Cheap Tips for Desis Visiting Pricey NYC

Let’s face it – New York City is expensive.

Everything in the Big Apple is really expensive.

Blame it on the swines on Wall Street.

But you can still save a bunch when you visit NYC if only you know how-to.

Here are some money-saving tips for our desi cheapo tourists visiting New York City:

1. Metropolitan Museum of Art a.k.a. Met (located on 5th Ave at 82nd St) – One of the finest museums in the world. Although the suggested admission fee is $20, you can pay whatever you feel like. Do not feel embarrassed by those standing around you. Remember, you are a desi and cheapo is your creed. Yes, even a quarter (25 cents) is fine. For a family of four, instead of paying $80, you can walk in by paying just $1. Now, that’s a deal our desis would love. Whatddaya think?

2. Heading for the Sex Museum – Use the $3 coupon on the Web site or ask for it at the door. The Sex Museum is located at the intersection of 5th Avenue & 27th Street). Of course, we’ve been there. How could you even think otherwise.

3. Even if you are dying of hunger, think 100 times before you visit an Indian Restaurants in NYC. Most Indian restaurant in New York City serve horrible caricatures of Indian cuisine. Forget palatable, the food at a lot of Indian restaurants including Dhaba, Surya, Utsav or Ayurveda Cafe is not even edible.

If you are really desperate for decent Indian food, we recommend you visit the Dosa-man Thiru in Washington Park. From his humble Dosa cart at Washington Square Park South in downtown Manhattan, Thiru offers a variety of Dosas – Sadha Dosa, Rava Dosa, Masala Dosa, Uthappam and the hot favorite, Pondicherry Dosa.

4. Visiting the Bronx Zoo – Do it on a Wednesday. Although the suggested donation is $15, you can get in by paying just a dime (10 cents). For a cheapo desi family of six, that’s a massive saving of $89.40. As good as free, na?

Unfortunately, when we went to the Bronx Zoo many years ago it was on a weekend. We did see our first polar bear there though.

5. Do not use cabs. New York City has a creaky but decent subway system (nothing compared to Europe, of course). For the most part, the NYC subways are safe. When you enter the subway, ask the clerk sitting behind one of those bullet-proof windows for a free map. You like free, na? The map is useful. Do not even try to listen to what comes over the speakers in the subway cars. That’s not meant for humans to understand.

Yes, you can take photographs inside the subways. If a NYPD cop asks you not to take pictures, tell him to read up on the rules before bothering you again. But do not be so dumb as to use the flash when the train is approaching.

6. Stay away from New York City Cops. They are known to engage in nasty practices like shoving a stick up your a**hole or shooting you dead if you are merely reaching for your wallet. No kidding. You don’t believe us? Just google Abner Louima or Amadou Diallo. Staying away from the NYPD clowns could be cheaper than paying a fortune in medical expenses to repair your ruptured a**hole or funeral expenses.

7. Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology (located on 7th Ave and 27th St) – Free, absolutely pukkat. No, we haven’t been here.

8. Do not buy anything (not even a water bottle) in the Times Square area. All overpriced stuff that you can get cheaper elsewhere. New York water is generally safe to drink. If you are staying in a hotel, fill up your water bottle there.

Back when we used to live in the New York area, we drank the water from the tap without any visible effects. Well, if we pop off before the age of 90, we’ve authorized our heirs to blame the H20 we drank in the area. After all, next only to cheap stuff we cheapo desis like to whine about everybody and everything. Right, na?

Above all, never lose sight of the fact that we desis are the cheapest SOBs on this planet bar none.Β  Folks, that reputation did not come by easily. It took decades of shameless-cheating, hard-bargaining and all kinds of cheapo behavior for us desis to struggle our way to the top of the dirtheap.

So, remember when you visit NYC the desi dishonor is in your hands oops wallet. Do not spend one cent more than necessary.

6 Responses to "Cheap Tips for Desis Visiting Pricey NYC"

  1. gnair91   February 24, 2009 at 9:29 pm

    Google this – Jacqueline Saburido

    She is a victim of drinking and driving.
    You might have heard of her.If you havent, i hope you have a strong stomach. Responds:

    Tragic, beyond words.

  2. the gora   February 25, 2009 at 2:04 am

    Times Square SI, not Time Square.

    “Stay away from New York City cops.” Abner Louima and Amadou Diallo? You forgot about the general crazy people like Bernie Goetz, “The Subway Vigilante.” Absolute legend!

    I will readily admit to usually paying $1 to enter the Met. A handful of times I’ve paid $5, and once I paid $10, but that’s the highest I’ve gone. I generally hate it when a place has a “suggested” price. They are trying to guilt you into paying something. If I was a poor college student (or currently or poor recent graduate) and I want to research art up close in person, I don’t want to be feeling like I have to pay $20 to access these resources to complete a major essay or term paper. Maybe 20 years from now when I might have a well paying job, $20 won’t mean anything and I’ll gladly throw it in there. If they want people to pay $20, make it the actual price, instead of the “suggested” bs. That’s the only thing that ever pissed me off about the Met, but it is far and away the best museum in Manhattan.

