As the weather begins to warm up and the UK begins to shake its wintery spell, many of us start dreaming about the upcoming summer and start researching where to spend our holidays this year.

To help you out, we’ve looked at the top trending travel destinations for 2019, based on our year-over-year (2018 versus 2019), booking data for trips being booked for 2019 – which is sure to inspire your wanderlust.

While a few of the usual tourist hot spots and beaches, like Alicante and Faro, made the list – there were also a few surprise new additions to the top 10. Here is our list of the top trending travel destinations for 2019:


1. Spain

Spain tops the list for the second year in a row as the most popular country for 2019 with Alicante (28%), Tenerife (15%), and Majorca (10%) proving to be the clear favourites. Last year, the country has set a new record for foreign tourist arrivals for the sixth year in a row, and another record year is expected in 2019.

Alicante, in particular, has seen a massive 11% increase in interest since last year and is set to be this year’s most popular city. With its sun-soaked beaches, picturesque narrow streets, beautiful coloured houses, and vibrant nightlife scene, the city has something to offer everyone.

Best time to travel: The best time to visit Spain is during spring (March to May) or autumn (September to November) because the weather is good and it’s not too crowded.

Tips for booking flights: The cheapest time to buy a flight ticket is approximately 36 days before departure, with midday flights offering the best prices (evening flights tend to be 12% more expensive). The cheapest day of the week to travel is usually Tuesday, and Saturday is usually the most expensive.


2. Portugal

Portugal remains the 2nd most popular country for the second year in a row, with Faro (77%) proving to be the overwhelmingly favourite destination. Portugal’s tourism has been growing for eight years in a row, according to the National Statistics Institute (INE), and it’s set to remain popular in 2019.

The Algarve boasts beautiful beaches, great weather, and picturesque fishing towns, making it an ideal and popular holiday destination. It is currently enjoying increased growth and investment, with new businesses opening and hotels extending their seasons.

Best time to travel: The best time to visit Portugal is in spring (between March and early June) and autumn (between mid-September and mid-to-late November) because the weather is still warm, its cheaper, and there are fewer crowds.

Tips for booking flights: Flight tickets are cheapest about 52 days before departure, with evening flights typically being the least expensive (23% cheaper than morning flights). Tuesday is typically the cheapest day to fly, while Saturdays are the most expensive.


3. Turkey

Turkey’s popularity has moved up to 3rd place for 2019 (ranking #4 in 2018), with Antalya (38%), Dalaman (33%), and Bodrum (13%) as the favourite destinations within the country. Turkey saw a 22% increase in the number of foreign arrivals in 2018, according to the European Travel Commission, encouraged by the Turkish lira’s decline in value compared to sterling.

Interest in Antalya has grown by 8% since last year, and promises to be Turkey’s most popular destination for 2019. The resort city attracts tourists with its yacht-filled Old Harbor and golden beaches flanked by impressive hotels.

Best time to travel: Spring (April to May) and autumn (September to mid-November) are the ideal times to visit Turkey because the weather is clear and warm.

Tips for booking flights: The cheapest time to buy a flight to Turkey is approximately 60 days before departure, and midday flights are typically the least expensive (at 16% cheaper than evening flights). The cheapest day of the week to travel is usually Wednesday, while Saturday is typically the most expensive.


4. Greece

Last year, Greece hosted a record-breaking 30-million tourists, according to the Bank of Greece, because it offers great value-for-money as a summer destination. The country is set to remain popular in 2019, ranking 4th place for this year, with Corfu (24%), Rhodes (19%), and Heraklion (18%) set to see the most visitors.

This year, Rhodes is seeing a 3% increase in interest while bookings for Heraklion have increased by 4% since 2018. Both destinations offer travellers long sandy beaches, a thriving café and restaurant scene, historical sites, and gorgeous weather.

Best time to travel: The best time to visit Greece is in spring to early summer (April to mid-June) and autumn (September to mid-October) when the weather is good and there aren’t too many crowds.

Tips for booking flights: Flight tickets are cheapest about 60 days before departure, with afternoon flights typically being the least expensive (16% cheaper than morning flights). Tuesday is typically the cheapest day to fly, while Saturdays are the most expensive.


5. Malta

Malta has climbed up from 6th place in 2018 to 5th place in 2019, with Luqa (94%) dominating as the favourite destination for the year. Thanks to Air Malta’s growth in fleet size and served routes, tourism in the country has seen steady growth over the past few years.

Luqa has seen a 3% increase in bookings for 2019, attracting tourists with its prehistoric temples, hidden coves, beautiful diving spots, sandy beaches, and crystal clear water. As a result, Malta’s economy is projected to grow the fastest in the European Union, according to the European Commission.

