Shopping in New York: The Ultimate Guide 2023
The Best Places to Shop in NYC
New York City is truly the best place for a successful shopping spree. The city has something for everyone with world-renowned brands and labels on every corner, cool shops in NYC, small insider boutiques hidden in up-and-coming neighborhoods, malls and outlets located just outside the city.
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Shopping in New York means you can find pieces that you won’t find anywhere else. Some worldwide trends are established here, new ranges and products are launched and the reactions of customers are tested. Shopping here is simply an amazing experience and it’s something you will definitely understand when you explore some of NYC’s finest spots for shopping.
This NYC shopping guide will show you the best places to shop and where you can score the best deals. Many stores offer a 15% discount on top of regular savings that you experience due to exchange rates and generally lower prices!
Looking for a shortcut? Here you find the 👉 best shopping areas in NYC, 👉 world-famous Shopping Stores in NYC and 👉 the best shopping streets in New York! And in my recently published article I have the 34 best flagship stores in NYC for you!
The 6 Best Shopping Areas in NYC
Every neighborhood in New York features its own best areas for shopping. You can shop for big-name brands anywhere in the city. Shopping on Fifth Avenue and the Meatpacking District, or unique boutiques in city parts like SoHo, Williamsburg, and Greenwich Village will provide you different types of stores. One of the best parts of shopping in the fashion capital New York City is that many brands have a flagship store here.
1. Shopping at Columbus Circle
The Shops at Columbus Circle is a small, manageable mall located directly at Central Park. We like shopping here because of the well-known brands and the fact that it is not as crowded.
You can find Columbus Circle directly in the bottom west corner of Central Park near 8th Avenue.
Address: 10 Columbus Circle, New York, 10023
2. Best Shopping in SoHo NYC
Shopping in SoHo can offer you everything that will make your heart skip a beat. The entire area around Broadway in SoHo is one of our favorite shopping areas in downtown Manhattan. SoHo has its own artistic charm and is home to many stores ranging from luxury brands and boutiques to more common brands like Forever 21 and H&M – SoHo truly has something for everyone.
With some great unique cafés in the area, you will not struggle to find a spot to rest your feet after a day of shopping. Our tip: come early in the morning during the week. There is much less of a crowd which guarantees a far more relaxed shopping experience. More about SoHo here.
3. Shopping in the Meatpacking District
The Meatpacking District, near the beginning of the High Line in downtown Manhattan, is one of the most contemporary areas in the city. It is definitely going to make you whip out your credit card with its numerous exciting shops, bars, and restaurants. The well-known TV show Sex and the City also showed the girls of the cast buying their fancy dresses here.
In addition to the expensive boutiques, you can also find a UGG Store, an Asics store with a broad selection of their newest products, and an Apple store. If you are tired of shopping, you can stroll through the Chelsea Market to find a bite to eat – the Food Market sells something to please every kind of palate. You can also combine your shopping trip in the Meatpacking District with a visit to the Whitney Museum!
4. Shopping at Herald Square
The atmosphere at Herald Square is significantly more hectic than the aforementioned spots. As a hotspot for tourists, it requires some strong nerves or a serious dedication to shopping. However, if you don’t mind a slightly busier shopping experience and a higher noise level, you will find that a great shopping experience awaits. In addition to the huge department store, Macy’s NYC (which is impressive just by itself), there are many other flagship stores all around Herald Square.
The new flagship store of H&M has also opened here, which is, of course, a brand you can find internationally as well as in the UK, but the NYC shop does it better. In close proximity, you will also find Victoria’s Secret, Zara, Mango, Levis, Footlocker, Gap, and Forever 21. These are just a few of the more popular retail shops you will find here. Our tip for this shopping location is the same as the previous one, make sure to come early and during the week if possible. Once you arrive at Herald Square you will quickly find yourself adapting to the fast pace of New York as you explore the large, busy, shops.
5. Shopping at The Oculus
Very close to One World Trade Center and the 9/11 Memorial & Museum is the Oculus. You can’t miss the futuristic looking building. It is also a train station with connections to New Jersey, a Christmas market during the holiday season and a mall with many great stores.
