Booking.com Shares 5 Budget-Friendly Destinations to Inspire the First Trip of the New Year
A new year with new resolutions is upon us, and for many traveling will be on top of the 2022 bucket list after another year of uncertainty and many travel plans being put on hold. According to recent Booking.com research, the travel appetite is bigger than ever before, with three quarters (72%)* of US travelers planning to say ‘yes’ to any vacation opportunity if budget allows in 2022. With the holidays behind us, Booking.com is sharing five budget-friendly destinations based on traveler reviews** and budget-friendly accommodations to inspire the first trip of the year if and when it becomes safe to do so.
To make 2022 travel even more budget friendly, Booking.com is sharing Early 2022 Deals for travelers to use when booking their next trip. Discounts start at 15 percent and are valid for stays until March 31, 2022. In addition, Booking.com is bringing the great value of its Genius program to even more customers by giving all account holders access to the program’s Level 1 benefits, with no minimum number of previous bookings to qualify, including access to exclusive 10% discounts at hundreds of thousands of participating properties around the world. All travelers have to do is download the Booking.com app, log in and look for the Genius logo to identify associated benefits, discounts and perks.
While the capital city of Malaysia may not directly feel budget friendly, according to Booking.com travelers Kuala Lumpur actually is one of the top recommended budget friendly destinations. Many landmarks in the city are free to enter, and traveling to these landmarks can be done free of charge when hopping on the KL City Bus, which takes you to the city’s most popular districts. Travelers can further enjoy the amazing food scene the city has to offer and enjoy authentic Asian dishes in many spots throughout the city for less than a few euros.
Where to stay: Situated in the heart of Kuala Lumpur is The Bed KLCC and is the perfect place to stay for travelers on a budget looking to explore the city. The modern designed hostel offers clean, individual pods in shared rooms, or guests can choose to stay in a private bedroom. City landmarks such as the iconic Petronas Twin Towers and the Menara Tower are just a short walk away, saving you transportation costs. To taste some incredible good food, Jalan Alor, one of the most famous roads of the city filled with food stalls and budget proof restaurants, is just a short walk away.
Often ranked as one of the most affordable cities to visit in Europe, and highly recommended as one of the top budget friendly destinations by Booking.com travelers, Sofia is worth a visit for those looking to explore a destination with a rich culture and history without breaking the bank. Travelers can visit multiple churches and museums, and admire the authentic buildings that are scattered throughout the city for free. And because the city is so quaint, every attraction can be easily reached by foot, which saves money on transportation. Since the Bulgarian climate is well suited to growing a range of fruit and veggies, the local cuisine isn’t expensive, and even the local wines are a delight to taste for a small price. During a guided Market Food Tour at the biggest open-air market in the city, travelers can get a sense of the local produce themselves for an affordable price.
Where to stay: Courthouse Apartments Slavi features cozy apartments in the heart of Sofia. Many of the city landmarks and restaurants are just a short walk away, making it a perfect stay for a city trip. The apartments are modernly designed and feature everything you need for a home away from home, including a fully equipped kitchen for those travelers who prefer to cook their meals with local products themselves to save some extra money.
For travelers looking to shop for a new wardrobe without spending too much money, Istanbul is the place to visit as it’s highly recommended by Booking.com travelers for fashion bargains, alongside also being budget friendly. Not only is the city full of historic sites that can be explored during a guided Small-Group City Highlights Walking Tour, the city is also known as the fashion capital of Turkey, with a variety of shopping options to fit every budget - from shopping malls with modern fashion brands to traditional shopping in bazaars. Besides shopping for clothes, it’s the perfect destination for shopping in general without noticing it too much in your wallet. From handmade carpets and handicraft to spices and freshly made delicacies.
Where to stay: Budget-friendly property Agora Hostel is centrally located with views of the famous Bosphorus river and landmarks such as the Hagia Sophia and Basilica Cistern nearby. The property is a perfect stay for those looking forward to some bargain shopping since the Grand Bazaar, one of the largest and oldest covered markets in the world with over 4,000 shops, is just a short walk away. And when it’s time for relaxation after a shopping spree, guests can enjoy some Turkish delights in one of the many nearby restaurants.
