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Plan the ultimate cruise vacation, how can i book a cheap cruise.

If you're looking for cheap cruise deals, booking with Expedia.ca allows you to customize your search with filters that will put the best value at the top of your search results. Filters are available for various factors, including cabin experience, cruise line, destination and more. In most cases, the simpler your cruise is, the cheaper it will be. Even so, you may still find discounts on luxury cruise experiences, so don't hesitate to filter for some more high-end amenities and sort by price to see the cheapest cruises available.

Which month is the cheapest for cruises?

There is no consistent answer for the cheapest month for cruises unless you specify a destination first. With a cruise to the Caribbean , for example, the cheapest month will be around August since that's when the region undergoes hurricane season.

What happens if a cruise gets cancelled?

Every cruise operates differently, but you'll generally get a choice between a rescheduled date, a refund or cruise credits. Check the policy on your cruise before booking to learn more.

How affordable are cruise trips?

Cruise trips can be surprisingly affordable given all the features you can enjoy on them. Booking with Expedia.ca lets you filter for features like cabin experience, cruise length, cruise line and cruise ship while also sorting the results by price to ensure that you're getting the cheapest options at the top of your search results page while still meeting your search filter specifications.

What are some of the top cruise lines?

Top cruise lines include Viking cruises and Disney cruise lines. While Viking excels at luxury, Disney is among the best when it comes to family-friendly experiences. Some of the other best cruise lines include Royal Caribbean International cruises , Carnival cruises , Princess cruises and Celebrity cruises . What really qualifies as the best is more up to what you're looking to get out of your experience. For example, travelling with kids typically means a Disney cruise or something similar is the best, while budget travellers may prefer Carnival.

How much are cruise ship tickets?

Cruise prices largely depend on the kind of cruise you opt for. Cruise ship costs can be fairly affordable, with cheap cruises only charging $50 a night per person or so for some of their trips, while luxury cruises can run you upwards of $1,000 per night per person or more.

How far ahead should I book a cruise?

Cruise tickets should be bought 6 to 12 months before your cruise departure in most cases. Tickets are technically available further in advance and closer to your cruise departure date. Still, the 6- to 12-month range is generally the best way to get the best deals without missing any opportunities.

What are cruises like?

The cruise you book will have plenty to see and do before you even reach the first destination stop. The ship can be just as exciting as the destinations on your route. Cruise vacations offer food and drinks along with pools, shops and live performances in some circumstances. You may even find a cruise with a water park and a cruise with a roller coaster among particularly luxurious options.

Are cruises a useful way to travel?

Cruise travel ensures that every step of the journey is fun, with activities available between destinations, starting from your cruise terminal. While cruises may only have a single destination, some will travel to multiple spots throughout their entire duration, allowing you to enjoy locales that are just as varied as the attractions on the ship.

Which cruise line is the most affordable in 2024 / 2025?

Deals are often available for just about every cruise line, but Carnival cruises tend to be the most affordable with their Mardi Gras ship . You can also usually find cheap cruises with Royal Caribbean . When searching for a cruise, remember to sort by price to put the most affordable options at the top of your search results page.

How do I get the top cruise deals?

Start your cruise search with Expedia.ca to get the best cruise deals by using our comprehensive filters to sort through our vast collection of offerings. Expedia.ca Rewards members may even find discount cruises through their membership perks, so don't hesitate to take advantage of the free membership.

What cruise would work best for me?

If you're looking for the absolute best cruise in the world, the answer depends on what you're personally interested in experiencing. A laid-back cruise is notably different from a family-friendly cruise with its own amusement park. Take advantage of search filters to narrow down your results to cruises that work for you.

What should I keep in mind when booking a cruise?

Finding a cruise you'll be satisfied with means considering the type of cruise you want and the budget you have to work with. See what's included in the price of a ticket and what you'll have to pay extra for. If aspects like food aren't included, for example, you'll need additional funds in your budget to cover that cost.

What are some of the best cruise destinations in 2024 / 2025?

Cruises can take travellers all over the world, whether you're looking for a cruise to Alaska , a cruise to Mexico or even Antarctic cruises . Cruises to the Middle East and cruises to Australia are popular as well. Think about the kind of cruise experience you want to determine which is the best destination. If you want plenty of time on the cruise, picking a faraway destination can be useful. You also need to consider the attractions available in the destination itself.

What countries should I visit on a cruise?

The Bahamas cruises are among the most iconic cruise destinations, but the cruises to Cuba can also be lovely. Of course, countries all over the world are available. Remember that cruises may not necessarily stop in a country for all that long, so keep in mind how long your visit will actually be when considering what you want to do during your stop.

Are last-minute cruise deals available?

Last-minute cruise deals are often available, and you can check what's available by inputting your travel dates into the cruise finder on Expedia.ca. If you sort by price, the cheapest options will be listed first, including opportunities with special deals applied.

Are there all-inclusive cruises?

Yes, all-inclusive cruises are available and quite popular, and you can find them by using the search filter for all-inclusive. Celebrity cruises and Royal Caribbean cruises , for example, both offer all-inclusive packages.

Is food included with a cruise ticket?

Whether or not food is included in your cruise depends on your booking details. You can check to see what exactly is included with the ticket by checking the ‘What's included’ section of the cruise summary page after clicking it from your search results.

