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Thanksgiving Travel Trends In 2020 - Updated 2021

Thanksgiving Travel Trends In 2020

This year has been a slump for the world, and many are affected greatly by the pandemic. While it has brought about huge shifts in our daily lives, people are still looking forward to celebrating the upcoming festivities safely. According to Airbnb’s wish list data, there has been a huge increase in the creation of lists with a festive theme. Compared to just over 27,000 lists created in September 2019, slightly under 80,000 wish lists were created with keywords like “Christmas”, “Hanukkah” and “Thanksgiving” this September. Read on if to find out more details on Thanksgiving travel trends in 2020 including places people are travelling to, the types of properties, and the best places to book for last-minute planners.

Where are people travelling?

Big Sur Coast Golden Hour
Source: Photo by Flickr user Doreeno used under CC BY-SA 2.0

With the festive season around the corner, many usually take the time off to travel or visit friends and loved ones. COVID-19’s impact on travel was felt by Airbnb, who saw US guests travelling to unexpected places to celebrate Thanksgiving this year. Close to 80% of bookings for Thanksgiving weekend were in low-density urban and non-urban areas. This is probably due to everyone’s desire to avoid crowds due to COVID-19.

Airbnb has also revealed 10 popular top and trending destinations for Thanksgiving weekend 2020. The top destinations are Kissimmee, Sevierville, Las Vegas, Big Bear Lake, and Atlanta. While trending destinations include Kinnakeet, Bar Harbor, Big Sur, Catskill, and Jackson. Based on the data taken in November, guests across the US seem to be opting for warmer climates, lake, and coastal regions. Remote destinations are also seeing an upward trend in searches than compared to the same period last year.

Types of properties

Still Winter
Source: Photo by Flickr user tuchodi used under CC BY 2.0

This Thanksgiving, Airbnb is seeing a downward trend in solo travel, down by almost half from last year. On the other hand, more than 60% of bookings are for groups of more than 3. With that said, guests who are travelling in groups are leaning towards more spacious property types to accommodate everyone under one roof. In a possible attempt to get away from the city buzz and find peace within nature, US guests are preferring cabins as a property type for Thanksgiving, and there’s been a decline in interest for apartments.

Apart from secluded and outdoorsy cabins set in the woods, the entire home space type is highly demanded by US guests this season. It should come as no surprise since travellers are looking for spacious vacation rentals to celebrate the festivities safely. Also, kitchens made it to the top three most searched for amenity among US guests looking to celebrate Thanksgiving and New Year’s Eve with delicious home-cooked meals.

Best places to book for last-minute trips

Kingston, New York
Source: Wikipedia

COVID-19 has brought about much uncertainty in our lives. Throughout 2020, many people have been affected by travel restrictions set by countries and have had to cancel or postpone trips due to the ever-evolving situation. Last-minute booking of trips has become common practice among travellers in 2020.

If you’re still undecided on where to head to this Thanksgiving and are only planning to book closer to your travel date, we’ve got your back. According to Airbnb, here are some of the best hospitable destinations in the US with the highest percentages of five-star reviews:

Airbnb Experiences

Those who aren’t travelling anywhere during the festive season can consider Airbnb Online Experiences to connect with the world and your loved ones! Whether it’s to learn a new baking recipe or to experience the festive vibes, here are some of the best Airbnb Experiences you can book to before we usher in 2021.

1. Learn to make pie crust from scratch (from USD 22.0)

You will get to learn how to make butter-based pie crusts using both a pastry cutter and food processor. Jo, your host, will take you through the entire 90-minute journey while sharing stories, tips, and tricks she has gained over years while running a pie shop and editing a pie cookbook.

Learn to Make Pie Crust from Scratch

Duration: 1.5 hours

30 reviews

2. Vegan holiday baking with Eva (from USD 31.0)

The two-hour holiday baking session will cover two different vegan recipes. For the month of December, your host Eva will be guiding you on making holiday cookies such as almond crescent cookies and fingerprint cookies with jam. You will receive the recipes in advance so you can make the necessary preparations.

Vegan Holiday Baking with Eva

Duration: 2 hours

43 reviews

3. Holiday sign language vocabulary games (from USD 25.0)

Through this festive-themed sign language vocabulary game, you will get the chance to learn useful phrases that are apt for the holiday season. Here’s a one in a lifetime opportunity to practice sign language in a fun and safe environment for people of all ages!

Work Hard, Play Hard, Asl Is Not Hard

Duration: 1 hour

126 reviews

4. Harry Potter magic in Edinburgh (from USD 12.0)

Allow David or Jule, both experienced tour guides in Edinburgh, to lead you through a one-hour online tour of Edinburgh through the eyes of J.K Rowling. You will get to see for yourself the places where J.K Rowling drew her inspiration from alongside quizzes to add a little fun factor to the Online Experience.

Harry Potter Magic in Edinburgh Tour

Duration: 1 hour

666 reviews

5. Uruguayan music on holidays (from USD 13.0)

You will be hearing from Nicolas, a professional songwriter who has been studying music for over 10 years. He will be performing blends of Afro-Latin rhythms with a hint of rock, pop, and soul. Take this hour to hear not only his original songs but also the culture and history of Uruguay.

Uruguayan music on Holidays

Duration: 1 hour

35 reviews

6. Holiday cocktails at home (from USD 25.0)

Want to create your own festive cocktails within the comfort and safety of home? Join Simeon, your host, as he shares some bartender trade secrets to make your own creative shots. This December, Peppermint Candy Cane Mojito and Gingerbread Old Fashioned will be on the menu.

Cocktail History & Mixology Class

Duration: 1.5 hours

108 reviews

7. Making and eating soup dumplings (from USD 27.0)

Cici has been teaching Chinese cuisines to expatriates and foreign visitors in Shanghai for almost a decade. In this two-hour class, you will learn to make famous Shanghainese soup dumplings from scratch. An easy-to-follow recipe will also be included in your experience.

Making & Eating Soup Dumplings vegan Ok

Duration: 2 hours

361 reviews

8. Learn to collage (holiday edition) (from USD 23.0)

Create your own unique collage with Maria, whose artworks have been published in magazines and online publications. You will be inspired by the lady on a selection of techniques and different styles used in collage making.

Learn to Collage with a Barcelona artist

Duration: 1.5 hours

162 reviews

9. Make apple tart Tatin with yoghurt sorbet (from USD 42.0)

You will be good hands since your host has over 10 years of experience in leading French and South African cooking classes. Master one of the French traditional cuisine through a yummy apple tarte Tatin with yoghurt sorbet. Let the host know if you have another French recipe in mind!

Julia Child recipes by a French lady

Duration: 1.5 hours

33 reviews

10. Hone your chopping skills with a chef (from USD 26.0)

Marcela is an international chef in a cooking school in the US. If you’ve always been intrigued by a chef’s chopping skills, you will be glad to know that your host teaches just that! You will also learn to make a salad followed by a Thai spring roll dish with peanut sauce.

Chop Like a Chef Knife Skills Class

Duration: 2 hours

20 reviews
Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.

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Celeste believes that life is a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. She's going to get that one-way ticket someday!

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