Browsing Tag

vacations

Top 4 Beach Destinations In The U.S.

beach destinations

Summer is almost here, which means millions of Americans are preparing to flock to the beaches in only a few months. This is the most popular time of the year to book summer vacations, so it’s important to get on it if you haven’t began searching. Whether it’s the excitement of the Jersey Shore, the relaxing beaches of Florida, the sightseeing in Laguna Beach, or the serenity of an Outer Banks rental, below are the top three beach destinations in the U.S.

Cape May, New Jersey
Cape May, New Jersey is a cozy, tight-knit town furthest south off the New Jersey parkway – exit zero. Cape May has won numerous awards for it’s pristine beaches and family-fun attitude. The old Victorian beach houses are painted bright, fun colors and have retained the same charm since they were built, over a hundred years ago. Cape May hosts a variety of restaurants, with the most popular being The Lobster House, as well as many small businesses and family-owned shops. Cape May is home to many nature reserves, as well as museums and the Cape May lighthouse.

Clearwater Beach, Florida
Florida offers a large number of beaches to visit, with Clearwater Beach being among the top. Ideal for both couples and families, Clearwater beach offers a variety of activities such as fishing, dolphin watching, parasailing, as well as a few museums and aquariums to visit. People are drawn to Clearwater due to the white sandy shores and it’s close proximity to Tampa.

Outer Banks, North Carolina
The Outer Banks in North Carolina (also known as OBX) is perhaps one of the most affordable beach destinations. Large modern Outer Banks rental homes offer an ocean view (or beachfront if you’re lucky) and often boast swimming pools and hot tubs. Some popular destinations in the Outer Banks include Corolla, Nags Head, Duck, Manteo, Kill Devil Hills, and Kitty Hawk. North Carolina is known for its excellent golf courses, adding to the list of things to do while vacationing in OBX. The Outer Banks is ideal for beach lovers looking for relaxation.

Laguna Beach, California
Made famous by MTV’s hit series, Laguna Beach, the town is among the most fashionable in the state. Many people choose Laguna Beach not only for its pristine beaches, but the Hollywood-esque culture. Laguna Beach is located in Orange County and is full of artistic culture. Whether you’re spending the day out on the town or unwinding on the sandy beaches, Laguna Beach is a top vacation destination.

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Planning For Summer

perfect vacation

Spring is right around the corner and before you know it, your dream vacation homes will be all booked up. It’s time to start planning for your summer trips and getaways while they’re still available. Whether you’re looking to sneak away to an all-inclusive, have a family-friendly romp in a theme park or head overseas for some sightseeing, we’ve got you covered.

 

Step 1 – Find a Place to Stay

Once you figure out what kind of trip you want to take, you’ll need to center your plans around your accommodations. Renting a vacation home, in many cases, is a cost-effective way to blend comfort and convenience, and will often be more inexpensive than a hotel room. Plus, the advantages you get with a kitchen, living room and driveway could be invaluable in many destinations.

Step 2 – Clear Your Schedule

This should arguably be done first, but it’s a lot easier to get out of a time commitment when you’ve already booked your vacation home. Regardless, be the first one to request the time off and you’ll avoid that headache altogether. Mark it off on every calendar you own so you don’t accidentally make plans. And when it comes time for your trip, clear any pending obligations beforehand so you’re not worrying while you’re on the beach.

 

Step 3 – Travel Smart

Sometimes, getting there is half the battle – whether you want it to be or not. Do your best to streamline your travel and you’ll maximize your away-time. Don’t be afraid to spend the extra $50 on a flight that is scheduled at a much more convenient time. If the cheaper itinerary brings you in late at night and flies you home early in the morning, you’ve lost an extra day and a half simply by being tired at the start and calling it an early night in the end.

Step 4 – Pack Light

It’s okay, this is where most of us fall short. Packing light is a very valuable skill, especially when travelling far and by air. There are a few important things to note: will there be laundry facilities where you are staying? Will you need room for souvenirs on the way home? And will you really need more than 2 pair of socks in the Bahamas? Put some thought into your packing and you will thank yourself when you’re invariably running late, dragging your suitcase down the terminal.

Step 5 – Enjoy!

Above all else, have a great time. That is why you’re taking a trip, right? Once you’ve cleared your schedule, booked one of those vacation homes, and stuffed your snorkel into your suitcase, your mind should be on one thing alone: enjoying yourself.

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Budget Vacations are All the Rage

Budget Vacations

In the past, those who went on vacations were typically driven by the desire to visit that particular location, but now it is much more common for someone to book vacation packages based on the price, not the place. In fact, there is a whole segment of travelers in the United States that will go anywhere for a vacation—if the price is right. Traveling on a tight budget is not as unattainable as it may seem, and in fact, many people are getting amazing deals on their trips. Knowing when to buy, having flexibility in your schedule, and a passion for traveling will all contribute to being able to travel for pennies in comparison to what other people pay for their vacations.

If the Time is Right

How does this sound: a four-night cruise to Mexico and two nights in a hotel in Miami for less than $300. It sounds crazy, but that is the exact deal one girl from New York was able to snag, according to the Huffington Post. Jessie Purton took advantage of bad timing for the cruise industry that equated to awesome deals for their customers. She and her friends booked that trip just after the cruise ship Costa Concordia sunk, according to the Huffington Post report.

The one thing that made this such a good deal was her timing. The company that owned the boat that capsized off the coast of Italy was afraid that all the press would negatively impact its business, so they dropped their prices as low as they could to keep people booking their ships. Purton took advantage of this opportunity by immediately getting on her phone and booking the trip.

How Many PTO Days?

The one requirement when it comes to traveling for cheap is that you sometimes need to be flexible, and available to leave on a trip with a day’s notice, maybe even less. Getting the greatest deals means always being on the lookout for last-minute package deals and drops in prices and immediately being able to take advantage of that deal. You do not want to get an awesome vacation planned only to find that you cannot get the time off of work.

Luckily, many of the best deals come in the off-season travel times so there will not be as many people going on vacation at the same time as you.

See the World

Of course if you are going to jump on vacation packages at the best prices possible, the destination shouldn’t be as important as the experience. If you are picky about where you are willing to travel to, it will be more difficult for you to find a vacation deal that fits those parameters. Be open, and you will be well on your way to seeing the world in no time.

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Samantha Wideman is a part of a team of writers, and specializes in wiriting about fashion and beauty trends.