Are there adults-only cruise lines?

Some lines are adults only, including Viking cruises , though Carnival cruises and Princess cruises have options for adults-only cruises as well. With an adults-only cruise, you can immerse yourself in a peaceful and tranquil environment designed to make it easy to sit back and relax.

What kind of luxury cruise lines are there?

Luxury cruise lines include ships like the Caribbean Princess from Princess cruises , along with pretty much anything that Viking cruises have available. With luxury cruises, you can expect high-end amenities and a variety of things to see and do on the ship, such as shopping, dining, live performances, pools and even theme parks.

What family cruises are best suited for kids?

Disney cruises go above and beyond to offer fun cruises for kids and adults alike, but some cruises, like MSC cruises , have special promotions that allow children to get booked for free. Think of Disney cruises as having a Disney theme park on a ship with rides, shows and attractions for the whole family to enjoy.

Which lines offer the best cruises for couples?

Romantic experiences are easy to enjoy with Viking Cruises and Holland America Line cruises . The latter's Koningsdam Cruise is complemented by truly stunning views among breathtaking natural features. River cruises tend to be some of the most romantic, with more stops in historic romantic cities for you and your partner to enjoy.

Why should I go on a cruise for my honeymoon?

A cruise is one of the best ways to spend your honeymoon, as you and your partner can enjoy pampering at spa facilities with fine dining too. You can check what special features are available on every cruise on Expedia.ca in the ‘What's included’ section of their summary page.

Do cruises run around Christmas?

Yes, several cruises operate during Christmas, and you can find them by entering travel dates around Christmas to see what's available for a 2024 cruise to finish out the year. Carnival and Disney both offer special Christmas cruises with special activities and features centred around the holiday theme.

Is it worth going on a river cruise?

River cruises offer a bit of a different experience from ocean cruises, as they tend to have more stops and more varied sights to see. Viking river cruises are among the best available, as they got their start doing river cruises, making them have extensive experience with river journeys.

Are passports required for cruises?

You will need a passport if the cruise travels outside of Canada, even if you're leaving from a Canadian port like cruises from Vancouver . Cruises to the US require a passport valid for at least 6 months after your return. Cruises to other international locations require the same in addition to any potential necessary visas.

What are the benefits of booking a cruise with Expedia.ca?

When you book with Expedia.ca, you'll have access to an expansive catalogue of cruise options and search filters that allow you to narrow down those results as you see fit based on the destination, length, itinerary, cruise line and more. Additionally, Expedia.ca Rewards members accrue points on eligible purchases and other perks that can be put towards subsequent trips. Membership is free, so feel free to join and reap the benefits.

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There is no other place in the world that compares to Alaska. With majestic mountains, breath taking ice fields in Glacier Bay, to a vast array of wildlife and fascinating gold rush history – there`s something for everyone in the 49th state.

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With its abundance of history and incredible attractions, the best way to make the most of your time in this part of the world is by cruising. Explore the riches and beauty of Europe via a cruise and see more castles, art and culture than you ever dreamed possible.

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Extraordinarily beautiful and impossibly romantic, Hawaii possesses some of the most exotic landscapes on earth. There`s so much to be seen and experienced in this wondrous land from rainforests, waterfalls, warm turquoise waters, to black and white sand beaches. You'll see more of Hawaii for less on a Cruise!

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River cruising has become popular with discerning travelers who enjoy the intimate experience of cruising within the heart of the globe's most quaint regions. Experience the river cruising phenomenon, and discover 5-star service, cuisine, and masterfully planned shore excursions – all included!

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Shore excursions are a great way to experience all that your destination has to offer. With a broad range of options available to suit a variety of lifestyles you will find everything from exhilarating activities to informative tours or even more low key experiences. Prebook your shore excursions when finalizing your cruise or in the following weeks for the best selection and to ensure you are able to reserve all of the excursions that appeal to you. Guides are local experts who will ensure that you see everything and maximize your time in the best attractions wherever you are.

There's really no limit on what you can do or see on a shore excursion from sightseeing tours, cultural events, or more active options. The options are endless. Don't limit yourself to enjoying each destination from a distance. Be sure to talk to your Cruise Consultant about shore excursion options available on your next getaway.

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Shore Excursions Group is a preferred partner offering an extensive array of shore excursions worldwide. Experts on what to do and where to go, they are highly recommended in helping you enjoy your vacation to the fullest. Whether you want to join a group, other families, or arrange your own individual or custom group excursions, their highly trained staff will work with you to create the perfect vacation.

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Table of Contents

When it comes to Expedia prices

When it comes to expedia travel insurance, when it comes to the expedia cancellation policy, when it comes to the expedia rewards program, when it comes to maximizing credit card points, the pros and cons of expedia recapped.

Frequent travelers likely know that there’s something better than a dream trip: a dream trip that you booked on a bargain.

The ways to save money on travel are plentiful. You can redeem hotels and airline points, or take advantage of last-minute travel deals, to name a few. And booking through third-party online travel agencies (OTAs) like Expedia can sometimes yield especially big savings.