For those who are looking for one of the newest shopping addresses in New York, the Oculus is the best choice!
Here you find everything you need to know about shopping at the Oculus.
6. Shopping around Brookfield Place
We love Brookfield Place: in the summer you can sit in one of the many restaurants and look at the One Word Trade Center, there are some of the best rooftop bars in New York and you can go shopping.
In Battery Park City in Lower Manhattan hides a complex of buildings in which there is a lot of choice, especially for the more expensive tastes. Here you will find luxury stores like Burberry, DVF, Gucci, Hermes, Salvatore Ferragamo and Tory Burch.
Want to know more about it? Check out our Guide to Brookfield Place NYC.
7. Shopping on Lexington Avenue
On the Upper East Side around Lexington Avenue, you will find a nice mix of luxury brands and more common brands like Zara and H&M. The Upper East Side is also home to Bloomingdale’s, one of the most famous and beloved department stores of New York City. When you purchase an item here it will be placed in one of their signature, world-renowned, Little Brown Bags for you.
The Most Famous Shopping Stores in NYC
Macy’s on 5th Avenue
Macy’s is not only the oldest but also the most recognized department store in New York. Spanning over 7 floors, you will find anything and everything your heart desires. Make sure to check out Macy’s Santaland and the famous Holiday Lane on the 9th floor during the holidays.Christmas at Macy’s is something you shouldn’t miss while visiting NYC.
Macy’s Location: 151 West 34th Street (between Broadway & 7th Avenue)
Bloomingdale’s is a very well know and popular department store in New York. The brown shopping bags (with a little brown bag or medium brown bag written on them) are well known around the world and you will probably see hundreds go past you throughout New York City. This is due to the huge selection comprised of quality items. When you visit one of Bloomingdale’s NYC locations you will even often see men roaming the store to secure the perfect gift for their significant other.
There are several Bloomingdale’s locations throughout Manhattan – just find one that is close to you!
Locations: 1000, 3rd Avenue (between 59th and 60th Street); 504 Broadway in SoHo
Tiffany & Co.
Tiffany & Co. is a very popular brand that is recognized globally, it has even been the topic of some major Hollywood films. The brand has several locations in New York but their flagship store is without a doubt the retail space on 5th Avenue. There are several stores throughout the town, meaning you can admire the beautiful jewelry at 5 other stores.
Ranging from small price tags up to some very large ones you can find everything at Tiffany & Co. that sparkles and shines. If you want to save some money, definitely take a detour around the NYC shops – with the amounts of amazing looking pieces inside it will be hard to persuade yourself you don’t need any of it.
Location: 1727 Fifth Ave., at 57th Street
Victoria’s Secret is also one of the brands that is firmly rooted in New York City. Victoria’s Secret sells beautiful lingerie, intimate apparel, and underwear but also carries swimwear fashion and shoes. With over 40 locations throughout New York, use their store finder to get to the location that is closest to you.
Victoria’s Secret should undoubtedly be part of any New York City shopping trip!
SAKS Fifth Avenue
Saks Fifth Avenue is an American luxury department store chain that has its flagship store on Fifth Avenue in Midtown Manhattan. Like Bloomingdale’s, Saks Fifth Avenue is the setting for many movies and series set in NYC. We especially love Saks at Christmas time, when it’s beautifully decorated. But even so, a visit is always worthwhile, because here you can store to your heart’s content!
Nordstrom NYC Women’s Flagship
The Seattle-based company opened its first Nordstrom NYC flagship store here in the city in October 2019. Situated on 57th and Broadway right at the base of the world’s tallest residential building in the western hemisphere, the store sells your favorite designer brands as well as other amenities. Known for its exceptional customer service, this is a place worth shopping at.
Location: Midtown: 225 W 57th St, New York, NY 10019
OMG The Jeans Store
Another popular retailer is OMG – The Jeans Store, a shop sells all types of jeans from well known to lesser-known brands. You will definitely be able to find jeans made by the classic jeans brands Levi’s, Wrangler, Dockers, and Calvin Klein here, at very competitive prices.
OMG has 4 locations in New York – click here to access the store locator. The company’s flagship store is on Broadway, between Canal and Walker Street.
