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Seattle Most Expensive U.S. City for a Summer Escape; Head South for Savings, According to TripAdvisor TripIndex

NEWTON, Mass., June 17, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- TripAdvisor®, the world's largest travel site*, today announced the results of its annual TripIndex™ Cities cost-comparison study, revealing that Dallas is the most affordable U.S. city for a summer trip, while Hanoi, Vietnam is the least expensive international destination. The findings also show Seattle as the priciest U.S. city this summer, while Cancun is the most expensive internationally.

The TripIndex helps travelers identify the destinations that offer the best value by comparing the cost of a three-night trip during the summer in nearly 60 key tourist cities around the U.S. and world, taking into account typical travel costs for two. For each day, the Index factors a four-star hotel stay, an organized tour or activity at local attractions, a round-trip taxi ride, as well as lunch and dinner. The study was conducted ahead of the summer travel period by TripAdvisor with Ipsos, an independent research firm.

"The South is the most affordable U.S. region for a summer city escape, with a three-day trip estimated at about $1,300. That's $450 less than what travelers would pay for a similar trip to Western cities, according to the TripIndex," commented Brooke Ferencsik, director of communications for TripAdvisor. "But even in the most expensive destinations, savvy travelers can snag a bargain stay by comparison shopping on TripAdvisor, which could save them up to 30 percent on their hotels."

Western U.S. Cities Costliest

  • The West is home to 7 of the top 10 most expensive cities on the U.S. TripIndex, including #1 Seattle ($2,080), #2 Honolulu ($2,046), #4 San Francisco ($1,909) and #6 Los Angeles ($1,850).
  • Seattle's top ranking is largely driven by its pricey hotel rates—average nightly rates for a 4 or 4.5 star hotel in the Emerald City this summer are $438, which is nearly 50 percent more than the U.S .TripIndex average.
    • Tip for Saving: The Silver Cloud Hotel – Seattle Stadium features a rooftop pool with views of Elliot Bay, and is bookable on TripAdvisor this summer for an average of $284 per night—$150 less than the Seattle average.
  • Surprisingly, New York City ($1,909) ranked as only the fifth costliest U.S. city during summer.
    • Tip for Saving: When booking in advance, travelers can often get special deals on activities. For example, recommended admittance to New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art is $25, but a "Skip the Line" ticket can be purchased for the same cost.
  • Cancun is the costliest international destination for a three-day break ($2,019), with the most expensive international hotel rates ($373) and activity cost ($167).

Americans Can Head South to Save

  • More than half of the least expensive U.S. destinations during summer are in the South, including the top three: Dallas ($1,171) New Orleans ($1,248) and Miami ($1,262).
    • Tip for Saving: Stay at the Intercontinental Dallas, bookable on TripAdvisor this summer for $154 per night, and save an additional $130 off projected costs for a three-day trip.
  • Travelers will find the least expensive U.S. hotel rates in Las Vegas ($157 per night), but also the most expensive attractions ($149 on average).
  • The most affordable food can be found in New Orleans, where lunch and dinner for two will cost around $86.
    • Tip for Saving: Schedule a Food Walking Tour for $55 to sample famous French Quarter fare while learning about the local culture and history.

Bargain Stays in Southeast Asia

  • Four of the 10 most affordable cities worldwide are in Southeast Asia: #1 Hanoi ($732) #4 Bangkok ($822), #7 Kuala Lumpur ($914) and #9 Manila ($925).
  • Southeast Asia destinations are 28%, or approximately $320, less than expensive than Dallas, the most affordable U.S. city in the TripIndex.
    • Tip for Saving: The TripIndex prices out on-the-ground costs, but travelers should also factor in flight fare when planning their budgets. Travelers can compare flight costs and book on TripAdvisor and also sign up for Air Watch alerts to get emails when prices drop.