Beyond just deals, Expedia has robust search filters that make finding your perfect vacation easy. It streamlines purchasing trip insurance , which can be especially important for travel these days. Plus, the new One Key Travel Rewards program earns you OneKeyCash you can use to pay for future bookings.

But booking through an OTA like Expedia is not without its drawbacks. Here's a look at some of those to help you weigh the pros and cons of booking travel through Expedia.

Pro: Expedia has frequent sales, last-minute travel deals and bundle discounts

Expedia deals are aplenty, whether it’s a bundling discount or a sale.

Bundling: A major component of booking travel on Expedia is the practice of bundling, where you can expect additional savings for booking more than one product (e.g., flight and hotel, or hotel and attraction ticket) in one transaction. For example, when we searched for a hotel and rental car in Miami, one five-day booking option included up to three free rental car days while another offered one free night.

Expedia payment plans: If you don’t want to pay for your whole trip at the time of booking, Expedia allows you to make smaller payments through Affirm, which is a service that offers short-term loans for online purchases. If approved by Affirm , you’ll be able to pay for your trip in monthly installments.

You can also check Expedia’s Deals page and Expedia’s Last-Minute Deals page . Both tend to offer an eclectic mix of travel deals, ranging from cheap motels in tiny towns to lavish resorts in major tourist destinations. We’ve spotted deals as high as 70% off.

» Learn more: How to find cheaper last-minute flights

Con: Booking direct is sometimes still cheaper than Expedia

Sure, Expedia sales and last-minute deals are nice, but that’s not to say that you can’t find other (sometimes better) deals for booking directly with the travel provider. Many offer their own exclusive deals — and they might save you even more than booking with online travel agencies. Compare prices across both Expedia and the specific company to ensure you’re getting the best price.

And sometimes the savings go beyond just the sticker price. For example, boutique hotel chain Ovolo Hotels offers generous amenities including free laundry, happy hour refreshments and a daily breakfast buffet — but only if you book directly with them.

» Learn more: Is Expedia legit? Can it get me a good deal?

Pro: You can purchase an Expedia travel insurance policy

Expedia partners with various insurance providers, depending on your individual booking, to offer trip protection.

For flights: Expedia offers travel insurance protection options that cover flight cancellation, medical emergencies and other covered circumstances.

For hotels: Choose hotel booking protection to reimburse your stay in the case of cancellation.

For car rentals: You can add car rental damage protection for an extra per-day fee.

Coverage varies by plan, but you can typically expect reimbursement for some (or all) trip costs if your trip is impacted by covered reasons. Covered reasons typically include delays, loss, theft or damage to one’s baggage and personal belongings. You’re also typically reimbursed for covered medical expenses, including emergency evacuation if you get sick or injured during your trip.

Your credit card may already have travel insurance benefits ( for example, these 10 do ). If you have a card with this kind of coverage, use it to book.

But there are many limitations and exclusions, so read your policy’s fine print to understand what’s covered.

Expedia 24-hour cancellation

When you book a flight on Expedia, you can cancel for a full refund as long as you do so within 24 hours of booking. The U.S. Department of Transportation requires airlines to allow you to cancel a flight for a full refund if canceled within 24 hours of booking and it was booked seven days before departure.

Con: Outside travel insurance might be more comprehensive or cheaper (and sometimes free)

You can opt out of Expedia’s travel insurance and either be completely uninsured or acquire your insurance elsewhere. And there are better travel insurance policies out there.

After a comprehensive review of dozens of plans that assessed factors including price and COVID-19 coverage, here are the best travel insurance policies .

What’s more, you might not even need to pay for travel insurance at all. Many credit cards offer travel insurance benefits if you paid for your trip with that card.

Pro: Expedia offers some fully refundable options

Because airlines, hotels and other travel services set their own individual policies on Expedia, change and cancellation policies can vary significantly. While it can be tricky to parse the policies for each individual property, use Expedia’s “fully refundable” search filter to limit potential bookings to those with flexible policies.

For straightforward requests, use the Expedia service page to make changes and get a refund. If you’re unable to get help through Expedia’s self-service tools, other ways to get in touch with Expedia include live chat, a dedicated Twitter account ( @expediahelp ) and a phone line.

Con: Most cancellation policies are bad, confusing or both

Because airlines are required to give full refunds if you cancel within 24 hours of booking, Expedia lets you change or cancel your flight reservation without fees within the same time period.

For everything else, good luck. Because each travel provider sets its own policies, navigating them can be a headache. In some cases, canceling through Expedia means you’ll have to chase after the hotel or activity provider to recoup the costs.

Additionally, prepare for cancellation fees (both Expedia’s own fees as well as fees from the service provider). That’s if you’re able to cancel at all. Some bookings through Expedia are nonrefundable altogether.

Pro: It’s great for commitment-phobes

The new Expedia Rewards program, One Key Rewards, lets you earn OneKeyCash for every booking you make on the platform (plus on Vrbo and Hotels.com), which can then be used like cash toward future trips. Not only that, but Expedia users can earn status, which includes benefits like exclusive members-only discounts and extra benefits at VIP Access properties (such as free breakfast or late checkout).

For travelers who don’t like to commit to one airline or hotel company, don’t travel that frequently, or who book travel that otherwise doesn’t have its own loyalty program (like a tour or vacation rental), Expedia makes it possible to still get rewarded.