Nordstrom Men’s Store NYC
Nordstrom started off on the west coast and has gradually made its way to the east coast. It’s very similar to Bloomingdales in terms of brands that are being carried. With men’s fashion on the rise and a trend that keeps rising, Nordstrom has finally built its first store in Manhattan. On top of that, it’s a store focused on men. The prices can be a little steep, but there are a lot of high-quality brands to choose from.
Location: Midtown: 235 W 57th St, New York, NY 10019
H&M in Times Square & Herald Square
The H&M stores at Times Square & Herald Square are futuristic and modern and not much like their other stores throughout the world. Since its grand opening in the fall of 2015, H&M trends originate and are tested in these two stores. With a huge selection of new items and ranges as well as entertainment by a daily DJ, the brand has created a very special atmosphere in these two stores. Even the store personnel seems to celebrate working at H&M in Times Square or Herald Square.
Take note of the fact the store re-arranges, re-decorates, and replenishes inventory daily, meaning items are always arranged differently. This can become a difficulty when trying to find that one piece of clothing you tried on yesterday but decided to sleep on buying. H&M has a total of 35 NYC locations meaning that you will see many of their shops around, however, their flagship stores at Times Square and Herald Square are by far the most impressive.
Location: 4 Times Square 1472 Broadway; 1328 Broadway at Herald Square
Which are the best shopping streets in NYC?
New York City is also home to Fifth Avenue, one of the most famous streets for shopping in the world. Designers like Calvin Klein, Prada, Armani, Hugo Boss, and Dolce & Gabbana have flagship stores here and are just waiting for you to cash in on their latest deals. Less expensive but equally big retail chains that you will be familiar with from the UK, are also popular in New York – this includes Abercrombie & Fitch, Hollister, Footlocker, Nike on FifthAvenue, Adidas, Apple, and H&M, for example. One thing is for sure, you won’t be going home empty-handed and there are so many great places to shop in NYC.
As mentioned before, 5th Avenue is one of the most famous and also most expensive shopping streets in NYC. Every shopping street in New York City is as diverse as the city itself. From hip and casual in Williamsburg to super fancy at Hudson Yards. Besides 5th Avenue we recommend checking out:
- Madison Avenue
- Lexington Avenue
- Hudson Yards
- Broadway (Midtown to Downtown)
- Herald Square
- Orchard Street
- Prince Street
- Bleeker Street
- Mulberry Street
- Spring Street
- West of Sixth Avenue between 14th and Houston
- Canal Street
- South Street at South Street Seaport
- Oculus Plaza (and inside the Oculus)
- 5th Ave (Park Slope)
- Bedford Avenue
These are the 5 Best Outlets and Malls in and around New York
New York City is home to many great shopping experiences and malls. Many of these malls are huge and feature numerous designer stores across their expansive grounds.
When it comes to outlets in New York, there’s currently only one in NYC, but more are located just outside of the city. You will definitely find some great deals here and not only on last season’s items. Make sure to check these out as you will often find large discounts on designer items too!
1. Empire Outlets, Staten Island
There are so many shopping experiences in NYC, but when it comes to outlets, before 2019, one had to travel pretty far just to find one. This is where Empire Outlets in Staten Island comes in. The outlets become NYC’s first, which is pretty surprising when the city is filled with so many shops.
It’s been about 7 years since the planning of Empire Outlets began and now it’s finally open. Empire outlets will have an array of stores including mainstream favorites such as H&M, True Religion, and many more. Check out our New York Shopping Guide about Empire Outlets (you will love it!)
Please find the complete list of stores at the Empire Outlets here.
Getting to Empire Outlets in Staten Island: Take the Staten Island Ferry located in downtown Manhattan.
2. The Woodbury Common Premium Outlet
The Woodbury Common Premium Outlet, which has over 220 designer stores, is less than 1 hour from Manhattan and gives you savings of up to 65%. The expansive outlet mall includes shops like Dolce & Gabbana, Gap Outlet, Nike Factory Store, Polo Ralph Lauren, Salvatore Ferragamo, Timberland, and many, many more!
