Discover the Cheapest Places to Travel in US – Budget Guide

Traveling can be expensive, but it doesn’t have to be. In the United States, many budget-friendly destinations offer an unforgettable experience without breaking the bank. Many affordable travel options exist from the Midwest to the East Coast and everywhere.

In this article, we’ll explore the cheapest US travel places. We’ll take a closer look at budget-friendly travel destinationsaffordable US travel spotsinexpensive vacation spots in the United States, and low-cost travel destinations in America. “Whether you’re looking for budget-friendly destinations in Europe or within the US, today is the day to discover the Cheapest Places to Travel, offering frugal travel options both near and far.”


Key Takeaways


  • There are plenty of budget-friendly travel destinations in the US.
  • Traveling doesn’t have to be expensive if you choose the correct destinations.
  • From the Midwest to the East Coast and the West, there are affordable travel options for everyone.

cheapest places to travel in us

Exploring the Beauty of the Midwest on a Budget


If you’re looking for budget-friendly travel destinations in the US, the Midwest region should be on your list. The region is known for its scenic beauty, vibrant culture, and affordable attractions, making it an ideal vacation spot for budget-conscious travelers.

One of the top destinations in the Midwest is Ohio, which offers plenty of budget-friendly attractions and activities. If you love music, visit Cleveland’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Adult tickets can be as cheap as $10. Meanwhile, Columbus is home to the impressive Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, which has adult admission fees at just $14.

State Attraction Admission fee (adults)
Ohio Rock and Roll Hall of Fame $10
Ohio Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens $14
Michigan Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore $10

Another great destination in the Midwest is Michigan, which has many outdoor attractions. Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore is a beautiful natural spot; adults can enter for as little as $10. The state is also home to various affordable water activities, such as kayaking and paddleboarding.

Illinois is another budget-friendly destination in the Midwest, thanks to its numerous free attractions. The Millennium Park in Chicago is famous, offering free concerts, live music, and public art displays. The city also has a variety of cultural institutions with low admission fees, such as the Museum of Science and Industry, which has adult admission fees at just $21.

The Midwest region is full of budget-friendly travel destinations that offer great value for money. Whether looking for outdoor adventures, cultural experiences, or family-friendly activities, the Midwest has something for everyone.


Uncovering the Hidden Gems of the Southeast


If you’re looking for an affordable US travel spot, the Southeast region is full of hidden gems waiting to be explored. From southern charm to scenic mountain vistas, the Southeast offers plenty of budget-friendly travel destinations.


Explore the Beauty of the Appalachians


North Carolina, Tennessee, and Georgia are home to the Appalachian Mountains, a beautiful region perfect for budget-friendly travel. Hike on the Great Smoky Mountains National Park trail or explore the stunning Blue Ridge Parkway.


Attraction Description Cost
Great Smoky Mountains National Park Scenic hiking trails and waterfalls Free
Blue Ridge Parkway Scenic drive through the mountains Free
Biltmore Estate Historic mansion and gardens $64-$99

Experience Southern Cuisine and Charm


Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana offer a unique cultural experience with their southern cuisine, music, and architecture. Visit New Orleans for its vibrant nightlife and Cajun food, or explore the antebellum architecture in Natchez, Mississippi.


Attraction Description Cost
French Quarter Vibrant nightlife and historic architecture Free
Natchez Historic District Antebellum architecture and history $12-15
Crawfish Boil A traditional Louisiana feast $20-$30 per person


These are just a few examples of inexpensive vacation spots in the United States. The Southeast region has much to offer for budget-friendly travel, so start planning your trip today!


Budget-Friendly Adventures in the Southwest


The Southwest part of the US has many affordable activities and beautiful sights for cost-conscious travelers. Its vast deserts, canyons, and unique geological formations make it a paradise for outdoor adventure and exploration.
One budget-friendly must-visit is the Grand Canyon National Park in Arizona. Entering the park costs $35 per car, a good deal for families or groups. Visitors can explore the park through various hiking trails, including the famous Bright Angel Trail, which offers stunning canyon views.


National Parks in the Southwest Admission Fees
Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona $35 per vehicle
Arches National Park, Utah $30 per vehicle
Joshua Tree National Park, California $30 per vehicle


Arches National Park in Utah is another affordable option for outdoor enthusiasts. Visiting the park costs $30 per car, giving you access to walking paths and unique sandstone arches. Visitors can also camp in the park for an affordable overnight stay.

