Finding Cheap Vacations from Tampa International Airport


Residents of Tampa have plenty of options for vacations in and around their own city, but sometimes you need to get away and experience something else, even if it is just for a weekend. Keeping an out-of-state vacation under budget can seem like a daunting task, but it is possible to do for only a few hundred bucks. The trick is knowing where to go to find cheap accommodations, attractions, and transport. If you are a Tampanian looking to take a cheap vacation in the near future, then we’ve got just the thing for you. Here are our favorite spots to take a last-minute vacation out of Tampa. (And if you aren’t from Tampa, don’t worry. Many of these destinations and tips can help you too!)

Finding Last-Minute Flights from Tampa

A woman looking at a flight departure display

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Typically, the first step on the road to a cheap vacation is finding a cheap flight to get you there. You can, of course, go for a road trip instead, and there are plenty of destinations along the coast of Florida to fill such a trip. But for the purposes of this article, we will be looking at destinations that are out of state, so a cheap flight is crucial. Luckily, Tampa has no shortage of destinations that you can often find cheap flights to. The trick is to be flexible with your dates and departure times. Less people travel during the week and in the early morning or late night, so these flights are much cheaper. If you can fly during a Tuesday or Wednesday, or if you can make a redeye flight, there’s a good chance you will save significantly. You can also sign up for fare alerts whenever you complete a GoLastMinute flight search. Keep an eye on flight prices to see when the best time to fly is, and a cheap, last-minute flight from Tampa will be easy to find!

Atlanta, GA

A courtyard in Atlanta

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With a bustling nightlife, a diverse restaurant scene, and beloved sports teams, it is not difficult to see why Atlanta is a popular destination for tourists. That said, going out on the town every night can get pretty expensive and it can be easy to go over budget if you aren’t careful. The reason Atlanta works for a budget vacation from Tampa is the abundance of dirt-cheap flights. It is not uncommon to find round-trip flights for under $100, and there are enough free or cheap things to do in the city that you can easily spend a few days there and barely spend a dime. Take in the city’s skyline at Piedmont Park, pay your respects at Martin Luther King Jr.’s final resting place, and admire the art installations along the Atlanta BeltLine, all without paying a dime!

San Juan, Puerto Rico

Colorful beachside houses in San Juan

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The idea that you can find cheap flights to an island in the Caribbean may seem impossible, but that’s what you get when you fly from Tampa to Puerto Rico. Even better, prices for food and lodging are often cheaper than in the States, especially if you look for something farther from the airport and beaches. If you are willing to deal with having to take a short commute to the beach, then you will open up your options and make finding a cheap hotel much easier. With cheap flights readily available, plenty of affordable hotels, and free activities like hanging out at the beach, San Juan makes for the perfect budget vacation for Tampanians.

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

A city park in Philadelphia

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Philadelphia is another destination that frequently you should be able to find cheap flights from Tampa. Just make sure that you pick a week where there aren’t any major events going on that might spike hotel prices, and you’re in business. Being a historic town, there are a lot of free places to visit and appreciate, like the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall, and Elfreth’s Alley. You can also get a City Pass for visiting multiple attractions, like the Franklin Institute, the Philadelphia Zoo, and the Adventure Aquarium. Even just walking the streets for a day can be an enriching and entertaining experience thanks to the street food and abundance of murals and art installations scattered throughout the city.

Cruise to the Caribbean

A cruise ship in the Caribbean

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Cruises can be an expensive way to spend your vacation, if you book one of the longer or more extravagant itineraries. But sailing to a couple of Caribbean islands on a cruise line like Royal Caribbean or Carnival can actually be cheaper for Tampanians than traveling to another city. Since you are already in a port city, you won’t have to worry about many of the travel expenses that others have to worry about; it’s really just the price of the cruise ticket! Avoid specialty dining and room upgrades, and you can find cruises for a couple hundred dollars per person. Typically, that will include everything you need to have a great vacation, from food to entertainment.

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