City breaks are surging in popularity and the US is home to many bucket-list destinations from New York, Boston and Washington DC on the east coast to San Francisco, Los Angeles and Seattle in the west.
Gold Medals reports continuing growing demand for the big cities such as New York and Las Vegas, with customers also looking to combine several into one trip.
Of course, the Big Apple on the US east coast is a perennial favourite, but Gold Medal says that in addition to the main tourist attractions such as the Empire State Building and the Statue of Liberty, visitors are seeking out ‘unique local experiences’, like SUMMIT One Vanderbilt, an immersive art experience, which is included in all packages of four nights or more, with prices from £779 per person including flights and four-star accommodation.
For a truly local experience, it also recommends a New York Neighourhood East Tour: Brownstone Brooklyn Experience, which takes visitors into local neighbourhood eateries to learn about its history. It costs from £75 per person.
New York is especially magical at Christmas and New Year, with quintessential experiences such as outdoor skating at the Rockefeller Center. Travelpack has packages from £959pp for four nights, including flights.
Cities on the US east coast, which can be reached in eight hours or thereabouts, can easily be sold as weekend breaks and while New York, Boston and Washington DC tend to dominate the holiday brochures, there are plenty of other, easy-to-reach alternatives you can recommend to clients.
Philadelphia, home to Liberty Bell, a symbol of American independence, will appeal to historians, while Chicago, on the shores of Lake Michigan, is a great walkable city, home to the Chicago Cubs, Chicago Bears – and the deep pan pizza! It’s also great for shopping and only slightly further to travel than New York.
While great for music-lovers, southern cities such as New Orleans and Memphis, and west coast cities such as San Francisco and Los Angeles, take longer to reach so are best sold for a minimum of three nights, or rolled into multicentres.
For repeat visitors, why not suggest somewhere off-the-beaten track. The Texan city of San Antonio, pictured above, which hosted IPW this year, is the fastest-growing in the US, yet it offers a more authentic Texan experience than its bigger rivals such as Dallas or Houston. Perhaps best known for the battle of the Alamo, you’ll find a city seeped in culture and heritage. Not only that, but from summer ’24, San Antonio’s Six Flags Fiesta Texas theme park will have three new rides, giving it more DC Comics-themed attractions than any other US amusement park.