Best Places to Travel in May

With the unofficial start to summer kicking off Memorial Day Weekend, there’s a lot to look forward to in the coming months. But did you know that May is one of the best months of the year to travel? You can take advantage of excellent weather and cheaper travel rates before the summer rush officially begins. 

If you think it’s too late to squeeze in a vacation this May, think again — here are four of the best destinations to put on the map next month! 

Savannah, Georgia

Savannah is acclaimed for its Southern cuisine, gorgeous art and architecture, and there are more than 300 years to discover. In spring and summer, this coastal city is covered in Spanish moss and azalea blooms. From many cities along the East Coast, a trip to Savannah can make for the perfect weekend getaway this May. 

How to Get There:

British Airways Avios is one of our favorite airline loyalty programs to book domestic tickets on American Airlines. For example, you can book award flights as low as 6,000 Avios one-way to Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport (SAV) from cities like Philadelphia (PHL) or Miami (MIA). 

Where to Stay:

There are several fantastic Hyatt properties in Savannah that exude the charm of the city, so you can’t go wrong with any of the options. The Andaz Savannah is a stylish hotel on Ellis Square and can be booked for 15,000 Hyatt points per night. Meanwhile, you can book the newer Thompson Savannah for 20,000 Hyatt points per night if you’re looking for an even more upscale hotel featuring a rooftop pool and bar. 

Reykjavik, Iceland

Summer is the most popular season to explore the Nordic island — not just because the temperatures become much more bearable, but you’ll get to experience nearly 24 hours of sunlight. Therefore, May is the best time to hit the road and see all of the waterfalls, glaciers, and black sand beaches on your list. 

How to Get There:

Iceland’s flag carrier, Icelandair, offers nonstop routes to 12 U.S. cities, including New York (JFK), Denver (DEN), and even smaller cities like Raleigh-Durham (RDU). While Icelandair is not one of Bilt’s airline transfer partners, you can book the carrier through the Bilt Travel Portal powered by Expedia. 

By booking flights this way, you’ll receive an excellent redemption rate of 1.25 cents per Bilt Points. For example, you can book one of these Icelandair flights for just 47,000 Bilt Points round-trip this May. 

Where to Stay:

There’s so much to see in Iceland that you’ll need at least four days to hit all the major sites and hikes. Most people start and end their vacations in Reykjavik — you’re not only near the airport, but you can also visit the  Fagradalsfjall volcano and of course, the Instagram-famous Blue Lagoon.

In that case, you can book the Mr. & Mrs. Smith Sandhotel in the heart of Reykjavik for about 43,000 IHG points per night. Once you venture out to the Golden Circle to see Geysir geothermal area, Gullfoss waterfall, and Thingvellir National Park, you’ll want to book a few nights at the Hotel Rangá, a luxury hotel conveniently located to all three attractions. At just 25,000 Hyatt points per night, this is a bargain compared to the $500+ nightly rates. 

Hamptons, New York

May is also a great time to visit the Hamptons and still enjoy nice weather, as it can be prohibitively expensive once we venture into June. If you need a few ideas for things to do, you can spend a weekend sampling wine at the Wölffer Estate Vineyard, kayaking in Main Beach, or exploring the iconic town of Montauk.

How to Get There:

The Hamptons is an easy train, bus, or even a Blade helicopter ride away for those who live in New York — and don’t forget to pay with your Bilt Card to earn 2x bonus Bilt Points on all travel-related purchases.

If you’re flying in from out of town, the largest major airport will be New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK). You can book Delta flights starting at 7,500 Virgin points one-way or American Airlines flights starting at 6,000 British Airways Avios one-way.

Where to Stay:

There are two quintessential Hamptons properties that can both be booked for 40,000 Hyatt points per night. But when you consider that the nightly rates cost upwards of $900, you’re getting an extraordinary deal when redeeming your points at either of these hotels. The Roundtree is an elegant countryside retreat in Amagansett, while the Topping Rose House is a restored 19th-century mansion in Bridgehampton. 

Lima, Peru

May is the beginning of the dry season in Peru if you want to visit the city of Cusco and make the trek up to Machu Picchu. You’ll likely need to make a stop in Lima first, but with its world-renowned gastronomy and gorgeous architecture, you’ll definitely want to spend a few days exploring the Peruvian capital first.

How to Get There:

United Airlines has some excellent award tickets on sale to Lima in May. For example, you could fly nonstop from Newark (EWR) to Lima (LIM) for just 44,400 miles one-way. For a seven-hour flight, this is a great deal on its own.

If you don’t mind a layover, you can also book a flight from New York (JFK) to Lima (LIM) with a layover in Bogotá (BOG). Operated by Star Alliance partner airline Avianca, you can book this flight for just 22,000 United miles one-way. From there, you can book a cheap ticket to Cusco (CUZ) on LATAM Airlines, often for around $50 round-trip.

Where to Stay:

IHG has several great options in Lima’s city center. For instance, you can book the Crowne Plaza Lima or the Holiday Inn Express Lima San Isidro — both for just 18,500 IHG points per night. Meanwhile, the Hyatt Centric San Isidro Lima costs just 8,000 Hyatt points per night!

There aren’t too many options from either IHG One Rewards or World of Hyatt once you get to Cusco. However, you can book virtually any hotel through the Bilt Travel Portal powered by Expedia at a rate of 1.25 cents each.

Bottom Line

While many of us are eagerly waiting for summer to begin, there’s no reason why you can’t go ahead and book a vacation this May. If you’ve built up a substantial heap of Bilt Points and PTO days to burn, there’s arguably no better time of year to embark on that next trip.