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New York City Shopping Guide for Seniors PDF Print E-mail

Guest Correspondent Wendy L., Miami FL: Whether tourist or local, be aware that shopping in New York City can be pricey. However, if you know how to find them, bargains are everywhere.

An ex-New Yorker, I go back often to stock up on everything from seasonal clothing to electronics to the latest in contemporary furnishings. As a senior shopper, I like the convenience of the Big Apple. I can get around by foot, cab, Uber and Lyft, and there are many places to stop, eat and take breaks.

Here are some suggestions on how and where to do your senior shopping in Manhattan. Rules of the Game: No matter where you look for bargains, don't accept the label numbers or clerk-quoted prices, especially on more expensive items. The economy is tough these days, and New York merchants are eager for business.

They're well aware that selling an item at a lower price is better than not selling it at all. Use the wisdom of your years to be a tough negotiator, and don't forget to ask for senior discounts.

Chinatown: This area in Lower Manhattan is still a great place to find bargains. However, considering the current flood of mainland Chinese goods in American big-box stores, the venerable neighborhood isn't quite as exotic and economical as it once was.

Despite the competition, Chinatown, especially stores and stalls along Canal and Mott streets, is worth browsing. Peruse the home decor, clothing, shoe, and leather bargains. If you're in the market for the latest smartphones, check out the variety of popular electronics available. For Chinatown info, shopping news and current events, go to explorechinatown.com.

Little Italy: For nostalgic tastes, merchandise and sights of the sunny European homeland of many New Yorkers’ ancestors, Little Italy is the place. Stroll along the Lower East Side's Elizabeth, Mulberry, and Mott streets.

You'll find shops that sell the latest handbags, jewelry, and shoes at a fraction of the prices you'd pay on Fifth Avenue and elsewhere in midtown Manhattan. For info, shopping news, and current events, go to littleitalynyc.com.

Chelsea, Union Square and Meatpacking Districts: This is the hip, young Lower Manhattan neighborhood that also offers bargains for the not-so-young senior. Many big stores have their bargain outlets here in the lower-rent area, including Barneys Co-Op, Universal Gear and T.J.Maxx.

For fresh food stands and a healthy lunch break, Union Square Greenmarket is open four days a week. It's the largest farmers market in the city.

Fifth Avenue: For senior visitors with big shopping budgets, this famous uptown street has Versace, Cartier and other exclusively expensive stores. For the smart senior shopper seeking real bargains along Fifth Avenue from 40th through 60th streets, they can still be found in less pretentious shops. Some favorites are Gap Fifth Avenue, Banana Republic, H&M Midtown along with smaller stores along the off-Fifth side streets.

Public Transport: Seniors get 50% off bus and subway fares in New York City with the Reduced-Fare MetroCard. Many businesses and restaurants will also offer senior discounts -- be sure to ask.

For the smart senior, shopping in the Big Apple can be an enjoyable experience. Cabs and public transportation make getting around easy, and the varieties of merchandise and services are almost endless.

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