For most of us who love to travel, we’re often faced with the tough task of creating a travel budget, and if you like to travel often, and you like to travel far and wide, travel budgets become very, very important. They either make, or break, your trip! How then do you get to travel to where you want to, do all the things you’ve dreamed of, see all the things you’ve got written down on that list of yours, and achieve all this without breaking the bank?! There is one simple way…choosing your time of travel.
Choose your time of travel wisely
While this is not applicable to every travel destination around the world, specifically those that are linked to specific seasons or natural phenomenon or certain events or festivals with fixed times or seasons, you can consider off-season travel to destinations that aren’t affected by time or seasonal restrictions of any kind. Say, if you’re planning a holiday to destinations of historical importance, with lots of monuments, museums and archaeological sights that are open through the year, then an off-season holiday would make great sense, especially if you have a frugal holiday budget. But remember, it’s important to choose your time of travel in conjunction with availability of whatever it is you want to see and explore.
Off-season travel requires some serious planning
When planning an off-season trip, remember to crosscheck availability of everything – flights, hotels, sightseeing locations, tours, restaurants, transport availability and so on. Many tourist locations virtually shut down during off-season (especially those that are entirely dependent on tourism), so figuring out what’s open and what’s not is most important. You don’t want to spend a bomb getting to a place only to find things shut or not available. So do your research thoroughly before booking flights and working on visas (if needed) for any destination you plan on visiting off-season.
Why you should definitely consider off season-travel
Save big bucks
Well, the biggest pro is of course all those extra savings. Travelling off-season means cheap flights (and the possibility of getting a whole row of vacant seats to stretch out on the flight!!), cheap accommodation (even luxury resorts and hotels slash prices big time to attract off-season vacationers, so if you’ve been dreaming of staying at that high-end hotel, off-season is the time to book it!), attractively priced tours (once again, specialized tours are generally priced attractively to attract off-season visitors), and cheap food! Many restaurants and eateries offer discounted prices and even special menu items that are sometimes not available during high season owing to the sheer volume of guests.
Avoid the crowds
If you’re the kind of traveler who just doesn’t like crowds, then you should definitely consider traveling off-season. The more popular the destination, the more crowded its going to get…and that alone can be reason enough to avoid visiting a place. Crowds mean lots of waiting, and lots of time wasted in the bargain. Off-season travel doesn’t have to deal with crowds – you can move at your own pace without being jostled, pushed and pulled in a wave of humanity, or spend time waiting endlessly for your turn!
Don’t waste time waiting in long queues!
Ask any true-blue traveler what irks them most about travel – and they’ll tell you the same thing: never-ending queues. Have you ever tried a cruise to Athens during the summer, or tried entering the Colosseum in Rome in the month of June? I’m sure one of your most lasting memories would be the amount of time you spent waiting in queues! Queues at the airport, to check-in to your hotel, at every monument and museum, every restaurant and café – phewww! That’s a lot of time wasted on your holiday! Off-season travel saves you the hassle of long waits. Imagine spending all that extra time actually exploring all those places you plan on seeing, rather than tiring your legs out waiting in an endless queue!
Avoid the touts!
Traveling during season time exposes you to touts – if you’re familiar with the term. Those shady looking characters offering you cheap tickets, quick entry, amazing experiences, cheap buys and much more…all for just a little bit more than you’d have to otherwise pay at the counter. You will find them everywhere…and they are best avoided if you don’t want to get conned into false experiences. Off-season travel doesn’t usually pose this problem as they are too few tourists to harass and not worth the time and effort. Also, there are less chances of your being conned into buying that Gucci bag or those Dior shades.
Check out the less-touristy aspects of a place
Many a times, travelers miss out on the true essence of a location just because of the sheer volume of people around. When you travel off-season, there’s time to pause, breathe, and soak in a place. You also get the opportunity to have unique experiences that may otherwise not be available during season. From a cultural aspect, locals are more open to visitors during off-season, and chances of getting to know a place for what it truly is, are much higher.
So there you have it…so many reasons why you should consider planning a trip off-season. Lots of savings, and an overall more fulfilling travel experience that will stay with you much longer than the rushed holidays you’ve taken during season.