NYC Basic Info

Getting to NYC
General Info
Welcome to NYC. Planning a trip to the five boroughs can be part of the fun, but there’s also a lot of ground to cover?how to get here, what to expect from the weather, how to hail a taxi and much more. In this section, you'll find essential information to help you make the most of your visit.
Getting to NYC
New York City is composed of five boroughs. While Manhattan and Staten Island are islands, Brooklyn and Queens are geographically part of Long Island, and the Bronx is attached to the US mainland. The islands are linked by bridges, tunnels and ferries. Manhattan is 13.4 miles long and 2.3 miles wide at its widest. Except at its northern and southern tips, the borough's avenues run roughly north and south, and streets run east and west. One-way thoroughfares are common, with traffic moving east on even-numbered streets and west on odd-numbered streets. Fifth Avenue divides the island into east and west sides (for example, locations on 57th Street west of Fifth Avenue are designated "W. 57th St.," and east of Fifth Avenue, they're "E. 57th St."). As you move farther east or west from Fifth Avenue, street addresses increase, usually in increments of 100 from one block to the next. For north-south avenues, 20 blocks equals a mile, and the street numbers increase as you go uptown. Blocks can be a useful measure of distance, but keep in mind your direction: walking uptown from 1st Street to 6th Street is about a quarter of a mile, but walking the same number of blocks crosstown, from First Avenue to Sixth Avenue, is approximately a mile.
Getting to NYC
To see current NYC weather conditions, view the upper right-hand portion of this website. For longer-term climate information, visit our weather page to learn about New York City's temperate climate, which changes with the seasons.
Getting to NYC
Time Zone
New York City is in the Eastern Standard Time Zone (Greenwich Mean Time minus four hours during daylight saving time, from March through November, and minus five hours the rest of the year). Here is the current date and time in NYC:

Getting to NYC
Getting to NYC and navigating the five boroughs is a breeze?and it's even easier with these tips about airports, the subway system, taxis, ferries and more. For information about the City's airports, shuttles, train stations and more, visit our Getting Here page. For information about taxicabs, subways, buses and more, visit our Getting Around page.
International Visitors
If you're visiting New York City from outside the United States, you may need a visa to enter the country. For details, visit the US State Department's visa information website.
Getting to NYC
Official NYC Information Centers
Official NYC Information Centers are the places to get NYC facts, figures and tips, along with maps, guides and everything else you'll need during your stay.
Statue of Liberty
CityPASS, Explorer Pass, The New York Pass and Downtown Culture Pass
Find out which deal best suits your visit to NYC with this guide to New York CityPASS, Explorer Pass, The New York Pass and Downtown Culture Pass.
City Experts NYC Tours
Seeing the City by double-decker bus, boat or helicopter can make for a memorable visit, as well as a convenient, affordable way to appreciate all of NYC’s major attractions.
Getting to NYC
Seasonal Events and Attractions
There's guaranteed to be something fun happening during your visit. To see what it is, visit our calendar of events or our annual events listings. Our overview of holidays in the City also provides essential information as well as details about how locals celebrate.
Getting to NYC
Staying Connected
Here's a guide to WiFi and other Internet connections in NYC. Remember that power sockets in the United States deliver 120 volts at 60 hertz, and you may need a converter to use your apparatus here.
Getting to NYC
Phone Numbers
Here are some important phone numbers to keep handy during your NYC visit.
  • Emergencies (police, fire or ambulance): 911
  • NYC government agencies and any questions or requests about City services (nonemergency): 311 or 212-NEW-YORK (639-9675)
  • Directory assistance: 411
  • Multilingual visitor information counselors: 212-484-1222
  • Printed NYC literature: 800-NYC-VISIT (692-84748) or 212-397-8222
Getting to NYC
In New York City and throughout the United States, the dollar is the standard currency. This converterallows you to determine the value of other currencies compared with the dollar.

Below are some of the many places where you can exchange your currency for American dollars.

Getting to NYC
American Express Travel Services:
  • Macy's Herald Square, Broadway and W. 35th St. entrance, balcony level; 212-695-8075
  • 111 Broadway (at Pine St.); 212-693-1100
  • 822 Lexington Ave. (at E. 63rd St.); 212-758-6510
  • 200 Vesey St., 3 World Financial Center, lobby level; 212-640-5130
  • 374 Park Ave. (at E. 53rd St.); 212-421-8240
  • New York Marriott Marquis, 1535 Broadway (at W. 46th St.), 8th floor lobby; 212-575-6580
Getting to NYC
Taxes and Tips
Travelers from out of town may not be familiar with the way taxes and tips affect New York City price tags. Check here for information about taxes and gratuities in New York City.
Getting to NYC
Public Restrooms
New York City features restroom facilities that you can use while you're out and about sightseeing. See our roundup of public restrooms for some helpful tips.
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