Thanks to Jen Leo from the LA Times for turning me onto this interactive travel map tool from Money magazine. In no way is it the end-all-be-all of travel searches, but it’s a great way to explore what kind of vacation in different price tiers. Its interactive map asks you a few travel choices. For example, do you want a domestic or international trip? Are you looking to go to the beach, to a city or on an adventure? Then, there are four categories to reflect the amount of money you want to spend: one dollar sign to four. After you answer those questions, the tool will show you on a map which destinations you should be looking into.
Once you choose a destination on the map and click its flag, a window pops up to share more. For Jacksonville, they say it will cost you $148.62 a day. That includes $101.50 a night for a hotel, $14.50 for an inexpensive meal and $3.63 per mile in a taxi. Keep in mind that flights are not calculated and hotel prices are averages based on Hotels.com.
Again, it gives users a good starting place but it leaves out all kinds of great destinations. For example, if you put in one dollar sign for a domestic beach destination it only offers Jacksonville, Florida. Of course, there are hundreds of other choices besides Jacksonville.
Tip: If you want to travel for cheap, consider renting a home or apartment and cooking your own meals there. Here are 5 vacation rental tips from the founder of HomeAway.com.
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Editorial Note: The editorial content on this page is not provided by any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.