Here's where Americans are planning to go for that summer vacation

2 weeks ago

Siesta Key beach in Sarasota, Florida.

Pola Damonte via Getty Images | Moment | Getty Images

Americans are looking to finally get out about this summer, interest in both well-known new emerging getaway spots is rising along with temperatures, according to travel companies.

Online travel guidance platform Tripadvisor says 67% of Americans plan to travel from June through August, a 17% jump over spring (March to May). Most of them (43%) plan to drive, although 19% are willing to fly, beach destinations — particularly in Florida Mexico — are at the top of traveler wishlists.

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Why the beach? "This summer, we continue to see travelers favor outdoor locations like beaches or national parks, locations that continue to enable the practice of social distancing," said Tripadvisor spokesperson Brian Hoyt.

People are also just ready to get out of the house, he added. "As the vaccine rollout far exceeds the Biden administration's promised target of 1 million doses administered per day, Americans are resoundingly saying they are prepared to get out t again, to travel see the world once more to make up for lost time."

Tripadvisor's Top 10 Summer Destinations

Here's a look at the most popular summer vacation destinations for Americans as tracked by Tripadvisor, along with a highly-rated hotel in each that still had availability as of press time.

Cancun, MexicoLe Blanc Spa Resort CancunOrlo, FloridaThe Delaney HotelMyrtle Beach, South CarolinaOcean 22 by Hilton Gr VacationsKey West, FloridaHavana Cabana at Key WestMiami Beach, FloridaThe Stard, MiamiLas VegasFour Seasons Hotel Las VegasPlaya del Carmen, MexicoBanyan Tree MayakobaCabo San Lucas, MexicoVista Encantada Spa Resort & ResidencesTulum, MexicoAhau TulumPunta Cana, Dominican RepublicDreams Macao Beach Punta Cana

Source: Tripadvisor

Despite the interest in Mexico that Tripadvisor tracked, the site found that 74% of Americans plan to travel domestically this summer — that means more competition for accommodations across the country. To wit, hotel searches are up 65% at Tripadvisor.

As popular vacation destinations fill up, more Americans are looking at less well known holiday spots, particularly of the sun--fun variety. Vacation rental search aggregator has tracked growth of more than 100% in bookings in 11 emerging summer destinations — eight of which are beach areas in Florida alone.

"Because of the last year, t's pent-up dem for travel this summer which makes it more competitive to book your typical vacation spots," said Zer Buteux, head of organic growth at "Smaller cities areas that don't traditionally experience summer tourism are growing in response to other locations booking up faster than before."

11 Emerging Summer Destinations for Renters

Here's a look at 11 emerging summer destinations that are increasingly popular with vacation rental customers, according to Each has seen growth of more than 100% in bookings year over year.

Destination — Growth Rate

Isle of Palms, South Carolina — 388%Sugar Mountain, North Carolina — 279%Miramar Beach, Florida — 237%Anna Maria Isl, Florida — 203.06%Siesta Key, Florida — 157%Sarasota, Florida — 149.43%Bonita Springs, Florida — 148%Pensacola Beach, Florida — 144.51%Lake Anna, Virginia — 143.50%Navarre Beach, Florida — 128.42%Rosemary Beach, Florida — 107.52%


Being smaller, these ascendant destinations don't have the same hotel inventory as big-league resort towns but, in this age of Airbnb other home rental sites apps, that's not necessarily a disadvantage. And vacation rentals offers added advantages such as isolation more space, said Buteux.

"They provide you with the flexibility to travel safely, renters have more control," he noted. "For example, you your pod can order groceries cook at the rental property instead of going out for food, to reduce contact with others."

"People missed out on seeing their friends family last year; by having everyone stay in a rental, it's substantially easier to coordinate plans spend quality time together," Buteux added.  

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