An awesome budget vacation starts by looking at cool destinations that also happen to be cheap places to fly to. Turns out, there are lots of cities, big and small, that have lower-than-average flight prices with tons of attractions and things to do.
See our list of the 10 cheapest places to go along with tips to sniff out the cheapest airfare possible for your next trip!
How to Find the Cheapest Places to Fly to
The best method to find cheap places to fly to isn’t throwing a dart at a map. It’s doing a little research!
While there are plenty of stunning places you can fly to cheaply, many of the most popular vacation destinations are some of the most expensive places to fly to.
That’s why it’s important to find out which destinations have a lower-than-average airfare so you can plan your trip without going over budget!
If you’re flying out from an airport in the U.S., flights to places in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico are generally going to be the cheapest because of the shorter flight distance and less fuel used.
Recent Skyscanner data shows you can find one-way cheap flights as low as $23 in the U.S. to some destinations (like Orlando and Philadelphia). Flights start at $26 to Toronto, Canada and $100 to Cancun, Mexico!
Round trip flights are a little more expensive, but still surprisingly affordable to the right destinations. Round trip flights start around $50 in the U.S., $96 in Canada, and $224 in Mexico.
When it comes to finding cheap places to fly to, it doesn’t necessarily mean you have to change your original vacation ideas or plans entirely.
Many times, you’ll find that it’s much more affordable to fly into a smaller airport near your actual destination, then rent a car or take an Uber to your hotel or resort.
Since this workaround can end up saving you hundreds or thousands of dollars, it’s definitely worth adding another leg to your journey to find cheap flights!
Next up, we’ll take a look at 10 amazing cheap places to fly to that won’t break the bank.
10 Amazing Yet Cheap Places to Fly to
Planning a trip – a weekend getaway, a 2-week vacation, or something in between – can seem cheap until you factor in the cost of your airfare.
Rising airfare costs have increased 25% over the last year. That’s faster than inflation and it can really throw a wrench into your travel plans if you’re on a budget.
The solution, other than swearing off travel or resigning yourself to road trips, is looking for cheap places to fly to where you can satisfy your wanderlust without breaking the bank.
These cities each offer something unique and special that makes a trip (and those wonderfully cheap plane tickets) well-worth it. Here are the 10 cheapest places to fly to:
- Orlando, Florida
- Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
- Charlotte, North Carolina
- Washington D.C.
- Albany, New York
- Tampa, Florida
- Denver, Colorado
- New York City, New York
- Toronto, Canada
- Cancun, Mexico
Keep reading to learn more about each destination and see which one has you excited to plan your next affordable trip!
1. Orlando, Florida
- Cheapest flights: $50-$54 round trip
- Average hotel price: $52-$189/night
- Best time to go: March-May
Listed as one of the 10 best US vacations you can take and one of the most-visited cities in Florida, Orlando is surprisingly cheap to fly to (around $50 round trip) and overflowing with attractions, theme parks, and feel-good Florida sunshine.
You’ll never have to worry about finding things to do in Orlando. From food and shopping at Disney Springs (no ticket needed) to Gatorland, swimming, and dinner shows, fun is always on the menu in Orlando.
2. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
- Cheapest flights: $52-$59 round trip
- Average hotel price: $80-$283/night
- Best time to go: March-May
We’re not saying you’d fly to Philadelphia just to get your hands on a melty Philly cheesesteak, but even if that’s your sole goal, the cheap flight prices to Philly (starting at $52 round trip) make it well worth the trip.
See famous works of art at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, learn about U.S. history at the National Constitution Center, or visit the birthplace of the City of Brotherly Love at Franklin Square.
Adventurers will enjoy biking or hiking down the 30-mile Schuylkill River Trail or hanging out at Love Park for a stroll.
Love the nightlife? South Street, Fishtown, and Northern Liberties are where you’ll find it. There are tons of great hotels in Philadelphia and you’ll have no trouble finding an affordable spot.
3. Charlotte, North Carolina
- Cheapest flights: $58-$61 round trip
- Average hotel price: $69-$220/night
- Best time to go: March-May; September-November
It may not be quite as famous as Raleigh or the Outer Banks, but Charlotte holds its own as a fun place for a weekend trip and – even better – it’s one of the cheapest places to fly to.
With round trip flights as low as $58 round trip, you’ll save a lot by planning a vacation to the “Queen City” and discover there’s plenty to entertain and occupy you while you’re there.
Take your pick from the many things to do in Charlotte, from thrilling carnival rides and games at Carowinds to outdoor fun at the Whitewater Center and catching a baseball game at BB&T BallPark.
