8 Summer Vacation Spots Worthy of Your PTO—That You Can Pay for Over Time With Affirm

This summer already feels different. There’s a palpable excitement in the air as things open back up and you’re all about making the most of it. (Same!) That means logging off, getting out of town and actually using those PTO days you’ve built up all year. But where to go? You want somewhere convenient and relaxing with plenty of things to do, whether you’re traveling with your S.O., BFFs, extended family or your kids.

Luckily, Affirm partners with some of our favorite travel sites like Vrbo, Expedia and Priceline so you can book the perfect vacay right now, and pay for it over time. With Affirm, you’ll never pay more than you agree to and it’s super easy to use: Just select Affirm as your payment option at checkout and see exactly what you owe upfront, with no hidden fees or surprises. Plus, Affirm offers flexible payment options (monthly or every 2 weeks) that can be set up with autopay through the Affirm website or app. So you can use up that PTO—not your entire paycheck.

Check out some of our favorite domestic summer vacation spots (or plan to go in the fall for lower rates and still beautiful weather!), plus our hotel and rental picks you can book using Affirm. Because we’re all about making up for the beach days, foodie adventures and shopping excursions you missed out on last summer—and then some.

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1. Destin, Florida

Gaze out at the Gulf of Mexico in this quintessential beach town with white-sand shores, azure waters, top-notch golf courses and some of the best fishing in the country. When you’ve soaked up enough sun for the day, check out the Harbor Boardwalk and pop into one of Destin’s many seafood shacks serving fresh grouper and mahi mahi. For the outdoorsy types, the coastline of Henderson Beach State Park is full of gorgeous oak trees and wildlife, while kids (and kids at heart) will love the nearby Big Kahuna’s water park.

Where to stay

Book now, pay over time with Affirm*:
Captain’s Quarters on the Bay (2 guests)
Grand Caribbean Crystal Beach Condo (6 guests)
Destiny West House (10 guests)

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2. Gatlinburg, Tennessee

Known as the gateway to Great Smoky Mountains National Park, this eastern Tennessee city is a playground of outdoor adventure. Get up close with nature while hiking or whitewater rafting or take a bird’s eye view approach at the 407-foot Space Needle observation tower and the Sky Lift, an aerial cable car that journeys from downtown to the local amusement park. If you’re there during Independence Day, don’t miss Gatlinburg’s award-winning Fourth of July Midnight Parade, which honors first responders, U.S. veterans, military heroes and frontline healthcare workers.

Where to stay

Book now, pay over time with Affirm*:
Cabin in the Woods (2 guests)
Downtown Condo (3 guests)
Baymont by Wyndham Gatlinburg On The River

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3. Boothbay Harbor, Maine

This coastal gem boasts ample opportunities for equal parts exploration and relaxation. Go whale-watching on the iconic Pink Lady cruise, indulge in all the lobster rolls and ice cream shops along the boardwalk, and enjoy a glass of wine under the stars after a day of hiking or swimming. If you’re there through the beginning of July, the Windjammer Festival is a sight to behold: Think tons of traditional antique schooners sailing into the harbor, fireworks, live music and a codfish relay. Yes, really!

Where to stay

Book now, pay over time with Affirm*:
Downtown Luxury Apartment (8 guests)
Oceanfront Home (8 guests)
Waterfront Cottage (13 guests)

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4. Kihei, Hawaii

Set along Maui’s southwest shore, this idyllic paradise offers six miles of beaches for swimming, surfing, snorkeling and kayaking—make sure to keep your eyes peeled for a whale sighting. You’ll appreciate the hang-loose, local vibe (Kihei has no mega hotels or big shopping malls), including the bustling farmers market, food trucks, shaved ice booths and roadside huli huli chicken stands. At night, take in the stunning sunset before visiting Hawaii’s largest craft brewery or singing karaoke.

Where to stay

Book now, pay over time with Affirm*:
Oceanview Condo (4 guests)
Cozy Cottage (4 guests)
Aston at The Maui Banyan

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5. Gulf Shores, Alabama

Bask in all the beach vibes—think perpetually blue skies and powdery white sand—at the laid-back Gulf Shore. Whether you’re parasailing and dolphin spotting or strolling along the boardwalk full of surf shops and fresh seafood, you’re in for a relaxing getaway full of southern hospitality. Pro tip: Try and catch the natural phenomenon known as “jubilees” (random nights when crabs and fish flop up on the beach).

Where to stay

Book now, pay over time with Affirm*:
Fort Morgan Peninsula Cottage (6 guests)
Gulf Clearwater Condo (7 guests)
The Lodge at Gulf State Park

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6. Branson, Missouri

Branson is a trip, in the best way possible. With its famous live shows, theme parks and quirky attractions (you can actually go aboard a replica of the Titanic), there’s tons of activities to fill your days. Visit Table Rock Lake for swimming, boating, fishing and even scuba diving. Then check out the Branson Landing boardwalk for outdoor shopping and dining located along a 1.5-mile stretch of Lake Taneycomo. There’s even a series of water fountains set to lights, fire and music (the feature was designed by the same company that did the fountains at the Bellagio in Las Vegas).

Where to stay

Book now, pay over time with Affirm*:
Holiday Hills Lakefront Condo (7 guests)
Old West Log Cabin (8 guests)
Hilton Promenade at Branson Landing

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7. Cape May, New Jersey

Known as America’s “original seaside resort,” this town at the very tip of southern New Jersey might be overlooked in favor of the oft-discussed Jersey Shore, but it’s well worth the trip thanks to its pristine beaches, relaxed vibes and grand Victorian architecture. When not sunning yourself by the shore, check out the pedestrian-friendly Washington Street Mall, surrounding nature trails and the famous Cape May lighthouse. Then have dinner right on the beachfront porch of a local treasure like the Peter Shields Inn.

Where to stay

Book now, pay over time with Affirm*:
Buttonwood Boutique Hotel (2 guests)
Grand View Cottage (4 guests)
Renovated Historical Church (10 guests)

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8. Santa Barbara, California

Megan and Harry recently bought a house in this coastal California town, so you know it’s worth a visit. Just two hours from L.A., Santa Barbara is known as the “American Riviera,” full of palm trees swaying in the breeze, views of the Santa Ynez mountains and dazzling ocean cliffs. When you’re not enjoying the picturesque sandy beaches, indulge in amazing Mexican food, tour the hilariously named Funk Zone—aka an area of winery sipping rooms and vintage stores—or take a leisurely hike up to Knapp’s Castle, the burned out remains of a palatial estate. Beautiful and eerie.

Where to stay

Book now, pay over time with Affirm*:
Blue Door Bungalow (2 guests): as low as $125/month* with Affirm
Retro Airstream (4 guests): as low as $101/month* with Affirm
Hilton Beachfront Resort: as low as $183/month* with Affirm

Ready to plan your next trip? Book now and pay for it over time with Affirm. Check out even more travel options you can pay for with Affirm right here.

*Payment options through Affirm are subject to an eligibility check, may not be available in all states, and are provided by these lending partners: CA residents: Loans by Affirm Loan Services, LLC are made or arranged pursuant to a California Finance Lender license.

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Senior Editor, Branded Content

Kelsey is a New York City-based writer, copy editor and Senior Editor of Branded Content at PureWow. She has over a decade of digital media experience covering travel, music...