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We know we’re far from the first to tell you this, but New York City is a special place. It has just about everything you and 8.5 million other people could ask for — on top of the 48.7 million of you who come to visit every year. And if you’re one of them, well, we have some words of wisdom for you. You don’t want to be one of those tourists who ends up on Overheard New York, do you?

These are the mistakes every tourist makes when visiting the Big Apple:

1. Not walking fast enough

Haven’t you heard? We’re in a rush to get somewhere. Stop taking selfies of random buildings and move it along.

2. Waiting for the traffic light to change to cross the sidewalk

We’re not telling you to get hit by a car or anything, but be strategic.

3. Thinking you’re going to see celebrities everywhere you turn

We hate to break it to you, but New York is a prettttty big place. And on that note…

4. Not wearing comfortable shoes

If you’re planning on walking, wear comfortable shoes. And even if you’re not planning on walking, wear comfortable shoes. You don’t want to be that person who can’t hail a cab and has to walk 20 blocks back to your hotel after a day of sightseeing, do you?

5. Taking cabs everywhere

Like we said, we like to walk here. Take the subway — your wallet will thank you. Oh, and while we’re at it: Don’t get on an empty subway car. Just don’t, and thank us later.

6. Spending more than 30 seconds in Times Square

Even 30 seconds is more than enough. Yes, we know it’s loud and colorful, but it’s also underwhelming and overstimulating.

7. Eating at the nearest restaurant

Or even worse, a chain. You’re in New York, for crying out loud! Go eat somewhere you can brag to your friends at home about.

8. Only eating pizza and bagels…

…And waiting in monstrous lines for them (looking at you, Ess-a-Bagel). Yes, we like our pizza and bagels here, but there are so many other amazing foods you should be eating, too. You name it, and we got it.

9. Only going somewhere because it looks cool on Instagram

It’s likely going to cost you a fortune, and chances are, it’s not even going to be good. We know this can be applied to virtually any city, but let’s all agree to not stop by Cha Cha Matcha or DŌ just because you want a picture like everyone else.

10. Pronouncing Houston Street like the city instead of “HOW-stun”

This is important to know, especially if you’re headed to tourist hotspots in the Lower East Side like Katz’s or Russ and Daughters.

11. Thinking that life here is like “Sex and the City” or “FRIENDS”

Don’t get us wrong, we love these shows — and also love this crazy city. But don’t get here under the assumption that we are all walking around in giant apartments (with walk-in closets!), going for brunch everyday, and only showing up to our jobs for three hours a day on a good day. Would be nice, but not gonna happen.

And please, whatever you do, stop with the selfie sticks.

Feature image by Joe Yates on Unsplash.

Know before you go.

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