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Bali to Honolulu: The most affordable places to travel using your tax return

·Personal Finance Editor
·2-min read
A person removing money from a wallet and travellers inside an airport international terminal.
Aussies keen to travel may consider using their tax return to fund a getaway. (Source: Getty)

While doing your taxes can seem boring, getting a splash of cash in your account certainly makes up for it.

And with tax returns starting to hit Aussies’ bank accounts, travel search engine KAYAK has revealed the most affordable destinations and dates to devote your tax refund to if you plan to fly in 2022.

“Aussies are extremely keen to travel this year,” KAYAK brand director Nicola Carmichael said.

“KAYAK has seen flight searches increase by 46 per cent for travel in the second half of this year for domestic and international flights, compared to the same period pre-pandemic.

So, whether you got a $500 or $2,500 tax return, here are the best places to visit with a little cash left over for accommodation and spending.

Tax return between $500-$750

According to KAYAK, the three most affordable return domestic flight destinations are:

  1. Coolangatta (Gold Coast), Queensland - the most affordable domestic destination, average price $237

  2. Sydney, New South Wales - average price $248

  3. Launceston, Tasmania - average price $270

But if international travel is more your style, flights to New Zealand (Auckland around $650, Christchurch around $692) would be within your tax refund budget as well as average return airfares to Bali sitting around $630.

Tax return between $750-$1,500

With this budget, you can afford to splurge on a pricier destination, or opt to stay longer.

Domestically, luxurious spots such as Hamilton Island (average price, $386) or Cairns (average price, $387) are great options to consider.

Other budget-appropriate hotspots include:

  • Proserpine (The Whitsundays) Queensland - average price $376

  • Mackay, Queensland - average price $376

Those looking further afield may enjoy flights to Nadi, Fiji for around $740, Singapore for around $772, or Phuket, Thailand for around $824.

Tax return is over $2,000

With a larger injection in your bank account, a longer-haul flight may be in order.

The five most affordable long-haul destinations offer a range of great options for travellers, leaving room for accommodation and spending money:

  1. Honolulu, United States - average cost $1,200

  2. Los Angeles, United States - average cost $1,700

  3. Athens, Greece - average cost $1,827

  4. San Francisco, United States - average cost $1,921

  5. Frankfurt, Germany - average cost $1,972

When to travel to get lower fares

Those choosing to travel domestically should consider November - the most affordable month, with the average cost of a return domestic economy flight sitting around $282.

If you’re hoping for an international getaway, October offers the most affordable time to travel, with the average international economy return flight sitting around $1,257.

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