While the Apple Store is where the spectacle is, the smartest way to get an iPhone 5 today is to visit your local AT&T, Verizon, or Sprint store.

Apple’s iPhone 5 launched today with much fanfare and long lines around the world. The sixth-generation superphone from Apple includes a 4-inch Retina display, 4G LTE data speeds, and a faster processor. But where to get one of the darn things?

I spoke with representatives at several AT&T, Verizon, and Sprint stores in New York City and New Jersey this morning. Many of these stores were sold out, but some still had iPhone 5 models in stock.

Specifically, all AT&T stores I spoke to were sold out, but a few Verizon and Sprint stores still had iPhone 5s.

Personal experience also informs pointing people to carrier stores rather than Apple Stores. Last year, when I purchased the iPhone 4S, I was able to get one on the third day of availability from a not-very-popular AT&T store in the greater New York City area.

If all carrier stores in your vicinity are sold out, you can always order a unit online and wait until it arrives at your home. Apple.com has an estimated wait of three weeks to four weeks before you’d receive your unit, but at least you wouldn’t need to wait in line.

Let us know in the comments about you were able to buy an iPhone 5 this weekend and what your experience was like.