New Mexico offers affordable options for those interested in cultural experiences with its unique blend of Native American and Hispanic cultures. The Bandelier National Monument, located in the northern part of the state, provides visitors with insight into the ancestral Pueblo people’s lives and history. It’s $25 per car to get into the park. Additionally, the Southwest area has affordable choices for meals and places to stay. Local food trucks and markets in cities like Santa Fe and Albuquerque provide affordable and authentic dining experiences, while budget hotels and camping sites offer comfortable lodging options.

Overall, the Southwest region of the US is a budget-friendly destination for outdoor enthusiasts and cultural explorers. Its stunning natural landscapes and unique cultural experiences make it a must-visit for those looking for an affordable adventure.


Affordable Coastal Escapes on the East Coast


The East Coast offers several affordable options for a budget-friendly beach vacation. From Florida to Maine, plenty of coastal towns have inexpensive accommodations, attractions, and activities.




Florida is known for its beautiful beaches and warm weather, but it can be an expensive destination. However, there are still affordable options, such as Daytona Beach and Fort Lauderdale. Both offer inexpensive accommodations and free or low-cost activities like strolling on the boardwalk, fishing off the piers, and visiting local museums.


South Carolina


South Carolina has several coastal towns worth exploring on a budget, such as Myrtle Beach and Charleston. Myrtle Beach has affordable hotels, condos, and free attractions like the boardwalk and pier. At the same time, Charleston offers low-cost historic district tours and affordable accommodation options.




Maine may not be the first destination that comes to mind for a beach vacation, but its coastal towns offer scenic views and plenty of budget-friendly attractions. Places like Old Orchard Beach and Wells provide inexpensive accommodation options like beach motels and campsites and free or low-cost activities like kayaking and visiting local lighthouses.

Overall, the East Coast has several affordable coastal destinations that provide a budget-friendly beach getaway. Picking the right place and where to stay can let travelers have a great trip without spending too much.


Exploring Natural Wonders on a Budget in the West


For nature enthusiasts, the Western region of the US is a treasure trove of natural wonders. The West has stunning natural views, from Bryce Canyon’s colorful hoodoos to Yosemite’s famous rocks. The best part? It’s possible to explore these beautiful locations on a budget.


Budget-Friendly National Parks


The national parks in the West offer some of the best opportunities to immerse yourself in nature without breaking the bank. One such example is the Grand Canyon National Park, located in Arizona. The park offers numerous hiking trails, camping sites, and guided tours at a reasonable price.

Another affordable option is the Great Basin National Park, located in Nevada. The park boasts gorgeous alpine lakes, bristlecone pine forests, and an extensive cave system, all at an affordable admission fee of $10 per vehicle.


Budget-Friendly Scenic Drives


The Western region of the US has some of the most scenic drives in the country, and many of these are budget-friendly. The Pacific Coast Highway, located in California, is one such example. This drive, 655 miles from San Francisco to San Diego, gives terrific Pacific Ocean views and passes through beautiful towns.

Another budget-friendly scenic drive is the Oregon Columbia River Gorge Scenic Highway; this drive boasts stunning waterfalls, lush forests, and a glimpse into the region’s history, all at no cost.


Budget-Friendly Outdoor Adventures


Outdoor adventures in the West don’t have to be expensive, either. The region offers many budget-friendly options, such as hiking, camping, and water sports. One such example is Lake Tahoe, located in California and Nevada. The lake offers affordable camping options, kayaking, and hiking trails, all while surrounded by the breathtaking Sierra Nevada Mountains.

Another budget-friendly outdoor adventure is the Moab area, located in Utah. The area offers affordable camping options and opportunities for mountain biking, hiking, and canyoneering, all against the stunning red rock formations.

Exploring the natural wonders of the Western US on a budget is an experience like no other. With budget-friendly national parks, scenic drives, and outdoor adventures, there’s no reason not to add this region to your travel list.


Affordable City Getaways


If you’re looking for budget-friendly cities with plenty to see and do, the US has a wide range of options to choose from. Whether you’re a music, food, or history fan, there’s a city out there waiting for you. Here are some of the most affordable city getaways in the US:


City Average Daily Cost Top Affordable Activities
Austin, TX $90 Food truck tour, Barton Springs Pool, Lady Bird Lake Hike, and Bike Trail
Nashville, TN $110 Grand Ole Opry Tour, Country Music Hall of Fame, Belle Meade Mansion
New Orleans, LA $120 Walking tour of the French Quarter, St. Louis Cathedral, Café du Monde


Of course, these cities are just the tip of the iceberg. Other affordable options include Kansas City, MO, Charleston, SC, and Albuquerque, NM. No matter where you go, check out free events and festivals in the area for a taste of local culture without breaking the bank.


Budget-Friendly Cultural Experiences


Traveling on a budget doesn’t mean sacrificing cultural experiences. The US has numerous destinations that offer affordable opportunities to immerse yourself in art, history, and local traditions.


Cleveland, Ohio


Cleveland is a hidden gem for art enthusiasts with budget limitations. The Cleveland Museum of Art has a world-renowned collection and free admission. The nearby Cleveland Cultural Gardens offer a beautiful outdoor space to explore 30 unique ethnic gardens. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame also has fascinating displays about the history of American music.


New Orleans, Louisiana


New Orleans is a vibrant city with rich cultural traditions. Join a free guided walk in the French Quarter to discover the city’s past and buildings. To indulge in local culture, visit the New Orleans Jazz National Historical Park, which offers free concerts and exhibitions. Additionally, the New Orleans Museum of Art hosts free admission every Wednesday.


Santa Fe, New Mexico


Santa Fe is famous for its lively arts and distinct cultural background. The city offers numerous free galleries and museums, including the New Mexico Museum of Art and the Institute of American Indian Arts Museum. To experience local traditions, visit the Santa Fe Indian Market, the largest Native American arts market in the world.


Savannah, Georgia


Savannah is a lovely city in the South with a deep historical background. Take a free walking tour of the city’s historic district to learn about its past. The Savannah College of Art and Design offers free museum admission, showcasing contemporary art and design. Additionally, the Telfair Museums offer free admission on the first Friday of every month.

Exploring these budget-friendly cultural destinations in the US is an excellent way to broaden your travel experiences without breaking the bank.


Affordable Outdoor Adventures


For those seeking affordable outdoor adventures, the US offers plenty of options. From hiking and camping to water sports and more, there is something for everyone. Here are some budget-friendly outdoor destinations to consider:


Destination Activity Average Cost
Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming Hiking, Camping $15 per person/night for camping
Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Tennessee Hiking, Fishing Free admission and camping available for $17-$20 per night
Lake Tahoe, California Kayaking, Stand Up Paddleboarding $25-$50 per day for equipment rental
Moab, Utah Mountain Biking $15-$20 per day for bike rental


When planning your budget-friendly outdoor adventure, consider visiting during off-peak seasons to save even more money. Also, research any necessary permits or fees beforehand to avoid unexpected costs.

With the abundance of affordable outdoor destinations in the US, planning a budget-friendly adventure that won’t break the bank is accessible.


Affordable Family-Friendly Destinations


Traveling with kids can be challenging, but it doesn’t have to break the bank. Plenty of budget-friendly family destinations in the US offer affordable accommodations, attractions, and activities suitable for all ages. Check out some of the cheapest places to travel in the US with your family:


Destination Why It’s Affordable Family-Friendly Activities
Myrtle Beach, South Carolina There are plenty of budget-friendly lodging options and free beach access. Beach activities, water parks, and mini-golf courses.
Gatlinburg, Tennessee Affordable cabin rentals and free outdoor activities in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Hiking, scenic drives, and local family attractions like mini-golf and go-karts.
San Antonio, Texas Reasonably priced hotels and inexpensive activities like the River Walk and the Alamo. Theme parks, museums, and family-friendly tours.

Other affordable, family-friendly destinations include Branson, Missouri; Virginia Beach, Virginia; and Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin. Watch for package deals and discounts on attractions and accommodations to save even more. You can enjoy a fun and affordable family vacation in the US with some research and planning.




Exploring the US does not have to break the bank. By focusing on budget-friendly destinations, activities, and accommodations, you can enjoy a fulfilling travel experience without overspending. From the Midwest to the West Coast, from cultural experiences to outdoor adventures, the US has much to offer for the budget-conscious traveler.


Plan Your Next Adventure


Choosing just one place can be challenging when so many budget-friendly options are available. Consider your interests and travel preferences when planning your next budget-friendly adventure. Many options exist, whether for a family-friendly vacation or a solo backpacking trip.


Make the Most of Your Travel Budget


While traveling on a budget, making the most of your money is essential. Look for free or low-cost activities in the area, consider staying in budget-friendly accommodations like hostels or camping grounds, and sample local cuisine rather than eating at expensive restaurants. Watching your expenses can make your travel money last longer and give you a more extended vacation.

What are you waiting for? Begin organizing your cost-effective trip now and discover the most affordable spots in the US!