4. Washington D.C.
- Cheapest flights: $74-$163 round trip
- Average hotel price: $89-$427/night
- Best time to go: September-November
Washington D.C. is a cheap destination to fly to (as low as $74 round trip)! A visit to the U.S. capital is so rewarding and educational. Great public transportation makes getting around the city super simple and affordable.
There are endless things to do in D.C., from touring Capitol Hill and the National Mall to browsing the Smithsonian museums and shopping along Wisconsin Avenue and M Street. Restaurants and bars are abundant in the city.
The often-historic boutique hotels in Washington D.C. can be a surprisingly cheap way to stay in the heart of the city’s best neighborhoods with luxury amenities – but without paying 5-star hotel prices.
5. Albany, New York
- Cheapest flights: $74-$220 round trip
- Average hotel price: $66-$197/night
- Best time to go: August-November
Even though it’s one of the best day trips from New York City, Albany (the capital of New York) often gets overlooked by its metropolitan neighbor. But with flights as low as $74 round trip, it’s worth checking out!
This little piece of solace in Upstate New York is a walkable college town (University at Albany) and boasts amazing architecture, great places to grab food and drinks, and lots of museums, performing arts centers, and parks.
Midtown is trendy and buzzing with energy, making it a great spot for nightlife. Check out the New York State Capitol Building, the New York State Museum, and Washington Park while you’re here.
History buffs will appreciate the Underground Railroad Education Center. Best of all, this cheap-to-visit city is less than 3 hours from NYC by car.
6. Tampa, Florida
- Cheapest flights: $76-$125 round trip
- Average hotel price: $73-$303/night
- Best time to go: October-December
With 246 sunny days annually, less crowded conditions than other Florida cities, and tons of outdoor activities and parks, you might not realize that Tampa, Florida is one of the best cheap places to fly to.
With round trip flights as low as $76 per person, you don’t have to spend a lot to fly in and out of Tampa. And lucky for you, there’s so much to do in this sunny city on Tampa Bay!
Shop at Hyde Park Village, visit ZooTampa, spend a day at Busch Gardens, grab delicious food, visit a winery, and check out museums when you’re not spending time on the bay beaches or at the top-rated parks.
You won’t have to worry about where to stay in Tampa, with tons of hotels for every budget and low room rates outside of the summer peak season.
7. Denver, Colorado
- Cheapest flights: $77-$128 round trip
- Average hotel price: $67-$287/night
- Best time to go: March-May; June-August
With the most breathtaking backdrop of the rugged Rocky Mountains, a youthful and eclectic vibe, and a big focus on all things outdoors, Denver isn’t just a great place to visit – it’s also one of the cheapest places to fly to.
In the heart of Denver, you’ll find amazing restaurants serving up local favorites to international cuisine and bars from speakeasies to nightclubs.
There are so many things to do in Denver. Spend a day touring the museums and galleries, hiking nearby trails at the foot of the Rockies, and checking out live music at the nearby Red Rocks Amphitheater.
Craft breweries, cannabis dispensaries, and unique boutiques and shops can make your visit extra-special. Hotels in Denver can be surprisingly affordable outside of the peak summer season!
8. New York City, New York
- Cheapest flights: $77-$92 round trip
- Average hotel price: $81-$465/night
- Best time to go: August-November
Some people think New York City is a crazy-expensive place to visit. While it’s easy to shell out thousands while you’re here, it can be a really affordable destination thanks to the cheap flights and low hotel rates during the off seasons.
With round trip flights as low as $77 round trip, you don’t have to spend a lot to travel to NYC and hotels can be as low as $81/night on average.
It’s impossible to get bored in the Big Apple with so many things to do in New York. Broadway shows, art galleries, museums, great shopping, and first-class dining from street food to gourmet is what New York is all about.
Visit Central Park for a stroll or bike ride (or just to people watch) and research some good hotels in New York City to find quality accommodations that won’t break your budget.
9. Toronto, Canada
- Cheapest flights: $96-$217 round trip
- Average hotel price: $74-$348/night
- Best time to go: April-May; September-October
Our neighbors to the north – Toronto, Ontario specifically – can be an excellent option if you’re looking for cheap places to fly to.
Toronto is less than 2 hours from Buffalo, NY and offers a completely different vibe and experience than you’ll find in the U.S. Sample the famous poutine – fries, cheese curds, and brown gravy – and catch a hockey game at the Scotiabank Arena.
