NEW YORK, N.Y. – Where’s hot, where’s not? Online travel booking site OneTravel.com released its data for fall bookings and spotted some interesting travel trends. Several new international cities have cracked the list of top ten destinations this season, and a drop in average airfares to Europe has resulted in a resurgence of travel to some continental capitals.
Europe bookings are up 20 percent. In fact, Europe owns five of top ten most popular international destinations this fall, with London, Paris, Rome, Frankfurt and Barcelona all seeing a surge of American visitors this quarter. Why now? “Europe is cheaper this year than last,” said Mark Drusch, Chief Supplier Relations Officer for Fareportal, parent company of OneTravel. “An average U.S. domestic airfare this fall ranges from $260 – $350, depending on the gateway, while an average European fare is $450 – $650, a relative bargain compared to domestic travel.”
Drusch also noted that fall is a great time to visit Europe since hotel rates are lower, crowds are gone, weather is mild and all local attractions, restaurants and shops are open following summer holidays.
South America bookings are up 50 percent. “U.S. travelers are discovering South America in droves due to the diversity of experiences and relatively inexpensive prices,” said Drusch. OneTravel cites Brazil, Colombia and Peru as most popular this fall. Roundtrip air from New York and a seven-night hotel stay in Rio de Janeiro in October can be found on OneTravel for just $1,500 – a 25 percent discount compared to high season.
Other major shifts among popular international destinations this fall are long haul, more exotic locations like Bangkok, Lima and Manila.
When it comes to trip planning, booking windows vary. Drusch recommends travelers “book at least three weeks out for domestic travel and at least 30 days out for international travel to get the best prices. For heavy travel times, like holidays and school vacations, book as soon as you know your plans. Lower price seats are particularly limited and sell out fast.”