Big Apple Greeter

Rating: 4.95 stars   266 reviews

Issues: International, Philanthropy, Economic Development, International Exchange

Location: 1 Centre Street Suite 2312 New York NY USA

Mission: Big Apple Greeter's mission is to enhance New York City's worldwide image and enrich the New York experience by connecting visitors with knowledgable and enthusiastic volunteers. The mission was created to accomplish the following goals: to promote New York City as friendly, inviting, and manageable; to bolster tourism and foster economic development; and to create opportunities for New Yorkers to show pride in their city and give back to their city.
Target demographics: International tourists seeking to explore New York City through the eyes of locals.
Geographic areas served: New York City
Programs: Support Big Apple Greeter www.savebigapplegreeter.com
2011 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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EIN 13-3733413
212-669-8159
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Community Reviews

Rating: 5 stars  

We were in NYC twice the last couple of years and on both occasions a BAG showed us around and told us all we wanted to know and more. It was really great! We would like to recommend BAG to everyone who is going to visit the BA. These volunteers know their city and the stuff they can tell you is not in the tourist guidebooks. And furthermore, they are nice people. Please continue your servives and we will definitely return tp NYC another time.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

NYC twice. In 2006 and in 2010. Both times very nice volunteers who shared their time with us and we liked it big time.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

not know. We think it's a great organization that can really turn a nice day in NYC into a great day in NYC!

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

I've been in nyc at january 2011. I'm french. I've had a wonderful experience with a greeter who showed me some brooklyn neighborhoods. A very informative visit with someone who has a wide knowledge of his borough and knows how to let tourists like me get interested on them. An experience who should be tried by all those who are interested in nyc.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Brooklyn, New York City, january 2011

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

get enrolled more volunteers if sufficient financing were available

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Rating: 4 stars  

On my first visit to the US last year, I had just over a day in New York. As a travel writer, I was keen to veer off the usual tourist route, for an insight into this high energy metropolis. I could achieve my objective, thanks to a Big Apple volunteer.
She was punctual and greeted me at my hotel, with an apple - most apt for the brand. But for her, i wouldnot have got delightful a tour of Greenwich village and a combined lesson on its history, geography and philosophy.
More importantly, talking to her human to human, i could largely realise my objective of understanding the concerns, motivation and attitude of average New Yorkers - something a professional guide with his practiced script and monetary motive wouldnot have delivered.
She had the metro tickets for both of us, but politely declined my natural gesture of paying for her lunch, and a book as a tocken of my gratefulness!
Big Apple Greeters is a great idea!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

helping visitors to New York get under the skin of this intimidatingly dynamic city.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

suggest that the guests be allowed to contact the volunteer, even before landing in NY, for reassurance

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

We are from Australia and in October 2010 my husband, son & I stayed in New York for 3 days and had the priviege of having a volunteer from Big Apple Greeter show us around New York. This experience far exceeded my expectations and we got to see a lot of New York that we otherwise would not have seen. The volunteer was very knowledgable and we learnt heaps of stuff about New York which we otherwise would not have known if we were on our own. Also got to see some different residential areas when we side-tracked off the normal tourist path.

It certainly was the best way to see New York from a locals perspective

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Being a visitor to New York and having a volunteer show us the city.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I wouldn't make any changes at this stage, as I am very happy how everything was done.

