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Most likely destination for travelers from every state

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Free-Photos // Pixabay

Most likely destination for travelers from every state

When U.S. citizens travel, they often fly within the country—less than half of Americans have a passport. The most popular destinations for plane travel are California, Texas, Florida, and New York. Orlando, Fla., takes the top spot for the most visited domestic city, but Las Vegas also brings in millions of tourists annually. Beach vacations are another favorite way to travel, which is why homegrown tourism to Florida continues to increase. In 2018, domestic visits were up 7.1%.

While some people hate flying and dread the idea of having a conversation with a stranger, about 1 in 50 people say they end up finding the love of their life on a flight. About 16% of travelers form a business connection and 14% say they made long-lasting friendships with a fellow plane traveler.

Retirees and snowbirds might also be hitting the skies to travel from high tax states like New York and New Jersey to ones that are more tax-friendly. South Carolina and North Carolina don’t have a tax on social security income; Florida doesn’t tax withdrawals from retirement accounts, and Georgia provides a $65,000 tax deduction on all types of income for those over the age of 64. Nevada and Arizona are also retirement-friendly.  

Using data provided by SmarterTravel, which used flight search query data from Airfarewatchdog spanning October 2017 to October 2018, Stacker compiled a list of the most likely destination for travelers from each state. SmarterTravel picked the top three destination states from all 50 U.S. states and Washington D.C. based on approximately 30 million flight searches. Some states are more popular to search for than others: Florida is the top destination state from 33 different states, and California is #1 for 10 different states.   

Read on to find out the most likely destination for travelers from every state.

ALSO: Locals share the most overrated and underrated tourist attraction in every state

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Unknown // Pixabay

Alabama

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 21%
2. Texas: 10%
3. California: 7%

The southern portion of Alabama's state line borders the Florida panhandle. The two states even share a bit of the Gulf Coast shoreline, and some say Alabamians and North Floridians share a common belief system of determination and stubbornness. Alabama residents can get to Texas, their second favorite state, rather quickly. A direct flight from Birmingham to Dallas takes less than two hours.

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Noel_Bauza // Pixabay

Alaska

Most common flight destinations:
1. Washington: 15%
2. California: 11%
3. Nevada: 8%

Washington is the closest state to Alaska, and residents can fly directly from Anchorage to Seattle in about 3.5 hours. The two states have also been business partners for a couple of centuries. During winter, the sunny states of California and Nevada can provide some much needed daylight to the residents of some Alaskan cities. People who live in Utqiagvik, the northernmost city in the U.S., entered a 65-day period of perpetual darkness back in November that extends until Jan. 23.

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KeYang // Pixabay

Arizona

Most common flight destinations:
1. California: 13%
2. Florida: 8%
3. Texas: 7%

In 1934, Arizona Gov. Benjamin Moeur declared martial law when a water rights conflict broke out between Arizona and California during the construction of the Parker Dam. The two states continue to have disputes over water, but sharing a border facilitates easy travel between them. Southwest offers almost 100 flights a day from Tucson to Los Angeles.

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mambeau // Pixabay

Arkansas

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 17%
2. California: 13%
3. Texas: 9%

Arkansas is the capital of quartz, spinach, and archery bow production, and it's also landlocked. This craving for coastline could be why Arkansans focus their searches on states with beaches. For residents who want some authentic Texas barbecue, a flight to Dallas is less than 2 hours from many Arkansas cities.

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Free-Photos // Pixabay

California

Most common flight destinations:
1. California: 11%
2. Hawaii: 10%
3. Nevada: 10%

California is not only the top destination for people from other states—its own residents like to fly in between its cities. Whether for work or pleasure, California residents can get from Los Angeles to San Francisco in 1.5 hours. Other than Hawaii, this West Coast state is home to more Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders than any other state in the U.S.

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12019 // Pixabay

Colorado

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 12%
2. California: 12%
3. Nevada: 9%

Colorado is home to the Rocky Mountains and world famous ski resorts, which makes the state a great destination for hiking in the summer, and snowboarding and skiing in the winter. But residents who prefer a beach vacation look for flights to Florida and California.