TripIndex Cities: Average Cost of a Three-Day Summer Trip for Two

Least Expensive – U.S:
Destination



Lunch
(per
day)

Dinner
(per
day)

Taxi
(2-mile
round-
trip)
Tour/
Activity
(per day)

Hotel
(per
night)

Total
(three
days)

1 Dallas $31.80 $82.13 $18.88 $37.80 $219.65 $1,170.78
2 New Orleans $26.77 $58.73 $22.99 $64.06 $243.45 $1,248.00
3 Miami $23.37 $73.45 $21.54 $125.58 $176.84 $1,262.34
4 Minneapolis $28.30 $77.73 $22.22 $51.98 $251.01 $1,293.72
5 Atlanta $30.56 $79.09 $17.70 $82.36 $224.18 $1,301.67
6 Houston $25.67 $64.80 $20.89 $96.48 $232.67 $1,321.53
7 Las Vegas $33.56 $89.27 $24.97 $148.86 $156.61 $1,359.81
8 Philadelphia $27.00 $87.60 $18.02 $81.42 $267.92 $1,445.88
9 Washington, D.C. $30.33 $80.40 $23.77 $85.26 $277.42 $1,491.54
10 Orlando $25.17 $76.64 $21.51 $116.32 $261.44 $1,503.24
Most expensive – U.S:
Destination



Lunch
(per
day)

Dinner
(per
day)

Taxi
(2-mile
round-
trip)
Tour/
Activity
(per day)

Hotel
(per
night)

Total
(three
days)

1 Seattle $27.49 $72.47 $23.49 $131.48 $438.46 $2,080.17
2 Honolulu $34.80 $81.63 $31.67 $143.80 $390.03 $2,045.79
3 Boston $32.66 $81.82 $23.96 $98.70 $406.45 $1,930.77
4 San Francisco $32.97 $87.24 $29.16 $80.16 $406.88 $1,909.23
5 New York City $42.63 $127.70 $25.97 $109.09 $331.00 $1,909.17
6 Los Angeles $27.27 $92.91 $22.66 $111.68 $362.26 $1,850.34
7 Portland, Ore. $29.97 $93.80 $19.11 $88.96 $345.96 $1,733.40
8 Chicago $27.30 $96.00 $21.03 $93.26 $313.95 $1,654.62
9 San Diego $29.13 $87.42 $21.81 $116.60 $287.21 $1,626.51
10 Denver $30.67 $86.67 $17.09 $74.76 $320.42 $1,588.83
Least Expensive -- International:
Destination



Lunch
(per
day)

Dinner
(per
day)

Taxi
(2-mile
round-
trip)
Tour/
Activity
(per day)

Hotel
(per
night)

Total
(three
days)

1 Hanoi, Vietnam $15.97 $45.36 $4.10 $91.41 $87.22 $732.18
2 Warsaw, Poland $19.72 $72.01 $20.01 $47.30 $87.42 $739.38
3 Sharm el Sheikh, Egypt $14.45 $52.06 $5.80 $99.33 $101.78 $820.26
4 Bangkok, Thailand $16.44 $59.57 $10.38 $92.97 $94.76 $822.36
5 Mumbai, India $20.88 $62.40 $4.97 $73.02 $120.83 $846.30
6 Lisbon, Portugal $35.57 $55.18 $25.33 $56.46 $129.70 $906.72
7 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia $23.57 $69.40 $6.52 $112.64 $92.64 $914.31
8 Marrakech, Morocco $47.08 $78.89 $4.00 $73.28 $103.63 $920.64
9 Manila, Philippines $14.87 $30.63 $11.55 $111.13 $140.18 $925.08
10 Berlin, Germany $23.02 $68.26 $24.77 $76.33 $117.88 $930.78
Most expensive -- International:
Destination



Lunch
(per
day)

Dinner
(per
day)

Taxi
(2-mile
round-
trip)
Tour/
Activity
(per day)

Hotel
(per
night)

Total
(three
days)

