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What to Wear in New York in Winter (with secret tips from a local)

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Not sure what to wear in New York in winter?

Dude, I so get it.

I mean, I wanna sit here and tell you that it’s gonna be frigid AF, with twelve feet of snow on the ground, meaning that you should OBVIOUSLY dress as warmly as humanly possible as you plan to visit New York in the winter


If I said that, that would be LYING.


Yeah, I would be too. But trust me, I’m a local. I’ve lived in New York City for well over thirty years.

And the weather here?

Yup, it’s changing. Thanks, Global Warming.

I mean:

Just a few years ago, it was 70 degrees Fahrenheit in NYC…on Christmas (If I didn’t experience it for myself, I wouldn’t believe it either)!

And just this October:

It was 90 degrees Fahrenheit! Yeah, I know, I was none too happy about this either.


While I can give you some GENERAL guidance as to what to wear in New York City and about what you should add to add to your New York City packing list, given the changing climate, my number one tip for you would be to check the weather RIGHT before you leave for New York City and pack accordingly.

Because while I can give you some tips, based on what the weather in NYC SHOULD be like during the winter, I am most definitely not a meteorologist and don’t pretend to be one.


I implore you to ALWAYS check the weather before you travel to NYC this winter because the weather here can be bananas level crazy.

I mean:

One day it can be 50 degrees Fahrenheit, and the next it can be 90 degrees Fahrenheit.


Put on your best pair of big girl pants and pack accordingly because the weather in NYC is most definitely one wild ride (especially if you visit when there’s a blizzard or Noreaster in town).

That being said though:

The weather in New York City during the winter is generally cold and damp.

And while we do get SOME snow, it typically doesn’t snow all day, every day, all winter long.


New York City will typically get a few big snowstorms each winter (maybe 2 or 3 depending on the year and the polar vortex), and people will go crazy and buy up ALL the water in the supermarket because they think it is the coming of the apocalypse, but that’s about it.

And I know what you’re thinking right now.

And the answer is yes, pretty much everything in New York City will STILL stay open, even if there is a blizzard (unless it’s a super storm like Hurricane Sandy or that blizzard in ’95 where we got three feet of snow).


Even if you do happen to visit New York City during a snowstorm, do NOT panic.

We know how to handle it and most attractions and restaurants will probably still stay open, public transportation included (That includes major holidays like Thanksgiving and Christmas as well. So, if you do visit NYC during the holidays, you’ll still have PLENTY of things to do and places where you can eat. Yeah, I know first hand since I hate cooking).

Trust me:

It takes A LOT to shut down the city that never sleeps.

But enough of my ominous warnings and ramblings.

Let’s get down to it and help you figure out EXACTLY what to wear in New York this winter!

Since I am incapable of making it rain money, there’s a high chance that this post may contain affiliate links. Please see my disclosure for more information. As an Amazon Associate, I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases.

If you’re booking a trip right now then I IMPLORE you to get travel insurance – even if it’s not from me.

After all, this past year has been a wild ride and I don’t want you to lose money because government regulations have changed. 

Truth be told though, I’ve never traveled without travel insurance and don’t think you should either – especialy since I think we’ve all had plans drastically change because of the pandemic. 

Therefore, find an insurance agency that covers travel changes related to COVID-19, like my two all-time faves World Nomads and Safety Wing. You can also read more about which policy is right for you in my full review here.

Contents show

First Things First Though. What is the Weather like in New York City During the Winter?

Winter in NYC can be very cold and snowy, so its really important to figure out what to wear in New York in winter.
Winter in NYC can be very cold and snowy, so its really important to figure out what to wear in New York in winter.


Generally speaking, the winter season in New York City lasts from December to February.

During these months:

The city can get quite cold, with average daily highs of 44 degrees Fahrenheit (on a good day) and average nightly lows of 25 degrees Fahrenheit.


If the polar vortex of doom comes into town from Canada, then it can get MUCH colder than that.

That’s why:

Temperatures of o degrees Fahrenheit, or lower, are definitely not unheard of.


The cold here is definitely not your average cold weather.

It’s this uber-damp, bone-chilling, soul-crushing cold that numbs you from the inside out.

Which is to be expected since about eight days out of every month experience some form of either rain or snow (or BOTH if you’re SUPER DUPER lucky. LOL).


Just another incredibly fun thing for you to look forward to when you visit NYC this winter (insert creepy, ominous, evil laugh here).


With all that being said, there’s still one, not-so-tiny question that still remains.

What. the HELL do you wear in New York in winter to prepare for all of that?


Read on my intrepid traveler because I’m about to reveal everything on my very own, personal, NYC Winter Packing List!

What to wear in New York in Winter!