Escape the city and explore nature in Jasper, the largest national park in the Canadian Rockies. Jasper is known for its vast wilderness, majestic peaks, abundant wildlife and outstanding natural beauty, making it a perfect destination for every nature and outdoor lover. While traveling to Jasper can usually be quite expensive, there are ways to explore this bucket list destination on budget. According to Booking.com travelers, Jasper is one of the top recommended destinations for camping. While camping in the winter can be very cold, it’s the right season to save some extra money to plan an epic trip for the spring or summer season. Pack your tents, save some money and go on a more adventurous trip as there are plenty of scenic camping spots in and around the national park to choose from and still be able enjoy the beautiful sights and nature Jasper has to offer. For the ultimate camping feeling, cook your meals on your own camping stove and enjoy your food in nature, and it saves you some extra money as well!
Where to stay: While summer is the ultimate season to stay in a tent in Jasper, the winters can get pretty cold and snowy. If you can’t wait until summer and prefer to enjoy the beauty of Jasper in winter, HI-Athabasca Falls offers a comfortable stay, but still in a budget friendly way. Staying in this back-to-basics wilderness hostel will still give you the camping feeling by waking up in the middle of nature every morning. The property comes with a fireplace in the communal area to warm up and features a fully equipped kitchen for some campsite cooking.
While we’re just done with the Christmas dinners, food is always an excuse to travel with almost half (49%)* of US travelers want to try out the best places for food and drink during their next trip. And Goiânia is a must visit for foodies that are on a budget, since this destination in central Brazil is highly recommended by Booking.com travelers for its affordable farmers markets. Travelers visiting Goiânia can find and enjoy local delicacies at one of the many farmers markets throughout the city for a reasonable price. At the same time, travelers are traveling more sustainably given that the products that can be found on these markets are produced by local farmers in the nearby area, perfect for the almost 7 in 10 (64%)*** of US travelers who want the money that they spend when traveling to go back to the local community.
Where to stay: Located a short walk from Mercadinho Natureba, one of Goiânia’s biggest and popular farmers markets, Flat Jd Goiás is a modern apartment in the city centre. After a day exploring the city, strolling around one of the many parks like the famous Parque Flamboyant, and shopping for organic produce, guests can either cook a homemade dinner in the property kitchen or try out the grill in the communal area. And with incredible views over the city, which is priceless, the food even tastes better.
*Research commissioned by Booking.com and conducted among a sample of adults who plan to travel for business or leisure in the next 12-24 months. In total 24,055 respondents across 31 countries and territories were polled (including 501 from Argentina, 1003 from Australia, 500 from Belgium, 1001 from Brazil, 500 from Canada, 1000 from China, 1007 from Colombia, 1001 from Croatia, 508 from Denmark, 1002 from France, 1000 from Germany, 1005 from Hong Kong, 1000 from India, 502 from Israel, 1003 from Italy, 1002 from Japan, 500 from Mexico, 501 from The Netherlands, 501 from New Zealand, 500 from Peru, 1000 from Russia, 1005 from Singapore, 1002 from South Korea, 1002 from Spain, 501 from Sweden, 501 from Switzerland, 504 from Taiwan, 500 from Thailand, 1000 from the UK, 1002 from the US and 501 from Vietnam). Respondents completed an online survey in August 2021.
**Endorsement data from Booking.com based on the most recommended and relevant destinations by global travelers for budget friendly, farmers markets, fashion bargains and camping.
***Research commissioned by Booking.com and independently conducted among a sample of 29,349 respondents across 30 countries and territories (1,000 from USA, 1,007 from Canada, 1,000 from Mexico, 964 from Colombia, 1,000 from Brazil, 1,000 from Argentina, 999 from Australia, 941 from New Zealand, 1,001 from Spain, 1,000 from Italy, 1,000 from France, 1,000 from UK, 1,000 from Germany, 1,003 from Netherlands, 986 from Denmark, 1,000 from Sweden, 997 from Croatia, 1,005 from Russia, 1,003 from Israel, 1,000 from India, 1,000 from China, 1,005 from Hong Kong, 968 from Thailand, 963 from Singapore, 1,000 from Taiwan, 1,005 from Vietnam, 1,000 from South Korea, 1,000 from Japan, 1,002 from South Africa and 500 from Kenya ). In order to participate in this survey, respondents had to be 18 years of age or older, had to have traveled at least once in the past 12 months and must be planning to travel in 2021, and be either the primary decision maker or involved in the decision making of their travel. The survey was taken online and took place in March 2021.