I found this little gem as a library discard at a book sale. Have no clue why the library gave it up so soon unless the 2011 version is available.
This is a must for both student and non-student alike. Because the book is geared towards students the lodging and dining section include affordable, safe alternatives to $300 plus night hotels and $50 plus meals. My main reason for going to NYC is to see plays and my hotel and food are low down on the list to spend money on. They do not list a lot of hotels in mid-town which is not good if you want Broadway theater, but do list a reasonable amount of hotels in the off and off-off Broadway areas. The dining recommendations are also sparse for Midtown. However, this book is geared towards students and they are most likely to stay in Greenwich Village, Soho etc. The dining recos are much better in these areas.
Let's Go New York City: The Student Travel Guide also has a good selection of affordable cultural activities including a decent selection of freebies like church tours, building tours and the like.
Towards the back of the book you'll find a section devoted by neighborhood to museums and galleries--lots of listings of high quality smaller, more focused museums and galleries in the lower price range. There is also a section devoted to entertainment which covers performing arts, dance, film, music, theater, comedy and the like (my reason for going). Again, lots of affordable alternatives to a pricey Broadway play.
In a city that is known for its costly entertainment, lodging and food, you will find a wonderful array of activities, food, and lodging to stretch your budget and increase your enjoyment of NYC.