Here Are the Best and Worst Destinations for Summer 2018 Travel

Know where to go if you're traveling on a budget.

Planning a vacation this summer? While there are tons of great destinations to choose from — from beach getaways to urban retreats — some locations are better for your wallet than others.

A new GOBankingRates study determined the 20 cheapest and 20 most expensive destinations to visit this summer to help travelers know where to go if they don’t want to spend a fortune on their trip.

Keep reading to see 20 brilliant ways to save on summer travel.

The study analyzed 40 popular summer vacation destinations, taking into consideration the average hotel rates during popular summer travel times and the average round-trip airfare to get to each destination from LAX and ATL airports. Each destination was given a score for hotel rates and airfare, and these were combined for an overall score. The destinations were then ranked from least to most expensive.

Overall, flights are a much larger expense than hotels, so it’s important to keep that in mind when booking a vacation. Hotel rates among the destinations included in the study ranged from $22 to $316 per night, while airfare ranged from $135 to $2,003 for round-trip tickets.

According to the data, the most expensive 2018 summer vacation destinations are:

1. The Bahamas
2. Hawaii
3. Seattle
4. Buenos Aires, Argentina
5. Porto, Portugal
6. Amsterdam
7. Hamburg, Germany
8. Edinburgh, Scotland
9. Dublin
10. Copenhagen, Denmark
11. Los Angeles
12. San Francisco
13. Athens, Greece
14. Rome
15. Barcelona, Spain
16. Vancouver, Canada
17. Boston
18. Paris
19. New Orleans
20. Nashville, Tenn.

Not surprisingly, many of the most expensive destinations were outside of the U.S., with many of the top 10 priciest destinations located in Europe. A previous GOBankingRates study found the cheapest times of the year to fly to Europe, and the summer months did not make the list for any of the most popular European destination cities.

Meanwhile, the cheapest 2018 summer vacation destinations are:

1. Las Vegas
2. Washington, D.C.
3. Orlando, Fla.
4. Miami Beach
5. Bangkok
6. New York
7. Austin, Texas
8. Montreal
9. Puerto Rico
10. Cabo San Lucas, Mexico
11. Cancun, Mexico
12. Bali, Indonesia
13. Key West, Fla.
14. London
15. Portland, Ore.
16. Virginia Beach, Va.
17. Singapore
18. Savannah, Ga.
19. Rio de Janeiro
20. San Diego

If you’re planning a summer trip within the U.S., check out the most expensive times to visit all 50 states.

Methodology: GOBankingRates analyzed the following factors to identify the cheapest and most expensive summer destinations: 1) average hotel rates based on the average three 4-star minimum hotels for stays during July 7, 2018, to July 14, 2018, and 2) average airfare based on the average cost of the three lowest round-trip flights leaving ATL and LAX from July 7, 2018, to July 14, 2018. Sources used: and Google Flights.