Texas Tops New York and California for Best Summer Road Trips

If you’re planning a budget-friendly summer road trip, Texas should be at the top of your list. According to a new WalletHub ranking, the Lone Star State is the best destination in the U.S. for a summer road trip this year.

Texas excels in offering activities, affordable accommodations, and diverse dining options. Following Texas in the rankings are Minnesota, New York, Louisiana, and Florida.

Despite the scorching Texas summer heat, the state ranks high due to its cost-effectiveness, safety, and variety of activities. Texas boasts some of the most affordable 3-star hotel prices near city centers in mid-July and offers a rich culinary scene, including renowned barbecue and Tex-Mex.

Interestingly, California and Hawaii, often seen as top travel destinations, ranked much lower at No. 43 and No. 44, respectively, primarily due to higher costs.

Texas has a lot to offer road trippers. Buc-ee’s, a popular travel stop, has recently opened its largest location in Luling, making it a must-visit. Thrill-seekers can enjoy amusement parks like Six Flags and Schlitterbahn, while families can explore the state’s numerous zoos and botanical gardens.

Despite Texas’ high ranking overall, it scored lower in safety, coming in at No. 39 out of 50 states. Factors affecting this score include road quality, car theft rates, driving laws, and the number of uninsured drivers. Urban interstate congestion, particularly in cities like Houston, also contributed to the lower safety score.

However, Texas compensates with its scenic beauty. The state boasts over 9,500 miles of scenic byways, offering travelers stunning views even in between activities. This scenic allure, combined with affordable and diverse attractions, makes Texas a preferred road trip destination, especially as more travelers opt for road trips over flying.

While Texas leads the list, other states also offer great road trip experiences. Minnesota is praised for its outdoor activities and parks, while New York offers a wealth of historical landmarks and vibrant activities.

On the other hand, states like Tennessee, usually popular tourist destinations in the South, ranked lower at No. 28, behind Oklahoma and Missouri. Delaware ranked the worst for road trips, performing poorly across multiple metrics, suggesting that travelers in the area might prefer heading to neighboring New Jersey instead.

As airlines face increased scrutiny and more travelers choose to hit the road, Texas’ strong reputation as a road trip destination is only expected to grow. Whether for the scenic drives or the unique attractions, Texas promises a memorable summer road trip experience.

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