Exploring NYC using Foursquare

FourSquareWhen I was invited on a tour of Tribeca with the gang from Foursquare, I instantly accepted.  For one thing, I love tours of NYC; for another, I admittedly had yet to venture into the depth of this mobile application and was curious if I’d been missing anything.  In my mind, it was an app to see and be seen on and that didn’t interest me.  I don’t want to check in to destinations and have everyone I know on Facebook or Twitter know where I am.  I still value my privacy and time with my family.  But in the back of my mind, I’ve wondered about the app’s popularity and have been meaning to check it out further.

We, other “mommy mavens” as they called us, and a bunch of people from Foursquare, met at Bubby’s, one of my favorite restaurants in lower Manhattan.  I’ve been back for their delicious homemade food many times over the years, and I’ve seen Robert De Niro, Harvey Keitel and so many of my favorite NYC actors dining there, as well. Alex Rainert, Head of Product at Foursquare, took us all on a walking tour of the area to show us how to better utilize the app, and I can honestly say I am going to start using it after the experience.  I finally understand how it can make my life easier.  Especially since I’m a travelholic and a mom-on-the-go who likes to save money when I can.

Here’s why:

  • Did you know that you can get personalized recommendations?  The Explore feature lets you get as specific as possible to find nearby venues – from Vietnamese and Vegan restaurants to the nearest antique shop.  By using the wisdom of the larger Foursquare community, you see only personalized recommendations based on your favorites.
  • Did you know that you get money-saving deals?  I didn’t.  Simply by checking in (which you don’t have to publicize), you will save money and find cool offerings.  The specials are mobile coupons, prizes or discounts and they appear when you check in or out of a business.  With over a quarter million businesses on foursquare, you can find rewards such as 20% off your dinner bill, a private tour, or a free dessert, all over the world.  I was just in London and Paris and it turns out I could have used Foursquare to find deals and specials.  It would have been nice to have had some freebies in cities where the dollar is so weak.
  • Foursquare lets you travel like a local.  That’s important to me.  I don’t want to hit the tourist spots, especially when I have kids in tow.  I typically like more interesting spots and I like the fact that I can get tips from locals.  
  • Foursquare also lets you make a to do list of all the best restaurants you’ve been to or want to go to.
  • Foursquare also lets you share moments of your travels.  Who knew you can attach photos to your check-ins so family and friends back home can see what you’re doing and where you are, and leave comments along the way?  There are so many great moments you want to share, and this is an easy way to do that.
The guys at Foursquare led us to some wonderful Tribeca spots, based on the app’s recommendations.  We popped into a toy store called Praying Mantis, another kid’s shop called Bu and the Duck and we ended up at South’s for delicious appetizers and drinks.  Their macaronni & cheese and nachos with cheese was absolutely to die for, and I’m really glad Foursquare led us there.  Next time I’m looking for a place to eat or go, I’m definitely checking in with Foursquare.  But no, you may not know, as long as I can help it.  I’m keeping my privacy as much as I can.



Disclosure: I was not compensated for this post and all opinions are my own.




Subscribe to Our Blog Updates!

Subscribe to Our Free Email Updates!

Share this article!


  1. OK. So you’ve convinced me. I’ve always thought of FourSquare as a stalkers dream app — but not much more. Obviously, I’ve been missing out.
    I’ll have to succumb.

  2. I learned so much about Foursquare last summer while consulting with a performing arts center here in Philly. I hadn’t used it prior to that and it was still weird and new. Since last July, its been my best pal when traveling. For a while I was like you and I didn’t want to broadcast where I was. Now I don’t mind so much but its primarily b/c there is something cheeky to say about wherever I am! I have used it not so much for specials but rather to find a coffee shop that isn’t Starbucks…or a local restaurant on the Lower East Side when I saw the circus co. two weeks ago and did not want Asian food! I love it. And to me its the only one…I get tired of yet another FB or Google app. I personally like trying apps that have their own agenda.

Speak Your Mind