Check out the Royal Ontario Museum, Art Gallery of Ontario, or head 1.5 hours southwest to see Niagara Falls.
Queen’s Park and High Park have hundreds of acres where you can walk, play, and picnic. If you’re wondering when and where to stay in Toronto, know that the average hotel rate is highest in summer (June-August).
10. Cancun, Mexico
- Cheapest flights: $125-$231 round trip
- Average hotel price: $95-$331/night
- Best time to go: December-March
Sunshine, sand, and the sparkling turquoise waters of the Caribbean Sea make Cancun, Mexico one of the most popular places to visit. Who would’ve guessed it’s also one of the cheapest places to fly to?
There are innumerable things to do in Cancun, from lounging on the sugar sand beach at Playa Delfines to exploring Mayan ruins and taking a deep dive at the sacred Cenote Ik Kil.
Whether you’re looking for something specific, like luxurious adults-only all-inclusive resorts in Cancun, or have a general request like affordable Airbnbs in Cancun, it’s never hard to find a great place to stay here.
It pays to be aware of the dreaded Cancun seaweed season that runs from February to October, but really only impacts a trip between June and August.
Things to Consider
If you plan on heading to one of the 10 amazing yet cheap places to fly to, you’ve got a lot to look forward to! We have a few more things for you to keep in mind.
- Account for airfare fluctuation. Plane tickets vary widely according to the departing destination, flight month, time, and day of the week, ticket class, and more. For reference, we looked at round trip airfare during the month of September for one adult.
- Always search for lower prices. Expedia advertises domestic flights as low as $39 (one-way flights to Newark, NJ). Of course, this doesn’t mean you’ll be able to find airfare this low on the destination you’re interested in, but it’s a great indicator of just how low flight prices can drop in some areas. Use any of the 3 best websites to book flights for the most accurate results.
- Save 5% more by booking on Sunday. Sunday is indisputably the best day to book flights, with domestic flights costing about 5% less and international flights about 15% less when booked on a Sunday.
- Don’t book too far in advance. While it’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of planning and want to book a flight several months out, that’s not always the best call if you’re looking for cheap flights. Domestic flights should be booked 1-3 months in advance for the most savings and international flights can be booked 2-6 months in advance.
- Use a VPN when searching flights. Private browsers and VPNs are tricks you can use to “hide” your digital identity from airlines while you’re searching and comparing flight prices. If your IP address is linked to a series of flight searches, the New York Times found that you’ll start seeing higher and higher airfare. With a VPN or private browser, you won’t have this issue.
Frequently Asked Questions
Learn more about booking an affordable trip somewhere new with the most frequently asked questions about cheap places to fly to below.
Where is the cheapest place you can fly?
Right now, Orlando, Florida is the cheapest place you can fly in the U.S. With round trip tickets around $50, you’d be hard-pressed to find a more affordable flight to somewhere as fun and memorable as Orlando!
Where are the cheapest places to fly right now in the US?
Orlando, Philadelphia, Charlotte, Washington D.C., and Albany are the cheapest places to fly right now in the US. These cities are seeing round trip airfare from $50-$74, depending on the dates and your departing airport.
What state has the cheapest flights?
Nevada may have the cheapest flights, since its McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas boasts the most affordable flights, according to a recent report from The Points Guy. Orlando International Airport in Florida was #2 on the list.
What is typically the cheapest day to fly?
Google Flights found that Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday are typically the cheapest days to fly with savings around 12% to 20%. Sunday is the cheapest day to book a flight, but is generally more expensive to depart or fly home because so many people fly as the weekend comes to an end.
Do flight prices go down at night?
Not usually. Skyscanner analyzed airfare data and found that 5:00AM tends to be the cheapest time of day to book a flight, but the cost savings might be minimal and not worth waking up at the crack of dawn to book your flight.
Add These 10 Cheap Places to Fly to Your Itinerary
From sunny Orlando and its thrilling theme parks to Mayan ruins and gorgeous beaches in Cancun, some of the cheap places to fly to might surprise you.
With affordable round trip flights from $52 to $125, spending less on your airfare means there’s more room in your budget to do cool stuff on your trip and make the most of your time away from home.
Make note of the 10 destinations on this list, even the ones that don’t seem particularly exciting at first.
When you open your mind to travel in places you didn’t feel immediately drawn to, you’re sure to discover hidden gems and things to love about new cities that may beckon you back for another stay one day.
When the cost of airfare to these destinations is so cheap, you’ll find you’re able to take more trips and enjoy travel a bit more – and that, friends, is what it’s all about.