1. Fleece Lined Leggings

Here’s the thing ladies:

When it comes to winter in NYC, you’re gonna have to make some tough choices, and pack smart.

That’s why:

Fleece-lined leggings are always a must for any winter trip to NYC.

I mean:

Not only are they incredibly versatile, and easily paired with almost any top, coat, or pair of boots out there, but they’re also insanely practical since they’ll definitely keep you super snug and warm all day long!

Which by the way:

Is, DUH, essential if you’re preparing to do battle with NYC’s notoriously frigid, polar vortex of doom.


Why pack/wear several layers of pants (think tights under thermals under jeans) when you can wear just one super-nifty and super warm pair of fleece-lined leggings.

Ya feel me? Besides:

The main focus of any NYC winter style guide really should be on your coat and not your pants.

But more on that later.

Just do yourself a HUGE favor and try not to over complicate your NYC winter packing list by wearing layer upon layers of pants.

Now personally:

I think that you can never go wrong with a pair of sleek, black leggings, like this affordable pair by Naviskin, since they’re slimming, comfortable, and incredibly versatile.

And if you can:

Do try and get for a pair of these epic leggings WITH pockets.

Because let’s be honest:

The first rule of travel is that you can never EVER have too many pockets (please tell me you get the Fight Club reference?).


2. Sweater Dress

Sweater dresses are one of my ultimate, go-to pieces when enduring, I mean frollicing through, winter in NYC.


Well, not only are they SUPER warm to wear, but they’re also extremely versatile and seamlessly transition you from a casual day out, into a hot night out on the town.

Something that is incredibly important if you decide to spend an evening out at one of NYC’s many amazing, uber-posh, super-luxe restaurants (and let’s be real, why wouldn’t you?)


If you’re looking to take some super chic, incredibly Grammable photos while in NYC, then you really can’t go wrong with a chic AF sweater dress.

But, you know the best part of all is?

The fact that sweater dresses are super easy to either style up or down. 


If you’re going for a more casual, street style look, then you can opt for a more slouchy, oversized sweater dress, like this one by Pink Queen, which will definitely keep you warm and cozy…ALL DAY, EVERY DAY!


If you do decide to purchase this particular sweater dress, then definitely order a size larger than you normally do if you want that full-on, uber-slouchy effect (This dress also does tend to run a bit small).


If you’re looking for something a bit fancier, like a dress that you could wear out to dinner or to a Broadway show, then go for a more form-fitting outfit, like this v28 Women Cowl Neck Knit Sweaterdress!

Trust me:

It’ll keep you nice and warm while simultaneously giving you a more sophisticated, totally dressed up look.


It even comes in an array of different colors that are sure to appeal to a multitude of different personal styles.

And for that perfect, NYC winter ensemble:

Just pair either of these sweater dresses with some thermal leggings, and an EXTRA high pair of waterproof boots, for an ultra-stylish outfit that will keep you warm all day long.

3. Aviator Jeans

Like the rest of the world:

New Yorkers love a good pair of booty poppin’, skinny jeans.

That’s why:

No guide on what to wear in New York in winter would be complete without a super chic pair of dark blue skinny jeans.

And these jeans are chic, with a capital c.

I mean, not only do they help make your butt look DAMN good, but they also make you feel as though you’re wearing the most comfortable pair of sweat pants EVER.

And you’re gonna need a BOATload of comfort after eating all of the delicious food that you’ll find in NYC.

Because if nothing else:

NYC definitely knows how to create decadently delicious food that you just CAN’T say no to.

But enough about food (I can’t believe I actually just wrote that), let’s get back to these jeans.

Because honestly:

I live and die by these Aviator travel jeans since they are the most comfortable pair of jeans that I’ve ever worn, are true to size, make you look/feel amazing, and have five insanely large pockets (with zippers) that can even securely hold that behemoth passport of yours.

But the real cherry on top of this proverbial sundae?

The fact that these jeans are incredibly well made and will probably last longer than any cockroach on the planet since they’re durable, flexible, and breathable.

Now personally:

I usually sport the dark wash, or black, jeans since I think they look a little nicer.


You really can’t go wrong with any of the clothes on that you’ll find on Aviator’s site.

The only teeny tiny drawback?

These jeans are $110 a pair. I know, pricey.


These pants are so well made that buying a single pair of these jeans is way cheaper than purchasing jeans of lesser quality every other month.


If you go to their website, you can sign up for their email list, and get an extra 15% off!

That’s a $16.50 discount that I for one am all about.


Since I know that not everyone out there can afford a $110 pair of jeans, these Levi’s Gold Label Jeans are a viable alternative at $25 a pair.

I wore them before I got my Aviator’s and like them, because they’re cute, true to size, durable, and have a comfy elastic waistband (it’s also a control top waist that holds in your muffin top) that instantly makes you look five pounds lighter.

