Traveling is not cheap, though there are ways to keep from blowing your entire bank account on a family escape. One of the best ways to avoid busting your budget on a vacation for the entire clan is to be flexible with your travel dates. Doing so will allow you to explore the nation’s premiere cities, such as New York, Chicago, Los Angeles and Washington, D.C. without going broke.
Recently, Hotwire.com and USA Today teamed up to pinpoint the perfect times of year to travel to major metropolises for as cheap as possible. They found that vacationing in New York is actually quite affordable if you go in January, February, the Fourth of July or the week before Christmas. If you do, you’ll find room rates as low as $93, compared with a peak of $250. Likewise, if you head to tourist magnet Orlando in late August, you can find hotel rooms for as cheap as $42. However, if you head to the Florida hot spot the week between Christmas and New Year’s Day the price of hotel rooms jump to nearly $80. Other popular cities, such as Los Angeles, San Diego and Washington, D.C. cost more to visit in spring and summer than January, February, October and November.
Being flexible with your travel dates can also save you a bundle if you prefer to hit tourist meccas like Las Vegas. According to Hotwire, mid-May to mid-August visits will yield the lowest hotel prices. Rates in early August fall to about $55 a night, while the same rooms climb to an average of $152 the week between Christmas and New Year’s Day. In addition, cities such as Atlanta and Dallas are more affordable to visit in mid-January. That’s when you can score hotel rooms for as low as $49 compared to nearly $90 per night if you plan your stay during the busy Christmas holiday period.