Want a real vacation this year but can’t afford it? Maybe you can. Thanks to Uber, Lyft and public transportation, you can skip the rental car. And there’s no need to stay at the Ritz when Airbnb, Tripping, Flipkey and others offer a range of budget accommodations. Or just crash with friends or family and have them play chauffeur (well, it’s worth a try).
Now let’s find some summer destinations that won’t cost an arm and a leg to fly to. While prices are cheaper if you fly in the first part of June or starting in late August, these routes are usually reasonable year-round.
HomeAway's most popular vacation rental destination in each state
Not all cheap destinations are cheap from every departure city, but you can generally lower a fare by driving to a bigger airport or by finding one cheap flight deal to fly to a hub, then another from the hub to the ultimate destination. Figure out how much inconvenience is involved and if the money you save is worth it.
These round-trip were found earlier this week, for travel in June:
1. Denver: If you like beautiful, rugged scenery, you’ll love the Mile High City. Fun nightlife, too.
• Dallas to Denver, $101
2. Fort Lauderdale: A serene Florida beach probably sounds pretty good right now, but if you want some city action too, Miami is just 25 miles away.
• Chicago to Fort Lauderdale, $111
3. Las Vegas: Gambling, bright lights, entertainment plus pretty desert scenery at nearby Red Rock Canyon.
• Minneapolis to Las Vegas, $134
4. Cancun: The very popular Mexico resort beach is an all-in-one destination.
• Washington, D.C., to Cancun, $259
5. Reykjavik: Exotic Iceland is now a deal (for flights, anyway).
• Pittsburgh to Reykjavik, $260
6. London: The Tower of London, historic palaces, fabulous dining and shopping.
• New York to London, $450
7. Paris: Eiffel Tower, the Louvre, the sidewalk cafés.
• Boston to Paris, $392
Now that you know where to go, here are a couple of money-saving tips.
• Use a deal finder tool to find cheap destinations from your city: There’s one on my site but there are plenty of others out there.
• Consider adding a stop to your itinerary; a non-stop from D.C. to Cancun is $469 while a one-stop trip is a mere $259.