Good news for people in need of a little rest and relaxation after the long winter — Spring Break is going to cost a lot less in 2016 than it did last year.
The average airline ticket prices to big Spring Break destinations are down year over year, according to a new analysis by Expedia. This is true regarding all five of the most popular Spring Break domestic destinations:
- Orlando, Fla. (-14%)
- Miami (-14%)
- Phoenix (-2%)
- Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. (-17%)
- Tampa, Fla. (-9%)
Four of the five most popular international destinations also show significant year-over-year decreases as well:
- Cancun, Mexico (-14%)
- Punta Cana, Dominican Republic (-6%)
- San Juan, Puerto Rico (-15%)
- Puerto Vallarta, Mexico (-10%)
Prices were up by 1% in the outlier — San Jose del Cabo, Mexico.
There’s a good chance you could get a good price on your hotel stay this year, too. The average daily rates of Puerto Rico, Panama City and Aruba hotels are down more than 5%, 15% and 10% respectively, year over year. New Orleans, Riviera Maya, Mexico and Miami also show lower average daily rates year over year, though their decreases are in the single-digits, according to the study.
The findings are based on Expedia.com bookings made between March 11-April 10, 2016 and March 1-April 12, 2015. (The site did not immediately respond to request for comment as to why the dates year over year were slightly different.) Popular Spring Break destinations are defined as markets that show higher demand in spring versus the rest of the year.
Prices could be down for a variety of reasons — “the price of oil, demand, weather, you name it,” Sarah Gavin, Expedia travel expert, said in a press release.
Thinking About a Trip?
Of course, lower airfare and hotel rates don’t necessarily mean you should book a last-minute trip. You’ll need to be sure your budget can handle a vacation, first. And you may want to check your credit. High credit card balances caused by a sudden influx of travel expenses could drive your credit utilization up and hurt your credit score. (You can see where you currently stand by viewing your free credit report summary each month on Credit.com.)
If you do decide to get out of Dodge, you can keep the cost of your trip down by comparison shopping for deals, avoiding tourist traps and traveling to less traditional locations. (Hotel prices in Lake Tahoe, for instance, are down 110% this year, Expedia said.)
You may also want to use a travel rewards credit card to earn points, miles or cash back on your vacation purchases. These cards also tout other benefits, like a free checked bag or no foreign transaction fees that can help control expenses. (You can go here to learn more about the best travel credit cards in America.)
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