Learn more : The complete guide to the One Key Rewards program

Con: Most hotel and airline loyalty programs are far more rewarding

While the One Key Rewards program is fine, most travel loyalty programs tied to specific hotels or airlines are almost always more rewarding. For individual point values, most other currencies of airline and hotel points are worth far more than OneKeyCash, which nets you 2% back on cruise, hotel, activity and rental car bookings but only .2% on flights. Once it's in your account, you can use it to pay for bookings just like you would cash — though you’ll need enough OneKeyCash in your account to pay for an entire flight, not just part of it.

Additionally, holding specific airline or hotel elite status is typically more lucrative than the value of elite status on One Key Rewards as most perks extend to Expedia VIP Access properties only. That said, some elite members can enjoy up to 20% discounts on hotels and free price drop protection on flights, which is a plus.

As for how to use Expedia points, OneKeyCash can be redeemed on “pay now” bookings for participating purchases priced in U.S. dollars. You can use it to pay for part of a hotel booking, but you’ll have to have enough to pay for the full cost of a flight (including taxes and fees). And while you can’t transfer rewards, you can use your OneKeyCash to book travel for others.

But depending what status you’re able to reach with individual brand loyalty programs, you can likely expect better perks. So if you’re fine committing to one brand, you’re almost always better off striving to earn its status versus with One Key Rewards. But if you only stay for a night here or there or prefer to book based on location or price, it’s a way to earn a few more rewards.

Pro: Expedia counts as a travel purchase

Chase Sapphire Preferred Credit Card

You might be able to take advantage of your travel credit card’s higher earning rates on travel purchases by booking through Chase.

For example, the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card earns 2 points per dollar on other travel spending (including online travel websites like Expedia).

Con: Travel credit cards are usually better for earning and redeeming rewards

If you’re open to pledging allegiance to a specific hotel or airline brand, those credit cards typically have a higher earnings rate on travel. If you’re not willing to commit to a specific brand (and you might not be), there are also plenty of other options.

Going back to the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card , this card can earn even more points on travel if you book through the Chase Ultimate Rewards® portal instead of through Expedia. The card earns 5 points per dollar on travel booked through Chase, but only 2 points per dollar on other travel spending (including online travel agencies like Expedia). The card’s annual fee is $95 , and there’s also an introductory offer: Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.

» Learn more: Is the Chase Sapphire Preferred card worth its annual fee?

If you're considering booking with other online travel agencies like Priceline or Hotels.com, here are the best credit cards for online travel booking websites .

With the right deal, booking travel — including flights, hotels, cruises or car rentals — on Expedia could be worth it. It makes searching for travel relatively easy given the massive array of available listings, coupled with thoughtful search functionality to actually help you create your ideal itinerary, and the new One Key Rewards program can help those without loyalty to one brand reap some rewards.

But don’t automatically assume it’s a cheap way to book travel. Especially given the complicated cancellation policies, it might become among the most expensive should an uninsured trip need to be canceled.

How to maximize your rewards

You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2024 , including those best for:

Flexibility, point transfers and a large bonus: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

No annual fee: Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card

Flat-rate travel rewards: Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

Bonus travel rewards and high-end perks: Chase Sapphire Reserve®

Luxury perks: The Platinum Card® from American Express

Business travelers: Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card

on Chase's website

1x-5x Enjoy benefits such as a $50 annual Ultimate Rewards Hotel Credit, 5x on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3x on dining and 2x on all other travel purchases, plus more.

60,000 Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.

Chase Freedom Unlimited Credit Card

1.5%-6.5% Enjoy 6.5% cash back on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®; 4.5% cash back on drugstore purchases and dining at restaurants, including takeout and eligible delivery service, and 3% on all other purchases (on up to $20,000 spent in the first year). After your first year or $20,000 spent, enjoy 5% cash back on Chase travel purchased through Ultimate Rewards®, 3% cash back on drugstore purchases and dining at restaurants, including takeout and eligible delivery service, and unlimited 1.5% cash back on all other purchases.

$300 Earn an additional 1.5% cash back on everything you buy (on up to $20,000 spent in the first year) - worth up to $300 cash back!

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

on Capital One's website

2x-5x Earn unlimited 2X miles on every purchase, every day. Earn 5X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of trip options.

75,000 Enjoy a one-time bonus of 75,000 miles once you spend $4,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel.

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Expedia CEO to Hotel Owners: Stamp Out Rogue Wholesale Rates

Sean O'Neill , Skift

January 23rd, 2024 at 10:56 AM EST

Hotels aren't doing enough to keep their wholesale rates off of smaller retail travel sites. That is damaging to Expedia's effort to gather the best prices online.

Sean O'Neill

Expedia CEO Peter Kern pled his case to hotel owners Monday: Take seriously the billion-dollar issue of wholesale rates being misused online.

“It’s a growing problem,” Kern said Monday. “There is a massive amount of rates leaking out.”

Kern spoke on-stage at the Americas Lodging Investment Summit (ALIS) in Los Angeles. It was the first time the head of a major online travel agency was invited to speak at the conference — arguably the largest one for hotel owners and developers.

