12 Bargain Warm-Weather Destinations to Visit This Winter


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There’s nothing quite like stepping aboard a plane headed to a warm-weather destination in the heart of winter. And although these getaways may seem like they’re only for the rich and famous, there are plenty warm-weather winter destinations suitable for smaller budgets. These 12 budget-friendly getaways will help you return home ready for whatever winter has in store and probably with a suntan too.

#1. Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic


The weather in Puerto Plata is just about as nice as the nightly rates. Travelers can soak in the sun, explore the historic port city, indulge in extreme water sports or venture to the neighboring beach town of Punta Cana for a budget-friendly, all-inclusive resort experience. Colonial architecture, affordable accommodations and airfare and a laid-back atmosphere make Puerto Plata one of our favorite warm-weather destinations.

#2. Los Cabos, Mexico


Not all trips to Mexico have to be to the mainland. Los Cabos — on the southern tip of the Baja Peninsula — offers luxury resorts in a pristine environment for prices that won’t ruin the rest of your 2015 travel plans. With temperatures hovering in the 80s and prime whale-watching season in winter, you’ll realize that Los Cabos is a very difficult destination to leave. Package deals can be the most affordable way to visit Los Cabos, but you’ll want to plan ahead since winter is the high-season.

#3. Phoenix, United States


Travelers who like mild winter temperatures will love the 60-degree winter days in Phoenix. Affordable airfare coupled with incredible dining, world-renowned golf courses, museums, hiking trails and everything from luxury resorts to bed and breakfasts, make Phoenix an exciting and affordable place to beat the cold-weather blues.

#4. Lima, Peru


Venture outside of your comfort zone this winter the stunning city of Lima, Peru. The average high temperature in February is 80, and the sunny, dry climate makes for ideal days of exploring the city and nearby beaches. And although winter is a busy time for South Americans to visit the city, you’ll still enjoy the incredible dining, sightseeing, shopping and historic accommodations for affordable prices.

#5. Southern Patagonia, Chile


Travelers with a thirst for adventure and a desire for mild winter temperatures will fall in love with the Chilean Patagonia. Travel in the North American winter, and you’ll arrive in the heart of summer south of the equator. The mild temperatures, affordable accommodations and majestic wild scenery will leave you in awe. Low hotel and bed and breakfast prices remain despite winter being the busy season, but you’ll want to shop for plane tickets early to get a better deal.

#6. Vieques, Puerto Rico

Photo credit: Kevin Harris
Photo credit: Kevin Harris

Affordable plane tickets, picturesque scenery and ideal winter temperatures make Puerto Rico one of the best budget-friendly winter getaways available for Canadians and American alike. Hop aboard a ferry to Vieques where you can enjoy seclusion, pristine beaches and some of Puerto Rico’s most jaw-dropping views.

#7. Fort Lauderdale, Florida


While party-seeking winter travelers head to Miami, more low-key, warm-weather lovers head to Fort Lauderdale. Average high temperatures in the mid-70s make for ideal golfing, shopping, outdoor dining and beach-going. And with special accommodation deals for visitors who stay longer, you can enjoy an extended getaway in Fort Lauderdale for the same price as a short-term vacation elsewhere.

#8. Ambergris Caye, Belize


Thinking of taking your winter getaway later in the season? The rainy season in Ambergris Caye ends in January, which makes February one of the most ideal times to visit. Average temperatures linger in the mid-70s and while you can opt for expensive resorts, more modest hotels tend to have ideal prices and desirable amenities.

#9. Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic


Affordable airfare and low prices once you arrive are just a couple of reasons the country made our bargain list twice. Santo Domingo is the thriving capital city of the Dominican Republic with a happening nightlife scene, the romantic Zona Colonial and gorgeous historic sights. Be ready to haggle, because most items and services you purchase in Santo Domingo are up for negotiation.

#10. Bangkok, Thailand


Thailand’s exotic atmosphere and location all the way across the Pacific Ocean may make it sound like an expensive getaway, but airfare to Bangkok is surprisingly affordable. And the prices when you arrive are even better. Ancient temples and kind people merge with an exhilarating city atmosphere that should be visited at least once. Although, the weather tends to be hot and humid during the North American winter, so travelers who prefer more mild temperatures may want to reconsider.

#11. Philipsburg — Saint Martin


Early winter travelers seeking an escape during the months of November and December will love the 70- to 80-degree temperatures and affordable vacation packages available in Saint Martin. This time of year — shortly after hurricane season and before hotel prices skyrocket — is the perfect time to enjoy the island’s unique dining, cultural and outdoor experiences without the crowds.

#12. Nha Trang, Vietnam


Airfare to Vietnam from Canada and the United States may not be as affordable as some Caribbean and Central American destinations, but the prices when you arrive will save your budget. Nha Trang, on the south central coast of Vietnam, offers a low key beach atmosphere with gorgeous scenery, plenty of water activities, incredible cuisine and temples dating back to the 800s.

About the Author: Courtney McCaffrey

Courtney McCaffrey is a travel writer and editor based in Wilmington, N.C, Mexico and around the world. In addition to writing, she lives for travel - seeing new places, experiencing new cultures and surfing new waves.

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