    “Don’t use cabs.” You left out the part of the argument where desis would feel most comfortable: screwing over other desis. A significant portion of cabbies in the city are Indian, especially Sikhs. So not only will you save money by using the subway, you’ll prevent another desi from taking your money and earning a living. Responds:

    1. Times Square – Fixed. Thanks. We’ve used it correctly earlier but this time it was a keyboard version of lapsus calami.
    2. Bernard Goetz – Yes, we read about him back when we were in India (Thanks to Time magazine). We cheered when he got away with a slap on the wrist. πŸ™‚
    Remember, those were also our Charles ‘Death Wish’ Bronson days.
    3. Regarding desi cab drivers, what greater pleasure for a desi than screwing another desi.

  3. sumeshy   February 26, 2009 at 12:51 pm

    I might have to shift to NJ or Boston. You have ne suggestions for me on which area to choose. Responds:

    1. We suspect Boston is colder (as you get older, the cold weather becomes a pain).

    2. NJ has very high property taxes and high auto-insurance rates too.

    3. Newark (NJ) international airport is close by for convenient, direct flights to India.

    4. The advantage or disadvantage with NJ (depending on your perspective) is that you tend to see more desi activity here. Particularly in the Edison, Iselin, Jersey City (Newark Ave) areas of NJ. We didn’t see as many Indians in the Boston area as in NJ.

    In NJ, there are lots of temples, grocery stores, Indian restaurants (both South Indian and North Indian), video stores, fashion, jewelry, Indian doctors, et al. Plus for entertainment – you get even regional movies like Tamil and Telugu in NJ (in addition to Hindi, of course).

    BTW, we’ve even seen ads from desi masseuses in the NJ/NY area. Not sure how important that’s to you. πŸ˜‰ Desi masseurs? No, we’re not sure.

    5. As to which one is better: NJ or Boston – depends on what’s important to you from the above list plus of course the $$.

  4. the gora   February 26, 2009 at 3:32 pm

    Boston is also hell for traffic. Even after the completion of The Big Dig, it is an absolute nightmare to go anywhere. Boston is also full of extremely arrogant pricks who think the world was invented for them, or that they invented the world. It’s hard to figure which one some days.

    The advantage of NJ is that it is much cheaper to live than NYC, while very very close to NYC. There is not really a cheap way to live like that in Boston. And if you think NYC has its share of problems with police corruption, i.e. Diallo & Louima, Boston/Massachusetts cops and politics in general invented and perfected corruption. NJ has the second highest auto insurance rates in the country… behind Massachusetts. Massachusetts is so bad that it is the only state that you can not buy GEICO insurance because they will not offer it.

    Boston is dominated by Irish-Catholic/Italian presence. NJ is more mixed overall. As SI said, virtually non-existent desi presence compared to what is offered in central NJ.

  5. terraferrous   March 4, 2009 at 9:17 pm

    Desi cheapness reminds me of Muthusamy Karuppaiah…

  6. babyface   April 27, 2009 at 9:14 am

    i am in NJ now :).. on friday, i got lost in a quaint little town called [deleted]. is that where you are .. lot of pretty girls (deleted]) on the road distracted (the irate wife setting right next to me) me..

    Didn’t visit any of the aforementioned places.. a kind soul bought us the city tour bus tickets..
    and we were roaming in NYC on a topless bus in the hottest April day since 1942.. TONS of cleavages.. this trip was totally worth it.. just for the skyscrapers and cleavages and free bus tickets. wanted to check out the dosa man, but was too lazy to get off the bus and walk.

    the friggin EZPass confused me.. does it catch every violation? i read somewhere that I can send a check to the EZpass thieves to avoid the 25$ charge.. is that so? Responds:

    You are in NYC? Great time to be there. Panni joram (Swine Flu) has already hit NYC. So your visit can’t make it any worse. πŸ˜‰

    1. If you have time, you might want to visit the Dosa Man a.k.a. Sri Lankan Tamil Thiru at Washington Park.

    But make sure to visit the Met, great museum. But don’t pay more than 10 cents. Remember, you are a cheap desi and our ethnic group’s honor rests in your hands now.

    2. EZPass – Not sure. Since we have the device, never tried driving on the highway without it. A Tamil friend did it for a few weeks but he never told us subsequently if he faced any problems. So, we assume he got off scot-free but that was in a different state – not in NY or NJ. (EZPass works in several states). But with the NY/NJ economies deprived of cash lately, they might not be that lenient now even to the accidental lawbreakers.

    3. You write: we were roaming in NYC on a topless bus in the hottest April day since 1942..

    Yesterday was unbearable. We went to a Gujju friend’s place in Philadelphia for sapad (lunch) and the drive was terrible. Luckily, the food was nice.

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