Is celebrity-spotting in West Hollywood or trying Universal’s 3D rides something you really want to do? What about spending 24 hours in San Diego before checking out street art in Brooklyn & Philly? Or how about getting bohemianised in the US’ Greenwich Village?

If the United States keeps screaming at you (like a Mandrake in Harry Potter) from its prominent position right at the top of your bucketlist then now’s the time to conquer and tick that baby off.

Why? It’s ridiculously cheap to go there and prices could get even cheaper.


As you’ve likely realised, flights from parts of Australia to Los Angeles are selling from $1,099 return with Air New Zealand and from $997 with United Airlines, while there was that recent Jetstar Easter Sale with fares to Hawaii available from $259 one-way (that one is over now, but you get the point).

It’s good value that’s being backed by discounted hotel rooms. But the really good news is that sale prices could go even lower in the near future thanks to President Trump.

Yes, Trump.

According to new reports, the controversial new leader is having an unexpected effect on travel to the US whereby people are allegedly avoiding the popular destination. It’s apparently occuring so-much-so that airlines and hoteliers have had to drastically discount prices in order to fill capacity.


The observation was made by the Chief Executive of Expedia, Dara Khosrowshahi, who said Trump’s immigration policies have resulted in a slump in tourism to the States.

“One of two things is going to happen. Either the US has to go on sale in order to keep volumes up, or volumes are going to come down.”

Dara Khosrowshahi, Expedia Chief Executive

“When we look at our business, the leading indicator is pricing — pricing has come down.”

However, Khosrowshahi’s comments contradict results from tour operators who say their North America product is selling better than ever before.

On The Go Tours’ Managing Director Carl Cross recently told KarryOn that the boutique brand’s US bookings increased during the first two months of 2017, while Trafalgar Australia’s Managing Director Matthew Cameron-Smith said the operator is seeing “positive demand for the USA”.

“In particular we’ve seen a strong shift towards value from our consumers with our new CostSaver program in the USA achieving great demand in its first year of operation.”

Matthew Cameron-Smith, Trafalgar Australia Managing Director

Image: Adventure World

Adventure World’s Managing Director Neil Rodgers told KarryOn that he’s seeing strong interest for its tailor-made trips in the US, despite having only just launched the product in February this year.

Rodger said demand has “far exceeded our expectations”.

Meanwhile, over at Contiki Australia, Managing Director Katina Barry said sales in the US are on the rise and she’s even anticipating “greater growth after the release of our new 2017-19 USA & Canada brochure”.

She continued, referencing a recent survey conducted by the youth tour operator, which revealed USA and Canada to be among the top three regions to travel in 2017 for 18-35 year olds.

“In response to this destination trend, Contiki’s 2018 USA and Canada product offering has been expanded to include a new trip to Canada and say Aloha to Hawaii, a new introduction for 2018.”

Katina Barry, Contiki Australia Managing Director

“The brochure will also see the exciting addition of two limited edition trips – Munch and Snap – focusing on food and photography.”

Then there’s David Farrar, Head of Sales at Insight Vacations Australia, who added that early forward sales for the US in 2018 are “encouraging” with both East and West proving to be popular among Aussies.

“Both our East Coast and Western itineraries continue to be popular among consumers who are frequently drawn to experience the varied music, local food and culture only found in America,” he explained.

Are you seeing a slump or increase in bookings for the United States this year?