Some backstory: Hotels have long set aside some rooms at discounted wholesale rates for contracted partners to offer to specific, coveted travelers. A hotel might offer wholesale rates to a tour operator to bundle with a flight in a discounted vacation package, for example.

Kern complains that some agencies are breaking the rules.

“Wholesale rates get out in the world where they’re unintended, and ‘unintended’ means they are available at the retail marketplace on other OTAs [online travel agencies] and comparison sites,” Kern said. “All of a sudden, people are showing up at your front desk with a rate that your desk doesn’t know how the hell it got there.”

Kern’s team at Expedia has worked with Marriott and other major hotel chains to curb the distribution of rates. However, the “wholesale leakage” problem continues to plague independent and regional hotel groups .

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Difficult Problem

Why don’t more hotels care, given that they’re the ones who are being undercut on price? A few reasons: It’s filling rooms with guests, and that’s what general managers are judged on for performance. It also takes some time and money to tighten one’s distribution.

The rogue rates are also hard to track.

“You may not even see the rates because they’re gated to geography,” Kern said.

If you’re based in the U.S. and you search for rates at your company’s hotel in Vietnam, it may look fine on the price-comparison sites you use, Kern said. But travelers searching sites in Asia Pacific may see other, cheaper rates.

Kern conceded that some hotels just aren’t that concerned. But he found that puzzling.

“If you end up filling your room at 30% off and killing your direct-to-consumer rates, I don’t know where that gets you long-term,” Kern said.

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More on Peter Kern’s Fight Against Rogue Wholesale Rates

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Tags: expedia , expedia group , future of lodging , hotel marketing , loyalty , loyalty programs , online travel , peter kern , rate parity , wholesale , wholesale rates , wholesalers

Photo credit: A guest room at the Grande Centre Point Ratchadamri Hotel in Bangkok, Thailand. Source: Grande Centre Point Ratchadamri

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These Are Going to Be the Most Popular Travel Destinations in 2024

A lready thinking about where you want to travel in 2024 ? If you’re hoping to hit the hottest travel destinations of the year, Expedia Group is here to help. The one-stop travel site—alongside Hotels.com and VRBO—just released Unpack '24 , a travel trends analysis for the coming year. In addition to detailing the projected top 10 most popular international destinations of 2024, the site also revealed 10 “dupes” for travelers looking to perhaps spend a bit less, as well as those hoping to be surrounded by fewer fellow tourists. Additionally, they revealed 10 affordable cities where the world’s biggest musical acts are set to perform, as well as where to travel if you live a sober lifestyle.

“At Expedia Group, we have extensive first-party travel data that we use to enhance and curate experiences for our travelers across Expedia, Hotels.com, and Vrbo,” Jon Gieselman, president of Expedia Brands, says in the report. “These insights shape our travel forecasts, revealed in Unpack '24, enabling our travelers to be the first to discover and book the most desired trips before they become well-beaten paths.”

Ready to ignite your travel bug? Ahead, discover the most popular travel destinations of 2024.

The Top 10 Travel Destinations of 2024

Expedia Group predicts that travelers are most likely to jet set to destinations popularized in fan-favorite TV shows and movies. According to the report, “More than half of travelers say they’ve researched or booked a trip to a destination after seeing it on a TV show or in a movie. In fact, travelers say TV shows influence their travel decisions more than Instagram, TikTok, and podcasts.” With that in mind, they reveal that the top 10 travel destinations of 2024 are as follows:

  • Thailand - Featured in White Lotus , Season 3—which has sadly been pushed to premiere in 2025
  • Romania - Featured in Wednesday , Season 2—which has not yet set a release date
  • Malta - As seen in Gladiator 2 , which is set to premiere on November 22, 2024
  • Paris - As seen in Emily in Paris
  • Scottish Highlands - Featured in Outlander
  • London, Bath, and Windsor, U.K. - As seen in Bridgerton and The Crown
  • South Korea - Featured in Squid Game —the Season 2 release date has yet to be announced
  • Florida Keys - As seen in the series Bad Monkey
  • Australia - Featured in Baz Luhrmann’s Faraway Downs series, as well as the film Furiosa , which is set to premiere on May 24, 2024
  • Greece - as seen in the films Argylle (set to release in 2024) and My Big Fat Greek Wedding 3

The Top 10 Travel Destination Dupes

Dupes have long been lauded in the beauty and fashion categories, and now the concept is making its way to travel. “1 in 3 of those polled say they’ve booked a dupe,” the report reveals. “But what do these less obvious alternatives offer besides potential savings? They’re often less crowded, tend to be a little unexpected, and can be every bit as delightful as the tried-and-true destinations.”

Intrigued by the idea of booking a stellar vacation for a fraction of the price? Check out Expedia Group’s Top 10 Travel Destination Dupes, below, which are listed as the original destination of inspiration and the dupe that mirrors it.

  • Seoul —> Taipei
  • Bangkok —> Pattaya
  • Santorini —> Paros
  • Saint Martin —> Curaçao
  • Sydney —> Perth
  • London —> Liverpool
  • Lisbon —> Palermo
  • Geneva —> Québec City
  • Zermatt —> Sapporo
  • Nashville —> Memphis

The Top 10 Tour-Inspired Travel Destinations

Music lovers, this one’s for you! As you well know, traveling to see your favorite artists live is expensive, to say the least. With this in mind, Expedia set out to find the most affordable destinations where the world’s most famous pop and rock stars are set to take the stage in 2024.