And any pair of jeans that make me look like I’ve lost weight are totally cool by me.

4. Thermal tights

Sometimes you just don’t want to don the jeans day after day after day. Plus, it doesn’t always go with the uber-chic look that you want for a night out on the town. 

The perfect solution?

Well, thermal tights duh! They are awesome, versatile, and amazingly comfortable. Plus it allows you to pull off that super cool dress without catching a chill. 

Trust me:

If you have a hot ensemble all set out but you are worried about catching a chill then a good pair of thermal tights will work wonders. 


They are insanely comfortable and they allow you to move into warmer cafes without getting too toasty either!

If you ask me what to wear in New York in winter for a hot date, this would definitely be a part of my dress code!

5. A Super Warm Sweater

If winter dresses really aren’t your thing, then wny not wear an awesome sweater instead?

Because honestly:

If I could wear a nice, totally fashionable sweater all year long then I totally would since nothing gives me those uber-cozy vibes faster than a crazy comfy sweater.

But sadly:

Summers in NYC are hot AF, so that’s definitely not an option.


If it’s wintertime in NYC and you’re looking for a fashionable sweater that is also easy to wear, then try this batwing sweater of awesome.

Because yes my friends:

We are finally saying a fond farewell to heinous Christmas sweaters of years gone by.

And are, thankfully, replacing them with this insanely soft, posh AF, cashmere sweater, which comes in a wide selection of colors that are easy to wear with a snazzy pair of leggings.

Meaning that you can now layer your clothes in NYC until your little heart’s content! 

And yes:

Layering really is the key to staying warm during NYC’s brutally cold winters.

Because during your visit:

You’ll constantly be popping in and out of stores, cafes, museums, and various other attractions while roaming through the blistering cold streets of NYC.

And since all of these places come with ample amounts of hea:

Chances are that you probably won’t need to rock a super warm sweater after crossing the threshold and getting safely indoors.

Which is why layering, my friends, is the key to all of your NYC fashion problems.

6. A Chic, Waterproof, Winter Jacket

Trust me:

You can’t go anywhere in NYC this winter without a nice, warm jacket.

And while this is probably just common sense:

I would also suggest getting a jacket that is both waterproof and stylish too!

Because yes:

NYC really is one of the fashion capitals of the world. And getting a super fashionable winter jacket will totally help you blend in with the locals.


This winter jacket also has to be waterproof since you never know when the weather will instantly change (and not for the better) while you’re up in NYC.. 

Trust me on this:

You’ll definitely want a jacket that can protect you from the seriously intense, blizzard-like conditions that NYC can throw your way.

That’s why:

You’ll also want a waterproof, winter jacket that comes with a hood.

Because while you can rock that winter beanie of yours all you want:

Nothing keeps your head warm and dry quite like the hood of a jacket, especially if there’s a deluge of torrential hail just waiting for you outside.

And while ticking all of these boxes with a single jacket may seem like mission impossible, it’s totally not since I have two simple, but stylish, options for you to choose from. 

Option number 1:

A chic, Levi’s, faux fur lined parka, with extra faux fur around the hood that helps give this jacket a more stylish feel.


If you’re at all concerned that the rain, or snow, might matt the hell out of the fur along the hood, not to worry because this part of the hood is detachable and can easily be stowed away if the weather in NYC takes a turn for the worse.

Now, option number 2:

A lightweight, super durable, waterproof, down, mid-length, chevron-quilted jacket from Tommy Hilfiger. 

And don’t let the heavy weight of this jacket deter you because down jackets are often your best defense against the blistering cold of NYC.


This jacket is also incredibly easy to pack and hits right above the knee, making it the perfect length to keep you warm while simultaneously avoiding the nasty ass slush puddles that regularly develop within the wintery streets of NYC.

7. Waterproof Socks

If there is one item on this list that I implore you to buy, it’s this pair of waterproof socks.

I know:

They’re definitely not the most glamorous item on this NYC packing list, but they’re still essential none the less.

Because while you can absolutely sport a pair of socks that you already own, they probably aren’t waterproof and can’t protect your feet from the icy cold, Grand Canyon size slush puddles that threaten to destroy your shoes and numb your feet while you trudge through the streets of NYC.

And because I care dear readers (I know, writing that kind of makes me want to vomit too but it really is true):

I would never ever want any of you to experience the no good, rotten feeling of frigid, totally wet feet that just never seem to get warm.

That being said:

I must apologize since there really aren’t any super cute, totally fashiomable waterproof socks out there.

But it’s all good.

Because when it comes to my personal well-being, practicality wins out over cute, every single day of the week.

