Rating the Cheapest/Most Expensive Destinations for Flights

Fact Checked by Pat McLoone

Today is National Cheap Flight Day, so NYCasinos.com decided to take a break from monitoring online New York casinos to look at the U.S. destinations where Americans can fly for the least amount of money.

Hey, people coming to the proposed casinos in and around New York City will need to fly back, right?

Using data from the Bureau of Transportation Statistics, we ranked the states and the District of Columbia based on approximate average domestic airline itinerary fares by origin city for 2022 and the first quarter of 2023. The Bureau of Transportation’s airfares are reported based on individual cities, and obviously the cities within a given state are of varying sizes. We averaged the fares by city, then arranged them by state, to arrive at our numbers.

Cheapest States for Flying

Rank State Avg. Fare ($)
1 DE 139.245
2 NJ 238.195
3 CT 272.265
4 SD 315.15
5 OH 326.92
6 NH 355.985
7 FL 358.575
8 RI 360.565
9 CA 362.7
10 NY 372.375
11 MD 387.39
12 UT 390.72
13 IL 394.24
14 KY 397.03
15 SC 418.84
16 NV 421.3
17 DC 438.195
18 WA 438.36
19 PA 438.735
20 IA 438.78
21 MA 446.035
22 NC 449.675
23 MO 450.08
24 IN 450.39
25 WV 454.235
26 VT 458.44
27 HI 459.84
28 TN 469.455
29 OK 470.185
30 AZ 473.65
31 OR 475.22
32 TX 480.365
33 ME 483.09
34 KS 490.8
35 VA 491.47
36 NE 497.845
37 NM 504.39
38 MS 509.34
39 CO 515.085
40 MI 515.44
41 WI 522.45
42 MN 522.76
43 MT 528.605
44 GA 529.315
45 ND 534.745
46 LA 537.815
47 AR 542.76
48 AL 570.91
49 ID 582.275
50 WY 598.86
51 AK 655.85


New York Cracks Top 10

In addition to providing coverage of the road to downstate casinos and New York online casino bonuses, NYCasinos.com occasionally does stories of cultural interest such as this.

In our travel data, New York state finished in 10th place, with an average fare of $372.38. The heavily traveled northeast dominated the Top 10 with No. 1 Delaware, No. 2 New Jersey, No. 3 Connecticut, No. 6 New Hampshire and No. 8 Rhode Island.

The cost of flights is determined, in part, by distance and demand, and while demand for flights into JFK or LaGuardia airports is high, there are airports throughout the state that are much more difficult to get to and fewer people want to get to them. JFK and LaGuardia combine for around 1,700 arrivals per day and an equal number of departures. But the state has 16 primary commercial airports: JFK is nearly twice the size of LaGuardia and LaGuardia is a little less than twice the size (in terms of flights) of the other 14 airports combined.

The cheapest time to fly to New York is in the winter, January is best. The most expensive time is in the summer. Avoid July. According to data from KAYAK, Friday is the cheapest day to fly to New York, with the most expensive day being Tuesday. For many states, Tuesday is cheapest. The New York airport that tends to be least expensive to fly into is Stewart International in New Windsor, located west of Newburgh, a little more than 90 minutes north of Manhattan.

The drawback to the cheapest airport, originally built in the 1930s as a military base, is that it only flies to a handful of domestic destinations – most in Florida - and is served only by Allegiant Air and Atlantic Airways. PLAY Airlines is the only international airline and it only flies to Iceland, where passengers can get connections to other European cities.

PLAY’s logic is simple: Stewart’s fees are less than the big NYC airports, so PLAY can charge less for flights, and given traffic, it doesn’t take much longer to get to Manhattan from Stewart than it does from Queens.

While Stewart served around 700,000 passengers annually in the 1990s, in 2021 that number was down to 81,000. JFK, for comparison, serves around 80,000 passengers per day


Howard Gensler is a veteran journalist who’s worked at the Philadelphia Daily News, TV Guide and the Philadelphia Inquirer and is a founding editor of bettorsinsider.com.