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Finding Budget Vacations from Douglas International Airport

 
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Residents of Charlotte, NC have plenty of nearby attractions and destinations for a cheap nearby vacation. But planning a weekend trip does not have to be relegated to in-state destinations. With the availability of cheap flights from Charlotte Douglas International, it is easier than you may think to take a budget vacation to somewhere out of state. To help you plan your vacation, we’ve got a few ideas for Charlotteans looking to take a last-minute budget vacation. (And for everyone else, pay attention, because many of these ideas will work for anyone in North America!)

Finding Last-Minute Flights from Charlotte, NC

A plane soaring through the sky

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Step one in budgeting your vacation is accounting for travel, so finding cheap last-minute flights from Charlotte, NC is going to be your first task. Fortunately, Charlotte Douglas International is one of the largest airports in the country, and there should be no shortage of cheap flights, if you know how to find them. Flight prices can be very low if you head to often traveled destinations and are willing to travel on an off day. With so many flights going to places like Orlando or Boston, these destinations offer more opportunities for last-minute deals. Sign-up for fare alerts when you complete a GoLastMinute flight search, and you can stay up to date on the best pricing. 

Orlando, FL

A welcome sign to dowtown Orlando

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It is not uncommon to find flights from Charlotte Douglas International to Orlando for under $100, so this is an obvious choice for a budget vacation. The benefit of vacationing in a beach town is that hanging out at the beach is plenty entertaining and completely free. To keep your hotel costs down, try finding accommodations further from the beach. If you can handle taking a short bus ride to get to the beach, you can potentially save a lot of money on your lodging. Combine that with cheap street food and BYOB libations and you’ve got everything you need to stay well under budget.

Cancun, MX

A woman plays in the Cancun sands

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A beach vacation to Cancun will follow the same principles as an Orlando vacation. Find a hotel or Airbnb a little ways from the beach and don’t overspend at bars and restaurants, and your flight ticket will be your biggest expense. Cancun can be a very expensive destination if you are staying at a beachside resort, but a budget vacation at a downtown hotel can have all the same fun-in-the-sun without the heavy price tag. Many things like food and entertainment can be much cheaper than in America, and that can offset the hefty price for your flight ticket.

San Juan, Puerto Rico

The skyline of San Juan

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Finding a relatively cheap flight to San Juan from Charlotte Douglas International shouldn’t be too hard, as it is one of the most traveled destinations for the airport. Remember that most people travel on the weekends, so if you can pick a Tuesday or Wednesday for your travel day, you will likely get a much better deal. Lodging and dining can be very cheap as well, and you should be able to keep the rest of your trip under the cost of your ticket, making travel the biggest expense for this Caribbean destination. 

Boston, MA

The sun sets over Boston

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 is another often-traveled destination for Charlotte Douglas International, and you should have an easy time finding a cheap flight. In addition, it is a very historic town, so there is plenty of sight-seeing that can be done for practically no cost. Learn the history of the city by walking the Freedom Trail, a walking trail that takes you to 16 different historical sites along a 2-and-a-half mile long path. Head to the Boston Common and Public Garden and take a ride in one of their iconic swan boats. Or check out one of their museums like the Museum of Fine Arts, the Institute of Contemporary Art, and the Boston Children's Museum, which sometimes offer free admission days. This is a great vacation for history buffs and enthusiastic patriots.

Caribbean Cruise

An ariel view of a packed cruise ship

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While you could head to Charleston to take a cruise, it is actually going to be cheaper to take a cruise that departs from Orlando or another port town in Florida. Flights to Orlando tend to be very cheap, and you can still find weekend cruises that are as low as $200 per person, despite raising cruise prices. The benefit of a vacation like this is that everything you need is included in the price of the cruise. You may be tempted to spring for premium entertainment and amenities, but it really won’t be necessary. Food, drinks, lodging, and beach access will all be provided, allowing you to enjoy your vacation without thinking about your wallet.

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