Our big Boxing Day sale is just around the corner, which means it’s time to kick your travel planning into high gear if you want to snag some of these hot deals for your 2021 holidays. Since 2020’s lack of travelling has probably given you a mile-long bucket list, you might be feeling unsure of where to go first.

Well, look no further than our list of the best destinations to book this year on Boxing Day. These destinations have it all: unending things to see and do, good for summer trips, and stunning scenery. Most importantly, we’ll have deals for all of them during the Boxing Day sale.

*Before travelling, always check local and national government guidelines for your destination to ensure you understand what restrictions are in place.*

1. Croatia


Croatia makes for the perfect summer getaway: it’s full of stunning beaches and island escapes, plus unique and charming cities. It’s also less crowded (and cheaper!) than more well-known European island destinations like Greece or the Italian coast. While cities like Dubrovnik can definitely get crowded in the summer, travelling in May or September will help you avoid most of the crowds.

Croatia has a unique blend of both Austro-Hungarian and Mediterranean cultures. You’ll find unique and delicious foods, art and architecture with influences from Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean. Explore Zagreb, Croatia’s stunning capital, then head to Plitvice Lakes or Krka National Parks for some incredible scenery. Of course, you’ll also want to make time to visit Dubrovnik, the coastal city made famous by Game of Thrones.

Fly into: Zagreb (ZAG) or Split (SPU). Zagreb is more central and often has more flight options and cheaper flights, but Split is right on the coast. If you’re planning to spend lots of time on the beach and/or do a sailing excursion, starting in Split makes sense. If you want to see some of Croatia’s incredible cities too, Zagreb is a good option.

2. Tulum, Mexico

Tulum, Mexico is a great place to check off your bucket list in 2021. It’s super easy to social distance, since the good weather and endless beaches means everything can happen outdoors. Safety measures like increased cleaning and mask mandates are in place in many areas and at most hotels. In addition, many hotels are operating at limited capacity. For maximum social distancing, choose a smaller hotel that’s right on a beach (they’ll be easy to find!). This will make it easy to walk straight from your room to the ocean. While you’re there, make sure to visit a few Cenotes, swim with sea turtles, fill up on authentic Mexican food and of course, enjoy plenty of beach time.

Fly into: Cancun, Mexico (CUN), then take a taxi or bus to Tulum. It’s a bit of a drive, but it’s the closest airport. Taxis cost about $80USD but the bus is around $12USD. Either way, it’ll take about an hour and a half.

3. Kenya


If you’re looking to make up for 2020 with a truly unique and adventurous experience, consider planning a trip to Kenya. Kenya is one of the best places to see African wildlife, as it’s home to Maasai Mara, which is the National Park with the highest concentration of mammals in the world. Plus, its wide-open landscapes are great for social distancing and the country has implemented rigorous testing requirements and temperature-taking practices to keep visitors safe and healthy. 

Fly into: Nairobi, Kenya’s capital city

4. Miami, FL

Where better to social distance than on a sunny beach? Flights to Miami have been at rock-bottom prices for weeks now. You know what that means: Boxing Day deals are only going to make them even cheaper. Whether you’re booking ahead for spring break or just planning a winter getaway to soak up some vitamin D, Miami is an easy destination for year-round sunshine. And it’s a destination with something for everyone. Enjoy plenty of time for relaxing on the beach or going surfing, trendy nightlife and a hip urban city, plus plenty of delicious (and outdoor) food options. Taco truck by the beach, anyone?

5. New York City, USA


With airfare still at all-time lows, now might be the perfect time to book a flight for a future trip to New York City.  New York has something for everyone and with many people choosing more distanced destinations, we expect there to be great deals to be found in 2021.

6. Costa Rica

If Costa Rica’s been on your bucket list for a while, but you’ve never made the time to get down to Central America, 2021 is a good year to make it happen. Costa Rica’s already welcoming back travellers. Whether you’re wanting to travel in the next few months or holding out for a trip later next year, Costa Rica is a possibility. Costa Rica’s known as an adventure destination, so it’s perfect for students. It’s also perfect for travelling when you want to have plenty of options to stay outside and socially distanced. From hiking in national parks and rainforests to waterfall rappelling, climbing volcanoes, or snorkelling, surfing and windsurfing on one of Costa Rica’s many beaches, you’ll find adventure galore in Costa Rica!

Fly into: the Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO) in San Jose

7. Dubai

Dubai might not be on your bucket list yet, but it’s an underrated destination that has a lot to offer for students! Dubai is one of the modern, exciting and diverse cities in the world, with stunning skylines, record-breaking architecture, amazing beaches, endless shopping and more. It’s also home to some fantastic adventure options if you like a bit of an adrenaline rush with your vacations! Go skydiving, mountain biking, sandboarding, dune bashing, kite-surfing, hot air ballooning and more. The year-round warm weather also makes it easy to do most things outside and social distance. It’s also one of the safest countries in the world.

Fly into: Dubai International Airport (DXB). It’s the world’s busiest airport and offers plenty of flight options.

8. Japan

We’ve said it before, but we’ll say it again: Japan is an incredible destination for a 2021 trip. Whether you want to spend some time in the ultra-modern Tokyo seeing iconic skyscrapers, filling up on amazing food and experiencing the hustle and bustle of a big city or need some space to chill out, Japan has a lot to offer. The quiet bamboo forests and historic temples in Kyoto might be just what you need after a stressful year! Either way, Japan is an extremely safe and clean country—definitely a big plus as you’re planning for next year.

Fly into: You’ll find the most options into Haneda International Airport (HND). The Narita Airport in Tokyo (NRT) also has international flights. It’s easy to travel from Tokyo to other areas of Japan, so we recommend starting with at least a few days in Tokyo before branching out to other cities.

Ready to book your trip? Make sure you’re signed up for a free StudentUniverse account to unlock exclusive fares and be able to use promo codes during our big Boxing Day sale.

Categories: Inspiration

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