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- Vrbo released its up-and-coming destination report for 2021 based on a survey of 8,000 participants.
- Pandemic habits are continuing, with most travelers planning domestic road trips to outdoorsy locations.
- Many of the top emerging destinations for 2021 are located in the South and Midwest.
According to a recent travel trend report released by Vrbo, many of the top travel habits of travelers in 2020 will be continuing throughout 2021. Travelers are continuing to take their own transportation, such as rental cars, to their destinations, with 59% saying they’ll drive instead of fly for their next trip.
Travelers are also continuing to seek out more remote destinations with easy access to nature, with 61% planning to visit an outdoor destination to fish, camp, hike, or explore instead of heading to an urban vacation. The top travel destinations reflect this, with almost all of the top 10 options located in the South and Midwest where there’s plenty of space for social distancing. In fact, of the top up-and-coming destinations on Vrbo’s list, only one is in a coastal area.
According to Melanie Fish, Vrbo travel expert, “Vrbo’s newest top emerging destinations align with shifts in travel behavior due to the pandemic.” She adds, “Booking a Vrbo in these off-the-beaten-path locales means travelers can enjoy the privacy and comforts of home while reaping the mental health benefits of being in a new environment and spend quality time exploring places they may have otherwise overlooked.”
The top 10 emerging destinations according to Vrbo are:
- Emory, Texas
- Smithville, Missouri
- Slade, Kentucky
- Outer Banks, North Carolina
- Mannford, Oklahoma
- Lafayette, Indiana
- Water Valley, Mississippi
- Fredericktown, Missouri
- New Roads, Lousiana
- Junction, Texas
Below, we detail these popular up-and-coming destinations among Vrbo users, as well as our top vacation rental picks to book in each region, all selected based on being well-located to the above emerging destinations, as well as well-reviewed listings with near-perfect 5.0 ratings from reviewers.
As always, bear in mind that even in more remote locales there’s never a guarantee of safety right now. Always follow guidelines from the CDC, practice social distancing, wear masks in public areas, and wash hands frequently. Before booking, check for travel advisories and restrictions in your vacation destination, too.