The on-going COVID-19/SARS-CoV-2 pandemic has completely shuttered travel across the globe. Multiple countries have closed their borders and most other countries have released guidelines that advise against all discretionary (leisure) travel. That being said, travel should be avoided over the next few weeks if not months. While this is terrible news for frequent flyers and jet-setters, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Now is the time to look ahead and begin making summer travel plans.
With passenger air travel demand having taken an extraordinary hit as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, air travel is quite cheap. Again, we advise against taking advantage of these low fares for the time being. However, many of these deals extend into the summer months. At the moment, it would appear that many of the restrictions on travel will be lifted by then. Travelers that book any of these cheap flights should have a back-up plan that could include shuttering their trip altogether. Nevertheless, if you’re looking for something to do during this period of isolation and social distancing, planning summer vacations are great way to pass the time. Here are 10 cheap summer flights to book now.
Advisory: The College Points urges that all readers avoid non-essential travel for the time being. As a result of the on-going COVID-19 pandemic, travel should be limited to essential and necessary travel. Leisure travel should be avoided at this time. All deals in this post are for summer travel. Should the COVID-19 pandemic remain a significant concern at that time, do not travel and continue to practice social distancing.
Departure Cities: Los Angeles (LAX), Nashville (BNA), New York (JFK/LGA), Newark (EWR), Seattle (SEA), St. Louis (STL), and other U.S. cities
Arrival Cities: Athens (ATH), Beijing (PEK), Cape Town (CPT), Colombo, Sir Lanka (CMB), Honolulu (HNL), Lima (LIM), Nairobi (NBO), Tokyo (HND), San Juan (SJU), Sydney (SYD)
Price: Americas from $80 R/T, Europe from $285 R/T, Asia from $337 R/T, Africa from $587 R/T
Dates: Select dates in May 2020 – June 2020
Airline(s): Air Canada, Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Lufthansa, Kuwait Airways, Qantas, Spirit, United
Trip Duration: 7+ days
Nashville (BNA) to San Juan, PR (SJU) – $80 R/T – Spirit
Just a few years since Hurricane Maria ravaged the island, San Juan, Puerto Rico has made a tremendous recovery. The island of Puerto Rico has seen millions of dollars in investments into both infrastructure and tourism. Additionally, flights to Puerto Rico are typically inexpensive and US citizens won’t need a passport to visit the island.
In addition to Nashville, cheap flights are available to San Juan, PR from numerous US cities. These cheap flights are available throughout the summer with the best deals available beginning in May and ending in mid-June.
New York (LGA) to Lima (LIM) – $197 R/T – Spirit
Spirit is offering a number of cheap flights from the majority of its US destinations to Lima, Peru. Flights from the US to Peru on Spirit are available for as little as $116 round-trip. However, keep in mind that while these flights are cheap, you’ll want to factor the cost of any carry-on bags and checked luggage. Spirit charges for any additional services including seat assignments and bags. Still, even with the cost of bags and seat assignments, flights from the US to Peru are quite inexpensive.
New York to Athens (ATH) – $285 R/T – Air Canada
St. Louis (STL) to Beijing (PEK) – $350 R/T – Air Canada via Orbitz
China’s economy has hit especially hard by the initial outbreak of COVID-19. However, just months later, the country is already beginning to recover following drastic and draconian measures to contain the spread of COVID-19. In the next few months, travel will begin to rebound. However, with the rebound of demand for travel, ticket prices will also increase. Currently, flights from cities across the US to China are quite cheap likely as a result of the on-going pandemic. However, these cheap flights extend into the summer.
In addition to St. Louis, cheap flights to China this summer are available from cities like Los Angeles, Chicago, Kansas City, New York, San Diego, and many others.
St. Louis (STL) to Honolulu (PEK) – $378 R/T – American Airlines
Los Angeles (LAX) to Colombo, Sri Lanka (CMB) – $474 R/T – Multiple Airlines
Seattle (SEA) to Nairobi (NBO) – $587 R/T – SWISS, United
Cheap Flights Using Points and Miles
While airlines have slashed the price of flights through the month of June, the price of flights when using points and miles have not seen the same decrease in price. However, you may still be able to find some cheap award flight redemptions. Here are three we found beginning in May.
Seattle (SEA) to Tokyo (HND) – 38,000 Miles O/W – Delta Air Lines
New York (JFK) to Cape Town (CPT) – 40,000 Miles O/W – United, South African Airways
Los Angeles (LAX) to Sydney (SYD) – 42,500 Miles O/W – Alaska Airlines, Qantas
Taking Caution When Booking Summer Flights
It should be noted that while most airlines expect to resume much of their operations that have been suspended as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the situation is fluid and changing. For the next few weeks, travel is not recommended and in some cases, prohibited or impossible. However, sometime in May, we should see some return to normalcy. Summer travel won’t be completely spared from the on-going pandemic however. When planing your summer travels, be sure to have a back-up plan. Additionally, you’ll want to be prepared in the event that you’ll have to cancel your vacation. Still, we’re cautiously optimistic that, in a few months, daily life will slowly return to normal.