At the end of the month, I’ll be going to Quebec. But that doesn’t stop me from looking ahead. Right now, in my unprofessional opinion, there’s a glut of cheap flights to some slightly off-beat places so here’s five Spring Break options under $725.
How did I compile this list?
This entry is the result of aimlessly poking around GoogleFlights and LonelyPlanet. Also, if you’re not part of the Scott’s Cheap Flights mailing list (free or the paid version), you’re missing out. SCF notified me when there was cheap flights to Mexico City last June, and that sure as hell beat our original plan of spending a week camping. It’s also a great way to get new ideas for trips.
As I’m writing this, I’m realizing that a lot of these fares are on Turkish Airlines through Istanbul. Sometimes that’s fine, but cheap tickets to Western Europe that go through Istanbul can be a bit of a pain as it adds ~four hours of flight time.
Without further ado, here are Five Spring Break options under $725. All prices I mention here are from Chicago-O’Hare at the end of March and are round-trip. Your results may vary.
Kyiv, Ukraine (aka Kiev)
Price: $696 on Turkish Airlines
Ukraine has been in the news for all of the wrong reasons recently, but the fighting in Donetsk, Crimea, and Lugansk regions is at least a 10 hour drive from Kyiv. The city itself is a bustling, Eastern European capital with the Dnipro River running through the middle of it. Adding to the beauty is the golden-domed monasteries that dot the city such as Kyevo-Pecherska Lavra and old Soviet monuments that harken back to a rapidly-fading era.
Another reason I want to go to Ukraine is because I desperately want to see Pripyat.
For more things to do in Ukraine, and if you need further convincing, click here to see what Lonely Planet has to say about Ukraine.
Price: $449 on United
Sunshine, drinks, culture, and some of the most amazing architecture in the world are all good reasons to go to Barcelona. The cheap flights are just icing on the cake. There’s a slew of things that I want to do in Barcelona such as visit the Museo Picasso, take a stroll down La Rambla, and take in all the Iberian sun my pasty English blood can muster.
Barcelona also makes a great jumping-off point for seeing the rest of Spain in case, like me, you want to feel like Ernest Hemingway.
Lonely Planet’s Barcelona page has more ideas in case you’re not sold.
Price: $404 on COPA ($10 more for Delta)
Bogota is the place that Sarah is pushing the hardest so we can cross off South America on our quest to visit every continent. Like Kyiv, Bogota (and Colombia as a whole) is one of those places that’s weighed down by a bad reputation. While not totally undeserved (be weary of travel advisories in southern parts of the country), the days of FARC’s reign are over. Cities like Bogota, Medellin, and Cartagena all have deep histories and untouched landscapes that draw tourists and make it an unforgettable trip.
More from Lonely Planet can be found here.
Price: $721 on Turkish Airlines
Aside from being a stable and friendly Middle East country, the name Oman can also be used as an expression, a joke that will surely never get old on the 18 hour flight there. Oman, that’s a long flight.
In a region of bigger and better (lookin’ at you, Dubai), Oman’s understated yet deep history is a perfect place to go to see the Middle East’s culture. The Grand Mosque, The Sultan’s Palace, and Bahla Fort are all great examples. Oman is also a place where you can buy Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh.
Oman, here’s the Lonely Planet link (sorry)
Price: $676 on China Eastern Airlines
China Eastern Airlines has a Chicago-Shanghai service that will get you to a few places in China cheaply, including Hong Kong. There are also cheap flights to Beijing if you want to see the Forbidden City.
China Eastern is also what Sarah and I took to South Korea last year, and while it’s not a great airline, it did get us there in one piece. And really, what more can I ask for?
If you go, check out what else to do on the Lonely Planet Hong Kong page.
Where are you considering going? Add your thoughts to the comments section.