Make no mistake -winter is coming. While some of us are still hanging on to our pumpkin spice lattes and savoring the last days of fall, ignoring the approaching colder weather, others are already daydreaming about how they’re going to escape the snow. Although lots of vacations are expensive and costs can be prohibitive for some, most of us can escape to a sunshine destination this winter. If you’re looking to travel on a budget, keep these 8 locales on your hit list.
Cuba has long been a fairly inexpensive vacation spot for Canadians and Americans willing to risk not being able to get back into their country. Although U.S. relations with Cuba have been improving, travel restrictions for tourism are still in place. For Canadians and others, Cuba remains an inexpensive Caribbean option. Havana is the place to go for the most culture, although other popular spots include Manazillo de Cuba and Varadero. Round-trip flights can be as low as $400 CAD, and hotels start at $66 CAD per night. If you’re looking for an all-inclusive option, things get even more affordable: a 7-night package deal, including all taxes and fees, starts around $500 CAD for 2 people. As of September 2015, Americans are allowed to travel to Cuba for purposes such as education or humanitarian projects, such as offering assistance to the Cuban people.
Here’s a destination not many people would consider when they think about flying south for the winter: Panama. This Central American country doesn’t get a lot of love from sun-seekers. Nonetheless, Panama City is a prime destination. The flight will set you back around $700 due to the lesser demand and more infrequent flights, but accommodations will run you around $40 USD a night for a 3-star hotel. Package deals are also available, usually running around the $1,300 mark—a little higher than some would like to pay, but worth it to get to a destination that’s off the beaten path for most snowbirds. Unlike high-traffic destinations like Punta Cana and Cancun, Panama City is still economical and less likely to be overrun with spring-breakers, making for a relaxing vacation whether you go all-inclusive or not.
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