The coming long weekend is already predicted to be the most crowded on the road in the last decade. An estimated 33 million travelers will be hitting the highways to get to their destinations this year. On the bright side, we'll be facing some of the lowest gas prices in the past few years, but there will also be a lot of people who are facing break-downs and flat tires, so make sure you've gotten your car checked out and you have roadside assistance on-hand for your trip.
While a lot of people use the long weekend to get away and bond with family, there are some people that are hoping to travel child-free, and not just people like me who don't have children. Short trips can be a good way to reconnect with your partner and take a break from being a parent and get you excited for taking that longer vacation with your child(ren) and discovering new, fun things with them.
A lot of us already have big plans for vacations later in the year, so splashing out a bunch of cash for a long weekend isn't always in our budget. Luckily, it looks like there will be a lot of deals this year, which can be found on Priceline. There are also a lot of ways to skip the flights and take an awesome road trip, but here are 12 destinations that are really budget-friendly, no matter how you choose to get there:
Learn about the country's history, with fantastic shopping and seafood dining options. Last-minute deals can take 45% off regular rates, allowing you to visit for much less than other times of the year.
Not only do you get the benefit of cheap food and proximity to the ocean, Cancun hotel rates are halved this time of year, and there are so many things to do outside of laying on the beach and getting sunburned. (Seriously, apply and reapply or you'll never want to go back to Mexico.)
When I was younger, I took several trips to Catalina Island off the coast of California. It's a great place to get a small town feel and oceanside accommodations. Hotel rates fall over 50% between May to October, when you can expect to pay under $100 per night, including the ferry ride to the island from Long Beach.
Airfare sales can be found to Hawaii right now and Memorial weekend kicks off summer sale rates for hotels, which can be found as low as $79 per night. Need tips on what to do or where to go? I've got tips for visiting Molokai, Maui or Honolulu.
As long as you don't gamble away your savings in the casinos, you can totally make a trip to Sin City cheap. Rates at the MGM Grand can run you under $100 per night, and you can spend less at a less-luxurious hotel. Not sure how to keep your money in your pockets? Here are free and cheap ideas and what you can do if you have kids in tow.
The Big Easy has just gotten over the crowds from Mardi Gras and Spring Break. That means it's clamoring a bit for tourists. You can book a hotel for around $129 per night or fin an Airbnb deal for similar (or less). Worried you won't be able to find anything to do besides drink? You'll be treated to parades and here are some other inspiring ideas for how to spend your time there.
New York City
While you don't normally think of The Big Apple as a budget getaway, prices drop for Memorial weekend. It won't be super cheap, but $159 per night for a 3-star hotel is a deal that won't totally break the bank.
Theme parks are certainly going to be busy over the holiday weekend, but there are tons of things to do in Orlando that aren't Disney World, plus room rates can run you just $100 per night. If you want ideas for what to do in the area, check out my Orlando Pinterest page.
Phoenix (and Scottsdale)
Arizona isn't at the height of its hot temps in May, making it an ideal vacation destination. Get amazing hotel rates or spend a little extra for a luxury resort that may be offering up to 40% off. There are a lot of cool things to see and do there, and tons of delicious Mexican food, too.
Riviera Maya (Mexico)
It's heating up in Mexico, and maybe you're ready to get a little sun worshipping into your life. Between May and the end of October, you'll face smaller crowds and room rates. Look to spend an average of $80 per night and pack your sunscreen, bathing suit and sunglasses.
This may seem like a really expensive destination, but if you look for hotels in the Union Square area, you can find rates as low as $112. Find awesome, and affordable, things to do there using this 48 hours post.
See our nation's capital for less. Once the cherry blossoms fall in April, tourism drops off, so lodging prices drop as well. You can find great deals in May for as low as $69 per night. There are so many free things to do in the city, that you could easily only pay for food each day. Need some ideas? Check out my post from our trip last year.
Where will you be spending Memorial Day? I'll be staying home this year and probably firing up the BBQ.