“Hold on, you moved where?”
My friends and my family could not believe it when I told them I was moving to New Jersey.
New Yorkers are proud bunch and it’s easy to see why; after all, nothing compares to New York City, but New Jersey is often underestimated: for one, the housing is cheaper—even when NJ is second to NY property tax costs, taxes in general are lower. Commute to NYC is painless along the Hudson’s edge: PATH trains, buses and jitneys have us spoiled for choice. The scenery is beautiful featuring an abundance of parks, hiking trails and green areas, often with stunning NYC skyline views.
Jersey City is 11 minutes or less from the World Trade Center via the PATH, which is, in general, pretty clean and runs 24/7. A similarly convenient but pricier option are the ferries departing all along the riverside— it’s easy as it gets.
There’s also NJ Transit buses, and jitneys (check out our lifesaving guide to riding jitneys!) that can bring you to and from the city.
Getting to where you need to is relatively painless, and no, you don’t really *need* a car to get around Jersey City. You will find most stores are walking-distance away (delis, mini-markets, liquor stores, and more) and if you do need to go further, NJ Transit, jitneys and the Light Rail have your back! While the rumor is partly true: public transpo doesn’t run all night (again, except for the PATH) the truth is you’re likely to catch your bus, jitney or light rail until a little past midnight depending on your route and location. You can even find the odd jitney circulating after official hours sometimes (I’ve boarded some as late as 2am!)… or you can take an Uber/Lyft, which are often a fraction of the Manhattan price!
It’s easy to mistake Jersey City for some sleepy town across the river, but the reality is very different: it has a vibrant night life, an abundance of bars, restaurants, cafes and all sorts of eateries both casual and upscale; there’s regular farmer’s markets, art galleries, lots of local events like movies under the stars, concerts both planned and impromptu, beautiful parks and promenades (Liberty State Park deserves a mention all on its own); and a fair share of cultural destinations like Mana Contemporary and Liberty Science Center—not to mention everything that neighboring cities like Hoboken and Union City have to offer too!
If you are considering a change of scenery, take it from a born-and-bred New Yorker: life on the other side (of the river) is just as great!
— Jimmy Pompa
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