U.S News & World Report's "Best Vacations in the World"

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U.S. News & World Report's "Best Vacations in the World" (Source: Pixabay.com - used as royalty free image)

There are so many places across America and around the world rich for exploration and discovery that it can be hard to know where to start. Why not kick off your next vacation dream list with some help from U.S. News & World Report?

The trusted and nationally-recognized consumer advice and information resource recently released its guide to the “top vacations in the world” for 2016. The choices are based on user responses and expert insight on a number of factors, including “the variety of attractions, accommodations and dining options,” and represent a wide array of destinations, ranging from cities to parks to beaches.

So what locations took the coveted top spots this year? Should I buy a timeshare in one of them?

On the global stage, U.S. News picked Australia’s Great Barrier Reef as the number one “best place to visit in the world.” Rounding out the top three are the iconic city of lights and lovers, Paris, followed by Bora Bora in French Polynesia, which has been called “the most beautiful island in the world” and boasts hiking, snorkeling, and lounging opportunities aplenty.

Here in the United States, the top three “best places to visit” are the Grand Canyon, Maui, and Yellowstone. Yosemite National Park and San Francisco round out the top five “best places.” The best “family vacations” in the U.S. include the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, and Honolulu, while the best “cheap vacations” include Yellowstone, Maryland’s Ocean City, and Fort Lauderdale, right here in Florida.

So what does this tell us? First, those writers need to spend a little more time in the Sunshine State – Florida is a great vacation destination, and underrepresented in our humble opinion!

But, even more, this list serves to remind us that there are thousands of awe-inspiring and eclectic vacation options all around the world, each offering their own unique opportunities for rest and relaxation – so why limit yourself to just one?

That’s what many consumers are doing when they buy into a timeshare, and end up spending thousands in down payments, loans, and annual fees for a mere week of vacation time that, often enough, they end up rarely using. In other cases, consumers quickly learn that they must pay for the privilege of exchanging their points or time and grow frustrated; many owners simply try to rent out, resell, or otherwise unload their timeshare – almost certainly at a financial loss –at some point down the line.

Timeshares originally arose in popularity as a cheaper vacation alternative – but it’s 2016, and there are more affordable options for consumers looking to get away than ever before. It begs the question: Why tie yourself down to a complex and problematic system when adventure awaits?

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