The five US ‘trend’ cities Brits are flocking to now the US is open again

Nov 13, 2021

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The U.S. has lifted its international travel ban on 8 November after almost two years of closure. Now, vaccinated travellers from a number of countries can visit the United States, and U.K. travellers are among the keenest to hop on a plane and fly there, Bloomberg reported.

Data from Travelport shows that after President Biden announced in September that borders would reopen in November, flight searches and bookings from the U.K. were higher than all other European countries combined.

Travellers reunite with family after the U.S. reopens. (Photo by ED JONES / Colaborador / Getty)

Related: What it was like on the first British Airways flight to the US on reopening day

But not all destinations are created equal, at least when it comes to where U.K. travellers are heading. Brits seem to have Disney on the brain as the number one destination is Orlando, according to Travelport. Orlando is followed by New York, Miami, Las Vegas, and Los Angeles.

A Florida beach. (Photo by Matteo Colombo/Getty)

As the cooler weather rolls in and Atlantic hurricane season comes to an end, it’s not surprising U.K. travellers are itching for a winter sun holiday, with two cities in Florida in the top five destinations, as well as sunny, warm cities like Los Angeles and Las Vegas making the list.

Still deciding where to go in the U.S.? Let’s dive into these top five destinations, why Britons are flocking there and why you should visit them.

Related: Everything you need to know about travelling stateside right now

Orlando, Florida

The obvious reasons to visit Orlando, Florida, are Disney World and Universal Orlando. While a winter sun holiday may be the most pressing reason to visit, visitors can still join in on the fun for Disney World’s 50th Anniversary celebration over the next 18 months.

A Disney castle. (Photo by Summer Hull / The Points Guy)

Some of the Disney fuzzy-feel-good novelty available now includes special 50th-anniversary food items, dining experiences such as Space 220, new lighting effects, events, shows, rides and more. Others, such as the Star Wars immersive hotel experience Galactic Starcruiser and the renovated Disney’s Grand Floridian Hotel will launch in 2022.

TPG U.K. tip: Aer Lingus launches nonstop flights between Manchester (MAN) and Orlando (MCO) on 11 December. Expect award rates to be 25,000 Avios on peak dates and 16,250 on off-peak dates one-way in economy.

New York City, New York

The one destination Britons are flocking to that isn’t quite as sunny as the others is New York. But the call to the city is undeniable, despite its cold winters, thanks to its diverse culture and cuisine – for many in the U.K. it is perhaps the ultimate U.S. destination. Currently almost all indoor activities are back up and running, but keep in mind you’ll have to be vaccinated (and carrying proof of your vaccination) and masked up to enjoy them, including Broadway shows.

Although there are endless hotel options, especially for those who have a stockpile of post-pandemic points, the newly opened Pendry Manhattan West offers a California-meets-New York City classic hotel experience in the heart of the new Manhattan West area.

New York City. (Photo by Busakorn Pongparnit/Getty)

Visitors should check out the brand-new Summit One Vanderbilt observation deck in Midtown, featuring two glass ledges suspended over 1,000 feet above the ground. There’s also Little Island on the Hudson River, an immersive art and nature experience.

Related: What it’s like visiting New York City right now

TPG U.K. tip: New flight options are popping up everywhere, making it easy for U.K. travellers to get to the Big Apple. Aer Lingus launches its Manchester (MAN) to New York (JFK) nonstop flights on 1 December 2021. Expect to spend 20,000 Avios one way in economy on peak dates and 13,000 Avios on off-peak dates. If you see a spring New York visit in your future, you’ll certainly have plenty of options with United. The airline is launching a sixth and seventh daily flight from Newark (EWR) to London (LHR) on the high-J Boeing 767-300ER on 26 March 2022.

Miami, Florida

With Atlantic hurricane season coming to a close, who wouldn’t want to winter in Miami? If the mild temperatures and warm sunshine aren’t enough, events like Art Basel (2-4 December 2021) and South Beach Food and Wine Festival (24-27 February 2022) are surely a draw to the Sunshine State’s most glamorous city.

