Saturday, February 12, 2005

5 Affordable World Travel Destinations

Who would have thought some of these popular travel destinations would also be affordable!
I decided to post an article as well...

That Offer More But Cost Less

So you want to travel the world but you have a tight
budget? Are you tired of reading
about everyone else�s exotic adventures and ready to have some of your own?
Have you always wanted to take an international vacation but thought you
couldn�t afford it? There are
numerous travel destinations across the world that are both exciting and
affordable. Five of them are
described here to give you ideas and get you started planning your own getaway.

There are two ways to approach affordable vacations to
distant destinations. Either you
will save money getting there or the savings will occur once you arrive at your
selected spot. If you want the trip
there to be affordable, many travel consolidators recommend choosing well-known
destinations that are served by numerous airlines and receive millions of
travelers each year. The
competition for customers usually drives costs down for everything from lodging
to tour packages. Airfares between
major hubs tend to be more affordable and there are often plenty of discounts
and last minute travel deals.


In Europe, London is a top pick for affordable vacation
destinations, for these exact reasons. Not
only do you have more flights to choose from, they are cheaper than if you flew
to a more remote location. On
average, staying in London may be a bit more expensive than other European
destinations, but the seemingly endless choices in hotels, restaurants,
transportation, tours, and other travel essentials gives travels opportunities
to mold their vacation to fit their budgets.
And you can use London as your home base to set out on day trips to other
more exotic locations or buy a Eurorail pass and see those more remote countries
without the expense of flying there.

Playa del Carmen, Mexico

This theory also works well for traveling in the Caribbean.
Belize is an appealing destination, with wonderful Caribbean beaches and
a lush tropic setting, but since it has only recently emerged as a popular
travel destination, it is more expensive than Cancun, Jamaica or other
well-traveled locations along the Mayan Riviera.
With fewer flights, getting there is more expensive, and there are few
moderate lodging options. Development
of larger luxury resorts have begun to boom, but the only real alternative for
those on a budget is staying in local facilities that may be hard to locate from
home and may be more rustic than most travelers are willing to try.

Although there are many options for affordable vacations in
the Caribbean, an excellent pick is Playa del Carmen, Mexico.
Accessible via flights to Cancun, which are often some of the cheapest in
the region, Playa is just a half hour away.
It is filled with a multitude of lodging choices, from expansive luxury
resorts on the ocean to quaint but clean hotels downtown.
From Playa, travelers can branch out and visit Tulum and other locations
on the Mayan Riviera or take the ferry across to the island of Cozumel where
snorkeling is prime and the attractions are many.

For Asian destinations, travelers often do better to focus
on saving money once they get to their destination. Depending on your country of origin, getting to just about
any spot in Asia is going to be a sizable chunk of your travel budget.
The difference will come from the cost of lodging, food, entertainment
and other travel expenditures once you arrive.
By choosing destinations where you get the most for your money, you can
save a great deal on your international vacation.
A drink or dinner in Tokyo will costs you many times more than what it
would in Saigon. The key here is to
go where you dollars buy you more and where the local cost of living is low.

Tioman Island

An affordable yet
exotic choice for Asia is Malaysia and specifically Tioman Island, knows as the
'Bali Hai' from the film 'South Pacific.�
Tioman Island is located at the southern end of the east coast of
Malaysia on the South China Sea. It�s sandy beaches, bordered by lush jungles
and stunning mountains make it a relaxing yet intriguing destination, ideal for
sun lovers, snorkelers and divers. The
island also has many villages for exploring and shopping.
English is widely spoken and the
rates are amazingly affordable, with a two night lodging package for a suite at
a lovely oceanside resort averaging around 100 U.S. dollars. Typically visitors reach the island via the speed ferry from
the mainland. Although the trip can
take over two hours, it is enjoyable and provides opportunities for dolphin
watching along the way.

Buenos Aires

South American also
has many destinations that are affordable because of the savings once you
arrive. Locales like
de Janeiro in Brazil, the areas top destination, are coming down in price but
are still more expensive than cities such as Buenos Aires in Argentina, where
the rates are lower and the U.S. dollar goes further.

A huge metropolis that is more
European than South American, the city has much to offer including cultural
events, thriving nightlife, shopping, local sports, and a host of tours and
excursions. La Boca, with its
street performers, shops, and unique architecture is a big tourist draw.
The large number of choices for lodging, restaurants, and activities
provides opportunities for budget travel and savings.
Airfare to the city is relatively reasonable for an international
destination, with discount fares from the U.S. averaging around $500 round trip. Buenos Aires might not be one of the most exotic or inspiring
destinations in South America, but it is a city that everyone should see at
least once, and with some of the most affordable rates and fares around, it
makes the list as a top South American destination.


The list would not be complete
without a North American destination, and the champ of all affordable locales is
Las Vegas. It too is a city that
should be seen at least once, and many world travelers return again and again
for the gaming, art, shows and people watching that just can�t be found
anywhere else. Close enough to
other top U.S. attractions like the Grand Canyon, Vegas provides other options
for those who have had their fill of casinos.

The city has long been known for its
cheap vacation packages with hotels and resorts that offer discount rates for
rooms, meals and entertainment in hopes of attracting people to their gaming
tables. Airfare rates into Vegas
are some of the most reasonable in the United States, no matter the origination
destination. And with more than
100,000 hotel rooms to choose from, there is sure to be a lodging choice that
fits your budget.

The world provides hundreds of affordable travel
destinations. With all the options
available, there is no excuse to put off that life-long desire to travel to
exotic places at the far ends of the earth.
Destinations can be researched on the Internet or your travel
consolidator can make recommendations and help with locating discount
flights and hotel deals that fit your budget. So
what are you waiting for? Get out
there and explore the world.

the Author

C.J. Gustafson is a freelance
writer and photographer who travels extensively for work and family
. A cheapskate by nature and necessity, she is always on the
lookout for bargain travel deals and affordable vacation destinations.

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