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Thread: I'm going to the U.S.

  1. #1
    Elite Member stef's Avatar
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    Default I'm going to the U.S.

    after our graduation my friend & i are going to the U.S. for 5 weeks in 2 weeks, and, as most people here are from the USA, i thought maybe you could give me some tips or advice if you've ever been to these areas or even live there.
    i've never been to the U.S. so i basically have no clue.

    our destinations are:

    New York
    Boston
    Washington D.C.
    Nashville
    Memphis
    New Orleans
    San Francisco
    Los Angeles
    1 Night Las Vegas
    San Diego
    1 Day trip to Tijuana
    Chicago

    i have a guide that pretty much has all sightseeing information you can ask for, but i'd still like to know some stuff:
    • could you redommend any CHEAP spermarkets in these cities or any good & cheap restaurants?
    • is it true that waiters/waitresses don't get a general salary = the tip is the only payment they earn?
    • this may sound completely stupid to you, but i'm serious: are there any areas in these cities where we better not walk around at night or at any time? i know this sounds stupid, but i've seen too many gangster movies and e.g. our hostel in NY is a block north of central park in harlem and the people in the movies usually get shot there so i don't know.
    • is the public transportation system reliable? e.g. my guide says that buses, the subway, etc. drive 24/7 in new york, but is that really true? every day, all the time?
    • we're 20, so i know we won't be able to drink alcohol. but will we still be able to go to bars, just without drinking alcohol? AND we've planned a trip to las vegas when we're in L.A. - so, being under 21, we won't be able to enter any of the casinos, but we can walk around that night and watch all the hotels without being arrested, right?
    • is tijuana worth visiting or are there only cheap hookers & drug dealers?
    • we'll be in NY on independence day - what are the best places to be on that day?
    i probably have some more questions, but that's it for now.
    "This is not meant to be at all offensive: You suffer from diarrhea of the mouth but constipation of the brain." - McJag

  2. #2
    Elite Member LynnieD's Avatar
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    Hope you have a great time! You're hitting a big portion of the country, hell, more than I have seen and I've lived here my whole life!

    Most waitresses make a very small wage, low hourly wage, so most of their income comes from tips, not all.


    Generally speaking you cannot go INTO a bar unless you are 21. So you might want to warn your friend about it. Looks like no Casino's or bars, sorry.


    And thats about all I can help you with, not much. But we have a lot of posters in the areas you will be visiting, so I'm sure you will get some good advice!
    Have a great time!

  3. #3
    Silver Member missjuicy's Avatar
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    • could you redommend any CHEAP spermarkets in these cities or any good & cheap restaurants?
    stick with the shop rites and stop n shops theyre usually cheaper
    • is it true that waiters/waitresses don't get a general salary = the tip is the only payment they earn?
    yea, they dont make that much. its usually normal to leave a 15-25% tip
    • this may sound completely stupid to you, but i'm serious: are there any areas in these cities where we better not walk around at night or at any time? i know this sounds stupid, but i've seen too many gangster movies and e.g. our hostel in NY is a block north of central park in harlem and the people in the movies usually get shot there so i don't know.
    yes, you shouldnt walk by yourself at night in alot of areas all over the country. make sure you use the buddy system and although u should ask the locals questions, dont be too trusting
    • is the public transportation system reliable? e.g. my guide says that buses, the subway, etc. drive 24/7 in new york, but is that really true? every day, all the time?
    go to nj transit or ny subways websites they have up to date bus, subway, ferry info for the nyc area and the same would prob go for all those cities
    • we're 20, so i know we won't be able to drink alcohol. but will we still be able to go to bars, just without drinking alcohol? AND we've planned a trip to las vegas when we're in L.A. - so, being under 21, we won't be able to enter any of the casinos, but we can walk around that night and watch all the hotels without being arrested, right?
    if you go to a bar that is also a grill house or restaurant you may get served. if you search hard enough youll be able to find them
    • is tijuana worth visiting or are there only cheap hookers & drug dealers?
    i was there, it was a sad sight. alot of poverty and depression. its worth the visit to gain a respect for the culture but dont expect alot
    • we'll be in NY on independence day - what are the best places to be on that day?
    anywhere, nyc has alot of firework sites and outdoor bbqs..youre lucky!


    your trip sounds amazing. i live a 5 min subway trip away from NYC if you ever need a tourguide!! LOL

  4. #4
    Elite Member sputnik's Avatar
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    get some fake ID. i'm not exactly sure how to go about this in the US but maybe someone here can tell you where to get it?
    I'm open to everything. When you start to criticise the times you live in, your time is over. - Karl Lagerfeld

  5. #5
    Silver Member missjuicy's Avatar
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    ^^ ehhh bc ID's are digital now its tough HOWEVER bc ur from Germany they may not understand your ID from Europe (ive seen it b4) you may be able to slip in hahah

