Here are affordable summer vacation destinations for 2024

Summer is fast approaching, and most travelers are figuring out where to go for an exciting adventure or a place for some much-needed relaxation. 

With nearly 80% of Americans expected to make plans this summer, some are willing to spare no expense to enjoy themselves on an excursion. 

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In a survey, the travel company polled Americans on managing travel expenses amid rising inflation, with many saying they’re willing to give up other things to have a vacation. 60% of Americans cut back elsewhere to afford a vacation, while 37% use credit to fund their trips.


FILE-Tourists enjoy the hot weather on the beach. (Photo by Finnbarr Webster/Getty Images)

"I would project summer vacations will be more expensive this year with inflation at 3% higher than a year ago. While vacations can be more expensive, there will always be deals and discounts for those who take the time to research, Lisa W. Miller, president of LWM and Associates and a consumer strategist, tells FOX Television Stations.

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Based on the prices of domestic and international flights listed on Hopper’s 2024 summer travel outlook and WeThrift, an online site for deals on flights and hotels, these U.S. and international cities are some of the inexpensive destinations for travelers this summer.

Top U.S. destinations for affordable summer travel 

  1. Orlando, Florida
  2. San Antonio, Texas
  3. Atlanta, Georgia
  4. Dallas, Texas
  5. Chicago, Illinois

Top international spots for affordable summer travel

  1. New Delhi, India
  2. Hanoi, Vietnam
  3. Cairo, Egypt
  4. Istanbul, Turkey
  5. Hurghada, Egypt

What are flight and hotel rates for summer travel?

Airfares in the U.S. for the summer are averaging $305 per ticket, a 6% decline compared to last year. Hopper noted that this summer marks the first year since 2020 when prices dipped  and flight rates this summer are projected to peak around $315 per ticket at the end of May and early June. 

"We expect about half of Americans to approach summer vacations the same as last year, yet with the economic pressure we know some are pulling back," Miller offers. "About 4 in 10 consumers report pulling back on discretionary spending. Higher prices for flights and hotels might impact consumers' destination choices."

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Flights to Europe are also affordable now, averaging $947. Demand for travel to Europe has expanded this year, capturing more searches from U.S. travelers during this time last year. But air travel to Asia, Africa, and the Middle East is significantly higher, with the average cost for a flight to Asia at $1,519, and Africa and the Middle East averaging $1,304, per Hopper. 

Hotel rates in the U.S. have dropped 7% to an average of $304 per night, but if you’re staying in a hotel overseas, prices increased 2% to $314 per night, according to Kayak.

What are some other summer travel options to consider this year?

Travelers seeking to do something unconventional in a location that typically is under the radar can consider these hidden gems to create memories. 

"Beaches and national parks, family reunions, and hiking typically top the list of consumers' 2024 summer plans. From South Texas to the Grand Canyon, there are tons of factors impacting consumers' decision-making for vacation destinations," Miller says. "Yet, small off-the-beaten-track destinations may be the winners this summer as many discovered these options during the solar eclipse, like Ennis Texas. It’s all about the heart of joy. About 34% of Americans are doing fewer things and saving to splurge on a summer vacation to create a memory. People are looking for an opportunity to take a moment to breathe together."

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Which places should travelers avoid this summer?

Depending on what factors in your summer travel plans will likely determine where you’re traveling, despite the cost. 

"It depends on your vibe. From a planning perspective, some people thrive in the hustle and bustle, while others are looking for relaxation, Miller explains. "What makes a great vacation, and what is the most important part, is prioritizing your planning budget. Whether it's splurging on the nicest hotel or spending on experiences like museums or dining."

Summer travel tips

And if you’re online searching for bargains on airfares and hotels while planning your trip, Miller shares a few tips to consider. 

"Research and take the time to explore to find better prices, being open to new destinations to save money, and considering different airlines and hotels and flying versus driving and determining what is important."

"Find the joy in the vacation. People should also spend within their means; you can look into the buy now pay later service to purchase flight tickets as a way to spread out the payments without racking up credit card debt. When on vacation it is important to be kind and engage with the frontline employees (i.e., rideshare drivers and flight, hotel workers) and be patient and kind to them."

The Associated Press contributed to this report. This story was reported from Washington, D.C.