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Hi All,

 

I just realized that flights inside the US seem kind of expenisve -- at least when booking from Germany.

 

Flying from Germany to New York City is about 500 Euros and the flight from New York to Ithaca (or even Syracuse) about the same. The busses seem cheap: about 50 Dollars but take 5 hours :/

Any idea where to book cheap flights from some international airport to Ithaca or Syracuse? 

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As a Cornell alum, current Ithaca resident and very likely future Cornell grad student, I just wanted to chime in on this thread. I really, really love Ithaca. However, housing can be kind of a p

I'm a senior @ Cornell and have been living off campus in collegetown for 3 years now so I've had a decent amount of experience living in Ithaca as a student. Good things about Ithaca / Cornell:

Bumping this topic! Really excited at the prospect of Cornell, but also apprehensive. Definitely used to living in urban environments and hesitant to let that go. Suggestions on best areas f

Flying into Ithaca is generally quite expensive especially compared to new york which has three airports to choose from. From ithaca there are three direct flights --to La Guardia (NYC-LGA), to Philadelphia, and to Detroit. I would look into flying to one of these other airports and then continuing onto ithaca. The other thing is there is a Campus to Campus bus that leaves from NYC and goes to Cornell that costs about $70/one way but is super nice and comfortable. I don't know if you are comfortable with this kinda thing, but there is also lots of people who offer spaces in their cars (rideshare) which I know is a thing in Germany and can be cheaper. There are a lot of offers on craiglist for about $35 and i'm guessing there is also an internal listing at Cornell that perhaps a current student can point you to. Good luck!

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Hi All,

 

I just realized that flights inside the US seem kind of expenisve -- at least when booking from Germany.

 

Flying from Germany to New York City is about 500 Euros and the flight from New York to Ithaca (or even Syracuse) about the same. The busses seem cheap: about 50 Dollars but take 5 hours :/

Any idea where to book cheap flights from some international airport to Ithaca or Syracuse? 

 

Ain't no flying to Ithaca ... Super-expensive and going to Syracuse is pretty tough as well.  NYC and then Campus to Campus or shortline bus is the recommended way sadly.  The buses are not nice but not horrible and the 5 hour trip is easy and rather beautiful (going through the catskills then binghamton to ithaca corridor).

 

The campus to campus bus really is a posh thing - leaves from mid-town and offers a better ride than an airplane (only 4 hours).  You get free sodas, snacks and coffee with wifi and whatnot.  http://transportation.fs.cornell.edu/coach/ 

Edited by ohgoodness
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Hello all,

I am an art history and archaeology student most probably going into the MA program for archaeology, in the fall of this year (2014). I received a "half package", and the half stipend will be my main sustenance for living in Ithaca. I'm looking to live in Ithaca in either a 1 or shared 2 bedroom, with a total net living cost of $1,000 per month. I've been scouring Craigslist and that seems to be possible with the apartment/condo listings advertised, but I'd like to get feedback from actual people who live in the area. I'm looking to lease/rent from mid July or the start of August for at least a calendar year. 

 

Also, any recommendations for the cheapest apartments (or local landlords) possible within a 45 minute walking distance from McGraw Hall? Also I've noticed a lot of listings are not friendly to cats/pets, don't even offer a pet fee, just have a staunch refusal--have residents known that to be the case in general with renting in the area, and is this flexible/negotiable in any way? I guess to qualify that, how likely is it that I'll find an apartment that will allow me to have my fat cat at a reasonable price?

 

Thanks so much, any information is fabulous, even if it is just to crush my cheap living dream :)

 

If you're ok having roommates, you should be able to find something in collegetown for $600 a month, although it will probably be down the hill a little bit. Check into what utilities are covered as a lot of the building in collegetown are old and poorly insulated which can make for some expensive bills. While there may be some cheaper housing closer to IC, you'll find you feel pretty disconnected from Cornell over there (which you may want). If you're in the lower part of collegetown you will have access to bars/restaurants of both downtown and collegetown -- if you're over by IC, you will mostly just be downtown, and given the winters, you'll probably be busing to campus (the tcat is actually pretty reliable).