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12019 // Pixabay

Connecticut

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 49%
2. California: 6%
3. South Carolina: 5%

Winters in Connecticut can be long and harsh. This environmental fact might be one of reasons why some of the state's residents are choosing to vacation, or even relocate, to Florida. Since they're already on the East Coast, Connecticut residents can get to Florida a lot faster than to California.

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skeeze // PIxabay

Delaware

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 32%
2. Georgia: 5%
3. Texas: 5%

Fewer than 1 million people live in Delaware, a state that isn't much larger than Anchorage, Alaska. When those residents want to get away, they look first to Florida. Business travelers could be heading to Georgia, as Fortune 500 companies such as The Home Depot and the Coca-Cola Company are headquartered in Atlanta, but incorporated in business-friendly Delaware.

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skeeze // PIxabay

District of Columbia

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 27%
2. California: 11%
3. Nevada: 7%

The nation's capital is a popular vacation destination itself. It's home to the White House, the Lincoln Memorial, the National Museum of American History, and too many other places of interest to list here. Even though Washington D.C. has plenty of things to do, it's not famous for white sand and beaches. That lack of year-round beach availability could be why most people in Washington D.C. are perusing flights for Florida and California.

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12019 // Pixabay

Florida

Most common flight destinations:
1. New York: 14%
2. California: 6%
3. Texas: 6%

When people in the Sunshine State travel, they head to New York. Or back to New York, as is often the case. Florida is a low tax state, which is popular with retirees. Florida doesn't tax withdrawals from retirement accounts, for example. It's such a popular spot with New Yorkers that many affluent residents already have second homes there, and some New York hospitals have opened medical clinics in the state.

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12019 // Pixabay

Georgia

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 19%
2. California: 10%
3. New York: 9%

Georgia's only southern neighbor—and biggest college football rival—is Florida, which makes it a convenient place to travel. Since Atlanta has one of the busiest airports in the world, Georgians can easily book a quick flight to Tampa or Miami. Getting to New York is also a breeze, with Atlanta-Hartsfield offering 2.5-hour nonstop flights daily.

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kdvandeventer // Pixabay

Hawaii

Most common flight destinations:
1. California: 25%
2. Nevada: 16%
3. Hawaii: 14%

While Alaska is the closest state to Hawaii, California comes in second. Hawaii residents can get to this West Coast destination—to see family or just for fun—in about 6 hours. Coming in second is Nevada, which is home to Las Vegas, also known as the ninth island. Flying in between the eight islands of Hawaii is also fairly simple; it only takes about 45 minutes to island hop by plane.

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skeeze // PIxabay

Idaho

Most common flight destinations:
1. California: 19%
2. Nevada: 9%
3. Washington: 8%

Idaho residents search out nearby destinations. California is only two states away while Idaho borders both Nevada and Washington. Travelers can get from from Boise to Seattle in less than 2 hours. Residents looking to enjoy a night or two in Las Vegas can get there in under 4 hours.

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12019 // Pixabay

Illinois

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 26%
2. Nevada: 12%
3. California: 11%

Many Illinois snowbirds head to warmer states—such as Florida, Nevada, and California—to escape the harsh winters of the Midwest. There is no personal income tax in Florida, where some Illinois residents already have second homes. Others are considering leaving the Midwest entirely to head to the Sunshine State.

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12019 // Pixabay

Indiana

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 34%
2. Nevada: 9%
3. California: 8%

This Midwestern state is home to the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, a stretch of sandy beaches with 15 miles of coastline along the southern tip of Lake Michigan. Nature lovers can explore more than 70 miles of hiking trails alongside the park. Since the winters in Indiana can be cloudy, cold, and snowy, residents copy their Illinois neighbors by heading to Florida, Nevada, and California.

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12019 // Pixabay

Iowa

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 21%
2. Arizona: 11%
3. California: 10%

Iowa is where the Red Delicious apple originated, and it isn't as flat as you might think. It's home to the Loess Hills, which were created during the Ice Age. It is landlocked and cold during winter, which has snowbirds and beachgoers alike searching out flights to warmer states.

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12019 // Pixabay

Kansas

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 17%
2. California: 11%
3. Nevada: 9%

Kansas is located right in the middle of the U.S., far from both coasts. Flights to Florida take about 3 hours. For those heading to the Pacific Coast, they can expect to be on a plane for closer to 4 hours. Casino fans can get to Las Vegas on a nonstop flight in about 2.5 hours.