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

On January 5, 2011, I had a literal "private" tour with a fine greeter with Big Apple Greeters. I was in NYC with my husband (who was on business), and though I had been to NYC many times previously, there are still so many areas of the city which I haven't experienced. Hence, signing up for a tour with Big Apple Greeters. Since it was only myself in our tour, my greeter met me in the lobby of my hotel, and we had a wonderful day walking (and walking and walking!), first across the Brooklyn Bridge (where I learned so much about the history of the building of the bridge itself), then into Brooklyn itself. We spent a little time in the area nearest the bridges, looking at the architecture, and taking photos from the Promanade, which gives marvelous views of the entire Manhattan skyline. We walked back across the East River via the Manhattan Bridge, and I learned more history of the area as we walked and talked. The Manhattan Bridge comes into Chinatown, so we walked through there, eating lunch at a popular noodle shop in Chinatown. My guide even took me to a specialty fish store in Chinatown (after he learned I volunteer at an aquarium in FL), where specialty koi and ornamental carp are sold, which was most interesting. After a tour of Little Italy, we ended up on the Lower East Side, concluding our tour. What a fun day it was, and with Big Apple Greeters, one ends up not only learning so much about New York City, but making a new friend (in your greeter) as well!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the knowledge I received during my tour, as well as the basic learning experience during my tour with a Big Apple Greeter

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

do nothing at all! I was entirely pleased with my experience. My tour and the tour guide were fabulous and very educational.

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 3 stars  

We went to New York 3 years ago and had an Apple Greeter help us one day. My only comment is not to try and do too much in one day. We rode a subway, saw Wall Street, Twin Towers, and a couple of neighborhoods. The greeter was nice. If and when we get to go back to New York we will call on the Apple Greeters again. Everyone that is coming for the first time will have a better knowledge of New York.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Coming to New York on vacation

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Let them win this contest.

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

My one and only visit to the US was in 2001 when I spent a few days in New York with friend to celebrate my birthday. The day that we spent with the Big Apple Greeter guide was the best day of our holiday and one I will always remember. We felt like we had seen parts of the city that we wouldn't have visited on our own and we met a number of native New Yorkers that we would never have met without our guide taking us to places that were off the tourist track. Everyone that we met was friendly and pleasant. We had experienced the legendary rudeness of the US customs service and the lovely New Yorkers that we met more than made up for it! Both my friend and I have treasured memories of our time on New York and would recommend the Big Apple Greeter programme to anyone who visits the city.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

A visit to New York in 2001

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

none needed

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

We first learned about Big Apple Greeters when we were planning our honeymoon to New York City. It was absolutely one of the best things we did! We truly enjoyed our time with John. He was professional and fun at the same time and we felt completely safe. He was patient with our picture taking. told great stories and maintained a pace that was just right. He provided us with invaluable knowledge about the subway system that we used during the rest of the trip. Whenever we talk about our trip to other people, the subject of Big Apple Greeters always comes up. The organization is a wonderful ambassador for the City the Never Sleeps!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

June 2010.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Nadda. We had absolutely no complaints!

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

December 2008, my first visit to New York and after finding Big Apple Greeter on the internet, I applied and was successful to be allocated a volunteer. Tim met us at our hotel at 10.00am and as ouor requested area was Brooklyn, he took us downtown where we proceeded to walk across the Brooklyn Bridge - awsome! Tim took us a walk around Brooklyn, giving us all the local history. He gave an insight on how it was in Brooklyn on 9/11. Although only a short walk from Manhattan, Brooklyn seemed a different world from there - no scryscrapers, only cute little houses with steps up to them - just like you see in the movies. This is something we would never have done on our own - having a "local" to take us around made a world of difference. I can't praise highly enough the real value we experienced by having a Big Apple Greeter. He gave up his Saturday to spend time with strangers, and shared his love and knowledge of Brooklyn with us. I will always remember this experience and it was made possible by Tim.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

As a stranger to New York city, the local knowledge of the Big Apple Greeter was absolutely invaluable.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

No changes required - only sufficient funding to maintain this excellent service.

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

As a visitor to NYC, I was in need of some kind of mechanism of learning the city. What I mean is to get comfortable w/ my surroundings. Big Apple Greeter met me @10 AM at the hostel. We spent the next few hours exploring greenwich village......he was fantastick.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Had a fantastick exploration in Greenwich Village, my greeter met me @ my hostel and we spent four hours walking thru the city.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I don't know @ this time.

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Review from Guidestar