By Sarah Waffle Gavin, on March 3, 2016

Spring Break 2016 to cost less

That cha-ching you hear is the sound of serious savings on booking travel for Spring Break.

According to a recent study from Expedia, you’ll have more cash to burn on drinks and activities during this year’s spring getaway—especially when compared to 2015.

Our analysis, based on average air ticket prices, indicates that prices to many top Spring Break destinations are down year-over-year. That’s a fancy way of saying everybody’s going to save a bunch of money on this year’s Spring Break trips.

Our data indicates that last-minute bookers could save the biggest amount.

Domestically, that means big savings in the Sunshine State, since four of our five most popular Spring Break destinations are in Florida: Orlando, Miami, Fort Lauderdale, and Tampa. Of these markets, our research indicates Fort Lauderdale shows the biggest difference in flight prices this year—down 17 percent from Spring Break 2015. Orlando and Miami were next with a 14 percent drop.

Internationally, our research indicates savings will be most prevalent in Mexico; three of the five most popular Spring Break destinations are Cancun, San Jose del Cabo, and Puerto Vallarta. Another city—San Juan, Puerto Rico—shows the biggest difference in flight prices this year—down 15 percent from Spring Break 2015. Cancun was second with a 14 percent drop, and Puerto Vallarta was No. 3 with a 10 percent difference.


On the whole, average daily rates of all hotels in Puerto Rico are down more than 5 percent this Spring Break. New Orleans, the Riviera Maya, and Miami also are showing lower average daily rates. Other notable findings: Panama City and Aruba also are showing drops of at least 10 percent.

For college students looking for less traditional destinations, other destinations to show significant price drops for Spring Break 2016 include Lake Tahoe (a 110 percent decline); Paradise Island in the Bahamas (a 45 percent decline); Portland, Oregon (35 percent drop); and San Diego (25 percent). For families, big-city options such as New York, Chicago, Honolulu, and Washington, D.C., all are showing flight savings of between 8-18 percent versus Spring Break 2015.

What’s prompting these price drops? The truth is that there are any number of factors that impact Spring Break pricing: the price of oil, demand, weather, and more. All of these phenomena are in play right now, and the good news is that, collectively, everything seems to be working together to push prices down.

Of course the way to maximize your deal is to book your hotel and your flight at the exact same time. Bundling your hotel and flight can yield hundreds in savings that disappear if booked separately. Consider this for Spring Break. Also, consider the wisdom of a beer bong.

Where are you headed for Spring Break this year?