New York City on a Budget:
Cheap Eats and Shopping!

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Who says you have to spend a bundle to have a blast in New York City? With a little insider information, you can feast on delicious meals, buy swanky clothes and load up on gifts and souvenirs without blowing your budget. In fact, you might find that even the swankiest places aren't as much fun as these quirky low cost joints.

Three 'You Have to Try' Cheap Eats

Amy's Bread treats you right with delicious pastries and hearth-baked breads at prices that are easy on your pocketbook. With three locations in Hell's Kitchen, Chelsea Market and the Village, their hearty chili bowls or sandwiches on hand-cut bread are recognized as some of the best in NYC.

Shake Shack always has a line, but it's worth the wait to try their Chicago-style hot dogs on poppy seed buns with an extensive choice of salad toppings, relishes and even celery salt for that perfect bite. For a mid-afternoon pick-me-up, try their handspun shakes or floats that only cost about $5. You'll find Shake Shack in five Manhattan locations, Brooklyn, and even at Citi Field during baseball games.

Mooncake Foods understands how to make the most of inexpensive ingredients to deliver a great selection of Asian style comfort food with most menu items coming in under $10. If you don't want to dine in their eclectic used furniture motif, just order a meal to go at their Soho, Chelsea or Hell's Kitchen locations and stroll to the nearest city park to have dinner while indulging in NYC's favorite sport, people watching.

The Best in Budget Shopping

For Fashionistas

Pop-Up Shops sprout up all over the city, especially during the holiday season, with bargains on everything from cool clothing to makeovers -- not to mention plenty of unique gifts and samples to taste. Check for them around Bryant Park in the winter, where there's also a free ice skating rink and cooking demos.

Don't forget to sneak out the city's hidden sample sales, these may happen in a hush - hush manner but you can be kept in the loop with sites like Top Button and don't forget blogs! Check out Sample Sally to see where it's all happening.

For the best of vintage where you can even snag a Vivienne Westwood or a Valentino at budget prices you can rummage through places like Cheap Jacks or Village Style, if you travel to Brooklyn you will find some amazing thrift stores like Vintage Warehouse where everything is $20 and under.

For Ecoists

Goodwill Stores in NYC can be virtual gold mines where you can score gently used trinkets donated by the rich and famous. From vintage evening gowns to outlet stores that sell items by the pound, you'll find the content of a Goodwill Store reflects the neighborhood's ambience, so when you discover a borough of NYC that suits your fancy, seek out their local branch and go treasure hunting.

For Bookworms

Housing Works Used Book Cafe is more than just a cozy place to peruse great used books selling for less than half the cover price while sipping on a latte or nibbling on a scone, this non-profit company pursues relentless advocacy for the less fortunate in NYC. Often the host of charity auctions that result in some astounding bargains, this wireless hotspot attracts all types and fosters community involvement instead of crass commercialism. Located in Soho, time spent at this bookstore/café may not only lead to you that perfect book to take home, but your purchase will finance programs that will be helping locals long after you leave NYC.

If you are looking for cheap hotels in New York to complete your thrifty stay, HostelBookers supply chic hotels and hostels on a budget throughout the city.

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