This Clever Tool Will Help You Plan Your Perfect 2024 Eclipse Trip

Amateur astrologers worldwide are gearing up to catch the first big celestial event of 2024. On Monday, April 8, the moon will pass between the Earth and the sun, causing a total solar eclipse. For the first time in seven years, the total eclipse will be visible from the continental United States, and heavy travel is expected. Towns and cities along the eclipse's path are preparing for a massive influx of tourists.

Humans have been fascinated by eclipses since time immemorial. There's something about gazing up at the cosmos that delights and inspires us. Eclipses encourage us to contemplate our existence in the grand expanse of outer space, which might be why millions travel far and wide to witness total solar eclipses in person. According to estimates by the Great American Eclipse organization, up to 4 million people will travel to the path of totality to watch the event this year. 

More than half of the entire population of the United States lives within 250 miles of the path of totality. For many hopeful eclipse enthusiasts, a road trip to view the eclipse will take less than five hours. While the road trip may be easy, finding places to stay may prove much more difficult. According to Airbnb's 2024 travel trend predictions, accommodations for the eclipse are a hot commodity and searches for places to stay are up 300%. Luckily, Expedia has released a fantastic tool that allows you to search thousands of hotels along the eclipse's path. 

How to use Expedia's solar eclipse search feature to find the perfect accommodations

Last year, 20 million people witnessed the annular solar eclipse, and this year, the total solar eclipse is predicted to be one of the busiest travel days. The last total solar eclipse in America was in 2017, and there won't be another visible within the United States until 2044. Many astronomy enthusiasts have had their plans in place for months, and options will become more scarce as the date draws near. Fortunately, the Expedia app's convenient eclipse search feature makes finding the perfect place to stay easy.

Search thousands of hotels along the eclipse's path by downloading the Expedia App via the QR code on its website, which will take you to your app store. Once you've downloaded it and signed up, click "Stays" in the upper left-hand corner. In the text box that reads "Enter destination," type "Solar Eclipse April 8, 2024" or "Total solar eclipse." Select the specific dates that you will require lodging. You'll then see a list of thousands of properties located within the eclipse's path of totality. 

You can filter through the results further by selecting property types, star ratings or setting a maximum nightly rate. All that's left to do is decide which property fits your needs and which town or city along the eclipse's path works for you. You'll be ready to pack your eclipse goggles and hit the road for an incredible astronomical experience.

The path of the total solar eclipse

The 2024 total solar eclipse is extraordinary because it passes through many major cities. Within the United States alone, over 32 million people live within the path of totality. It's already estimated that it might be the most viewed astronomical event in history. As you search through Expedia's eclipse listings, consider making a long weekend out of your trip and spending some time in unique destinations around the United States.

The path of totality will be 115 miles wide and 10,000 miles long. It stretches through Mexico, the United States, and Canada. NASA notes that the eclipse will pass through 13 states within the United States, starting with Texas. After Texas, it will pass through Oklahoma, Arkansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine before entering Canada.

Some cities along the eclipse path are already trendy tourist destinations and will likely see some of the biggest crowds. One location to consider as you scroll through the Expedia listings is Austin, Texas, known for live music and great food. Other major cities on the route include Dallas, TX; Little Rock, AR; Indianapolis, IN; Cleveland, OH; Buffalo, NY; and Burlington, VT — amongst many others. America's small towns within the path of totality also offer more great places to stay. Hot Springs National Park in Arkansas and Cuyahoga Valley National Park in Ohio are excellent places for travelers hoping for a natural retreat to view the eclipse.