Looking for a really expensive city to escape to over an extended weekend? If you haven't already made plans for how to enjoy a long 3-day weekend, you should check out Deutsche Bank's Weekend Getaway Index released early this week before you set your heart on a destination that could break the bank.
How does Deutsche Bank define a weekend getaway? Easy. 2 nights at a 5-star hotel, 2 pub meals for 2, 2 restaurant dinners for 2, a car rental for 2 days, 2 pints of beer, 4 liters of soda or water, and a little bit of shopping. Airfare is not included.
In this GET.com post we list the 5 most expensive cities for weekend getaways:
Topping the list is Zurich, Switzerland. The city may boast alpine views, a lakeside riviera feel, rivers clean enough to swim in and luxury shopping to suit all tastes. But Deutsche Bank estimates that a weekend getaway in this financial capital will run you up a $2,475 bill, and that's just counting the basics. Zurich is also the most expensive place in the world to grab a burger. A Big Mac there costs $6.44, according to the Economist's Big Mac Index.
An overpowered Australian dollar and a no-holds-barred tourism campaign is driving up the cost of a weekend getaway in Sydney to heights never seen Down Under. Add that to the fact that nearly 1 in 5 Australians live in the city and you have the perfect storm for an expensive weekend getaway. Deutsche Bank estimates 3 days and 2 nights in Sydney will run travelers $2,320.
London, United Kingdom
Big Ben, fish ‘n' chips, a pint of Guinness and a couple of black cabs can really add up in one of the world's most popular tourist destinations. For 400 years, the British pound has held reserve currency status, and the strength of the pound and the UK's popularity among travelers means you'll need a heavy purse to swing a weekend getaway in London. Deutsche Bank estimates 3 days and 2 nights in London will set you back at least $2,226.
Ah, Milan, Milan. Boasting more museums, theaters, classic architecture and art masterpieces than you can shake your fist at, Milan is on many travelers' must-see list. A few nights in Italy's second-most populous but definitely most popular city will set you back a mere $2,141. That doesn't even account for the cost of all the great clothes, shoes, gelato masterpieces, and Italian delicacies you are sure to sample, but it will be worth every penny.
Emerging from its sub-Arctic winter of obscurity, Stockholm is becoming a syndrome of tourism. Charming, quaint and perfect in summertime, a weekend getaway in Europe's latest tourism hotspot will run you just $2,025 according to Deutsche Bank.
But just wait a New York minute, where's the Big Apple? Iconic, romantic and expensive, how does New York compare to other world capitals for travelers looking for an expensive weekend getaway?
Fortunately for your wallet, the Big Apple ranks 7th, costing $1,783, not including Broadway tickets, followed by San Francisco in 8th place and Chicago in 14th as the most expensive cities for a weekend getaway in the US.
Crazy price tags like these can easily throw a wet towel over your vacation plans. But unless you're looking for an exclusive experience, you will be glad to know that there are cheaper ways to visit these destinations.
Most large US airlines operate flights to these destinations, giving you the opportunity to pay for your flight using the miles you collect with your airline credit card and frequent flyer program.
Using a credit card with no foreign transaction fee will cut out the cost of foreign currency exchange, making that exclusive Swiss watch just a little bit less expensive.
If you aren't out to impress, try an online room or flat rental service or even couch surfing. In many of these cities you can get everywhere you would want to go using a bicycle, and some even offer free bicycle rentals.
Eat like the locals, avoiding tourist trails and frequenting local restaurant and grocery joints, and eating well shouldn't bankrupt you.