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12019 // Pixabay

Kentucky

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 33%
2. Texas: 8%
3. Nevada: 8%

Kentucky is one of the northernmost Southern states, sitting underneath Indiana and Ohio. While people come to the Bluegrass State to sample bourbon or sip on mint juleps at the Kentucky Derby, people in Kentucky search out flights to Florida when they want to get out of the state.

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JamesDeMers // Pixabay

Louisiana

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 18%
2. California: 11%
3. Texas: 10%

Hundreds of thousands of tourists flock to New Orleans every year to collect beads and revel in the French Quarter during Mardi Gras. Louisiana also attracts young intellectuals with top-rated universities such as Louisiana State University, Tulane, and Xavier. But Louisiana residents fly to nearby Florida when they look to travel. Texas, the state's next door neighbor, is the third most popular flight search.

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FrankWinkler // Pixabay

Maine

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 39%
2. New York: 6%
3. California: 4%

Maine has a comfortable summer climate with temperatures that average about 70 degrees. Leaf peeping during fall is a must for anyone near Acadia National Park. Winters, on the other hand, are dark and cold. It might come as no surprise that most people in Maine search for flights to Florida. New York is only two states away, making it a convenient travel stop.

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12019 // Pixabay

Maryland

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 33%
2. California: 9%
3. Texas: 8%

People in Maryland can dine on crabs or take in an Orioles game in Baltimore. In winter, they can cross-country ski or try outdoor ice skating. What they can't do is sit on a white sandy beach year-round. For that, they can book a trip to Florida. A direct flight to Tampa from Baltimore or Washington International Airport only takes 2.5 hours.

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usmc0491 // Pixabay

Massachusetts

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 36%
2. California: 10%
3. Texas: 5%

There is plenty to do during summer in Massachusetts. The state is home to Cape Cod, Boston, and Martha's Vineyard. But winter is another story. Below freezing temperatures are common, and some days fall below zero. That winter weather can make Florida and California getaways especially appealing.

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skeeze // PIxabay

Michigan

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 34%
2. Nevada: 9%
3. California: 7%

While the first day of winter isn't officially until Dec. 21, wintry conditions start a month earlier in Michigan. The dark, snowy cold of a Great Lakes winter can start before Thanksgiving and last until after Easter. Those temperatures have many Michigan residents eyeing flights to vacation in Florida.

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skeeze // PIxabay

Minnesota

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 23%
2. California: 10%
3. Nevada: 9%

Minnesota may have the most brutal winter of all. Some parts of northern Minnesota get upwards of 170 inches of snow during winter, and temperatures can dive to under-60 degrees Fahrenheit. Residents looking to get out of the cold search for flights to Florida, California, and Nevada.

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12019 // Pixabay

Mississippi

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 16%
2. Texas: 11%
3. California: 9%

Both root beer and blues music started in Mississippi. It's also where the “Teddy Bear” originated; the toy was inspired by President Theodore Roosevelt, a man known for big game hunting. While Mississippi can be an interesting place to visit, residents of this southern state search flights to Florida and Texas when they want to travel out of town.

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vicariousalex // Pixabay

Missouri

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 24%
2. Nevada: 11%
3. California: 11%

Iowa sits to the north of Missouri, and Arkansas is to the south. Some people—like New Yorkers—may have trouble locating the “Show Me” State, but that's not the case with Midwesterners. While it can be fun to visit the St. Louis Zoo or take a ride up the Gateway Arch, Missourians head to states with beaches or casinos when they fly out of town.

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12019 // Pixabay

Montana

Most common flight destinations:
1. California: 14%
2. Nevada: 8%
3. Washington: 8%

Montana sits along the U.S.-Canada border and includes mountain ranges and flat grass land; the Rocky Mountains and Great Plains both run through Big Sky Country. The Treasure State is trying to attract more tourists, but when Montana residents look to travel, they eye flights to closer states such as California, Nevada, and Washington. A flight from Helena to Seattle only takes a couple of hours.  

