Where the Riders are in New York in December
With Christmas looming, we’ve reached the peak time of year for riders in New York.
Good business is where you find it, but where you look is critical. At INSHUR we look for ways to help you make more money – revealing where the crowds are is one of them. Many Uber drivers will be cruising for riders in all the same old places. But that’s way too competitive. Instead, we’ve searched for different ways to cash in on the big events and make the most of other busy spots that may get overlooked. Scoop up the riders that the others never see.
Bryant Park and Union Square Christmas Markets
Event: Festive holiday markets.
Where: Central and South Manhattan.
When: 31st October to 5th January.
Times: Bryant Park – 11.00am to 8.00pm Mon to Friday, 10.00am to 8.00pm Sat and Sunday. Union Square – 11.00am to 7.00pm Mon-Fri and Sun, 10.00am to 8.00pm Saturday.
New York’s best and brightest holiday markets run through November, December and into 2020. Local craftsmen and retailers bring their bespoke products to Bryant Park and Union Square. Both fairs present stalls, food and fun, but Bryant Park also offers ice-skating and the park café. A huge draw for locals and tourists alike, tens of thousands throng every day to enjoy the atmosphere and buy ornaments and festive treats.
Insider’s scoop: Most of Bryant Park Market’s action centers on the area around Fountain Terrace. Drop off and pick up riders along 6th Ave or West 40th Street. The Union Square market is situated on the south side of the park. Drop off and pick-up along East 14th Street.
Rockefeller Plaza Christmas Tree Lighting
Event: New York’s symbolic Christmas tree lights up.
Where: Rockefeller Plaza.
When: December 4th.
Times: 7.00pm to 9.00pm.
The 87th lighting of New York’s most famous Christmas tree takes place in Rockefeller Plaza, Dec 4th. A sold-out show, with high-end gala and reception as well as a massive crowd in the bleachers makes this event a major magnet for Uber riders. Expect surge pricing from 9.00pm when the crowds leave to find somewhere warm and inviting to shrug off the winter cold.
Insider’s scoop: Avoid the traffic jams as thousands surge onto 5th Avenue after 9.00pm. Meet your riders at 49th Street and 6th Avenue.
Hello Panda Festival
Event: The USA’s biggest Chinese Lantern festival.
Where: Citi Field, Queens, NY 11368.
When: December 6th to January 26th.
Times: 5.00pm to 10.00pm.
In its inaugural year, the Hello Panda Festival brings more than 120 lantern exhibitors and over 60 food retailers to Citi Field. A blaze of colour and spectacle, it promises to bring an oriental flavour to Christmas in New York. Potentially a big draw for families, the fair also offers live entertainment, immersive experiences for the kids and a glimpse into a fascinating cultural tradition. Expect to meet a horde of parents and children too weary to make it home on bus or subway.
Insider’s scoop: Uber has a designated zone at Citi Field. Riders are notified at the time of booking via the Uber app. Wait for requests along 126th Street and then meet your riders at the pick-up area.
NY Horror Film Festival
Event: New York’s only recognised horror film festival.
Where: Cineopolis, Chelsea.
When: December 5h to 8th.
Times: 7.00pm ‘til late on 5th and 6th, noon ‘til late 7th and 8th.
For those who like their Christmas with a dark touch, the New York Horror Film Festival has been bringing a terrifying edge to the season since 2002. A big favorite with horror flick fans, the festival draws crowds from across the city. With programs that run well into the night, there may be many riders too scared to take the subway home. Be nearby to light their way.
Insider’s scoop: NYHFF is also an award show. Expect biggest crowds on Saturday 7th when the Lifetime Achievement awards are given out from 7.30pm. (Tickets already sold-out to visitors).
New York International Motorcycle Show
Event: The east coast’s biggest celebration of everything on two wheels.
Where: Javits Centre, NY 10001.
When: December 6h to 8th.
Times: 2.00pm to 8.00pm on 6th, 9.30am to 8.00pm on 7th, 10.00am to 5.00pm on 8th.
