Last Minute Vacation Ideas from Dallas, Texas

 
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Dallas, Texas has plenty of options for those who desire to take a cheap vacation at the last minute. From discounted flights to other major cities, to nearby road trip destinations, there are plenty of paths to an inexpensive weekend getaway. Whether you yearn for venturing to another city or heading outdoors for a camping adventure, a change of scenery won't have to come at too high of a price with a little creativity and shopping savvy. In this article, we'll go over a few of our favorite options for a cheap last-minute vacation for Dallasites, as well as give you some tips for how to keep the overall price tag down. 

Last Minute Flights from Dallas Fort Worth

The skyline as seen from inside a plane

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The biggest expenses for any vacation usually revolve around travel, lodging, and eating. So the first thing you want to figure out is how you are getting there without breaking the bank before you even arrive. Fortunately, Dallas Fort Worth is a large airport that serves thousands of flights every day, which means you have a lot of options when looking for a cheap flight from DFW, especially if it is last minute. While prices will sometimes go up as it gets closer to the departure date if the destination is in high demand, they can also go down if the airline is trying to fill a flight that is in lower demand.

To take full advantage of the shifting prices, it’s a good idea to check on them regularly and see when they change. Also consider flying out of other airports, flying with different airlines, or being flexible with your departure and arrival dates. The more flexible you are with your travel plans, the more likely you will be able to find a good deal. Remember that most people on a weekend trip will fly out Friday evening and come back late on Sunday. To get a lower price, try avoiding the busier times by flying out Friday morning or Thursday night and coming back on Monday instead of Sunday.

Fly to Miami

Ariel view of a beach in Miami

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Miami is a popular destination from DFW, so it should be easier to find a cheap last minute flight, and it also happens to be one of the cheaper cities in Florida for a vacation. There are many cheap and free things to do during a vacation to this sunny beach town. Take a leisurely walk or ride a bicycle along the boardwalk and enjoy the ocean breeze and the outstanding views of Miami’s magnificent skyline. Spend an afternoon in the Miami Design District where you can find modern art galleries, boutiques and restaurants. Pleasure cruises are also available for a nominal fee, so you can capture views and get an up-close and personal experience of the area and its natural beauty. For those who like to dance, head to a club for Latin and Cuban styles of dance and music. Wrap up the day with a sunset stroll or picnic on the beach and watch the incredible colors of the sky.

Fly to Atlanta

A park in Atlanta

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Another great destination for a weekend getaway from Dallas is Atlanta. Check out Piedmont Park or the nearby Centennial Olympic Park, both of which are inexpensive and charming locations if you want to take a relaxing stroll or people watch. There are several free museums you can drop by including the Martin Luther King Jr National Historic Site, the High Museum of Art, and the Georgia Capitol Museum which offer plenty of opportunities to explore and learn about the history and culture of Atlanta. Take a walk down the PATH Nature Trail near the Atlanta BeltLine which is a great scenic route with lots to see and explore. For a unique experience, sign up for one of the many walking tours, or even a Segway tour, which are both great ways to take in the city's atmosphere at an affordable price.

Drive to San Antonio

The riverwalk in San Antonio

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Driving is a good alternative if you can’t find a cheap flight, and San Antonio is a great place for Dallasites to drive to as it is only a few hours drive away. There are also plenty of cheap, fun activities to do all over the city. You can check out the San Antonio Riverwalk, which offers a unique experience for strolling, shopping, and dining. Additionally, the Alamo, the famous fort where an 1836 battle for Texas independence took place, is a must-visit historical spot. For a little outdoor adventure, a visit to the Brackenridge Park is free and a great place for a picnic or to explore its many trails. Also, the San Antonio Zoo covers areas near the city and can be a fun outdoor adventure for the entire family.

Galveston Beach Vacation

A pier in Galveston with rides and attractions

(Image provided by Adobe Stock)

A beach vacation is always a good choice for affordability, as you can spend much of your trip by the water for free! Galveston is a four hour drive from Dallas, and it is probably better to take that route than to fly into Houston, as you will still have to make it another 50 miles from the airport. Enjoy the beach, pier, and museums for free, and be sure to see the Gulf of Mexico from the Observation Point Park. Then, explore the historic Strand area, home to interesting architecture, boutique stores, diverse eateries, and pubs. Downtown Galveston is home to numerous shops and restaurants, plus the yearly Mardi Gras celebration. Art, theater, and nightlife options are abundant, and tickets won’t bust your budget. For some family fun, Moody Gardens hosts an Aquarium, IMAX Theatre, and more – plus it’s free if you plan ahead. There are also luxury cruises that head to the Caribbean from Galveston, and a 2 to 3 day voyage can actually be pretty affordable!

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