That’s why:

I highly recommend these socks by Randy Sun (Thanks Randy! You da’ man!).


They’lgive your feet the ability to breathe, while simultaneously keeping them warm and dry.

Something that is pretty important since ain’t nobody got time for sweaty feet that start to stink up the joint.

And yes:

That’s a lot of jobs for one little sock to do, so we’ll just have to forego the cuteness factor on this one.

But wait, it gets better!

Because one guy actually submerged these socks in a sink full of icy cold water (and yes, it was while he was wearing them).

And the result?

His feet emerged completely dry. 


Totally unbelievable but totally true.  


Do yourself a favor and go buy a pair of these awesome socks.

LIKE RIGHT NOW (Kidding! It’s not THAT serious…or maybe it is…)!

At least if you want to keep those precious little feet of yours uber-dry this winter season.

8. Waterproof Boots


Tims (AKA Timberlands) aren’t just a shoe, they’re a way of life.


If you want to pick one brand of shoes that will totally make you look and feel like a true New Yorker, then Tims are it.

And not to worry:

Because this brand has come a LONG way from the iconic work boots that we all know and love but that aren’t particularly well-suited for any budding fashionistas out there.

That’s why:

If you’re traveling to NYC this winter, then I’d highly recommend ditching your sneakers (and heels of any sort) and grabbing a pair of these tall, waterproof riding boots instead.


I know what you’re thinking.

“But it’s New York City! I can get away with ankle booties!”

And I hate to say this but no. You are wrong on SO many levels.

Because I can’t even begin to tell you how important it is to have a pair of tall, high-quality, waterproof boots when walking through NYC this winter.


At first glance, winter in NYC sounds all romantic since idyllic images of couples skating through Rockefeller Center and sipping on an iced hot chocolate from Serendipity always swirl through your head.


What you don’t see, is exactly what happens to all that beautiful, white, powdery snow about an hour or two after it hits the ground.


It systematically morphs into this huge, totally dirty, frigid AF, slush puddle that, SURPRISE, has huge icebergs inside!

I know, delightful huh?

And yes, these are puddles that you’ll, unfortunately, just have to trudge through if you want to walk anywhere in NYC.

And what’s worse?

These puddles of slush actually tend to form around all of New York City’s major subway stations.

That’s why:

It is beyond imperative that you add an awesome pair of Timberland boots to your NYC winter packing list.

I mean:

They’re waterproof, are incredibly comfortable, rise well above your ankles, are easy to style, and even have a wicked awesome grip on them too.

So yeah:

Buy these shoes and you too can avoid the horror of slipping down several flights of stairs as you descend into NYC’s iconic subway.


It’s definitely not a cute look and happens way more often than most people think.


If you’re not a fan of the Tims I recommended, you can also try these Hunter, tall snow boots!

I personally don’t own a pair of Hunter’s since I’m not into their style, but that’s just me.

Basically every other New Yorker in the city seems to love them and swear by them during the winter.

9. Warm Hat


This hat is one of the best purchases that I’ve made on Amazon.

I mean, what’s not to love?

It has a super cozy, fleece interior that keeps your head warm, has an adorable knit pattern, has a cute AF pompom on top, and comes in an assortment of different colors.

It also costs just $20 and is incredibly durable since I’ve had mine for a solid year and it still shows NO signs of wear and tear.

The only tiny issue that some people seem to have with this hat is that when they dry in the dryer, the pompom on top tends to disintegrates

So yeah:

Definitely, don’t do that because this hat really is kind of sort of awesome, and is the perfect accessory for any blustery, winter day spent in NYC.

10. Warm Gloves


Gloves are definitely a challenge when it comes to winter packing.


They’re kind of essential if you want to use your touchscreen smartphone without developing a mild case of frostbite.


Three cheers for modern glove technology that allows you to wear your gloves and text, all at the same time!


If you’re looking for a pair of gloves that will work with your phone, keep your hands warm, AND snazz up even the dreariest of winter outfits (in a subtle kind of way), then go for these fleece-lined, windproof driving mittens.

Not only do they come in a variety of beautiful colors, but they also have a soft interior, are streamline (AKA not bulky) for easy use, and have a timeless look that will pair well with almost any outfit.


If you’re looking for a glove with an elastic cuff and that has a more knitted style, then these Achiou winter knit thermal gloves are a great choice.

And yes:

They’re totally touchscreen-friendly too.

11. Warm Scarf

No NYC winter look would be complete without a kick ass scarf!


As we all know, a scarf is way more than just a fabulous fashion accessory.

It’s also a really great way to protect your neck and face from the intense gusts of wind that whip through NYC.


Its particularly useful when it’s a blizzard outside and the snow is literally full-on, pelting you in the face.

Yeah, good times, good times.