1 Cancun, Mexico $30.42 $89.12 $13.43 $166.95 $373.11 $2,019.09
2 Zurich, Switzerland $61.68 $151.39 $46.15 $89.08 $300.23 $1,945.59
3 New York City $42.63 $127.70 $25.97 $109.09 $331.00 $1,909.17
4 London, UK $48.18 $109.15 $34.92 $121.71 $311.99 $1,877.85
5 Punta Cana, DR $28.41 $85.23 $1.86 $159.27 $326.92 $1,805.07
6 Paris, France $52.49 $99.82 $16.86 $99.04 $270.38 $1,615.77
7 Tokyo, Japan $44.04 $87.35 $27.76 $127.14 $244.11 $1,591.20
8 Toronto, Canada $30.79 $94.70 $23.99 $82.32 $283.17 $1,544.91
9 Dubai, UAE $53.36 $166.87 $10.19 $143.28 $134.24 $1,523.82
10 Singapore $61.60 $147.95 $8.71 $78.34 $206.00 $1,507.80

Notes to Editors: The TripIndex Cities 2015 destination list is comprised of 59 key cities among the top searched countries and destinations.

TripIndex Cities prices out the average daily cost for the following items in each destination, multiplied by three to represent the cost of a three-day city trip for two people:

  • Lunch: Meal and soft drink
  • Dinner: Appetizer, entrée and bottle of wine to share
  • Taxi: Round-trip taxi ride of two miles each way
  • Tour/Activity: Cost of a tour/activity bookable on TripAdvisor via Viator
  • Hotel: Accommodation in a 4-4.5 star hotel bookable on TripAdvisor

Research was conducted by Ipsos and TripAdvisor and prices were collected through telephone and Internet searches. Prices were taken in local currencies between March 27, 2015 and May 5, 2015 and currency conversion rates were taken from xe.com on May 10, 2015.

Lunch for two: Prices specify the average cost of a common main meal for two people with a soft drink (prices average from four mid-range restaurants in each destination).

Dinner for two: Prices specify the average cost of a traditional or common two-course meal (appetizer and entrée) for two people with a bottle of house (or cheapest available) white wine (prices average from four mid-range restaurants in each destination).

Return taxi journey: Prices specify the approximate cost of two taxi rides of two miles each, representing a roundtrip ride. Data was taken from local authorities and taxi companies in the area. Taxi companies were identified using Internet searches and contacted via telephone in each market.

Tours/activities for two: Prices specify the average cost of a tour/activity for two people in each destination. The average price was calculated from all bookable tours and activities (excluding multi-day tours) on TripAdvisor via Viator.

Hotel room: Prices specify the average cost of one night's stay in 4 and 4.5 star hotels bookable on TripAdvisor in each destination between June 15 – August 31, 2015, aggregated from booking partners, including online travel agencies and direct hotel suppliers.

About TripAdvisor

TripAdvisor® is the world's largest travel site*, enabling travelers to plan and book the perfect trip. TripAdvisor offers advice from millions of travelers and a wide variety of travel choices and planning features with seamless links to booking tools that check hundreds of websites to find the best hotel prices. TripAdvisor branded sites make up the largest travel community in the world, reaching 340 million unique monthly visitors**, and more than 225 million reviews and opinions covering more than 4.9 million accommodations, restaurants and attractions. The sites operate in 45 countries worldwide. TripAdvisor also includes TripAdvisor for Business, a dedicated division that provides the tourism industry access to millions of monthly TripAdvisor visitors.

TripAdvisor, Inc. (Nasdaq:TRIP) manages and operates websites under 24 other travel media brands: www.airfarewatchdog.com, www.bookingbuddy.com, www.cruisecritic.com, www.everytrail.com, www.familyvacationcritic.com, www.flipkey.com, www.thefork.com (including www.lafourchette.com, www.eltenedor.com, www.iens.nl, www.besttables.com and www.dimmi.com.au), www.gateguru.com, www.holidaylettings.co.uk, www.holidaywatchdog.com, www.independenttraveler.com, www.jetsetter.com, www.niumba.com, www.onetime.com, www.oyster.com, www.seatguru.com, www.smartertravel.com, www.tingo.com, www.travelpod.com, www.tripbod.com, www.vacationhomerentals.com, www.viator.com, www.virtualtourist.com, and www.kuxun.cn.

*Source: comScore Media Metrix for TripAdvisor Sites, worldwide, December 2014

**Source: Google Analytics, average monthly unique users, Q1 2015

CONTACT: Erin Millard (617) 795-7985 emillard@tripadvisor.com

Source:TripAdvisor