A roundtrip outing to the mall is not a hardship with regular bus connections (ShortLine/coach USA) from the Port Authority Bus Terminal (42nd Street at 8th Avenue). If you are the owner of a New York Sightseeing Pass you can also reserve a bus to the outlets and take advantage of the included discount booklet valued at several hundred dollars.
Here you can find our complete review of the Woodbury Common Premium Outlet.
3. Jersey Gardens Outlet
The Jersey Gardens Outlet is one of the most popular shopping destinations near New York City. Located in New Jersey, it avoids the high taxes of New York City, so that you are almost saving an extra 9% on clothes and shoes! It has multiple public transportation options. A 34-minute bus ride will take you straight to the outlet mall. You start at the Port Authority Bus Terminal (between 8th and 9th Avenue and 40th to 42nd Street (Google Maps) – the blue MTA Trains A, C and E stop here.
Once you are in the Port Authority Bus Terminal, go to the Lines 111 and 115 of NJ Transit. You need to buy roundtrip tickets (to and from) in advance and indicate the bus number you want (111 or 115). Buses drive on a regular schedule, (approx. 1 per hour).
The ride will take you a little over half an hour depending on traffic. Your return bus will leave from the same spot that you were dropped you off.
My tip: Our Shopping Guide to Jersey Gardens Outlet
4. NEW: The American Dream Mall
Attention shopping lovers: the Greater New York City area will very soon be home to one of the largest malls in the entire country – the American Dream Mega-Mall. After many years of waiting and constant delays, the massive shopping and entertainment complex is set to finally open this fall.
More about The American Dream Mall
5. Garden State Plaza Mall
There are many malls in NYC, but we can’t forget about the malls close to the city as well. Approx. 200,000 square meters filled with 400 stores – Garden State Plaza promises the ultimate shopping experience. It is the largest mall in the state of New Jersey, and it is only 12.5 miles away from Manhattan. If you are an avid shopper, your pulse will double once you arrive in the small town of Paramus, New Jersey. You will also be saving here as you shop due to New Jersey not having a sales tax on shoes and clothing.
Due to its size, the selection at the Garden State Plaza Mall is huge. Outlets often feature many unknown brands trying to pedal their leftover products from the previous season – but not here. Our jaws dropped when we looked at the map to see which stores could be found in the mall. In addition to the big department stores like Macy’s, J.C. Penney, Nordstrom, Lord & Taylor, and Neiman Marcus you will also find other great name-brand stores like Michael Kors, Louis Vuitton, Superdry, Apple, and Abercrombie.
The list goes on with Converse, Gap, Hollister, Steve Madden, H&M, GUESS, COACH, MAC Cosmetics, and Lacoste. And this is just a small sample of what you can expect. Check out the complete list of stores in the Garden State Mall!
6. Tanger Outlets – Riverhead New York & Deer Park New York
The Tanger Outlets are also not far from NYC – you can get there in about 1.5 hours and enjoy the shopping paradise on Long Island. Both the Riverhead and the Deer Park Outlet are great places to shop. We bought stacks of athletic wear here for reduced prices on our last trip to NYC. Since we had rented a car it was easy for us to swing by and snap up some great deals. If you are going to these outlets in the summer, I recommend taking a trip to the beach which is not far away! We took a tour to the Hamptons this summer and ended our tour at the Tanger Outlets.
Current coupons: the outlets always offer a coupon booklet (be sure to pick one up at the information counter!) that will give you extra discounts on your purchases. These range from buy 1 get 1 free deal to discounts of up to 60%. You can find current coupons on this page.
Getting to Riverhead Outlet by car: Long Island Express Way Exit 72 (from Manhattan). Enter this address into your sat nav: 200 Tanger Mall Drive, Riverhead, NY 11901
Getting to Deer Park Outlets by car: Long Island Express Way Exit 52 (from Manhattan). Enter this address into your sat nav: 152 The Arches Circle, Deer Park, NY 11729
More about Tanger Outlet Riverhead New York More about Outlet Deer Park New York
7. Westfield Shopping Mall inside the Oculus
Head inside the Oculus for an amazing shopping experience. Especially during rainy or cold weather, the Oculus is a wonderful place to shop, eat and enjoy the stunning architecture. Inside the Oculus you will find shops like Victorias Secret, Apple, Sephora, Kiehl’s, MAC, Aldo and many more.
