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Celebrity Vacation Hotspots You Can Actually Afford

Celebrity Vacation Hotspots You Can Actually Afford

A-list vacations on a D-list budget

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The life of the rich and famous. We hear about it, read about it, even dream about it. But it’s a lifestyle that always seems to be, at most times, unattainable. But whether you’re a movie star or not, it’s important to escape the risk of burnout by packing your bags and heading to a new destination. 

According to a 2019 survey by Bankrate, Americans planned to spend, on average, $1,979 to take a summer vacation. The averages ranged by location, with West Coasters expected to spend an average of $2,265, Northeasterners $2,078, Midwesterners $1,607 and those from the South $1,943. 

The former totals might appear small in comparison to the amount celebrities spend on a weekend getaway, but locations frequented by stars can be visited on a budget, too. Using information from Google Flights, Google Hotels, Triviago and the U.S. Department of Transportation, we found estimates for the most affordable spots. For international destinations, we used estimates for flights to and from New York City airports. 

We can’t all afford to splurge on expensive travel destinations. But these celebrity vacation hotspots could be in your budget even if you still want to save.

Costa Rica

Costa Rica

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Kourtney Kardashian, one of the five sisters in the Kardashian-Jenner family, vacationed in Costa Rica with her family in the summer of 2019. Television personality Mario Lopez was spotted at the Planet Hollywood Beach Resort Costa Rica with his family. One of the best times to visit Costa Rica and feel like a star is between December and April. Rainforests become perfect for touring, festivals are in full swing and temperatures can range from the low 70s to the high 90s, making it an ideal warm-weather destination to spend the holidays. You can live it up in this warm location just like the celebs, even if you are on a budget. The average price for a roundtrip flight to Costa Rica in March is as low as $297, and the average rate for an overnight stay in a four-star hotel is $162.

Anaheim, California

Anaheim, California

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Located in Anaheim, California, is “The Happiest Place on Earth,”  best known as Disneyland. Plenty of stars frequent this destination — Oscar-winning actor Matt Damon has been spotted at the park, as well as Oprah Winfrey — and there are ways to save money on a Disney vacation perfect for the entire family. Most of your change will be spent on your flight and time at the theme park. The average price of a roundtrip flight to California was about $364, a few dollars over the nation’s average, and a day pass to Disneyland is $112 for anyone age 10 and up. But savvy tips and tricks can help you save on hotel prices, especially if you visit in May. The average rate for an overnight stay in Anaheim in May 2019 was $125.

Orlando, Florida

Orlando, Florida

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When you’re searching for a bit of magic and your favorite celeb in Orlando, Florida, there’s only one place to look: Disney World. Actress Drew Barrymore and supermodel Heidi Klum have been known to frequently visit the Disney park. There are certain times when it’s best to visit Disney World. The average price for a flight to Orlando was about $258 in 2019, nearly $100 cheaper than the nation’s average. And overnight stays in Orlando were even cheaper with hotel rates averaging $97 in November 2019.

New York, New York

New York, New York

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New York City is more than a popular destination for tourists from around the world. Celebrities vacation in the Big Apple as well. From local airports to some of the best restaurants like Pastis, there are a few places where you’re really likely to spot a celebrity in the big city. And you can do the same on a budget. Most of your money will have to go toward a flight — the average price of a flight to New York in 2019 was $386.81 — but you can save big on hotel prices. The average overnight hotel rate didn’t exceed $150 in 2019 and was as low as $118 in January. The rest of your travel money can be spent dining like a star and enjoying locations only East Coasters know.

Aspen, Colorado

Aspen, Colorado

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If you’re planning the perfect ski vacation, there’s no better place to look than Aspen, Colorado. This popular ski town has been referred to as “Colorado’s Hollywood” because of the number of celebrities that visit the city to tour the snowy slopes. Kim Kardashian and husband, rapper Kanye West, have taken family trips there, and Oscar winner Leonardo DiCaprio has gone incognito while skiing. You’ll have to save before taking this vacation, but it can still be done. The average price to fly into Denver International Airport was approximately $300 for 2019, then shuttles are available to the mountains. Overnight stays in hotels can get pricey if you stay at one of the ski resorts, but a five-night stay at a three-star hotel in February, one of the best times to visit Aspen, is as low as $199 a night.

