It’s that time of year again — school is out and you’re headed on your ultimate summer vacation. Whether you’re traveling with friends, family, a partner or solo, these 10 cheap vacation deals won’t disappoint. They may even leave you some extra money to save — or spend while you’re exploring the world.
Some general tips for affordable summer destinations: Travel on Tuesday or Wednesday for the cheapest fares; July 9 is considered the most expensive day to fly of the summer; airfare to Europe is cheaper than ever this summer.
If you’re headed to Europe this summer, Barcelona should be on your list as one of Europe’s most affordable summer destinations. With great weather and short, inexpensive flights to hotspots like Mallorca and Ibiza, it’s the perfect spot to spend summer. Yes, you’ll encounter some crowds, but prices are so low this year it’s still the perfect time to go.
Why it’s a steal: According to Kayak, flight prices to many Spanish cities have decreased this summer — Barcelona flights are 35% less than last summer, and median airfare is $695. An Airfarewatchdog search yielded flights from New York City to Barcelona under $500 for the months of August and September on Air Berlin and TAP Portugal, so check these airlines first for deals to one of Europe’s most affordable summer destinations.
On the hotel front, things are shaping up in travelers’ favor as well this summer in Barcelona. U232 Hotel has an average nightly rate around $200 for summer stays, according to Wander. Hilton Diagonal, only a 10-minute walk from the beach, is offering a pool package for those looking to relax in the sun. And, Generator Hostel Barcelona offers even cheaper nightly rates if you’re willing to share a room.
Don’t miss: Summer brings exciting festivals, including Pride Barcelona, the feast of St. John (Sant Joan), and the San Miguel Mas i Mas music festival.
Underrated and up-and-coming Pittsburgh is a family vacation-ready affordable summer destination this summer. Check out a Pirates baseball game, discover culinary treasures, and explore the esteemed Andy Warhol Museum. Outdoor lovers can hike Mount Washington to be rewarded by perfect sunset skyline views.
Why it’s a steal: Spirit Airlines starts non-stop flights to/from seven U.S. destinations to Pittsburgh this month, opening up competition and delivering affordable fares under $100 round-trip (as seen in searches on Airfarewatchdog). According to Kayak, flight prices are down by 12% compared to last summer. The Steel City is also a quick train ride from New York City, and is within driving distance from major Midwest cities like Cleveland.
Find an affordable boutique experience at the Hotel Monaco Pittsburgh, a Kimpton Hotel that opened just two years ago. Wander reports an average nightly rate for the summer months under $250, which is a great deal for all it has to offer — including pet-friendly rooms, daily happy hour, free bikes, a great location and an onsite fitness center.
Don’t miss: Summer festivals include Pittsburgh PrideFest and Pride in the Street, Jazz Live International Festival, BikeFest and Pittsburgh Restaurant Week’s Summer Celebration.