LOS ANGELES, CA – New York, Santa Barbara and San Francisco are the most expensive vacation destinations of 2015, while Las Vegas, Jacksonville and Orlando are the cheapest, according to a new GOBankingRates study that found the most and least affordable cities for travelers. The report investigated 50 of the most popular vacation destinations, ranking their affordability based on the factors that impact travelers’ budgets the most: hotel prices, airfare, food and drink costs, and transportation expenses.
“You don’t have to drive to the middle of nowhere to find a cheap summer vacation. In fact, some of the least expensive destinations on our list are also the most popular — with Vegas taking the No. 1 spot,” said Casey Bond, GOBankingRates’ editor in chief. “Still, it’s important to remember that saving money on vacation doesn’t end with finding a cheap flight or inexpensive hotel room; don’t blow your budget on squeezing in visits to crowded tourist traps. You can have more fun, spend less money and get a more authentic experience at some of the cheapest cities in the country.”
10 Best Cities for Cheap Vacations:
1. Las Vegas, Nev.
2. Jacksonville, Fla.
3. Orlando, Fla.
4. Kansas City, Mo.
5. Detroit, Mich.
6. Albuquerque, N.M.
7. Grand Rapids, Mich.
8. Salt Lake City, Utah
9. Memphis, Tenn.
10. Denver, Colo.
• Most Expensive: New York ranked as the least affordable city on our list, largely because of its hefty hotel rate (averaging $200), and its high food and drink prices.
• Golden State: California was the most represented state among the least affordable vacation destinations, with three Golden State cities making the bottom 10: Santa Barbara, San Francisco and Los Angeles. In fact, Santa Barbara had the most expensive airfare of all cities in the study, averaging more than $525 round-trip.
• Sunshine State: Florida contributed two cities to the top 10 cheapest destinations — Jacksonville and Orlando, which came in at No. 2 and 3, respectively. Jacksonville had the most affordable hotel price on the list, averaging $73.