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  • 3 weeks later...

Maybe take a look at http://www.trailwaysny.com, or Greyhound. There's also some kind of "limo" service too apparently.

 

Thanks! The "limo" is 85 bucks which seems like a lot for a 1 hour ride. Trailways and Greyhound don't seem to go from Syracuse to Ithaca. Thought it would be much easier to go that distance as it doesn't seem that far...

 

Decided to fly to Syracuse the first time I travel as I found a (kind of) cheap flight and feel more comfortable with all my belongings.

Next time I think I will go for new york + bus as it is cheaper and also doesn't take longer.

Edited by GermanStudent
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I just looked at the fares and schedule section of trailways and it looks like it doesn't list that route. But if you go through the purchase ticket process there looks to be a bus that goes from syracuse to ithaca every day around 4.

 

Going from NYC and taking a bus is a pretty good option too.

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On 2/15/2014 at 1:01 AM, ReadingLisa said:

Hello guys, I've also been admitted into Cornell, but am really really doubting that I'll accept. I'm from NYC and the thought of not having a supermarket nearby kind of scares me. Also, I can't drive. 😕 I hope I don't sound lazy, but it's just I've grown up in a big city so don't really feel comfortable anywhere small. I'm lucky because I've also gained admission into another good school, but I don't know if Cornell offers a better program, in which case I don't want to pass on it just because I'm scared of small towns. But I guess that's what student weekends are for...

 

I do know one thing though, if I do end up at Cornell I am sooo becoming a regular at that cult cafe! 

No supermarket?! Ithaca has one of the best supermarkets in the states; We have Wegmans (other supermarkets in town: Tops, GreenStar, Walmart, Target). 

IMO Wegman's is better than Whole Foods, Trader Joe's, Raley's, etc.. Wegman's offers locally sourced food, cheap Wegman's brand ripoffs of almost anything you can dream of, as well as all the food you would find at normal supermarkets still at the same cheap prices.

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I have an offer from Cornell, which includes a $24k TAship for the school year, with possible summer support but not guaranteed. I don't know how much the summer would be if I get it. I don't drive, would hope to live alone (studio okay if it has a full kitchen, 1 bedroom preferred), and would be fine with busing or walking to campus as long as it's reasonably good bus service or not too long of a walk. I would also have expensive international flights home for the holidays, at around $1200 or more. Is this doable on the TAship income? Are the graduate residences a bad idea for a first year international student? It looks like not a great location for shopping or getting to campus.

 

Also, how close to the centre of campus (near the math department..) do the buses go?

Edited by MathCat
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I have an offer from Cornell, which includes a $24k TAship for the school year, with possible summer support but not guaranteed. I don't know how much the summer would be if I get it. I don't drive, would hope to live alone (studio okay if it has a full kitchen, 1 bedroom preferred), and would be fine with busing or walking to campus as long as it's reasonably good bus service or not too long of a walk. I would also have expensive international flights home for the holidays, at around $1200 or more. Is this doable on the TAship income? Are the graduate residences a bad idea for a first year international student? It looks like not a great location for shopping or getting to campus.

 

Also, how close to the centre of campus (near the math department..) do the buses go?

 

Hey I'm visiting Cornell early next month to figure out the answers to some of your questions. But here's the info concerning summer support:

 

https://www.gradschool.cornell.edu/costs-and-funding/stipend-rates

 

I think I'll probably stay at the graduate housing if I attend Cornell. They look pretty good.

 

Stop complaining about your $1200 flight ticket. A return trip from Sydney to Ithaca costs me about $2000...

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I lived in Ithaca from fall 2003 - spring 2008 (undergrad at Cornell). I loved it. 

 

 

Wegmans >>>>>>

 

On 2/8/2015 at 8:20 PM, MathCat said:

I have an offer from Cornell, which includes a $24k TAship for the school year, with possible summer support but not guaranteed. I don't know how much the summer would be if I get it. I don't drive, would hope to live alone (studio okay if it has a full kitchen, 1 bedroom preferred), and would be fine with busing or walking to campus as long as it's reasonably good bus service or not too long of a walk. I would also have expensive international flights home for the holidays, at around $1200 or more. Is this doable on the TAship income? Are the graduate residences a bad idea for a first year international student? It looks like not a great location for shopping or getting to campus.

