ICP’s integrated center at 79 Essex Street on the Lower East Side of Manhattan spans a full city block between Ludlow Street and Essex Street. The closest subway stops are Essex-Delancey (J/Z/F/M) and Grand (B/D), both of which are just steps away. 

This dynamic space serves as a permanent home for ICP's exhibition and education programs and for our community of members, photographers, artists, scholars, museumgoers, students, alumni, and faculty. The neighborhood is a welcoming and inspiring destination known for its converging cultures and creative spirit. 


**The following information is not endorsed by the International Center of Photography. ICP is not responsible for outcome due to poor judgment or bad business.**

Securing housing should be your first priority. Allow ample time to arrive and settle into your surroundings before orientation begins. Many people will be looking for housing at the same time, as most of the schools in the New York area begin in September. Once you find housing, make arrangements for services such as telephone and utilities (gas and electric.)

Low-cost apartments range from $900 to $1,500 and can be difficult to find, but such places do exist.

The ICP Pads Facebook Group is open to anyone in the ICP community looking for or posting available housing.

Finding Your Apartment

International House in New York City has traditional student dormitory-style single rooms, apartment shares, and studio and one-bedroom apartments. Facilities include a dining room, fitness center, music practice rooms, study rooms, and a gym. Accommodations are available for a few days or a few months. Post-Graduate university students, scholars, faculty, international trainees, and interns are eligible to stay there.
p. (212) 316.8432
e. admissions@ihouse-nyc.org

Educational Housing
p. (800) 297.4694 ext. 313
e. reservations@studenthousing.org

92 Street Y Residence 
p. 800.858.4692
e. 92YResidence@92y.org

International Cozy Inn
p. 646.248.1890 or 646.496.5268
e. info@ici248.com

Central Park Apartments
p. 212. 678-0491
e. info@centralparkinn.com

Finances And Budgeting

New York City can be as expensive as it is exciting. It is important to plan your finances carefully. ICP estimates the combined costs of tuition, housing, photographic supplies, food, transportation and entertainment to be more than $55,000 for the academic year.

Here we’ve illustrated the estimated annual living costs:

  • Housing $12,000
  • Food $5,000
  • Personal Items and Clothing $3,000
  • Local Transportation $1,300
  • Books and Photographic Materials $6,500
  • Total Yearly Expenses (excluding tuition): $27,800

Banking & Currency

How much money should I bring to New York?

Your personal expenses include the rent and security deposit for an apartment, utilities, food, transportation, medical insurance, photographic supplies, and clothing.

What is the best way to carry money?

International students should make careful plans for currency exchange in U.S. dollars before leaving home. When you arrive in New York, you should have money in a form that is safe and immediately available for your personal use.

Do not carry large amounts of currency or cash with you. Pre-arrange for a transfer of funds. Most foreign banks have established connections with U.S. banks allowing for direct transfers of funds in U.S. dollars into your newly established bank account. This is the safest and easiest way to handle your money. A direct bank transfer of funds will make your money immediately available to you when you present personal identification to the bank teller. Consult your bank at home to arrange for this service.

Traveler's checks are relatively safe and preferable to carrying large sums of cash. They will provide you with immediate funds until you can open a bank account. Also, many traveler’s checks such as American Express are covered by the issuer’s insurance and can be replaced if lost or stolen. Traveler's checks can be changed into cash at any bank or used as cash at larger stores. Traveler’s checks are not accepted in taxicabs, small markets, or boutiques.

Personal checks and drafts from foreign banks are a safe form of carrying money but do not give you immediate access to the money in the U.S. First, you need to open a bank account, and then deposit your check. Foreign checks can take up to 2-4 weeks to clear (i.e., become available to you in the form of cash). Checks from U.S. banks can take 1-2 weeks to clear.

How do I choose a bank?

You might visit several different banks to inquire about the types of services they offer. Review and compare how each bank can meet your needs. Many banks have a "consumer manual" that explains in detail the services they provide. Remember that banks charge fees for a variety of services and have certain requirements regarding the amount of money needed in order to open an account. Banks also have a requirement regarding the amount of money you must keep in order to maintain a particular level of service. Interest rates, as well as fees charged and services provided, vary greatly from bank to bank.

How do I open a bank account?

When you decide where you want to open your account, you need to complete an application and present three forms of identification (including one with a photograph).

International students: take your passport, form I-20, letter of acceptance and any other forms of identification you have. A social security number may be required.

U.S. Citizens: take three forms of identification such as a driver's license, passport, acceptance letter, or a birth certificate. The bank will ask you for proof of residency in the form of a lease, invoice, or bill with your current New York address.

A list of national banks also located in New York: