Expedia Group Is Calling 2024 The Year Of 'Dupe' Destinations. Here's How To Find The Right One For You

In this day and age, everything is overpriced, including the cost of living and, of course, travel. With flights, lodging, rentals, meals, and more, going on a trip, international or not, won't come cheap. According to Forbes, the average cost of a three-day domestic vacation for a family of four was nearly $4,000 in 2023. Likewise, CNBC reported in April 2023 that roundtrip flights to Europe were 32% more expensive than in 2022. These price increases are due to several reasons, including inflation. This is where cheaper destination dupes come in.

Per a travel trends report from Expedia, destination dupes are on the rise and will continue to rise in popularity in 2024. If you're unfamiliar with the term, "dupe" is a trendy abbreviation for duplicate primarily used on social media. Melanie Fish from Expedia explained this concept further, saying, "In online slang, dupes are cheaper versions of luxury brands. In the Expedia Trends in Travel report, dupes are destinations that are a little unexpected, sometimes more affordable, but every bit as delightful as the tried-and-true places travelers love." Nevertheless, these substitute options offer plenty of adventure at a lower cost if you know what you want and what you're looking for.

Be open when it comes to planning a trip to a destination dupe

In a study conducted by Skyscanner in 2023 (via Travel + Leisure), 93% of travelers said they would consider a dupe destination. If this is you, there's much you need to consider before you pick or travel to your dupe destination. First and foremost, think about the place you want to dupe, why you want to travel there, or what you enjoy about it (think nightlife, food, historical significance, all that good stuff). This will make it easier to find a destination that is on par. Keep in mind that a dupe destination is comparable but not identical to the original.

However, the point is that the experience will be similar in setting and attractions but cheaper. Thus, research to compare the destination dupe and the original. Consider flights, lodging, transportation, meals, and more. Is traveling to the destination dupe less expensive than the original location? If not, you should reconsider or look for another dupe destination.

In other words, be open to more than one location. If flights to your destination dupe are pricier than the original location, check if there's a cheaper flight to a nearby bigger city. You might be able to save money by nabbing a connecting flight. Lastly, to find great deals on flights and accommodations, travel and book during the week instead of the weekend; it will save you money in the long run.

Destination dupe ideas

Although choosing a dupe destination sounds intimidating, it could lead you somewhere you would never have considered. For example, Nashville, Tennessee, known for its significance in country music history, is an iconic Southern city visited by millions annually. However, instead of Nashville, you could travel to Memphis (also in Tennessee) or Macon, Georgia, a must-visit for music fans. Like Nashville, Memphis, and Macon have strong ties to legendary music stars and soul music. In addition, both cities are budget-friendly and have affordable and free things to do.

London, which has attractions like The British Museum and London Eye, was one of the most visited European Cities in 2023. It's also incredibly expensive.  As an alternate, try Belfast, Ireland, or Liverpool, England. Skyscanner (via Travel + Leisure) reported that a trip to Belfast can be up to 73% cheaper than a trip to London. Likewise, Liverpool, home of the Beatles, is significantly cheaper than London. Despite these price differences, Belfast and Liverpool have countless historical sites and museums to explore.

Chances are, you've heard of or even visited Santorini, the famed Greek island in the Aegean Sea. What about Paros (pictured)? The island is only a quick ferry ride away from Santorini. Both Santorini and Paros offer stunning beaches and coastal views. However, Paros is not as well known, which means you'll get more bang for your buck and avoid crowds while doing so.