself a roommate, cut expenses in half

There are many ways to find someone to share the expenses with, there are apps, college programs and of course, the good old word of mouth method. Sometimes it can be quite difficult to share your space with someone you don’t know that well, or even if it’s your best friend but you’ve never lived with him/her before. It is all part of growing and learning, it is the reason why you are reading this, right? Embrace change, and if you feel awkward or uncomfortable, don’t worry about it, you’re supposed to.


A handy CV at all times is a winner

This is rule number one to find a job in a place this big, you never know when you’ll see the ad in a window or run into your future employer at Starbucks, so if you’re always prepared, you’re always the winner. It’s real simple and there’s a ton of info about creating an effective and clean CV on the internet, the key is to have a virtual copy in your email account and a physical copy in your bag at all times.

Start cooking!

Most students move out of their parent’s home without the slightest idea of how to boil an egg. As you might probably find out in the upcoming months, asking for delivery as well as eating out is a very expensive luxury not everyone can afford, so make YouTube your best friend and look for the best recipes for your favorite food. Next, you need to hit the grocery and unlike many people think, buying supplies in NYC is cheaper than other places in the US, so take advantage of it and save hundreds of dollars a year (once you’ve mastered this art, you can impress your SO too!).


Use public transport (or pedal it out!)

This might be a no-brainer, but in such a huge city, distances can become a problem. If you own a bike and want to go around in it, you can pedal it out but that’s not going to be always possible because pedaling or walking for an hour and a half when you study and work your way through college is a huge time investment. So, make the most out of the comforts of living in a city as big that has a very well designed and developed public transport system that can take you virtually everywhere.

Have lots of fun and enjoy the moment

This is a key thing for living in Brooklyn and for being young in general: enjoy the moment! You won’t be that age again and there are plenty of options to do free stuff and have a great time, you can check most of them here {NOTE TO DEVELOPER: Kindly link “plenty of options to do free stuff” to the article “A Backpacker’s Virtual Journey Through Places To See in Brooklyn”} So, even if you’re not eating at a five star restaurant and can’t see Central Park from the window, there are plenty of things you can do to enjoy the journey and live the dream of living in The Big Apple.