Through their research, in which they analyzed the average daily rates of tour locations, they found the top 10 most affordable cities (less than $150/night on average) where travelers can witness the likes of Taylor Swift, Olivia Rodrigo, Coldplay, Metallica, Madonna, and more. They are as follows:

  • Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia - $91
  • Edmonton, Canada - $108
  • Mexico City, Mexico - $119
  • Warsaw, Poland - $119
  • Birmingham, U.K. - $127
  • Houston, Texas - $130
  • Antwerp, Belgium - $140
  • Tokyo, Japan - $147
  • Perth, Australia - $148
  • Detroit, Michigan - $149

For more research-backed travel trends, be sure to check out Expedia’s full Unpack ‘24 Trend Report .

Discover destinations all over the world inspired by TV and movie sets, music tours, lifestyle trends, and more.

Travel Disruptors: Capturing B2B growth

In 1996, Expedia—then under the auspices of Microsoft—debuted as one of the internet’s first online travel agencies (OTAs). Expedia Group is now a publicly held company encompassing brands such as Expedia, Hotels.com, and Vrbo. It sees more than six million average daily visitors and more than one billion average monthly searches across its sites and apps.

Ariane Gorin joined Expedia Group in 2013 and is now president of Expedia for Business. She oversees the company’s fast-growing global B2B ecosystem, which counts Walmart and United Airlines among its partners. Gorin’s advice to young people who are thinking of entering the travel industry? “Go for it,” she says, “because once you get in, you’ll never want to leave. What we do as an industry is help people create memories, and that’s incredibly meaningful.”

In this installment of Travel Disruptors , Gorin spoke with McKinsey’s Emma Loxton about the industry’s postpandemic recovery, Expedia Group’s B2B offerings, and how generative AI (gen AI) might change the business of travel. The following is an edited transcript of their conversation.

McKinsey: As the travel industry continues to bounce back from the pandemic, we see people traveling and interacting with travel companies in slightly altered ways. How has Expedia Group responded? Where have you invested to deliver for customers?

Ariane Gorin: It’s been an interesting few years. One thing that’s certain is that people need to travel, want to travel, and—no matter what barriers are put up—will find a way to travel.

At Expedia Group, when COVID-19 arrived in 2020 and borders closed, we saw consumers shifting to Vrbo, which is our vacation rentals brand. People were concerned with health and safety and wanted to be in their own bubbles, so they started renting whole homes. This meant that, while the air and hotel businesses didn’t do as well, the Vrbo business thrived.

Then, as vaccinations began and international borders opened, we saw people returning to international travel, hotels, and airlines. At Expedia Group, we have a diversified business, both geographically and in terms of brands and lines of business, so that as travel patterns changed, we always had an answer.

In terms of investments, I think we’ve led the way in having a focus on self-service and automation. When the pandemic began, we needed to handle a sudden onslaught of requests for cancellations, refunds, and credits. We were prepared because we’d already made a lot of investments in self-service technology. We quickly developed the ability, for example, for people to self-service airline credits, which was important for travelers but also really important for our airline partners. We let consumers make modifications using chats on our platform, instead of having them spend time on the phone with an airline trying to cancel or modify a ticket.

We also took advantage of the past couple of years to replatform our entire company. We have a number of brands—Expedia, Hotels.com, Vrbo, and others—that were each running on different technology stacks. In a world where having access to data and scale can be an advantage, the idea that we had these separate stacks and couldn’t innovate on them all at the same time was a problem for us. We found we had an opportunity, during a period of depressed demand, to do a lot of technology work under the covers and to then reemerge with a great platform that had scale and modern infrastructure and that allowed us to use modern data science to innovate faster for our travelers.

McKinsey: Countries have taken different paths back from 2020, and travel markets are developing at varied paces. How do you see the industry evolving in different markets?

Ariane Gorin: There are parts of the industry that have grown past where they were prepandemic, but other parts haven’t fully recovered yet. For example, air capacity in the United States is above prepandemic levels, but airlift between the United States and China is still only a fraction of what it was. Corporate travel is expected to recover, at a dollar value, in 2024 to where it was prepandemic, but when you factor in inflation, it means that from a volume perspective it still won’t have fully recovered.

There remain a lot of areas where there could be waves of growth. When you look at the middle-class population in Asia, it was about 2.0 billion people in 2020, but it’s expected to be 3.5 billion people by 2030. India, over the past decade, has issued 100 million passports, but still only 7 percent of the Indian population has a passport—compared with more than 40 percent in the US.

McKinsey: You’ve been instrumental in developing B2B offerings for Expedia Group. What was the genesis of that effort, where does it stand now, and what’s your value proposition for the different organizations that you work with?

Ariane Gorin: I started working on B2B initiatives in 2014. At the time, B2B was a small part of our business—basically using our hotel inventory to power other travel companies—and it wasn’t growing much. I think there was a perspective that the B2B business was sort of a sideshow.