8. Brookfield Place
Only a few minutes walking distance away from the Westfield Mall inside the Oculus you will reach Brookfield Place. It’s a small mall with a very selective number of shops like Burberry, Bottega Veneta, Michael Kors, Lululemon. Most of them are expensive but it’s still worth it browsing around exploring the area. Leaving Brookfield Place facing New Jersey, you will be right by the Hudson River.
9. The Shops at Hudson Yards
You will definitely feel fancy inside the marble-clad, four-level, 720,000-square-foot mall at Hudson Yards. Over 100 shops have moved into New York City’s newest editions to the best malls in New York City. Brands like Zara and Banana Republic, the city’s first Nieman Marcus, Forty-Five Ten, and B8TA are only a few of the shops at Hudson Yards. Make sure to enjoy the food here too because the mall also offers an impressive range of eateries.
More about the Shops at Hudson Yards
Second Hand Shopping in New York and the best thrift shops in NYC
“A Second Chance” Designer Resale in SoHo
With so many thrift stores in NYC, this small, unassuming shop in beautiful SoHo has lots of treasures for lovers of luxurious clothes. This second-hand store sells items from Louis Vuitton, Prada, Gucci, and even Hermes. From bargain basement deals to purses for $20,000.00, you will find a wide selection of stuff at different price ranges here. This includes everything from new clothes to second-hand items discarded by those with too much money. If you are planning on buying a Louis Vuitton bag or something of the likes during your time in New York City, be sure to take a look at A Second Chance – your bag might just be waiting for you on one of its shelves.
Location: 155 Prince Street in SoHo
This second-hand store in New York is probably the most well-known. New Yorkers bring whatever no longer fits, what they no longer like, or simply is no longer worn to this store. Shoes, jeans, dresses, skirts, shirts, bags, simply everything you can imagine can be found at the Buffalo Exchange. Depending on location, inventory is more mainstream or funkier. For example, in the hip district Williamsburg, items are a lot more trendy than they are in the upper-crust East Village. But you can find deals everywhere.
- Queens 29-16 Ditmars Blvd.,
- Williamsburg 504 Driggs Ave.,
- 109 Boerum Pl. Brooklyn,
- East Village 332 E. 11th St.,
- Chelsea 114 W. 26th St.
The Vintage Twin
This thrift store has multiple locations in NYC and is blowing up quickly. Supermodels such as Gigi Hadid and Taylor Hill shop here sometimes, so you know it has a pretty trendy collection.
- 543 Broadway, New York, NY 10012
- 1132 3rd Ave, New York, NY 10065
Another fantastic second-hand store is Beacon Closet in Greenpoint and Bushwick. Located near McCarren Park in Greenpoint, for example, you can find the best vintage clothes as well as newer collections, bags, shoes and much more. At Beacon’s Closet in Greenpoint they have a huge variety of styles for both men and women.
- 74 Guernsey St Brooklyn, NY 11222
- Bushwick 23 Bogart St Brooklyn, NY 11237
New York City Flea Markets
Flea markets in NYC shouldn’t be overlooked as well. Sometimes going to a set location with numerous vendors is beneficial as well. Each vendor is unique and can bring unique items that would be hard to find.
Best Boutique Shopping in NYC
We love boutiques in NYC because each one is curated specifically for its customers. By picking out certain items, boutiques are a great place to go to so you’re not overwhelmed. Make sure to check out our article about the best boutiques in NYC.
26 Best Boutiques in New York City.
Shopping Tips for Sportswear and Leisure
This store is absolutely huge – hence the name Niketown. Spread over multiple floors you will all the different Nike ranges sorted by their respective sports. You can buy shoes, clothes, and accessories for everything from basketball to skateboarding. Not only is the selection larger here than anything you will be used to from Europe, but the prices will also definitely make you want to buy something!
Location: 57th St between 5th and 6th Avenue
Foot Locker New York Herald Square
If you are looking for the best pair of trainers, sports shoes or a new training outfit, this store has the best and biggest selection next to Niketown. Organized according to sports with different departments for men, women, and children, this store carries it all. Prices are fair and their product selection is always up to date.
