How to Support — and Maybe Discover — Stellar Small Businesses in NYC Closed Due to Coronavirus (Video)

Time for some online retail therapy, NYC-style.

New York City has launched a new way to help its businesses hit hard during the coronavirus pandemic.

In an initiative called "Shop in NYC," locals and visitors alike are encouraged to engage in some online retail therapy or gift card purchasing to help stores and attractions that have been closed due to COVID-19.

"We’ve rounded up those offering ecommerce and/or gift cards so you can shop the best of the city from home—large and small, these businesses employ New Yorkers and help keep the five boroughs’ economy running," the website read. "Look for distinctive apparel and accessories, food items and gift baskets, souvenirs, books, music, games and more."

The site's list includes shops, restaurants and museums that have merchandise and gift cards available, easily organized and ready to shop.

According to New York State's Department of Public Health, over 150,000 cases of coronavirus are in New York City and 16,300 have died. The number of cases in the city has lead to overwhelmed hospitals and uncertainty when it comes to what normal life will look like. But the city is hoping New Yorkers and people around the world will come together to support the small businesses that make New York the global attraction it is.

“There never has been a more important time to support our city’s local retailers, small businesses and iconic stores across the five boroughs,” NYC & Company President and CEO Fred Dixon said in a statement. “NYC & Company’s new digital initiative Shop in NYC encourages locals and those who love NYC around the world to shop their favorite stores and brands today.”

couple walking past stores
People stroll past stores during the coronavirus pandemic on April 22, 2020 in New York City. Shelter-In-Place and social distancing continues across the city, emptying streets and businesses to curb the spread of the COVID-19. Rob Kim/Getty

You can shop clothing from the city’s best-known cultural institutions, like the Apollo Theater, MoMA or the New York Hall of Science. Revisit the mid-century heyday of design and architecture at JFK airport with the TWA Hotel Shop. Preorder the cookbook from Queens Night Market, which highlights some of the most popular items available at the multicultural summer market series. Or you can order your next quarantine read from a local NYC bookstore, like Books Are Magic, McNally Jackson or The Lit. Bar.

Even though you may not be able to wander down the city's streets and discover a new business to love, "Shop in NYC" will keep us dreaming of better days to come.

Click here for updates on coronavirus from Travel + Leisure.

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