That’s why, it’s always important to have a scarf that you can wrap around your nose and mouth, thus protecting yourself from those aforementioned, icy annoyances.

The thing is though:

That when it comes to scarves, you have a veritable buffet of options to choose from!


You can opt for a blanket scarf (a super versatile scarf that is big enough to be used as a blanket), an infinity scarf (a large, closed loop scarf that is easy to wear and that won’t unravel throughout the day), or a classic scarf.


I go with a classic knit scarf since it not only keeps me warm but is also a great way to add a pop of color to an otherwise neutral outfit.


Like with most things in life, the scarf you choose really just depends on you and what your personal needs are.

12. A Nice Day Bag

While you’e in New York City this winter:

You’re obviously gonna need a super sleek, stylish, and totally practical day bag to hold all of your stuff while trudging through NYC on the subway (Grab is definitely a viable alternative to the subway though).

And this PINCNEL Women’s Backpack totally ticks all of those boxes.


It’s comes in black, the one color that ALL New Yorkers love since it’s slimming and pairs well with everything (Wearing black also makes you look like a super-savvy local).


What really makes this one of the best carry on bags for women is the fact that this bag comes in six different colors, has a unique, waterproof/antitheft design (the nylon in the bag is fused with leather to create a fabric that can withstand slashing), and is big enough to hold a 10″ MacBook, among other things!

Pretty sweet right?

A bag that’s big enough to hold all of your day trip essentials, but not so big that you’ll develop back problems.


This backpack even has a fantastic back zipper, that accesses the main compartment and rests up against your back while you’re wearing it.


Say goodbye to theft-related anxiety and hello to serenity since there’s no way that anyone could open the zipper and steal all your belongings while you’re walking around.


There are also two adjustable shoulder straps, one detachable crossbody strap (use this in museums that don’t allow backpacks), and a slew of interior and exterior pockets to keep you uber-organized while strolling through NYC.

And all this for just $26!!!

Trust me, no way are you gonna find a backpack this cheap and this awesome while in NYC.

13. Flannel Long Sleeved T-shirts

I love flannel. It is so versatile and it is incredibly long-lasting. Plus it makes a great fashion statement. I love to combine the long loose flannel t-shirts with denim or thermal leggings.

I mean take a look at this from Legendary Whitetails. It has been a part of my wardrobe for eons and I use it both during summer and winter!


If it is really cold, I team it up with a thermal tank top underneath because layers are god sent in winter!


Flannel is that it keeps you nice and warm. If you are looking for something even warmer, I recommend checking out the fleece-lined flannel t-shirts. I mean they aren’t available everywhere but that’s the beauty of online shopping. Everything that you need can be brought to your doorstep. 

Pretty cool right?

Take a look at the Woman’s Sheerpa Fleece flannel shirt. I love this one because unlike many of the other fleece lined shirts, the lining is throughout the shirt and not just at the hood! It comes in a lot of funky colors too.

I love my red checked one. It’s been used and abused! Time to get a new one!

If you ask me what to wear in New York in winter, I would say that flannel is the most versatile thing on the list!

Other, General Travel Items That Should Be On Your Winter in New York Packing List!


Raise your hand if you carry electronics with you while you travel?

Yup, this chick’s hand shoots straight up in the air since I am most definitely, NOT Amish.


Just like the rest of my tech-addicted, social media crazed generation, I too would probably fall down a well (where’s Bear Grylls when you need him?) or get eaten by a rogue shark if I wasn’t using the GPS on my phone 24/7, 365 days a year.


It’s beyond imperative that I keep my phone fully charged and ready to go at ALL times.


If the battery on my phone actually does die, it’s like a Defcon 5 level emergency.

And as a result:

I’ll basically curl up into the fetal position while sucking my thumb and quietly rocking back and forth like a new born baby.

Yeah, not a good look.

But, fear not, because that’s where this little miracle of modern technology comes in.

Not only can this nifty little gadget recharge multiple devices at the same time, but this device is so small that it can easily fit inside your makeup bag.

Yeah, you read that right.

Your make up bag!

Thus leaving plenty of space in your carry on for super important things like that Harry Potter wand that you just HAD to buy at Universal Studios.

I totally get it.

The Muggle Struggle is indeed 100% real 100 (if you hate Harry Potter just ignore this).

2. ELECTRONICS (including an INTERNATIONAL ADAPTOR if you’re not from the United States)


Since appliances in the United States run on 110v of electricity and electrical outlets are shaped differently than the rest of the world, anyone living outside of North America (and most of you are not) will need a dual adaptor and current converter when using electronics in New York City.

Don’t get me wrong:

Most laptops, cellphones, and cameras should be totally fine, but many hair dryers, curling irons, and hair straighteners won’t be since they don’t support multiple voltages.


