Published on : Friday, January 6, 2017
CheapOair, a leading flights-focused hybrid travel agency, announced its list of ten international destinations on the rise in 2017. While the top four destinations remained the same from 2016 (Manila, Philippines; Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam; Cancun, Mexico; Bangkok, Thailand), many destinations are expected to see a significant increase in visitors in 2017. Additionally, CheapOair’s data showed the average ticket price for international travel has decreased by 8% compared to the previous year.
To create the list, CheapOair compared the number of passengers who booked 2016 travel during the July through November 2015 period to the number of passengers who booked 2017 travel during the same time period in 2016. CheapOair compared passenger numbers to over 1,200 international gateways.
Mexico – While Cancun, Puerto Vallarta, and San Jose de Cabo still hold top spots on the list as #2, #6 and #7, respectively, Guadalajara and Mexico City both broke into the top 15. This movement indicates that Mexico is an emerging destination, and not just for their beaches. Plus, the current exchange rate between the U.S. Dollar and Mexican Peso makes travel to Mexico a very affordable travel option for 2017.
Mexico City, the nation’s capital and 5th largest city in the world, has become a global hotspot known for its innovative cuisine, progressive art scene, and over 150 museums preserving Mexico’s rich history. If Mexico City sounds a little daunting, Guadalajara is a great alternative. Undergoing a cultural renaissance, Guadalajara offers traditional Mexican culture alongside a burgeoning culinary scene and a mellow artistic ambiance.
Western Europe – The top of the list in 2016 was dominated by South and Central America and the Caribbean. However, in 2017, there is a resurgence of Western European destinations including London, Barcelona, Madrid, Amsterdam, and Rome. Recent financial analysis shows that the Euro is at its lowest compared to the dollar since 2003 and it’s possible they may reach parity in 2017. This is great news for American travelers that have been holding off on a trip to EU countries such as Spain, the Netherlands, or Italy. European vacations in 2017 could be cheaper than they’ve been in over 14 years.
Southeast Asia – Thailand and Vietnam have become popular destinations in recent years, but Cambodia is now beginning to make a name for itself. Phnom Penh jumped 34 spots to position #34 on the list. Visitors to Cambodia can expect a vast range of attractions including traditional Khmer culture and architecture dating back to the early 9th century, idyllic beaches on the southwest coast and museums that give a firsthand look at the country under the brutal Khmer Rouge regime from 1968-1999.
Cebu, Philippines broke into the top 5 to compliment Manila holding strong in first place. The Philippines have long been treasured as a beach destination, but the nation comprised of over 7,000 islands offers much more than just sand and surf. Though certain areas of the Philippines can be difficult to reach, the country also offers thick forests, volcanoes, waterfalls, cold and hot springs, excellent diving and more.
Nepal – Despite facing a devastating earthquake in 2015 which halted tourism to the region, Nepal is rebuilding and ready to welcome visitors once again. Ranked #118 in 2016, Kathmandu has regained 62 positions and is now ranked #56. Aside from being a launch pad for Himalayan excursions, Kathmandu offers travelers nearly 2,000 years of history including ancient Buddhist and Hindu temples.