Moved to West NY 7 years back, had my car broken into 6 times, they issue parking tickets even when you have a parking pass on your car as it takes full day to fight and most people pay. Very little street parking available. Loud music every day & night, people yelling, drunks everywhere DO NOT MOVE HERE, cops seem to have deals with some businesses and harass others, DO NOT MOVE HERE! Unless you speak Spanish you are not welcome DO NOT MOVE HERE. DO NOT MOVE HERE. DO NOT MOVE HERE. DO NOT MOVE HERE. DO NOT MOVE HERE. DO NOT MOVE HERE.
Please, unless you are bilingual or spanish is your first language, DO NOT MOVE HERE! You NEED to be able to speak spanish to get a decent job around the area. You will most likely never get a good night's rest due to all of the parties, police sirens and impatient drivers honking their horns at all hours of the night. Don't be caught walking around at night, not only are all of the cops suspicious of everyone, but the perverted drunks will make passes at anything that moves. West New York is NJ's most overpopulated city. The only perk is the skyline, you can see all of NYC, worth the visit, please don't stay.
I moved to West New York, New Jersey from Flemington, NJ at age 18. While I recently moved, I remain in touch with family and friends who still live in West New York.
West New York is an extremely crowded city where unless you live on the Hudson River side of Boulevard East (JFK Blvd. East) you lived packed liked sardines in apartment buildings. We laughed at the Census Bureau's population estimates because we all knew of apartments which had two or three families living in them and only one family was legal and therefore counted in the Census estimates. If you lived in a riverfront apartment, West New York was an entirely different city, uncrowded and really nice. While it was more expensive to live in a riverfront apartment, all of West New York is a fairly expensive place to live.
Shopping in West New York is great if you go to the Miracle Mile where every chain store is represented because they can charge less sales tax there. You'll want to do all your shopping during the daytime though, the streets get very dark and lonely after the sun sets. Crime is not a major problem in West New York but, like all cities, there are places you should avoid after dark.
If you are a fan of Spanish food, you'll be in heaven in West New York; the food is fabulous. Being one of the very few non-Hispanic residents was never a problem for me, all you have to do is learn a few words of Spanish as almost everyone under 20 years old also spoke English. My recommendation is to learn to say hello, thank you, "Can I help you carry that?" and "This is delicious" and your neighbors will be your friends for life.
One frustrating think about living in West New York, NJ was that no one you talked to in other states seemed to understand that we were not a part of New York City. I ended up telling people I lived next to Weehawken; that they seemed to understand. Just remember, we're not in New York!