 

Also, how close to the centre of campus (near the math department..) do the buses go?

 

 

 

 

The math department is in Mallot Hall. It's kind of right between the ag quad and the arts quad. If I remember correctly, the Bus stops very close (less than a 5 minute walk for sure) to Mallot Hall

 

Edit: The Bus goes right down the center of campus (right down University Ave)

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No one I know here lives in the graduate housing, and the most convenient bus route in Ithaca (every 10 minutes) runs from downtown to campus. In winter, you don't want to be waiting more than 10 minutes for a bus here. That said, there are places where multiple bus routes run and may actually take you to your destination more frequently depending on where you are and where you're going. 

 

As for living expenses - in Ithaca they're relatively low (at least relative to NYC - compared to anywhere else, I'm not so sure) especially if you live with roommates and don't have a car (a bus pass is only $200 a year compared to $100+/month for transit in NYC and carshare can help with trips for which buses aren't convenient). But be prepared for rents to be more than you'd expect for a small town in the middle of nowhere; all the student renters (including undergrads, for whom there aren't nearly enough dorms) create enormous pressure on the small housing stock. 

 

Whatever you do, don't live somewhere you have to depend on cabs; they're notoriously slow, overcharge crazily and you will wind up sharing with a boggling number of people who will all ask to pay separate fares even if they're taking the same trip. 

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Check out the TCAT website to learn about buses: http://www.tcatbus.com/

 

I'd say the graduate residences are not a bad idea for a first-year international grad student. They're actually quite accessible if you don't mind walking for 10-15 minutes. However, a few years back, the housing services would usually not put first-year students in studios or 1BR units, first because their number is limited; second in order to avoid isolation within a vulnerable population. Maplewood Park was considered the international student community. Maybe this has changed, though.

 

 

 

 

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  • 3 weeks later...

I did my undergrad at Cornell and have used zimride a couple times to get to Syracuse. https://www.zimride.com/cornell/

 

It's sort of random when you can get a ride, but lots of people are going to and from Syracuse pretty often. Also, you definitely can fly to Ithaca, and in the summer you will have no problem with flights getting canceled... but it is expensive. However, when I was flying in (from SLC) I almost always flew to Ithaca unless I had a friend who could pick me up in Syracuse because the extra cost pretty much evened out if you have to take the bus. If you are coming from NYC, you can take the campus to campus bus, it's a little pricey but really nice. 

 

Also, if you are looking at living in down town Ithaca and not up on the hill, keep in mind that it can be a hassle to get to campus. It's pretty expensive to get a parking pass and they are limited (unless you will be up by the vet school). You can always look on North campus for cheap options or if you want to live above collegetown.

 

Ithaca is an AWESOME place to live

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Is it always sort of dark/cloudy in Ithaca during fall and winter? Cornell seemed amazing in terms of research resources and support from faculty and cohort, but I don't know if I can handle the gloominess. Montreal is way colder but sunnier - that's been very important to me for the past year. Sorry if it comes across as a strange/superficial sort of question.

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The fall is incredibly nice in Ithaca, but, yes the winters can be dark and gloomy... part of the reason Cornell has one of the longest winter breaks in the country (although not sure if this applies to grad school). I know a couple people who got happy lamps when they were there to get more vitamin D, but I always loved the winters there. There are some beautiful hikes in the winter and you can sled and go ice climbing. I never had a problem with the winters, but it can be chilly to walk to class so make sure you have some good boots and a warm coat!

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Is it always sort of dark/cloudy in Ithaca during fall and winter? Cornell seemed amazing in terms of research resources and support from faculty and cohort, but I don't know if I can handle the gloominess. Montreal is way colder but sunnier - that's been very important to me for the past year. Sorry if it comes across as a strange/superficial sort of question.