What my team and I realized was that the travel industry was immense and that the major OTAs, at that time, were only a small portion of it. There was still a ton of business being done through corporate travel, OTAs in emerging markets, offline retail, and loyalty programs. Those were huge pockets of demand that our brands weren’t going after and that our hotel and airline partners wanted to be able to access.

We thought about how we could power all these other companies by bringing to them our technology and, especially, our supply of high-quality inventory. In recent results, B2B was at a record $995 million and growing at a 26 percent increase year over year for us. And there’s still a big runway for helping to power other companies.

The first thing in any B2B effort is understanding what your client or partner needs. For example, we work with an online travel agency in Indonesia. They already understand travel, and they are experts at knowing what their local traveler wants—how to market to that traveler, what payment types that traveler wants to use, and so forth. They know all of that. What they’re looking for from us is mainly access to great hotel inventory in Europe and in the US.

On the other extreme, earlier this year we announced a partnership with Walmart in which we are powering the travel component of its loyalty program. Walmart is not a travel company, so it is looking to Expedia Group to bring in a turnkey travel solution. And that includes not only the hotel inventory and the like but also the front-end technology. It’s our content and it’s our customer support. Similarly, if you go to United Airlines online and you look at the hotel tab, that’s us. They’ll be the first to say they’re not the experts in hotels, so they want our hotel inventory and also the great e-commerce experience that we can bring.

It’s really about listening to your partner and then having modular blocks of solutions—from technology to inventory and all of the support around them—that you can then fit to what the partner needs.

One of the things that’s helped our B2B business succeed is that we are part of a company that also has a B2C business. So we know what kinds of photos, content, and descriptions travelers want, and we are constantly making sure that our technology has the best uptime possible because we’ve got millions of people shopping on our own brands. When a B2B partner decides to come to us for their inventory or their technology, they know that it’s going to be backed by what’s working for these massive consumer brands.

McKinsey: Expedia Group is a very large company in the travel industry. How do you think about working with smaller organizations and entrepreneurs to create value for the traveling public?

Ariane Gorin: We’ve realized there are a lot of small companies or even individuals that want to participate in the travel industry, and we work with them in a number of ways.

One is that we have a program that allows an individual at home to become a travel agent. You can sign up for the Expedia Travel Agent Affiliate Program, which we call TAAP, and we’ll put all the tools at your fingertips to start to sell travel. For example, one woman who lost her job at the beginning of the pandemic decided to start her own travel business through TAAP, and that helped her build back her income.

For start-ups that are trying to make their way in the travel industry, we recently created an accelerator program. Its theme was around making travel more inclusive and accessible, so we chose a handful of start-ups that were working on accessibility. We gave them technical expertise, marketing expertise, access to coaches and mentors in our company, and stipends. It’s a six-month program. And in some cases, we actually looked at whether we could integrate their services into our products. It’s really fun to see how all of those start-ups are evolving.

And, of course, there are the individual property owners using Vrbo. What these entrepreneurs are primarily looking to us for is distribution. And our promise to them is that we’re going to develop a great platform with great marketing that’s going to attract travelers, but we’ll also provide advice about photos, descriptions, and other things they can do to help themselves get in front of the travelers who interest them. We have a lot of intelligence about what makes a property successful that we can share with them.

McKinsey: What’s your view on the biggest use cases for gen AI in the travel industry?

Ariane Gorin: I think smart players are going to benefit from it. We have often talked about how to “put the travel agent back in the OTA”—how to create a personalized experience for people, so they feel that Expedia Group knows them, is recommending things that make sense for them, and is helping them discover new things. I think within that realm of personalization, we can use gen AI to respond more easily to people’s queries and make proposals for them. We’ve already integrated ChatGPT on the front end of the Expedia app and into the shopping flow for our travelers. For example, if you’re looking at a particular property, you can ask questions about amenities, and you’ll have more conversational customer service experiences.

But I think there are also a lot of internal use cases. I have a fairly large team of commercial people who are out talking to partners every day. How can we use gen AI to make them more effective when they’re speaking to a partner? Can we use gen AI to create a summary after a call? Can we off-load some of the less value-add work for them so they can spend their time on more value-add things?

I suspect that in every boardroom, management teams are talking about this. What can you do to make your product better, but also what can you do internally for your company? At Expedia Group, we’re asking what we can do for travelers and for our internal teams, but also what we can do for our partners. We have a lot of information and data about what’s happening in the industry, so we’re wondering to what extent we can provide insights to our partners to help them make better decisions.

McKinsey: What’s one thing you wish you could change about the travel industry?

Ariane Gorin: There’s no denying that, like many industries, we have a big impact on the environment—even though, over the past few years, the growth of the industry has been faster than the growth of our environmental impact. Simply because we’re moving people around the world, sustainability is a real issue. So if I had a magic wand, the first thing I’d do is help us reach our sustainability targets much faster.

Ariane Gorin is the president of Expedia for Business. Emma Loxton is a partner in McKinsey’s London office.

Comments and opinions expressed by interviewees are their own and do not represent or reflect the opinions, policies, or positions of McKinsey & Company or have its endorsement.

This interview was edited by Seth Stevenson, a senior editor in the New York office.

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8 Best Apps for Last-minute Flights and Hotels

Download these travel apps so you're prepared for your next last-minute getaway.

