How to Stay Safe on New York Streets This Holiday Season

New York City is filled with holiday cheer in the winter months when the city comes alive with light displays, family activities, and other festivities. Christmas is a wonderful time to visit the “The Big Apple,” as there is plenty to do. Although New York City is one of the safest major cities in the United States, visitors should still use caution and common sense while taking in the sights.

Temperature Changes

Winter brings snow, cold temperatures, and biting winds to New York City. Bundling up to protect against the elements is wise, but temperatures in the subway can be sweltering, especially when there are crowds. Bring a bag or backpack with you to store your coat while riding the trains. Dress in layers to avoid overheating as you go in and out of tourist sights. Winds can be harsh throughout the city, so a hat will be a welcome addition for keeping warm. Bring slim-fitting gloves so you can use your cell phone for directions or information without freezing your hands, and pack warm layers if you plan on exploring Central Park or the High Line.

Road Hazards

Driving in the city can be intimidating if you aren’t used to the streets and traffic. In winter, you’ll also face hazards like ice, snow, and holiday crowds. Use caution in weather that may be hazardous; be prepared to break suddenly and leave plenty of space between your car and the car in front of you. Beware of distracted drivers, especially near holiday sights and tourist areas. Never use your phone when driving. According to lawyers, sending or receiving a text takes the driver’s eyes off the road for five seconds. Those five seconds can mean the difference between getting into an accident and reaching your destination safely.

Protect Yourself Against Pickpockets

Your vacation can quickly turn sour if your wallet is stolen. Hold your belongings close to your body, and always be aware of your surroundings. If you carry a purse, choose a style with a crossbody strap, and avoid keeping things in the back pocket of your pants. Understand that pickpockets often work together as teams. One may create a distraction while the other takes advantage of the diverted attention to take valuables from bystanders. Street performances, which are common in the city during the holiday season, are prime opportunities for this type of theft. As you enjoy the talent performing, pay attention to your surroundings.

If you’re planning to visit New York City during Christmas, you’re sure to have a blast. Exploring the big city isn’t all fun and games, though. But following these three tips can help you stay safe on your next trip to New York City. Above all else, being prepared and staying aware of your surroundings can help you to avoid most pitfalls and have a safe and pleasant holiday getaway.

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