Tulum, Mexico

Tulum, Mexico

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If your favorite celeb is posting pics on Instagram of them lounging in the sun, seemingly living a stress-free life, chances are they’re in Mexico. And Tulum is the go-to town on the coast of the country. Paris Hilton has been seen glamping at Habitas, a luxury resort in Tulum where guests can stay in tents on the oceanfront. And actresses Cameron Diaz and Reese Witherspoon are only a few of the celebrities that have been spotted relaxing on Tulum’s beautiful beaches while vacationing at Amansala Yoga and Wellness Resort. Between November and December, after hurricane season, is a prime time to stop by Tulum when temps are in the low 80s. Tickets can appear pricey thanks to a spike in holiday travel, but roundtrip tickets are as low as $310 in November and four-star hotels are as cheap as $66 a night.

Paris, France

Paris, France

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Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony award-winning artist John Legend and his wife, model Chrissy Teigen, recently went on a family vacation to the City of Love. Newlyweds Joe Jonas and Sophie Turner enjoyed a romantic adventure in the city, where they had a meal at Hôtel Costes and snapped a few photos in front of the Eiffel Tower. A trip to Paris doesn’t have to cost a fortune. One of the best times to visit Paris is between September and October when tourist season dies down but the weather is still optimal. The price of a roundtrip flight in October ranges from the mid-$200s to the mid-$300s. And a night at a four-star hotel may be as low as $185 a night.

Miami, Florida

Miami, Florida

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Celebrities love to visit sunny, warm Miami, including tennis star Serena Williams who has been spotted at the Faena Hotel Miami Beach. Famous folks love to eat at Sugar Factory so much that the restaurant has a website dedicated to the stars who visit. The average price to fly to Miami in 2019 was approximately $347, less than the nation’s average, and overnight hotel rates were as low as $109 in September. After saving big on travel, visitors can enjoy their time and money sipping drinks poolside and enjoying the city’s cuisine.

New Orleans, Louisiana

New Orleans, Louisiana

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Thousands of party-goers flock to New Orleans for Mardi Gras every February, celebrities included. Oscar-winning actress Hellen Mirren, Will Ferrell, Spike Lee and “Lord of the Rings” star Elijah Wood, have all enjoyed the annual festivities. You too can party at Mardi Gras among the elite for a fair price. The average fare to fly was an estimated $305 in 2019, and the average overnight hotel price in February was $200. The best part about Mardi Gras is that most of the fun is cheap, like the parades, strolling Bourbon Street, having a snack or taking in the history of the French Quarter.

Paradise Island, Bahamas

Paradise Island, Bahamas

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On Paradise Island, you can find the giant Atlantis resort, a warm-weather paradise with pristine waters and white sand beaches. Stars like late-night host Jimmy Fallon and former One Direction member Liam Payne have enjoyed all that Atlantis has to offer. And rappers Drake and DJ Khaled have both spent Memorial Day weekend lounging on Atlantis’ sandy beaches. Actress Katie Holmes vacationed with her daughter at The Cove at Atlantis, a luxury hotel resort. The best time to visit the Bahamas is between mid-December and mid-April. A trip to Paradise Island will require flying into the capital of the Bahamas, Nassau. Flights are cheapest in March with roundtrip flights ranging from $304 to $333. And an overnight stay at a three-star hotel starts at only $172 a night.

Nashville, Tennessee

Nashville, Tennessee

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In addition to being one of the best foodie towns in America, Nashville, Tennessee, is frequented by celebrities year-round. Country music stars like Kenny Chesney and A-list actors like Gwyneth Paltrow have been seen in the southern state. Much like New York, stars vacationing in Nashville can be recognized at ordinary locations like the airport or one of America’s greatest old-school restaurants, The Loveless Cake. The average price to fly to Nashville was about $347 for 2019, lower than the nation’s average. Overnight hotel rates were under $200 for the year, the cheapest month being January, when the average rate was as low as $155.

Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

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Puerto Vallarta is a town on Mexico’s Pacific Coast. Singer Demi Lovato and actors Jennifer Lawrence and Michael Douglas have been seen enjoying the warm weather and sandy beaches. Hotel Mousai is a popular spot where celebrities like to stay. The luxurious resort has ocean and jungle views and a rooftop infinity pool. A trip to Puerto Vallarta in September promises nice weather and low prices. Roundtrip flights start around $300 and hotel prices are as low as $100 a night for a stay in a four-star hotel.

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

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In 2018, Idaho was dubbed the “New North Hollywood” by TMZ because of the amount of vacationing celebs the state attracted. And celebs love to stay in Coeur d’Alene, one of the best coastal towns in America. Kim Kardashian and Kanye West rented a cabin in the city, and musicians Adam Levine and Harry Styles have also been seen in the city. The price for a flight to Boise, Idaho, the nearest largest airport, averaged $359 for the year. And eating, relaxing and touring the city like your favorite stars is just as affordable.

Las Vegas, Nevada

Las Vegas, Nevada

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Celebrities are spotted year-round in Las Vegas performing, partying and relaxing. Singer Rihanna and actor Jonah Hill have been known to party at the Marquee Nightclub & Dayclub at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, and lavish Vegas restaurants serve famous diners regularly. The average price of a flight to Las Vegas in 2019 was $249, more than $100 below the nation’s average. And hotel rates were even more inexpensive. The average rate didn’t exceed $150 throughout the year and dropped to just over $100 in June.

Ibiza, Spain

Ibiza, Spain

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Ibiza is a party hub where celebrities head to both relax and let loose. You can catch actor Idris Elba spinning a few tracks at the nightclub Lio, or one of the best soccer players in the world, Lionel Messi, enjoying a stay at his adult-only Hotel MiM Ibiza Es Vivé. Paul McCartney, Katy Perry, Amy Schumer and Calvin Harris have also all visited the island. If you’re heading to this party hotspot, consider going in September. Roundtrip flights are as low as $500, a price much cheaper compared to some of the $800 flights in July. And you’ll save big on hotel rates too. A stay in a three-star hotel starts at about $120 a night.

Atlantic City, New Jersey

Atlantic City, New Jersey

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You might not imagine your favorite celebrity relaxing in Atlantic City, New Jersey, but models, musicians, actors and social-media moguls have all flocked there to enjoy the summer heat and stroll the Atlantic City Boardwalk. The average price for a flight to the city was $130 in 2019, more than $200 below the nation’s average. Monthly hotel rates were just as cheap for an overnight stay. The average price to stay in a hotel in April was only $121.

The French Riviera, France

The French Riviera, France

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The Côte d'Azur, or the French Riviera, has been a hotspot for celebrities for decades. Cannes, one of the coastline’s glamorous beach towns, hosts celebrities like megastar Brad Pitt each year for the Cannes Film Festival. And St. Tropez, another stunning small town, is so popular for vacationing celebrities that rappers like Jay-Z have mentioned the destination in songs about living luxuriously. Flights are cheapest in February with roundtrip prices starting around $400, and hotels are even cheaper during the month of love with rates starting at $50 a night for a stay in a four-star tourist hotel.

Punta De Mita, Mexico

Punta De Mita, Mexico

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Jennifer Aniston, Gwyneth Paltrow, Charlie Sheen, Lady Gaga and Hilary Duff all vacation in Punta De Mita, Mexico. The luxurious gated peninsula development combines privacy and accessibility to serve as a utopia for all who visit. According to U.S. News and World Report, roundtrip air prices and hotel rates are at their cheapest between July and September. A roundtrip ticket is as low as $271 and hotels are as cheap as $60 a night.

Jamaica

Jamaica

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Jamaica is a popular destination for travelers searching for a tropical getaway. If you want to escape a cold city during winter months, roundtrip flights start as low as $329 and hotel rates for a four-star hotel start as low as $185. Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, English singer Rita Ora and supermodel Bella Hadid are only a few of the celebrities that have stopped by Jamaica, an insanely affordable warm-weather destination.

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