It’s the end of August, you finally landed in New York and presented your student visa to immigration. You’re ready to start school in a couple of days in the exhilarating city, but as you look at your phone, you find that you have no idea how to get started. Good thing you stumbled across this article! Continue to scroll to find a comprehensive list of all the apps you need on your iPhone/Android to experience the city to the fullest!


Let’s first start with NYU-related apps.

I’m sure you will be pestered by our Welcome Week team, your RAs (if you’re dorming), and basically anyone you come across your first few days to download these apps. If you’re reading this article, you’re ahead of the game!


NYU Mobile

This is an absolute must-have for all NYU students! When I say must-have, I mean literally you will need this app to function at NYU.  On this app you will also find shortcuts to all NYU-related websites you need, including but not limited to Brightspace, Albert, NYU Eats, Upcoming Events, Engage & Event Pass, Shuttle times, and so much more. 

Safe NYU

Our NYU safe app that you probably heard about on tours! It has our mobile Blue Light button, Friend Walk (where you can share your location with a friend when you’re walking home), incident report form, Saferide request button, and everything you will need to stay safe at NYU!

Duo Mobile

We take multi-factor authentication very seriously here at NYU. This is the app that we use to ensure that your information stays secure!

Second, social media!

These are popular social media apps in the U.S. to help you stay connected to friends and meet new people!



The best place to post photos and keep up with friends! I love seeing what my friends are doing, especially those currently studying away. Before school starts, usually someone will create an Instagram account for the incoming class (ex. classof2024nyu, nyu2025class, nyu2026.official) where you can post a picture and write a blurb for yourself to meet new people from your class! While these IG accounts aren’t affiliated with the university, they can be a great way to reach out to potential roommates.

And of course, you can always follow @meetnyu, @nyuniversity, @nyuhousing, @nyu.eats, the accounts belonging to your school or college, student organizations, and much more!

Group Me

Sooooooo many group chats are made here at the start of school! They range from thrifting group chats to group chats by school (CAS, Tisch, Gallatin…). There are also usually group chats for classes as well so you can meet people to study with! Definitely a good resource to have.


This is a great app to create group chats with everyone! This app is iPhone and Android friendly 🙂


This is a recent social media app that has really popped off – the app tells you to take a photo of yourself at a random time everyday! It takes a photo with both your selfie cam and the front camera at the same time. I love stalking my friends to see what they are doing. 

Check out a few NYU students’ favorite BeReal photos from this current semester!


I spend the majority of my time on this app watching videos so maybe don’t download it if you don’t already have it because it’s very addicting… But if you have it you’ll be in the loop for all the current trends and understand references that our generation loves to make–so maybe get it?

Also, if you’re not following @MeetNYU on TikTok, you’re missing out!

Check out these TikToks made by (and starring) yours truly!


@meetnyu We love sunset walks + nice weather 🥰 #nyuniversity #nyu #ny #nyuadmission ♬ original sound – NYU Admissions

@meetnyu We also really like corn!! 🌽🌽 #nyu #meetnyu #itscorn #cornsong #nyuadmission #corntok ♬ original sound – Tariq (Cornkid)


For all your professional networking needs! Create a profile here and detail all your past job experiences, projects, etc. and connect with everyone you meet!


Just good apps to have in general!


This food-delivery app has a partnership with NYU so we get their GrubHub+ membership for free (free shipping yay)! You can order food from our dining halls ahead through this app for pick up. 


Google Maps

The most accurate map app in my opinion! Not only is it good for navigation, it also lets you save places you want to go and organize locations in lists! This makes my organization-oriented brain very happy! You also get so much information from here, from restaurant ratings and reviews to when stores open and close. Definitely good to have when navigating the city for the first time.


A safety app that alerts you when crime happens near you. Good to have to see which areas to watch out for! Also allows you to add friends so you have their location to make sure everyone is safe.


Many restaurants and bakeries participate in this app to sell fresh food they have left over each day for less money in “surprise goodie bags!” They don’t want good food to go to waste, and us students love saving money so this app is honestly a godsend.


This app really comes through during the registration period when a class you really want goes on the waitlist or becomes closed. When you enter your course code, it will automatically alert you when the class opens up! It has helped me get into so many classes I want. 

And many many more...

I hope you found this list helpful! I definitely wish I had this when I first moved here. Of course there are so many other apps to download (honorary mentions to Amazon, Spotify, CitiBike, Jetpack Joyride…), but I think if you at least have the apps mentioned above you are good to go! If you want to hear more about international student life at NYU, check out this article written by our lovely (and recently-graduated) digital ambassador Neyl! 

Acy Cai is a rising senior in the College of Arts and Science majoring in Economics and minoring in Business Studies, Dance, Spanish and Math. On campus, she can often be found hanging out in the Kimmel music practice rooms, or picnicking with friends at Washington Square Park. When she isn’t on campus, she loves to do yoga and try out new restaurants around the city with friends! Aside from working in Admissions, Acy is also in a Panhellenic Sorority, Zeta Tau Alpha, and on the executive board of Amnesty International NYU.