Before you use any of your precious electronics (and have them shrivel up like bacon), just read the manufacturer’s tag and make sure that it explicitly states that the appliance is dual voltage.

If it is then rock on because you can safely use this device in the good old U S of A, without a current converter.


Obviously, you’ll want to bring your smartphone with you to NYC, if it isn’t already permanently attached to your hand.


Try and purchase a sim card for your unlocked phone prior to your visit so that you don’t get hit with a ton of data overages while using the internet to navigate the not so mean streets of NYC (FYI: This is only applicable if you’re visiting from outside the US and don’t have a cell phone plan that includes this country).


Don’t forget to pack a decent pair of headphones, which is the only socially acceptable way to ignore people who try and talk to you.

Three cheers for introverted social isolation!


I love a good pair of noise-canceling headphones since they drown out all of the ambient noise and let me watch my movie/listen to my music in peace, without hearing the blood-curdling wails of some small child in the background.


Let’s keep it NYC level real up in here, shall we?

Because truthfully:

Any pair of headphones will suffice. It just depends on your budget…and mine happens to be itty bitty at the moment.


Some other electronics that you might want to pack include a tablet with a keyboard, a lightweight laptop, and an e-reader, like a Kindle

Just make sure that you choose wisely and don’t overpack!


I am OBSESSED with my Manfrotto Compact tripod! Not only is it lighter and easier to use than my old tripod, but it's also durable enough to hold both my camera and its rather large lens!
Definitely the lightest and most durable tripod I’ve ever had.

While I wouldn’t exactly call NYC picturesque (just look at the garbage heaps and the rats the size of cats), there are a ton of beautiful parks and iconic landmarks that you’ill want to take pictures of.

You know:

Little known places (totally joking) like the Chrysler Building, the Empire State Building, Times Square, the Statue of Liberty, the Flat Iron Building, etc.


Unless you want to draw everything with your 90’s era Etch-a-Skecth (talk about a blast from the past), you’ll clearly need camera gear of some sort to help you photograph your trip.


I’m not a huge fan of selfie sticks (aka Millennial wands of self-indulgence) since I feel like a total tool when I use them.

That’s why:

As a die-hard solo traveler, with no Instagram husband to call my own, I suck it up, force my eyelids open at the crack of dawn, and drag my tripod around with me wherever I go (I personally love my Manfrotto Compact tripod! Not only is it lighter and easier to use than my other tripod, but it’s also durable enough to hold both my camera and its rather large lens and easily fits in my day bag! So yeah, Manfrotto for the win!)


It’s 110% as un-fun as it sounds, but totally worth it once you get THAT amazing shot and feel like all TWO of your Instagram followers will be OVERJOYED.


If you still want to use a selfie stick, that’s totally cool. No judgment here. I just don’t personally use one.

Also know that in most major cities, a selfie stick is kind of like the hallmark of a naive and unsuspecting tourist.

And speaking of tourist (terrible segway I know):

There are a few other photography essentials that you might want to add to your NYC packing list (In case you were at all curious, I love my Sony A6300 Camera and its associated Sony SELP18105G E PZ 18-105mm F4 G OSS lens since both are easy to use and result in great, high-quality photos).

You know:

Super un-exciting things like spare batteries, extra memory cards, any type of lens you may need (I usually pack a zoom and wide-angle lens), a UV filter, and a great camera bag to store all this expensive AF gear.

Now personally:

My new favorite camera bag just happens to be the Evecase Urban Life DSLR Shoulder Bag/Case.

Why you may rightly wonder?

Well, I’m so glad you theoreticaly asked.

Because not only does this camera bag (it’s not a purse, it’s a satchel!) have this vintage, Indiana Jones-style about it, but it’s also made of water-resistant, ultra-durable material that can actually accommodate a wide variety of different cameras (You know, brands like Sony, Canon, Nikon, Olympus, etc.).

Added bonus?

This camera bag even has this insanely useful sleeve in the back that you can use to attach it to the handle of your rolling luggage.

But wait, it gets better!

Because this bag has yet ANOTHER sleeve where you can store a 10 inch tablet, as well as a padded interior, with removable foam inserts, that create a customizable fit that will help protect all of your most coveted, uber-expensive, camera-related belongings.

But the best part of all?

The price tag!

No, I’m totally being for real right since you get ALL of this for just $33.99.

Crazy right?

Now if only my camera was that inexpensive! Sigh…


Don’t forget to pack extra Ziploc bags to store your wet clothes in or to keep your electronics dry, in case of an impromptu torrential downpour.


I know:

A collapsible water bottle is not an item on this NYC packing list that will be bringing sexy back any time soon.


