We’re deep into winter here in the US—while we’re battling with the freezing weather and potential snowstorms, we can’t help but daydream about warmer climates and faraway lands. Luckily, those daydreams can turn into reality! It’s the off-season for travel, and Audicus is here to show you some of the best destinations you can take advantage of during this time.
Off-season travel: Take a jaunt to Europe
Winter can be the best time to visit destinations like southern Europe, where it’s still warm but less crowded than the summer months. Rick Steves, author and professional traveler, encourages a trip to Europe in the off season.
Advantages of off-season travel include less crowded attractions, lower hotel prices, and unique winter events. Big tourist cities like Paris, Rome, and Berlin will still be buzzing with activity but you’ll definitely experience shorter lines and cheaper deals.
Explore the US during the off season
Want to stay a bit more local? There’s plenty of good winter deals within the US. Traveling Lifestyle suggests checking out New Orleans, where the good times roll. Avoid the week of Mardi Gras if you’re traveling on a budget (March 2-6, 2019). New Orleans always has parades and festivities, so you don’t need to actually go on Fat Tuesday to experience the energy of Mardi Gras!
Another great idea for winter travel is the Southwest. Loren Bendele of savings.com, quoted in Reader’s Digest, proclaims that the best time to see places like Phoenix, Austin, and Las Vegas are the winter. Check out the Grand Canyon without the buzz of summer tourists, or plan a romantic getaway to stunning Sedona, AZ, with your partner.
If you’re planning a family trip, Orlando might be the spot for you! January and February are slower months for the theme park capital, and while you won’t save much on park tickets you can definitely find cheap flights and hotels. As a bonus, there will be way fewer screaming children and angry parents running around than if you visited in August.
Off-season beach buys
For many tropical destinations, the winter is not the best time to go—everyone’s trying to get a little beach and sun in during January and February, right? If you’re traveling after the December school holidays, however, you could scoop up some great savings for sunny locales.
Nina Willdorf of Budget Travel, quoted in Reader’s Digest, suggests Punta Cana and the Cayman Islands for winter travel. These resort destinations experience a slowdown of tourists during the winter months, leaving staff more available for the people that do venture down. A bonus: The weather is almost exactly the same as in the summer time—all the sun for a fraction of the price!
Off-season travel below the equator
If you’ve got time, some of the best places to travel in the winter are on the opposite side of the globe. Below the equator the seasons are switched, so our winter is their summer. Traveling Lifestyle recommends places like Cape Town, South Africa, and Byron Bay, Australia, as great winter destinations. Go in February as the summer is waning down (don’t worry, it won’t get too cold!) and see how the prices for flights and accommodations drop.
Travel tip: For flight deals, keep an eye on websites such as Secret Flying, The Flight Deal, and Airfare Watchdog. These sites are constantly updated with cheap flights to places around the world. Happy travels!
By: Elena McPhillips