If you're feeling spontaneous and want to head out of town for a last-minute getaway, you'll need some help finding affordable airfare and hotel rates on a whim. There's a good chance you won't be in the mood to sit on your laptop and track price trends, either.

So instead of wasting time bouncing between websites, download these tried and true apps to make planning a last-minute vacation easier. These flight- and hotel-booking apps will help get you on the road — and likely save you money, to boot.

Whether you want a flight, hotel room, car rental, or total trip package, Expedia's easy-to-navigate app has thousands of last-minute choices for any destination. Though actual prices are usually around 20 percent cheaper than what's advertised on Expedia's website, it's not unusual to find savings of up to 50 percent.

Download for iOS or Android .

Type in where you want to go, and this app (or its website) offers up the lowest available fares over the next several months. Being flexible about your destination pays off: if you want to skip town this weekend, simply select your dates, and Fareness will display a list of the cheapest airfares to various cities.

Download for iOS .

If you're looking to book a flight tonight or tomorrow, this app from flight tracker Hopper is your go-to helper. The inventory is from major airlines as well as low-cost carriers, and the prices are always favorable. The app even allows you to keep track of flights so you will be alerted when prices go down.

HotelTonight

Snag a discounted hotel room for the same day or up to a week in advance in more than 1,700 cities. Look for properties with special Geo Rates, which target users based on their GPS location. For example, while you're waiting for a flight at the airport, search for a room at your destination — you can sometimes get a better deal than if you wait to book after you've landed.

Download for i OS or Android .

Cruise Finder by iCruise.com

You normally have to book cruises well in advance — sometimes even a year out. But those looking to hop on deck on short notice can use Cruise Finder's Hot Deal feature to find last-minute savings. Go ahead and book that ocean-view room on a three-night cruise in the Bahamas. You'll pay as little as $200 for a departure within the next month or about $500 for next-day travel.

Download it for iOS or Android .

SecretEscapes

This app lists last-minute deals for upscale hotels — sometimes as much as 70 percent off the rates published online — at properties all around the world. Travelers can also use it to book air and hotel vacation packages.

Travelzoo's app not only lists discounts on packages, hotels, cruises, and flights, but also has an extensive range of special offers for restaurants, spas, and activities. For example, on a recent search, we found a deal for business class tickets on round-trip flights to South America starting at $799.

This app is loaded with suggestions for dining, activities, and events, which you can search based on your travel preferences. It also offers savings on hotel rooms that average around 25 percent off rates advertised online.

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    Expedia Group, Inc. is an American travel technology company that owns and operates travel fare aggregators and travel metasearch engines, including Expedia, Hotels.com, Vrbo, Travelocity, Hotwire.com, Orbitz, Ebookers, CheapTickets, CarRentals.com, Expedia Cruises, Wotif, and Trivago. [1]

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  21. These Travel Companies Have The Best Customer Service In 2024

    Best online travel agency for customer service: Expedia. Expedia retook the lead from Booking.com for 2024. Expedia's biggest change for 2023 was a reimagining of its loyalty program. In mid-2023 ...

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    Expedia booked a record-high Q3 revenue of $3.9 billion, a 9% year-over-year increase, and EPS of $5.41, beat by $0.41. The online travel company reported adjusted EBITDA growth of 13% to $1.22B ...

  23. Expedia CEO's Plea for Hotel Owners Over Wholesale Rates

    Share. Expedia CEO Peter Kern pled his case to hotel owners Monday: Take seriously the billion-dollar issue of wholesale rates being misused online. "It's a growing problem," Kern said ...

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    Find the best deals on Elektrostal vacation rentals with Expedia.com. We offer a huge selection of top vacation homes for rental in Moscow Oblast. ... More travel More travel. Stays Stays. Flights Flights. Cars Cars. Packages Packages. Things to do Things to do. Cruises Cruises. Deals. Groups & meetings. Expedia Magazine. Download button with ...

  25. These Are Going to Be the Most Popular Travel Destinations in 2024

    The one-stop travel site—alongside Hotels.com and VRBO—just released Unpack '24, a travel trends analysis for the coming year. In addition to detailing the projected top 10 most popular ...

  26. Travel Disruptors: Capturing B2B growth

    In this installment of Travel Disruptors, Gorin spoke with McKinsey's Emma Loxton about the industry's postpandemic recovery, Expedia Group's B2B offerings, and how generative AI (gen AI) might change the business of travel. The following is an edited transcript of their conversation. McKinsey: As the travel industry continues to bounce ...

  27. 8 Best Apps for Last-minute Flights and Hotels

    Expedia. Whether you want a flight, hotel room, car rental, or total trip package, Expedia's easy-to-navigate app has thousands of last-minute choices for any destination. Though actual prices are ...

  28. Visit Elektrostal: 2024 Travel Guide for Elektrostal, Moscow ...

    Cities near Elektrostal. Places of interest. Pavlovskiy Posad Noginsk. Travel guide resource for your visit to Elektrostal. Discover the best of Elektrostal so you can plan your trip right.

  29. The Best Websites for Booking Accessible Travel in the US and Beyond

    The report, commissioned by Open Doors Organization, an accessible-travel advocacy group, shows that such spending has skyrocketed—up 339%, from $17.3 billion, in 2015. Still, more than 70% of ...