Budget-Friendly Vacations for Couples

Whether it’s your first trip together, your honeymoon, or your babymoon, sharing experiences with your partner while traveling can make it more enjoyable. Sometimes, however, the desire is present, but the financial situation prevents a vacation extravagance. 

Making an economical vacation is doable with some careful preparation and math. Consider traveling to less well-known or off-peak locations, or search for the greatest deals on airfare on websites like Hopper. Being adaptable with timing or travel days pays well as well.

A budget, itinerary, and activities plan should be created, according to experts, in order to anticipate costs for things like lodging, transportation, food, and purchases. In order to avoid dining at restaurants, travel experts also advise choosing a hotel with a kitchen and going out to lunch rather than dinner. Examine all-inclusive accommodations as well, but only after determining what is truly included and how frequently you will use the amenities. 

Since “affordability” is a relative concept, we focused on locations where couples can enjoy a trip while adhering to the spending limit they set for themselves. We searched for free or inexpensive activities and considered the accessibility of less expensive hotels. In light of this, listed below are some of the most inexpensive getaways for couples.

Mazatlán, Mexico

White-sand beaches, mouthwatering restaurants, a buzzing nightlife, history, a 13-mile beachfront promenade, affordable rates, and a ton of free or inexpensive activities are all available in Mazatlán. Visitors can explore Plaza Machado, wander through cobblestone streets, and pause for a beverage or ice cream in the downtown historic center. Along the Malecón de Mazatlán, you may spend the entire day looking through gift shops, watching cliff divers, or purchasing a snack from a vendor. The Pueblo Bonito Mazatlán Beach Resort offers rooms starting at less than $200. Additionally, guests are not charged extra to use the facilities at the posh Pueblo Bonito Emerald Bay Resort & Spa.

New York, New York

Although it may surprise you to learn that New York City is included on a list of cheap holiday destinations, there is a ton to do there for free. You can discover accommodations for under $200 if you use websites like Hotels.com or Airbnb to do your online hotel room shopping. Enjoy a traditional (and economical) New York bagel breakfast, followed by the greatest pizza or a hot dog from a street vendor for lunch. Many of New York’s museums are free to enter or welcome donations. Visitors can also ride the Roosevelt Island Tramway (approximately $3 each) or take the subway to Gantry Plaza State Park in Long Island City, which displays the stunning NYC cityscape.

Honolulu, Hawaii

Even on a tight budget, you may plan a trip to Hawaii if you have your heart set on going there. This is especially true if you have access to any airline miles or points. A tour of Pearl Harbor and the USS Arizona Memorial are among the free activities, as are hiking and beach time. The island of Oahu may be efficiently and cheaply explored using the bus system. Farmers markets, saimin (noodles), poke, and shave ice are all delightful travel-related food experiences. The Twin Fin is a brand-new beachside hotel with rooms starting at $239. DJs, live music, stargazing, and other nightly entertainment options are available.

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

This year-round getaway is perfect for couples who love the great outdoors and is situated in northwest Idaho on the northern coast of Lake Coeur d’Alene. Along with taking in the breathtaking surroundings, activities in the area include hiking, biking, boating, vineyards, and breweries. Discover the waterfront-area downtown, peruse the boutiques, and have a bite to eat at a restaurant. There are several different lodging options, including hotels, bed & breakfasts, and campers. The Coeur d’Alene Resort offers rooms starting at about $249 and is well-known for its daily scenic cruises, as well as sunset and supper sailings.

Gulf Shores, Alabama

The Gulf Shoreline and Orange Beach region is an affordable destination for a seaside break thanks to its sandy shores, warm Gulf of Mexico waters, fantastic dining, and exciting nightlife. At Track Family Fun Park, you may go karting, ride the roller coaster, play mini golf, or ride the Ferris wheel. To experience the beautiful bay, board the Mobile Bay Ferry for less than $10. Pick from over 200 dining establishments, and don’t forget to sample some of the regional seafood, which includes shrimp, oysters, crab, and snapper. Numerous reasonably priced accommodation alternatives include hotels, resorts, bed and breakfasts, and campgrounds.

