We Found the Least-Crowded Trader Joe’s in NYC (and 4 Other Crazy-Popular Chains)
We may live in a magical age of Amazon Prime and Postmates, but there are still times when shopping in person is necessary. Too bad that in NYC, those trips are usually accompanied by hour-long lines, understocked shelves and utter madness. (Shudder.) You don’t have to live like that: We found the best location of five mega-popular chains. Who knows? Your next TJ’s run might actually be enjoyable.
This may sound overdramatic, but we honestly could not survive without our everything-bagel seasoning and our gummy penguins—especially our gummy penguins. And at this East Side location, you don’t have to steel yourself for insane lines snaking through the aisles. (For now, anyway…we have a feeling it won’t last.)
200 E. 32nd St. (at Third Ave.); 212-889-3279 or traderjoes.com
Wait, there’s another Target? Yep, less than ten minutes from the (chaotic) Atlantic Terminal location, this one quietly opened in January and has somehow remained pristine and blissfully crowd-free the last few times we’ve visited. It’s also in the same complex that houses Alamo Drafthouse, if you want to make a day of it…which you should.
445 Albee Sq. West (at Fulton St.), Brooklyn; 919-397-2864 or target.com
Nothing is more heartbreaking than finding the Rag & Bone blazer of your dreams only to discover it’s not your size. True C21 acolytes know that the designer mecca’s Bay Ridge location has the best selection and stock—so your search for (sartorial) love can have a happy ending. (P.S. If you're not up for the trek that far south, the brand-new location in City Point—next to the aforementioned Target—is also a good choice.)
472 86th St. (at Fifth Ave), Brooklyn; 718-748-3266 or c21stores.com
Bed Bath & Beyond
Rows upon rows of shiny kitchen gadgets, fluffy linens and the SodaStream you never knew you needed? No wonder it’s Abbi Abrams’s home away from home. And this brand-new Triple B in Industry City is somehow even lovelier than its brethren. Don’t forget your 20 percent off coupon(s).
850 Third Ave. (at 31st St.), Brooklyn; 929-324-3492 or bedbathandbeyond.com
We’re constantly hitting up the affordable chain for a fancy tee or a killer statement-sleeve top. Unfortunately, so is every other style-conscious New Yorker between the ages of 14 and 60. For whatever reason, this midtown location manages to be better curated, more organized and never picked over, so you don’t have to endure Hunger Games-level pandemonium for your next fashion fix.
666 Fifth Ave. (at 52nd St.); 212-765-0477 or zara.com