Priceline.com has come out with its top 25 destinations for 2016 based on advance hotel reservations last year, and topping the list are Las Vegas, Orlando, Miami, New York City and San Francisco‚ all of which are easily accessible by air, with a mix of major airline and discount carrier traffic. With the exception of Chicago, the rest of Priceline’s top 10 are in the Sunbelt: Fort Lauderdale, New Orleans, Orange Country, California, and Los Angeles.
The trend continues: No fewer than six of the top 25 are in the Sunshine State (the others being the Florida Keys, Tampa, and Fort Myers); Phoenix, Atlanta, and Puerto Rico, San Diego, and Honolulu are also top vacation spots. The top foreign destination in the Priceline survey, anyway is Cancun/Cozumel. For its part, Skyscanner.com has also spotted an increase in domestic travel, which accounts for more than half, or 51.6 percent, of all bookings made by U.S. travelers, up from 49.5 percent the previous year. Cities that are trending up in searches recently include Dallas, Atlanta, Phoenix, Tampa, and Philadelphia; however, New York City and Las Vegas are trending down slightly.
Other destinations ranking high in Skyscanner’s search activity include Puerto Rico, Colombia, the Philippines, and Cuba which, unsurprisingly, is up nearly 90 percent from the previous year due to the restoration of diplomatic ties with the U.S. last year. It’s unclear how much of this interest translated into actual bookings, however, given that trips to Cuba for pure tourism are still off-limits for Americans.
One surprise? Bookings to China were down by 23 percent, and, despite a stronger dollar, U.S. travel to key European gateways also decreased last year when measured by Skyscanner bookings the U.K., Italy, and Germany all registered drops of more than 10 percent. True, airfares across the pond have risen sharply in the last few years. But once you get there, air travel is a bargain: according to Expedia, discount carriers have kept fares down within the continent, declaring 2016 to be ‘great year to travel to Europe and hop around by plane. ‘
Source: Research Shows: This Is Where You’re Actually Going in 2016 – Condé Nast Traveler