Best time to travel: The best time to visit Malta is in late May or June when it is warm but not too hot, or in early autumn between September and November when the summer crowds have gone but the weather is still nice.

Tips for booking flights: Flight tickets are cheapest about 60 days before departure, with afternoon flights typically being the least expensive (9% cheaper than evening flights). Tuesday is typically the cheapest day to fly, while Fridays are the most expensive.


6. United States

The United States has seen the biggest increase in interest since 2018, climbing up from 10th to 6th place for 2019. New York (34%) is the favourite this year, followed by Orlando (10%) and Las Vegas (9%).

New York City has seen a massive 13% increase in interest since last year, and the city has enjoyed record-breaking tourism for nine consecutive years in a row, retaining its spot as the number one US destination for international visitation, visitor spending, and economic impact.

Best time to travel: Spring (from April to June) and Autumn (between September and early November) are the best times to visit the United States because the weather is warm and pleasant but the tourist crowds have largely dissipated.

Tips for booking flights: The cheapest time to buy a flight to the United States is approximately 60 days before departure, and midday flights are typically the least expensive (at 6% cheaper than afternoon flights). The cheapest day of the week to travel is usually Thursday, while Saturday is typically the most expensive.


7. Poland

At 7th place, Poland is a new entrant to the top 10 list for 2019, fuelled by the country’s steady climb in tourism since 2017. Safety appears to be one of the key factors in the increased interest that Poland is currently enjoying, according to the Polish Tourism Agency.

Krakow (87%) is the most popular destination in the country, attracting foreign visitors with its quaint cobbled streets, horse-drawn carriages, rich history, world-class monuments, and delicious pretzels.

Best time to travel: The best times to visit Poland is during the spring months of March to May when it is warm and not too crowded.

Tips for booking flights: Flight tickets are cheapest about 60 days before departure, with midday flights typically being the least expensive (20% cheaper than evening flights). Monday is typically the cheapest day to fly, while Fridays are the most expensive.


8. Egypt

Egypt is another new entrant to the top 10 list, taking 8th place, also due to an improved security situation as well as cheaper prices. According to the Egyptian Tourism Federation, Egypt's tourism is in constant improvement and the number of tourists arriving in the country is expected to exceed 5-million this year.

The beach resort town of Hurghada (82%) is the most popular destination for 2019, and is renowned for its excellent scuba diving and its long stretch of sun-soaked beaches. There is also a thriving nightlife, as well as traditional Egyptian coffee shops and souks.

Best time to travel: The months between September and April are great for travelling as the temperature in the daytime is far more pleasant during this period than it is during the rest of the year.

Tips for booking flights: The cheapest time to buy a flight ticket is approximately 41 days before departure, with morning flights offering the best prices (morning flights tend to be 16% more expensive). The cheapest day of the week to travel is usually Tuesday, and Saturday is usually the most expensive.


9. Bulgaria

For 2019, Bulgaria is the 9th most popular country, with Sofia (71%) and Burgas (16%) topping the list as the destinations set to receive the most tourism. Last year saw a record number of visitors to the country, and this trend is expected to increase in 2019, according to the National Statistical Institute.

Bulgaria has a lot to offer travellers, with the beautiful capital of Sofia acting as a gateway to nearby ski resorts and Burgas offering sun-worshipers uncrowded beaches, interesting museums, and historic towns further up and down the coast.

Best time to travel: The best time to visit Bulgaria is between April and May, and between September and October when the weather is pleasant and the prices are lower.

Tips for booking flights: Flight tickets are cheapest about 54 days before departure, with afternoon flights typically being the least expensive (22% cheaper than evening flights). Tuesday is typically the cheapest day to fly, while Fridays are the most expensive.


10. Italy

Italy makes up the last of our top 10 destinations for 2019, with Rome (55%) and Naples (15%) set to be the most popular destinations this year. Italy has enjoyed seven years of continuous growth and is one of the most visited countries in the world.

Interest in Rome, Italy’s sprawling, cosmopolitan capital, has increased 11% since 2018, as visitors flock to its historical landmarks – including the Colosseum, St. Peter’s Basilica, the Roman Forum, the Trevi Fountain, and many more. Rome is also well-known for its awe-inspiring art, vibrant streets, and delicious food.

Best time to travel: The best time to visit Italy is in the spring (April to June) or autumn (September and October) when there is nice weather, fewer tourists, and lower prices.

Tips for booking flights: The cheapest time to buy a flight to Italy is approximately 60 days before departure, and midday flights are typically the least expensive (at 13% cheaper than evening flights). The cheapest day of the week to travel is usually Wednesday, while Friday is typically the most expensive.

 

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