When you visit New York City and begin to realize that a single bottle of water can cost you upwards of $3, this reusable water bottle begins to get a whole lot more attractive…REAL QUICK.


Not only does it help you save money, but it also helps protect the environment by reducing your overall plastic use while you travel.

Added bonus?

Ultra-left wing hippies will stop throwing titanic levels of shade your way as you guzzle down your filthy, mass-produced, environment destroying, chemical-riddled, diet coke (all a joke since I LOVE diet coke).

But why buy THIS water bottle?

Well, it’s a nifty, collapsible water bottle that will take up a minimal amount of space in your bag when you’re not using it to carry water.


Say a fond farewell to bulky water bottles that seem to take up way too much room in your bag.

Because when you’re not using this little hero of hydration:

Just deflate it, roll it up, secure it with the attached strap, and, BAM, you now have a ton of space for other, way more important things like, DUH, FOOD!


Because I am a total hot mess:

Tide to Go is an absolute MUST for me since I’m forever spilling something rediculously awful all over myself.

And while I may not be able to save myself from acute spillage of the least attractive kind:

I can do a little incognito damage control and whip out this little cleaning wand of wonder (as well as a handy little moist towelette) to clear away any residual evidence of my not-so-lady like ways.


I may be a glorified travel disaster, but that doesn’t mean I wanna look like a hobo while I’m walking through the super snazzy, uber-posh streets of NYC.

That’s why I stick with this little miracle and pray for deliverance from my accident-prone ways.

And while we’re at it, add some Advil to your NYC packing list too.

Because trust me:

There’s nothing worse than nursing a splitting headache, after a debaucherous night atop one of NYC’s many amazing rooftop bars, with no relief in sight.


I know:

Travel insurance is probably THE most boring thing to talk about…EVER!

But, a necessary evil none the less.

Especially if you, WHOOPS, have a major medical emergency and it just happens to save you from a lifetime of debt to a foreign government.

Because in that instant:

I think we’d all be sitting there, professing our undying love for the wonder and glory that is travel insurance.

Or maybe that’s just me.

Hey, all I know is that when the proverbial you-know-what hits the fan, I never seem to regret my decision to play it safe and purchase some awesome travel insurance.

But I’ve been there.

I too have been tempted to save a few dollars (or yen, pounds, pesos, euros, etc.) by foregoing travel insurance.


As you get older, wiser (hopefully), and a bit more infirmed, you, and your dwindling bank account, quickly see the error of your ways.

So moral of this parent size lecture?

Always get travel insurance, even if it’s not from the company I recommend (COUGH…WORLD NOMADS TRAVEL INSURANCE IS THE BEST). 

Why, you may wonder?

Well, as a veritable maven of travel mishaps, I’m the type of person who would trip over an escaped tiger and plummet down the side of a cliff, and end up in a full body cast, after a casual stroll through Central Park.

And while you probably aren’t as accident-prone as me, you also probably aren’t a psychic who can predict exactly when travel-related misfortune will befall you.

That’s why:

You need to suck it up, put your big girl panties on, and add travel insurance to your NYC packing list.


I LOVE World Nomads Travel Insurance! 

Not only do they cover you in almost any country that you might want to travel to, (besides SUPER offbeat places like Pakistan), but they also give you an amazing level of coverage, make it super easy to customize your plan, and even let you extend/change your policy while you’re still traveling,

Amazing no? 

But, out of the buffet of options available to you, how do you know what plan to go with?


If all of your travel gear is worth less than $1000, purchase the basic plan.


If you’re a travel blogger like me and carry a camera, laptop, tablet, and phone, all of which cost well over a $1000, then the explorer plan is the way to go since it will reimburse you for any gear that is lost or stolen while you’re away from home (PSST: Both plans also offer emergency medical coverage of up to $100,000).

So, my NYC lovin’ homies:

Go forth, buy travel insurance, and be the awesome traveler that I know you are.


I HATE sleeping on planes. It is literally the worst thing ever. 

I sit there, wide awake, plagued by a perpetual case of insomnia and watch in total annoyance as everyone easily drifts to sleep, quietly dreaming about NYC. 


The only thing that makes the entire ordeal even slightly bareable is a neck pillow.

And my pillow of choice is the inflatable daydreamer neck pillow.

Not only does it give me the neck support that I need to sleep on a plane, but it’s also easy to pack since it occupies a fraction of the space that a normal neck pillow does.

I just deflate it, roll it up, place it in my carry on, and I’m good to go.


This pillow also comes with a DREAMY (sorry, that pun was right there, just calling my name), velvety exterior and a handy, built-in air pump that makes inflation wonderfully easy.


This little sleep-inducing marvel will help you get the rest you need while taking up minimal real estate in your carry on.