If Nike comes out with new gear or the latest trend from Adidas, you can be sure to find them here. We particularly recommend the Foot Locker location next to Macy’s as it lets you combine your shopping trip with other sights, and it is by far the biggest Foot Locker in the city.
Location: Midtown West Herald Square / 34th Street from Macy’s
Adidas Originals Store
This is one of our favorite stores because we are huge Adidas fans. We all have a pair of Adidas shoes and most of our running gear is from here too. This huge store is located in the heart of SoHo and it offers a broad and up to date selection of merchandise. The original series has brought back many classic designs and is gaining popularity by the day.
There are several stores such as the 5th Avenue store, the flagship store in SoHo and another one on Wooster Street near Broadway.
Opening times: Mon-Sat: 11:00am – 7:30pm, Sun: 11:00am – 6:00pm
Apple Store in New York
The Apple store on 5th Avenue is world-renowned and an architectural marvel. Only a large glass cube bearing the Apple logo gives you the hint that below lies a mecca for Apple devotees. After months of renovation, the highly anticipated reopening is finally happening in September 2019.
There are now several Apple locations in New York, with the biggest store being inside Grand Central Station. Also, when you have completed your High Line Park walk in the Meatpacking District, you can find an Apple Store there too.
Shopping Tips for Everything Else
Shoe Stores in NYC
When you go to NYC, there’s one thing that’s guaranteed and it’s the fact that you will be walking around. A lot. So obviously you’ll need great walking shoes to trek the city in. We’ve made a list of some of our favorite shoe stores in NYC.
M&M’s World New York
Warning: Danger of addiction! Every time one of us visits this store we come home with far too many M&Ms in a huge bag. The M&M’s store is one of the best candy stores in NYC. They have every color imaginable and for some reason its irresistible to get a bit of each one. Why, I don’t know – they all taste the same anyways as the color is just food coloring but all of us swear by our favorite color. Most of us blame the huge plastic dispensing tubes displaying the delicious-looking sweets across the whole store.
If you are a fan of M&Ms this is definitely a must on your shopping to-do list in New York.
Location: 1600 Broadway, between 48th and 49th Street (at Times Square)
Barnes and Nobles
A wonderful store and not just for the bookworms among us! This Barnes & Noble is huge, there are books as far as the eye can see. They also have several floors dedicated to souvenirs from around NYC. You can buy postcards, magazines, toys, DVDs, picture frames, notebooks, and guest books, or grab a Starbucks for a coffee break. We really recommend browsing through Barnes & Noble as they have a really creatively chosen set of products. The store also hosts book signings and lectures if you are lucky enough for there to be one while you are there. This is truly one of the better bookstores in NYC.
Location: 555 Fifth Ave, New York, NY 10017
Our 26 Best Boutique Shopping in NYC
Shopping in SoHo NYC: The 26 Best Stores Right Now
Nordstrom NYC Flagship Store
The 5th Avenue Apple Store NYC
Sales Tax and Customs Regulations
All prices indicated on goods in New York do not include the sales taxes. You need to add an 8.875% sales tax to the total of all purchases. This number is comprised of the sales tax of the city of New York (4.5%) and the sales tax of the state of New York (4.375%). Several outlet malls, for example, the Jersey Gardens Outlets, are located outside of the city for this very reason, here there are reduced tax rates on most goods and no sales tax on clothing items!
Please be mindful of the customs regulations when you return to your country, as you are only allowed to bring in a certain amount of goods tax-free.
Opening Hours in general
Opening times are very flexible in Manhattan – some shops are even open 24 hours a day. Most, however, are open from 10:00 am to 9:00 pm Monday through Saturday and 11:00 am to 7:00 pm on Sundays. This means you will have plenty of time to go shopping without having to watch the time.
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I'm a true New York fan! Not only have I visited the city over 20 times but also have I spent several months here at a time. On my blog I show you the best and most beautiful spots of the city, so that you have a really good time! You can also find lots of insider tips in our New York travel guide. Also check out my hotel finder for New York!