Hey, as well as a sleigh, maybe Santa likes a motorcycle too? Everything from custom bikes to chunky trikes and ATV’s are packed into the NY MC Show at halls 1a, 1b and 1c, Javits Centre. A longstanding fixture of the motorcycle scene, the event attracts lovers of this form of transport from across the USA. With tens of thousands in attendance, abundant opportunities to find Uber riders exist every day.
Insider’s scoop: Guests enter the complex via the entrance at 429 11th Avenue. Drop off and pick up on West 35th or 36th Streets. Ignore the show’s posted address of 655 West 34th Street, that’s for exhibitors only.
John Lennon Memorial Day
Event: A gathering of hard-core Beatles fans on the anniversary of his passing.
Where: Terrace Drive, Strawberry Fields, Central Park, NY 10023.
When: December 8th.
Times: All day.
Every year, hundreds of fans of the late John Lennon converge on his memorial in Central Park to honor his passing. A solemn event by Christmas standards, it adds a somber touch to an otherwise happy time of year. Many visitors come from around the world and are unfamiliar with the city’s layout. Be there to let them get by with a little help from the Uber app.
Insider’s scoop: Many visitors also wish to view the Dakota Building where Lennon used to live. Meet riders along 73rd Street to avoid the crowds on the corner of 72nd Street and Central Park West.
Renegade Craft Fair
Event: Artisanal Christmas market and fair.
Where: Brooklyn Expo Center, 79 Franklin Street, NY 11222.
When: December 21st and 22nd.
Times: 11.00am to 5.00pm.
More than 240 stallholders offering quirky goods, clothing, food, drink and vintage items fill out the Renegade Craft Fair in the heart of Greenpoint, Brooklyn. A big hit with families, it’s a chance for last minute shoppers to snag their final gifts and treats. The best time for riders is after 3.00pm, when the visitors have worn out their feet, emptied their wallets and just want to go home.
Insider’s scoop: From 4.00pm onwards, expect shoppers to begin arriving at the East 34th Street ferry terminal from Greenpoint. Time your appearance to pick them up using the ferry schedule.
Prospect Park New Year’s Eve Fireworks
Event: 2019/2020 fireworks show.
Where: Grand Army Plaza, Prospect Park.
When: December 31st.
Times: 10.30pm to 12.30am on Jan 1st.
Never mind the madness in Times Square, make the most of an equally enjoyable but far more accessible New Year’s celebration with the Fireworks Show in Prospect Park. Tens of thousands of New Yorkers will avoid overcrowded Manhattan and travel to this event as it celebrates its 40th year.
Insider’s scoop: After 12.30am the subway stations at 7th Avenue, Grand Army Plaza and The Brooklyn Museum will be packed to the roof. Wait near St. John’s Place and 8th Avenue to pick-up those who cannot face the crush.
- It’s the peak time of year for riders in New York.
- Catch riders where other drivers do not look
- Bryant Park and Union Square Christmas Markets
- Rockefeller Plaza Christmas Tree lighting
- Hello Panda Lantern Festival
- New York Horror Film Festival
- New York International Motorcycle Show
- John Lennon Memorial Day
- Renegade Craft Fair
- Prospect Park New Year’s Eve Fireworks Show
LINKS and SOURCES
Union Sq. Market: https://www.nycgo.com/shopping/union-square-holiday-market
Bryant Park Market map: https://firstname.lastname@example.org,-73.9845174,19z
Rockefeller Xmas Tree lighting: https://www.rockefellercenter.com/holidays/rockefeller-center-christmas-tree-lighting/
Rockefeller Plaza map: https://email@example.com,-73.9789211,18z
Hello Panda Festival: http://www.hellopandafest.com/
NY Horror Film Festival: https://nychorrorfest.com/
East 34th Street ferry terminal schedule: https://www.ferry.nyc/routes-and-schedules/route/east-river/
Prospect Park Fireworks Show: https://www.prospectpark.org/news-events/events/2019/12/31
Prospect Park pick-up point map: https://www.prospectpark.org/visit-the-park/park-map/points-interest/points-interest-grand-army-plaza/?expand