Skift Take

The incremental changes in year-over-year airfares and room rates rarely impact the boom of holiday travel, which annually boosts the economies of those destinations that reach the top of the list.

Orlando and New York are continually the most popular holiday destinations for Americans, reveals a new study by Orbitz and American Express.

Orlando is top destination due to its family-friendly attractions plus a drop in travel costs this year: airfare dropped by 4 percent and hotel rates decreased by 7 percent. Hotel rates are actually down in several cities including Las Vegas, Miami, Fort Lauderdale, and San Juan.

Airfare over the holiday season is expected to be 8 percent higher than last year, but only 12 percent of survey respondents said they planned on cutting back their travel spending.

Most Americans are expected to spend the same, if not more, money on holiday travel this year than they did in 2011. The majority of respondents aim to keep travel costs below $3,000, but 89 percent of survey respondents plan to the same amount of money and 40 percent plan to spend less.

“For many Americans, travel is now part of the holiday tradition…The convenience of shopping online makes it easier to find ways to save money like booking a less expensive destination or booking package deals,” said Jeanenne Tornatore, senior travel editor for

The 10 most popular Christmas destinations:

The 10 most popular New Year’s destinations:


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Tags: holidays, orbitz, usa

Photo credit: Chicago's O'Hare airport during the holiday season. cursedthing /

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