How can you avoid the tourist look in New York? If you feel it will be safer for you and your family to blend in while on your trip in the City and State of New York, you will want to review our tips listed below.
Please note that you may actually be treated nicer if people (especially the businesses) know that you are a tourist. A business knows that you have come New York to spend lots of money in the state and good reviews from you to friends, family members and associates back home will mean more sales when those friends and relatives visit to use their services as well or the loss of future sales should you give a bad review of them. As for the people who live in New York, they will stop for a second or two to explain getting from point A to Point B or answer a question on your mind if you stop them to ask but if you appear to be a local as themselves, they may assume that you are panhandling for money and will ignore you which adds to the old impression that New Yorkers are rude.
One of the few ways that a tourist can be identified is by their accent. If a tourist is from England (for example), their British accent is a giveaway that they are possibly visiting New York. If you have an accent, speaking very frequently can give you away to locals but with a little practice and local phrases, you can fake a New York accent in no time.
One of the fastest way to spot a tourist is due to their clothing. The clothing style (or fashion statement) will not be something typical (such as I Love NY T-Shirts) locals would wear and also may not be appropriate for the weather. This would be taking the subway to your hotel from the airport while wearing shorts between the months of October and December when city temperatures in the state are very low.
Another way that a tourist can be spotted is from the use of a hard copy or electonic translation dictionaries as it shows that the reader does not understand English very well. New York tries to incorporate numerous languages on signs but English is the key language written and spoken so try to understand a few words and acronyms often used by locals before coming for a visit.
New Yorkers often know where they are going and is always heading there very fast. Stopping suddenly on the sidewalks to look at street and subway maps or a hand-held GPS, shows that you are not familiar with the layout of city and is possibly from out of town. With your electronic gadget displayed, you also let thieves know you have something important to steal. When you are not paying attention, someone may attempt to grab this and try to loose you in the crowd or subway.
As with accents, speaking in a foreign language can have locals believe that you are a tourist. Vendors of your native tongue are fine to alert as you can pick their brains as you shop with them and also score some additional discounts they would not normally offer to locals or other tourists.
Visiting New York and is coming by plane? If pulling or hauling your luggage through the city with airline tags and stickers on them in mint condition, it shows that you just arrived in New York. Once through security at the airport, you will want to remove these tags and put in a side pocket on the luggage then toss it away later once you reach your final destination in New York. Doing so, you have the chance to remove any personal information on the tag before tossing in the trash to reduce the chance of identity theft through dumpster diving. With the tag in the bag, it is also easy for local police to contact the airline to see how to return it to you should you forget it on the train, bus or store.
New Yorkers often know where they are going and is always heading there very fast. Stopping suddenly on the sidewalks to look at street and subway maps or a hand-held GPS, shows that you are not familiar with the layout of city and is possibly from out of town.
Tourist often want to capture memories of their visit in New York to show to friends and family members back home so it is very easy to be detected this way when capturing famous landmarks that do not have any camera restrictions in New York as these can be seen everyday by locals who live here and can see it at anytime.
Join us in our New York Forum if you have any comments or questions.