South Beach during Art Basel. (Photo by JC Ruiz/Getty)

New hotels like the Moxy South Beach give visitors a true post-pandemic experience, with open-air meeting spaces perfect for business travellers or remote work, an outdoor screening room, an indoor/outdoor gym and of course, in typical Florida fashion, a gorgeous pool deck with cabanas. The hotel is a Category 5 Marriott Bonvoy property, so an award night will cost 30,000 points off-peak, 35,000 for a standard night and 40,000 for a peak night until Marriott moves to dynamic award pricing in March 2022.

TPG U.K. tip: According to Travelport data, couple and solo U.K. travellers were the most eager to travel, which makes sense given the U.S.reopening is during the school term which isn’t as convenient for families. But couples and solo travellers may want to check out the trendy, adults-only Virgin Voyages Cruises. The entire ship has been built as a  kid-free zone — no one under 18 is allowed on the new Scarlet Lady ship, which sails out of Miami to destinations like the Caribbean and the Bahamas.

Las Vegas, Nevada

Las Vegas reopened back in July, and it seems that British travellers have been waiting and ready to gamble, take their chances on the strip, sun tan, and check out upcoming shows.

Both hotels and casinos have undergone some changes to reflect a post-pandemic world. The Wynn Hotels, for example, will clean pool chairs and cabanas after each use, and pressure wash them daily. The Venetian will treat its pools with antibacterial and antiviral treatments. Expect mask rules to be enforced in indoor spots like casino floors, shops, and attractions, as well as other initiatives in casinos for safe gambling.

Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Westend61/Getty)

Visitors should consider checking out new hotels such as the desert-inspired, 1500+ room Virgin Hotels Las Vegas, a Hilton Curio Collection property, and Resorts World Las Vegas, located on the strip and home to the Las Vegas Hilton, Conrad Las Vegas and Crockfords Las Vegas.

TPG U.K. tip: While you can fly to Las Vegas  (LAS) on British Airways or Virgin Atlantic nonstop, fans of Dutch carrier KLM can fly to Las Vegas or Miami (MIA) from Amsterdam (AMS) starting on 7 December 2021.

Los Angeles, California

Travellers should head to Los Angeles, if only to stay at the brand new Thompson Hollywood. TPG’s director of content Eric Rosen compared the illustrious rooftop pool to a “sun-splashed David Hockney painting come to life,” as well as noting the staff was as warm as the weather. The best part? If you have Hyatt points, it’s only 25,000 per night. And speaking of warm, Los Angeles maintains a solid 70°F/21°C or so almost all winter long, warming up even more as spring rolls around.

The pool at the Thompson Hollywood. (Photo by Eric Rosen/The Points Guy)

For those who want to really visit Los Angeles in style, consider flying through a secret VIP terminal, The Private Suite at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). Each suite provides a luxury pre-travel experience with chic, comfortable furniture, private outdoor space, top-of-the-line cuisine, fancy booze, elite spa services and tarmac transfers. Just expect to fork over more than £3,000/$4,000 for this opulent travel experience.

TPG U.K. tip: If you’re dying to fly business class from Europe to the U.S., consider the nonstop route Iberia Airlines from Madrid (MAD) to Los Angeles (LAX). One-way rates start at 42,500 off-peak in business class with fewer fuel charges than British Airways. And don’t forget that you can transfer BA Avios to Iberia Avios, too.

Thinking of travelling to the United States?

Travel to the United States has reopened for Brits. (Photo by d3sign/Getty)

The U.S. is finally open to tourists, and we’re hopeful it won’t be closing its borders again any time soon. At the moment, travelers from the U.K. need to show proof of vaccination to board a flight to the U.S. as well as negative COVID-19 taken within three days of the flight’s departure. For more information, read our article on what you need to know about travelling to the U.S. right now.

(Feature image by Alexander Spatari/Getty)

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