 

Ithaca is super cloudy is the winter. "Happy lamps", as the poster above puts it, used to be reimbursed if you were on the student health plan, and I knew plenty of people who used them because of SAD. That being said, I think Ithaca is so great that it makes up for the few months of bad weather. And I'll second the idea that getting good boots makes a huge difference in keeping you warm and happy (go Sorel boots!).

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My sincere suggestions:

 

Do not live in maplewood. The AC is terribly loud, you'll be waken up when your roommate uses the bathroom in the morning; we had some moles running in the house during winter break; student center never opens when you have time; it's far and old and stupid.

 

Do not come unless you have a car or are ready to walk on snow/dirt/slush/ice for half a year.

 

Come with skiing gears would be ideal.

 

Ithaca is mad boring. I do not see myself spending more than 2 months here with joy.

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  • 10 months later...

Bumping this topic!

Really excited at the prospect of Cornell, but also apprehensive. Definitely used to living in urban environments and hesitant to let that go.

Suggestions on best areas for graduate students to live? Any particular management companies or sites to use for searching (other than the usual craigslist)?

 

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Also keen to reopen the discussion for this year – I received my offer on Friday! Like the poster above, I'm excited and apprehensive in equal measure: I've spent my entire life either in big cities or within 90 minutes' travel of London, so Ithaca seems a bit scarily remote. I'm a fan of the whole college-town idea on the whole, having enjoyed my time studying for undergrad and masters degrees in Oxford, but at least from there you can escape to London for the day (or even for an evening out) if everything's starting to feel a bit small and claustrophobic.

The research side of things at Cornell seems like a great fit, and I've got a potential advisor who seems really supportive and enthusiastic (as well as being a big up-and-coming name in my field). From what I've gleaned so far from photos online and Google Street View, Ithaca and the Cornell campus seem like a beautiful environment to live and work in for a few years; I've never experienced anything as cold as it gets in winter, but coming from England I'm well used to it getting dark at 4pm! So, it really is just the isolation issue that's bugging me. Do grad students tend to escape to NYC much in practice?

I'd also be interested to know what the options are like for accommodation: I'm not hugely keen on living in graduate housing (unless people can convince me otherwise), but would ideally like to share a house or apartment with two or three other like-minded people.

Finally, what's the situation re. driving? Is it pretty much necessary to have a car in Ithaca if you want to have something approaching an independent life? (Bear in mind: I'll be 25 when I start, and have had a couple of years out of full-time study, so am keen not to spend all of my free time doing campus-based/'studenty' things.) I don't currently have a licence (though I do know how to drive a car – long story), but if it's going to make a major difference to my quality of life then I'm prepared to put some effort into getting one over the next few months before I go out there. 

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Ithaca isn't a bad place to work and spend your time.  There is quite a bit of good food, a fair amount of shopping, and PLENTY of outdoor activities.  Tons of trails and camping sites, wine country, finger lakes, Greek Peak ski resort nearby.  People complain about it being in the middle of nowhere, but it is only 20 minutes from I-81.  Takes about an hour or so to get to Binghamton, which has tons of stuff to do.  It is a little less than an hour from Syracuse, which has a lot of food options and Destiny USA (mall), which has only recently been completed.  I haven't checked into this myself, but I have heard that it is actually bigger than the Mall of America.

That being said, there are some down sides for some people.  This is Upstate NY.  It might not be the North Country, but it is still North.  That means it gets cold in the winter and it snows.  If this is a major shock to you after you look at a map to find out where Cornell is then you probably shouldn't be going to graduate school.

The other down side, for you big city folk, is that stuff isn't always within walking distance.  Ithaca does have a bus system but it is not a major city, so it might not be as frequent as you'd like or go everywhere you might want it to.  Driving is a part of life if you live in Upstate NY.  There are uncommon exceptions, excluding college students who live on campus, but by and large everyone drives because you have to in order to get anywhere.

I genuinely hope you guys enjoy Cornell.  I grew up in the area and am graduating from Cortland, which is just down the road (18 miles), this spring.  I haven't heard back from them yet, but I have received other good offers from Penn State and Stony Brook, among others, so regardless I will land on my feet running.

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