Fort Worth, Texas

Fort Worth, which is rapidly expanding and is located about 30 minutes from Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, is well-known for its Western past and cowboy heritage, which are now preserved in the Stockyards National Historic District. On a walking tour, discover the streets that previously served as the center of the cattle trade and discover the history of the region. When the Fort Worth Herd of longhorns passes by with drovers who are willing to answer questions, you’ll want to see the cattle drive. There is a lot to see and do in Cowtown, including stores, bars, restaurants, the Cowtown Coliseum rodeos, and music and dancing at the renowned Billy Bob’s. Spend less than $200 a night at the Kimpton Harper and enjoy a drink outside at the posh Hotel Drover, Autograph Collection on Mule Alley.

San Juan, Puerto Rico

Consider visiting Puerto Rico if you’re looking for stunning beaches, delicious food, and a rich history – no passport required. For inexpensive entertainment, check out museums and street art installations. Visit the El Yunque National Forest, go on a hike to a waterfall, take in the views, and bring a picnic to eat outside in the lovely settings. Learn about the island’s past by spending some time at Old San Juan. And with a variety of lodging options, you can choose a place to stay that fits your budget. Additionally, you can navigate around the San Juan region without spending money on a rental car thanks to the availability of taxis and Uber.

Palm Springs, California

The Greater Palm Springs desert is a year-round vacation spot, but during the hot summers, many visitors seek out pools or air-conditioned places. There are plenty of both and things to do without spending a fortune, so no problem. Browse the boutiques and eateries along Palm Canyon Drive in Palm Springs or go on a self-guided tour of the celebrity residences or mid-century architecture. Go for a hike in Indian Canyons to experience nature. You can find solutions that meet your budget thanks to the variety of lodging. Joshua Tree National Park, which is a short drive away, has spectacular rock formations, local plants like cactus, and a starry night sky.

St. Petersburg and Clearwater, Florida

This region is an excellent option for an inexpensive holiday, especially if the goal is sunshine, swimming, and water sports. It is known for its white-sand beaches and mild waters. After dusk, there is still a ton to do, including dining out, going to clubs, and visiting dive pubs. More than 600 murals can be seen by simply strolling through the city; street art tours are also offered. The Dali Museum is housed in a distinctive structure on the waterfront in the heart of St. Petersburg, making it the ideal destination to spend the day away from the beach. There are many lodging options, so you can be sure to find one that fits your trip budget.

Washington, D.C.

With its monuments and museums, the nation’s capital can be a reasonably priced vacation spot as well as a chance to explore and appreciate history, art, science, and technology. There is something for everyone’s interests at the Smithsonian museums, from space travel to natural history, and admission is free. The National Zoo of The Smithsonian is a fantastic free day trip destination. Just keep in mind to request passes ahead of time. The same applies to White House tours, so be sure to schedule them well in advance. Public transportation, such as trains and buses, is a practical and affordable choice. Hotels in the capital may be expensive, but staying in Alexandria, Virginia, nearby, can help you save money and show you a beautiful city.

Toronto, Canada

This pedestrian-friendly city is renowned for its diversity, which is reflected in both its populace and, particularly, in its cuisine scene. The historic district, which was previously a collection of industrial buildings, is great for an afternoon or evening of exploration thanks to the stores, restaurants, art galleries, bakeries, and entertainment that can be found in the Distillery District. Grab a bite to eat at St. Lawrence Market or visit Stackt, a market made of shipping containers that houses stores, a microbrewery, and special events. Use the large public transportation system or a bike share program to get around.

Yosemite National Park, California

A great and inexpensive vacation can be had by visiting one of the country’s most stunning national parks, which is home to granite cliffs, waterfalls, enormous sequoia trees, and amazing animals. Beautiful lookouts are reached via hiking, and each season offers a unique experience. Spend less money on meals and take advantage of picnics with views of Yosemite’s attractions. Cheap lodging options include camping and cabins, either inside the park or close by. Even if you decide not to stay at the famous Ahwahnee hotel, make sure to stop by to see the furnishings, artwork, and architecture. (Closed for renovations until March 2, 2023)

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