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12019 // Pixabay

Nebraska

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 17%
2. Arizona: 10%
3. California: 10%

Residents of Nebraska can explore about 20,000 square miles of sand dunes or check out the Badlands in the northeastern part of the state. Residents of the Cornhusker State can even explore the largest indoor rainforest in the U.S. at Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium. What Nebraskans can't do, however, is head to the ocean. This makes Florida and California appealing flight destinations.

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esudroff // Pixabay

Nevada

Most common flight destinations:
1. California: 18%
2. Florida: 9%
3. Texas: 7%

California and Nevada are next-door neighbors, making air travel between the two convenient and quick. A nonstop flight from Las Vegas to Los Angeles only takes a little more than an hour and can cost less than $100.  

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12019 // Pixabay

New Hampshire

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 43%
2. California: 5%
3. Nevada: 5%

Like many other states in the Northeast, New Hampshire residents eye flights to Florida the most. Winters in the Granite State aren't as brutal as Minnesota or Maine, but it still gets cold and snowy. In January, when average temperatures rarely reach above freezing, an afternoon in the 70-degree Florida sun can be appealing.

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12019 // Pixabay

New Jersey

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 48%
2. California: 8%
3. Nevada: 6%

While some New Jersey residents head to Florida to enjoy some sun and sand—winter days are shorter up north—retirees and people who want second homes can also see major tax benefits if they split their time in the Sunshine State. People only need to live there six months to establish residency, and property taxes on condos in Florida can be quarter of the rate as those on the Jersey Shore.

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skeeze // PIxabay

New Mexico

Most common flight destinations:
1. California: 16%
2. Texas: 11%
3. Nevada: 10%

Artist Georgia O'Keeffe used to live in New Mexico, which is also home to White Sands National Monument and Valles Caldera, an inactive volcano in a national preserve. While New Mexico is an interesting place to live, when residents are looking to head out of the state, they check flights to California, which is a much closer beach destination than Florida. Texas is also a convenient travel spot since the two states share a border.

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Free-Photos // Pixabay

New York

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 42%
2. California: 8%
3. Georgia: 5%

New Yorkers face the highest tax burden in the U.S., which has many retirees eyeing the Sunshine State. Florida doesn't collect any individual income tax, and property owners—many New Yorkers have second homes in the state—get tax breaks if Florida is their primary residence. Georgia is another state with favorable tax rates for retirees; anyone 64 and older gets a $65,000 tax deduction on retirement income.

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mam5032 // Pixabay

North Carolina

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 21%
2. New York: 10%
3. California: 8%

North Carolina is another tax-friendly state, especially for retirees who might be looking to get away from the high taxes of New York. There is no social security tax or state estate tax, which probably helped make the state the #3 most popular place to retire in 2018.

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jmrockeman // Pixabay

North Dakota

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 15%
2. Nevada: 12%
3. Colorado: 8%

For those familiar with the movie and television show “Fargo,” it's no surprise that people in North Dakota—a state that borders Canada—would be searching for flights to Florida and Nevada. Average temperatures during a Fargo winter top out around 18 degrees with a low of zero. And that's an average, which means it can get colder. In 1936, people shivered through 60 degrees below zero.

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12019 // Pixabay

Ohio

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 35%
2. Nevada: 10%
3. California: 7%

During summer, Ohio residents can head to Hocking Hills State Park for hiking and kayaking. The park is also a great stop for leaf peeping in the fall. The Buckeye State—which sits between Indiana and Pennsylvania—may border Lake Erie, but it's is void of beachside coastline. That's probably why many snowbirds from the Midwest head to Florida when it gets cold.

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filmDASH_OKC // Pixabay

Oklahoma

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 15%
2. California: 13%
3. Texas: 9%

Oklahoma is another landlocked state that has residents' eyeing oceanside vacations when they fly. The Sooner State also borders Texas, making it a popular and convenient destination. A flight from Oklahoma City to Dallas only takes about an hour.

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12019 // Pixabay

Oregon

Most common flight destinations:
1. California: 23%
2. Nevada: 11%
3. Hawaii: 10%

Oregon sits on the northern border of California, making travel between the states fairly simple. Along with California and Washington, Oregon is home to more Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander residents than other U.S. states. A flight from the Pacific Northwest state to Hawaii is only about 6 hours.

