10 Travel ‘Dupe’ Destinations That Will Save You Money on Your Next Trip

Rainbow / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Rainbow / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Amid high inflation, the trend of searching for “dupes” — duplicates of higher-end items — has risen in popularity. This extends to everything from beauty products to designer goods to even vacation destinations. “Dupe” destinations can save travelers big money versus vacationing in a hotspot.

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“In 2024, Americans are more likely to choose hidden-gem destinations over tried-and-true tourist hotspots for their vacations,” Jon Gieselman, president of Expedia Brands, told CNBC.

If you’re planning ahead for travel in the new year, consider one of these travel “dupe” destinations to save serious cash.

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Andrey Danilovich/Getty Images

Instead of Bali, Indonesia, Visit Lombok, Indonesia

Travelers looking for beautiful beaches and stunning natural surroundings have flocked to Bali — but this destination can get very expensive.

“Most people travel to Bali when visiting Indonesia [at] an average of $1,000 for a week’s trip,” said Alexandra Dubakova, travel expert and head of marketing at FreeTour.com. “Lombok is a great alternative that offers the same vibrant culture, attractive beaches and hiking trails, and [it] costs around $600 for a week’s visit.”

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ronniechua/Getty Images

Instead of New York, Visit Montreal

Those looking for a city destination should skip NYC and head farther north.

“Visiting New York City comes with a hefty price — $2,500 for a week’s trip,” Dubakova said. “Montreal offers a rich history, a great food scene and vibrant city life for almost half the price — $1,500.”

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©Shutterstock.com©Shutterstock.com

©Shutterstock.com

Instead of Paris, Visit Lisbon, Portugal

When you think of romantic European destinations, Paris is likely top of mind — but it’s far from the only option.

“Paris, the City of Love, is a great choice but [it’s] expensive,” Dubakova said. “It costs around $2,000 to visit Pairs for a week, [while] Lisbon costs $1,200 and offers the same romantic aura and architectural beauty.”

Kjersti Joergensen / Shutterstock.comKjersti Joergensen / Shutterstock.com

Kjersti Joergensen / Shutterstock.com

Instead of Bora Bora, French Polynesia, Visit Zanzibar, Tanzania

Planning a honeymoon for 2024? Consider Zanzibar for an affordable destination.

“Bora Bora is renowned for its luxurious overwater bungalows and stunning blue waters,” said Jim Campbell, CEO of Honeymoons.com. “Zanzibar offers a similar paradise with beautiful beaches, rich cultural history and exotic wildlife. The cost of a trip to Zanzibar can be up to 50% less than a trip to Bora Bora, making it an excellent choice for a romantic and adventurous honeymoon.”

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kasto80 / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Instead of Venice, Italy, Visit Ljubljana, Slovenia

Avoid the crowds — and the hefty price tags — by opting for Ljubljana over Venice.

“Venice is famous for its canals, historic architecture and romantic ambiance. “Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia, offers a similar charm with its picturesque waterways, vibrant cultural scene and less crowded streets,” Campbell said. “Traveling to Ljubljana instead of Venice can save you about 30-40% on accommodation and dining.”

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12ee12 / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Instead of The Maldives, Visit Palawan, Philippines

If an island getaway is calling your name, consider booking a trip to Palawan.

“The Maldives is known for its stunning islands and luxury resorts. Palawan provides a similar tropical paradise with breathtaking lagoons, rich marine life and more affordable accommodation options,” Campbell said. “Choosing Palawan over the Maldives can result in savings of about 40-50%.”

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roman_slavik / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Instead of Santorini, Greece, Visit Puglia, Italy

Puglia is one Italian destination that isn’t yet overrun by tourists, so you can still book an affordable trip here. On the other hand, Santorini has become increasingly pricey.

“Santorini is famous for its iconic white buildings and beautiful sunsets. Puglia offers a comparable Mediterranean charm with its beautiful coastlines, historic villages and delicious cuisine,” Campbell said. “A [vacation] in Puglia can be up to 35% cheaper than one in Santorini.”

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xbrchx/Getty Images

Instead of Dubrovnik, Croatia, Visit Cavtat, Croatia

If Croatia is on your travel list, consider booking a trip to Cavtat over the more popular Dubrovnik.

“Though not as publicized as Dubrovnik, Cavtat is an excellent alternative to this now overpriced Croatian destination,” said Danielle Rudic, director of marketing at Travelive, a luxury destination management company. “You can find both four- and five-star properties, great traditional taverns [and a] more traditional feel, and you won’t have to elbow through rivers of tourists holding a selfie-stick as you would in Dubrovnik.”

Hotels in Cavtat are $150 to $300 cheaper per night, and Dubrovnik is just a 20-minute drive away. “This price difference is also noticeable in restaurants and bars,” Rudic said. “On average, you can expect to pay 30% less.”

Nikada / Getty Images/iStockphotoNikada / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Nikada / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Instead of Kyoto, Japan, Visit Hoi An, Vietnam

Kyoto is a popular Asian destination, but you’ll find much better prices elsewhere.

“Kyoto is famous for its historic temples, gardens and traditional teahouses. However, a trip here can be quite expensive, with hotels averaging $120 per night and meals around $30 per person,” said Augustinas Milaknis, head of PR at Ratepunk, a travel booking app.

“Hoi An, a UNESCO World Heritage site in Vietnam, is a delightful alternative with its well-preserved Ancient Town, lantern-lit streets and rich history,” he said. “Accommodations in Hoi An can be as low as $50 per night, and a delicious meal can cost around $15 per person.”

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©Shutterstock.com

Instead of Napa, California, Visit Sonoma, California

Even though these two wine country destinations are located close by, the prices can be worlds apart.

“They’re comparable due to them literally being right next door to each other and offering many of the same amenities,” said Jared Benoff, founder of Vacationeeze, a family-owned travel agency.

“You have to look a little closer to see some key differences between the two charming regions,” he said. “For example, the Bardessono in Yountville, Napa will be approximately $1,500 per night while the Madrona, recently named one of the best in the world by Travel + Leisure, will be approximately $690 per night. People visiting Sonoma will also find generally more affordable wine-tasting fees and dining options.”

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