Discussing the finer points of toiletry packing doesn’t exactly make me want to frolic around ecstatic, jubliation.


I also don’t want to have sewer rats swooning at my feet because I smell like Oscar the Grouch from Sesame Street.


We should probably discuss toiletries, at least a little bit, just so that you don’t forget something ultra-important, like a toothbrush. 

But it’s NYC:

So you’ll basically need the same essentials that you would for any other major city on earth.

You know:

Things like a brush, shampoo, conditioner, body wash, toothbrush, toothpaste, floss, deodorant, moisturiser, contact lens solution (if you wear contacts), medication, and any makeup or sanitary products that you can dream up.


If you do have a major brain fart and forget something important, not to worry because NYC will have almost anything you could ever want (No really, there’s a drugstore on every corner. You’ll be fine).


In terms of toiletry bags, I usually just throw all my stuff in a ziplock bag and call it a day since I’m not super fancy.


I recently decided to try and be a bit more organized in my old age and discovered this fantastic toiletry bag.

Not only does it come with a durable hanging hook that makes everything 10,000 times easier to find, but it also has a sturdy zipper, a breathable mesh pouch, a strong handle, and is big enough to hold just about anything you could every need.

Added bonus?

It costs just $16, which is the perfect price for a bag that will only ever see the inside of your bathroom.

***Remember to pack LOTS of chapstick so that your lips don’t get Sahara desert level dry.***

9. The Perfect Carry On Bag to Put Everything in!

Cabin Max makes one of my favorite carry on bags for women.


So I’ve now had this bag for well over three years:

And besides some minor wear and tear, it’s still in great condition.

I mean:

Not only is it 100% functional, but this bag has also survived my recent foray into life as a digital nomad.

And yes:

This really is the ONLY piece of luggage that I travel with, besides my day bag.


You can just imagine how much I have put this poor bag through.


What really makes this bag so special is the fact that its lightweight, durable (no holes in my bag yet), made of water-resistant material, and has an awesome, 44 L capacity, with 21″X 14″ X 9″ dimensions that meet the maximum carry on allowance for any IATA (International Air Transport Association) flight.

Truly the perfect bag for anyone who needs a place to store all of the items on this rather long, NYC packing list.

And all for just $44.95!

Talk about B-A-N-A-N-A-S!


This bag comes in a variety of colors and patterns that are sure to appeal to even the quirkiest of travelers (and yes, I am totally referring to myself).

One word of caution though:

Before purchasing this bag on Amazon, please note that not all the bags listed are actually the same size.

Yeah, some are actually way bigger than others.

That’s why:

If you’re planning to do some carry on only travel to NYC, then definitely opt for the larger of the two bags.

10. Hand Sanitizer

New York is New York. It is a bustling city which unfortunately means that it is also very dirty.


I always recommend packing a hand sanitizer when you head out.

You don’t really know what you’ve touched and since everything is germ heaven, it keeps you relatively safe from unwanted infections.


You don’t always have the luxury of using a wash basin to scrub your hands clean now do you? 


So whenever I head out, I make sure that my hand sanitizer is in. It has become a permanent part of my bag!

The Cliff Notes Version of this Winter NYC Packing List!

  • Heavy Down Jacket that is waterproof (lighter winter jacket if it’s not frigid)
  • High Snow Boots (or waterproof boots if the weather is dry)
  • Fashionable, Comfortable Sneakers (1) ***Only pack this if the ground isn’t slushy***
  • Dark Jeans (1)
  • Cardigan (1)
  • Stylish Sweater Dress (1)
  • Fleece Leggings (2)
  • Long Sleeve Shirts (4)
  • Water-proof Socks (3)
  • Underwear (7)
  • Comfortable Sleep Clothes (1)
  • Bras (3)
  • Hat (1) Gloves (1) and Scarf (1) (NYC is known to be windy and cold in the winter.
  • Toiletries
  • Camera Gear
  • Electronics

So there you have it travel fans, the not-so-epic conclusion of my ridiculously long post on what to wear in New York in winter!

Yeah, I was gonna hire a brass band and have an avatar shoot themselves across your screen from a canon, but then I remembered that I have no idea how to do those things and that my time and money would probably be better spent elsewhere.

But, in spite of this posts’ rather anti-climatic end, if you did find my musings on winter fashion in NYC even remotely insightful, then pin this post now and read it again later.

Come on, you know you want to!


Thursday 15th of December 2022

Winter clothing might defficult be to find. If you reside somewhere with extremely cold winters, this is especially true. In this situation, you almost certainly favour cosiness and comfort over fashion.


Saturday 7th of January 2023

So true.

Kimberly Vilson

Friday 21st of October 2022

Thank you!


Saturday 7th of January 2023

You're welcome

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