With COVID-19 currently preventing us all from hitting the road, we’re spending a lot of time dreaming about our next trip. Here are our top ideas for your first trip to take after lockdown ends. When it came to selecting these destinations, we had only two requirements:
1. Budget-friendly (either cheap flights or low costs when you get there) and
2. Epic enough to give you that special something to look forward to until you can get back out there.
Stay close to home for your first trip after lockdown and plan to stay in Europe:
For an other-worldly, adventurous, and more remote trip, head to Iceland. Although Iceland was basically unknown as a tourist destination even just ten years ago, it’s become quite popular – mostly due to its stunning outdoor scenery and adventures. And while Iceland has been known for its expensive food prices, with our cheap flights and list of free things to do there, it’s totally possible to plan an awesome trip on a budget.
Portugal has historically been known as a great budget European destination. Recently, it’s been getting more and more popular. With castles, beaches and loads of good food, there’s plenty to do and explore. Take advantage of those low flight prices now and book a future trip before prices rise again.
Flights to Budapest are some of the cheapest flights within Europe right now. Take advantage of these low prices and plan a cheap post-lockdown trip to Budapest to enjoy great food and culture.
Looking to plan a trip with a taste of both Europe and something else? Plan a trip to Turkey – where Europe and Asia meet. Savour the famous Turkish kebabs, try the national drink, swim with turtles and grab yourself a ride in a hot air balloon. The possibilities are endless.
Craving time out of doors? Hit the beach for your first trip after lockdown:
While Bali isn’t the easiest to get to from the UK, it’s a great budget destination when you get there. It’s full of beautiful beaches that are perfect for surfing, relaxing or partying at one of its famous beach clubs. Plus, with plenty of time to plan your next trip, you can find a great deal on flights for later this year.
Since winter in the UK is summertime in Oz, maybe now is a great time to plan a future trip to the land down under. Swim at Bondi Beach, take a coastal hike along secret beaches, ride in a hot air balloon or kayak around the Sydney Harbor: and that’s all without even leaving Sydney! You can also head up to the Northern Territory for more hiking, camping and skydiving.
Enjoy cheap street eats, all-inclusive budget hotels and white sandy beaches with a post-lockdown trip to Mexico.
Use this time to plan an epic adventure or gap year for your first trip after lockdown:
If you haven’t already been dreaming about an epic trip to Thailand, it’s a great time to start. Between the amazing and iconic temples and history, the standout street food and the great exchange rate, Chiang Mai is a budget traveller’s paradise. The Old City of Chiang Mai holds a lot of Thai culture and is filled with stunning temples that you should definitely check out. But don’t forget to make time for pad thai from a street vendor, a trip to meet monkeys or a hike out to a waterfall. If you were hoping for a little less bustle, head to Phuket and take an affordable ferry to the Phi Phi Islands for a lovely, picture-perfect beach day (or an all night long full moon party).
Full of beaches, rainforests and volcanoes, Costa Rica is one of the most exciting and diverse destinations to plan to visit after lockdown. For adrenaline junkies, zip-lining in Monteverde is a must. If heights aren’t your thing, white water rafting is another great option. If you’re not feeling so crazy, go for a waterfall tour or wildlife tour. Big chocolate and/or coffee fan? Costa Rica is the perfect place to try both.
Lima, Peru is a pretty underrated destination for all it has to offer. The weather is great year-round. You can spend your days sampling ceviche (a traditional seafood dish), exploring Peruvian culture and relaxing on the beach. And it’s a great destination for adventure! Obviously, you’ll want to head to Machu Picchu, but you can also do some amazing hikes, surfing and even try sandboarding.
Why not plan to take some time off and head to New Zealand? Go bungee-jumping or skiing in Queenstown, renowned for its scenic views and adventure sports. Go kayaking in the famous Milford Sound or explore Auckland. Explore the lava tubes of a volcano on Rangitoto Island, chill out on the beach, or go wine-tasting on Waiheke Island. And of course, don’t miss the chance to visit Hobbiton in real life. It’s just a 2-hour drive from Auckland.
While we absolutely love thinking and talking about planning a future trip, just remember it’s important to follow the health and safety guidelines of your local and your destination’s governments. There’s still a lot of uncertainty about the travel and COVID-19. We recommend holding on to travel plans lightly and booking future trips on airlines currently offering flexible change policies.