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12019 // Pixabay

Pennsylvania

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 39%
2. California: 8%
3. Nevada: 7%

Pennsylvania is home to historical towns like Gettysburg and Philadelphia—the latter of which was where the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution were signed. People who live in the state can visit the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia or the Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh. For those looking to get out of town, however, Florida is a popular spot.

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12019 // Pixabay

Rhode Island

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 51%
2. North Carolina: 6%
3. California: 4%

While Rhode Island might be the smallest state in the U.S., it has 400 miles of coastline along the Atlantic. It might be known as the Ocean State, but half of all flight searches are for Florida. Coming in second is North Carolina, another popular coastal state for retirees.

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acethom // PIxabay

South Carolina

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 15%
2. New York: 11%
3. Texas: 7%

South Carolina is the fourth most popular place for retirees and one of the most popular states for new residents to move. New Yorkers may split their time in South Carolina to avoid the high taxes.

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skeeze // PIxabay

South Dakota

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 14%
2. Arizona: 10%
3. Nevada: 10%

Mount Rushmore and Badlands National Park are both popular tourist spots in South Dakota, where snowmobiling is a big winter sport. For those who want to get out of the snow and into the surf, Florida is the top option.

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skeeze // PIxabay

Tennessee

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 25%
2. California: 9%
3. Nevada: 9%

People who live in Tennessee can visit the Great Smoky Mountains or take in some country music in Nashville. The Volunteer State is also famous for its whiskey. When residents are looking to travel, however, they eye the same flights as the rest of the country, with Florida topping their search queries.

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12019 // Pixabay

Texas

Most common flight destinations:
1. California: 13%
2. Florida: 13%
3. Nevada: 11%

Many U.S. residents travel to Texas for their barbecue and beaches. People who want to get weird head to Austin, where food trucks are a mainstay of the food landscape. When Texans want to leave their home state, they head east to Florida or west to California.

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skeeze // PIxabay

Utah

Most common flight destinations:
1. California: 20%
2. Hawaii: 11%
3. Florida: 10%

California is only two states to the west of Utah. Hopping a flight from Salt Lake City to Los Angeles takes less than 2 hours. Utah also has the fifth highest Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander population in the country.

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Mariamichelle // Pixabay

Vermont

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 34%
2. California: 6%
3. New York: 6%

Winter can be so long and snowy in this Northeastern state—which borders Canada, New York, and New Hampshire—that some colleges even offer online tips on adjusting to a Vermont winter. When residents want some sand and sunshine, they start searching flights to Florida.

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PublicDomainPictures // Pixabay

Virginia

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 29%
2. Texas: 8%
3. California: 7%

Virginia is home to Arlington National Cemetery and Shenandoah National Park. When residents want to travel out of state, they explore flights to Florida. Getting from Richmond to Orlando only takes a couple of hours.

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Free-Photos // Pixabay

Washington

Most common flight destinations:
1. California: 21%
2. Nevada: 12%
3. Hawaii: 10%

It doesn't take long for Washington residents to get to California. A flight from Seattle to San Francisco only takes a couple of hours. The Pacific Northwest state is also home to the third largest Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander population in the U.S.

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12019 // Pixabay

West Virginia

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 34%
2. South Carolina: 12%
3. Texas: 7%

When West Virginians travel to Myrtle Beach, S.C., they might feel right at home at Clubhouse Foods & Spirits, also known as the “West Virginia Rest Stop.” A nonstop flight from Charleston, West Virginia to Myrtle Beach is less than 3 hours.

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12019 // Pixabay

Wisconsin

Most common flight destinations:
1. Florida: 27%
2. Nevada: 11%
3. Arizona: 8%

The snowbirds of Wisconsin head to some of the most popular states for retirees when they're looking for warmer weather. And while the Midwestern state has miles of coastline along Lake Michigan, the lake never warms up quite as much as the Gulf Coast or Atlantic Ocean. Florida can be a great option for families looking to shed their snow pants for a swimsuit over spring break.

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WikiImages // PIxabay

Wyoming

Most common flight destinations:
1. California: 9%
2. Nevada: 9%
3. Florida: 9%

Wyoming hosts world-class skiing in Jackson Hole and has two nationally protected destinations: Yellowstone National Park and Grand Teton National Park. There is no shortage of activities to do year round, but there is no ocean with white sandy beaches. Wyoming residents look to California and Florida for that.  

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