  6. #6
    Elite Member McJag's Avatar
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    New Orleans-French Quarter. MUST go to Cafe duMonde-right on the river. Must have beingets & cafe au lait-for good luck! Walk around Jackson Square-free entertainment,muscians playing,tap dancing,artists painting-it has it all! It will be sultry & hot,sundress is coolest, comfy shoes. People are friendly,watch out for purse snatchers-use fanny pack if you can. Police are friendly & helpful. If you look older at all,you can get away with ordering a drink. If they ask for ID,just say you forgot it. Order iced tea,anyway.Lots of cute shops. Must try: muffuleta sandwich(Nola Cuisine " Blog Archive " Muffuletta Sandwich Recipe.) Crawfish etoufee. Boudin sausage(pork & rice). If you can-Commander's Palace. For Sunday Brunch. This will be a splurge,worth it. About $45 apiece. Out of this world! If you order the Bloody Marys,try to get away with it. Order firmly & if asked about ID,raise your eyebrow & say you didn't think you would need it here ,of all places. Chances are great you won't be asked. Those Bloody Marys are to die for! Most little eating places will have red beans & rice for cheap-an NO go-to dish. Try to eat all the different Cajun stuff you can-seafood is great here. Everybody loves food,music,laughing.
    Oh! Do tip 20%.
    I didn't start out to collect diamonds, but somehow they just kept piling up.-Mae West

  7. #7
    Elite Member qwerty's Avatar
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    Public transportation is scarce or inconsistent in a number of the cities you've listed. You'll be good in New York but other cities have limited public transport so you might require a rental car or lots of cab fare and walking if you really want to get around.

  8. #8
    Elite Member McJag's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sputnik View Post
    get some fake ID. i'm not exactly sure how to go about this in the US but maybe someone here can tell you where to get it?
    Ha! Penny will know this!! Good thinking!
    I didn't start out to collect diamonds, but somehow they just kept piling up.-Mae West

  9. #9
    Elite Member FierceKiten's Avatar
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    Speaking for L.A...

    Transportation:

    Metro bus system is the best way to get around the city. Three dollars for a full day pass, good from 6 am to 11pm. The "Rapid" (red bus) gets you from A to B quick. Only 50 cents for using the "Dash". It's a little blue and white bus that takes you around the main districts all throughout downtown.

    Drinks & nights out:

    Curfew (time to be in) shouldnt affect you because your over 18 but, always carry some form of I.D. to be on the safe side. Since your just under 21, sorry but you will be refused alcohol nor allowed entry into bars. Some may allow you in but you wont be served alcohol period.

    Supermarkets:

    If the cheapest route you want to go but dont want groceries in the sense, try "99 cents store". Also "Big Lots", they carry snacks and frozen food you can put in your hotel freezer.

  10. #10
    Elite Member sputnik's Avatar
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    yeah, ask penny. and if not get some fake german ID, they won't know the difference.
    I'm open to everything. When you start to criticise the times you live in, your time is over. - Karl Lagerfeld

  11. #11
    Elite Member witchcurlgirl's Avatar
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    Forget the fake ID, at least in NY. You need a passport or a drivers license.

    NY public transport does operate 24/7.

    The best place in NY on July 4 is anywhere downtown where you can see NY Harbour. The fireworks show is great. Try Battery Park, but you must go early to get a spot.

    In Las Vegas you will be able to walk around freely and see what you want. You will even be able to walk around inside most of the casinos, just act casual, and don't gamble, because if you win big you would then have to present ID.
    All of God's children are not beautiful. Most of God's children are, in fact, barely presentable.


    If I wanted the government in my womb I'd fuck a Senator

  12. #12
    Elite Member Laurent's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by McJag View Post
    If you look older at all,you can get away with ordering a drink. If they ask for ID,just say you forgot it.
    Agreed with your whole post about New Orleans! Makes me want to take a weekend trip! The last time I was there, I got I.D.'ed constantly though, and I'm in my early 30s. That was during Mardi Gras, but I was also there in December and got carded a lot then too. So, I'm not sure, but there's definately a good time to be had there even without a Pat O'Brien's Hurricane.

  13. #13
    Elite Member sputnik's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by witchcurlgirl View Post
    Forget the fake ID, at least in NY. You need a passport or a drivers license.

    NY public transport does operate 24/7.

    The best place in NY on July 4 is anywhere downtown where you can see NY Harbour. The fireworks show is great. Try Battery Park, but you must go early to get a spot.

    In Las Vegas you will be able to walk around freely and see what you want. You will even be able to walk around inside most of the casinos, just act casual, and don't gamble, because if you win big you would then have to present ID.
    really? is this recent? is it everywhere or just the more fashionable clubs and places? i went to NY as a student and used a foreign ID (just told the guys i didn't want to walk around with a passport in case i lost it/got it stolen, etc) and it was fine. some places they pretty much only pretended to look at the IDs. though this was mostly underground and punk places and small bars.
    ugh, the whole 21 drinking age thing really pisses me off. that is one retarded law.
    I'm open to everything. When you start to criticise the times you live in, your time is over. - Karl Lagerfeld

  14. #14
    Elite Member witchcurlgirl's Avatar
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    ^ it's fairly recent, the last few years.

    they even put ID's into a scanner in many places, to record the ID with the photo. They have used it to catch rapists, and a murderer or two.

    There still are some places where you can go and ID check is lax, but they are few and far between. Mostly local neighborhood spots.
    All of God's children are not beautiful. Most of God's children are, in fact, barely presentable.


    If I wanted the government in my womb I'd fuck a Senator

  15. #15
    Elite Member cmmdee's Avatar
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    Stef, if you make it to DC, message me on here so I can guide you to fun spots

    if you decide elsewhere for 4th of July, DC is (*obviously*) the funnest place to be. Crowded as fuck but so much fun

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