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Let’s get packing for New York City!


If you travel in the winter months to New York City, you may need to pack at least one heavy coat, a scarf, a hat and a pair of gloves. And if you travel in the summer, don’t forget the sun cream and a pair of sandals! But, never forgetting an umbrella is important no matter what time of the year you are travelling. If it suddenly starts to rain, you won’t have the time to find a shop, and New York is typically a walking or public transport kind of city.

Once you get settled in your New York apartment, you will be doing a lot of walking. In NYC, it’s sometimes faster to walk than to get stuck in traffic. Even if you’re getting around by subway, note that some transit tunnels are very long and your feet will need proper gear so that you can enjoy everything.

Make sure you pack a comfortable pair of shoes that allow you to be on your feet and walk a lot. There’s nothing worse than blistered, sore feet on a vacation. A crossed-body handbag would also save your day out and prevent you from a backache!

Before you start putting things into your suitcase, evaluate your proposed wardrobe in relation to the type of activities you will be doing… and do think hard if you really need those four pairs of jeans (two would probably do, if any jeans at all). Remember to bring at least one dress — in case you go out to a Broadway show or to a fancy restaurant — and a pair of shoes to match with it!


Beyond this, you can bring a few accessories, like a couple of nice pairs of earrings or necklaces that can be matched with several of your outfits. Although I would recommend for you to stay away from super trendy jewellery. By the time the trend gets to your home town, it’s totally out of date on New York streets!

Remember, you may want to do a lot of shopping in the city, so leave room in your suitcase for things you purchase in the Big Apple. I would advise bringing the bare minimum with you if you intend to do any shopping. Otherwise you can buy a suitcase before leaving your apartment in New York to bring your extra clothes home, but remember that many airlines now penalise for excess luggage.

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Gear We Use


Packing Cubes – Organize your luggage with the lightweight, durable and compressible Eagle Creek Pack-It Specter Compression Cubes.

Backpacks + Daypacks

Pacsafe – Since they come with extra theft-resisting features, Pacsafe bags make you a more confident traveler. We especially love this bag.

Sea to Summit – Of all the Sea to Summit products, our most recommended is the fits-in-your-palm, super packable Ultra-Sil Daypack.

Personal Care

Nalgene Toiletry Bottles – These leak-free toiletry bottles and tubs come in all sizes – even super tiny, helping minimalists pack it all without bulk.

Turkish Towels – They’re thinner than most travel towels, and they actually cover your body! We can’t get enough of Turkish towels for travel.


Speakeasy Supply Co. – They make the awesome hidden pocket infinity scarves that are perfect for stashing secret cash, lip balms, and passports.

Anatomie – Anatomie travel pants come with luxury prices, but they offer many benefits for travelers. See our review of the famous Skyler pants.

Travel Resources

Booking Airfare

Dollar Flight Club – Get flight deal alerts for your preferred departure airport. There is both a free and premium version (recommended for more sweet deals). Members save on average $500 USD per flight!

Skyscanner – Skyscanner is our preferred site for searching flights. They offer unbiased search results and are free from hidden fees. You can also book your hotels and rental cars.


Airbnb – Airbnb is the best place to book out apartments around the world. Sign up using this link to get $37 USD off your first stay booking + $14 USD towards an experience booking! – Search for hotels, hostels, and apartments using this one resource. Use it for flights, car rentals, and airport taxis as well.

Hostelworld – For hostels, Hostelworld remains our number one source for booking stays. Choose from straight up hostels, budget hotels and bed and breakfasts.

Trusted Housesitters – Save money on travel accommodation by becoming a housesitter. Housesitters often have extra duties, like caring for pets and gardens.

Reader Interactions


  1. Stephanie says

    Thank you for this! I’m about to take my first trip to NYC (and alone at that!), and I’ve been freaking out over what I should pack. I’m from Texas, and I’m going to New York for close to two weeks in November. I love cool weather, but I’ve been worried about freezing to death.

    Two months before my trip, and I want to pack my bag NOW! =]

    • Adele says

      I’m also from Texas, haha! 🙂
      I’m going for my first trip there too. I’m staying for four days, and Im leaving in two days. I’m really excited!

    • Michelle H. says

      Haha! I’m taking my first trip to NYC (also alone!). I’ll be there for 9 days, end of November and first week of December. Of course, I’ve been googling “what to wear”, “what to pack” etc. I live where the winters are crazy cold so I’ve been worried about packing too heavy of a jacket. I’m already trying to plan outfits in my head so i can pack lighter. 🙂 So excited!

  2. Alex says

    Hi, we are backpacking in Nicaragua, but on the way home would like to stop off a few days in January the problem is it will be hot in Nicaragua and cold in NYC! What do I pack? More inportantly what shoes!?

  3. Nicole says

    Hi, Brooke, Caroline, and Katy! I’m going to New York for the first time in the Fall, and I’m staying for a month. It’d be a huge help if you can come up with a mix-and-match list that’ll keep my trolley light. Thanks!

  4. Rosa says

    I’m going to New York fir 2 weeks during Christmas and new year . I will be Traveling to the falls . Going to the theatre to see shows going to a New Year’s Eve clubs sign seeing and so gitvloads packed in but not sure what to pack


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