5 Reasons Off-Season Travel Will Enhance Your Vacation Experience
At Destination: Overlooked, we are big proponents of traveling during the off-season. We will never forget our two drastically different experiences we had the last couple times we visited Rome.
The first time was in early September 2012. Big mistake. Not only was the city almost unbearably hot, but to say it was crowded is an understatement. We happened to be in the city the day the cruise ship(s) came in. We almost had to crowd surf in order to get out of the Trevi Fountain area.
It was literally a sea of people and it was panic inducing! At least we think the Trevi Fountain was there…we weren’t able to see it at all. As soon as we got back to our apartment that evening we decided to cut our losses and make a mad dash for Tuscany to salvage what was left of our vacation time.
Fast forward to early February 2016 when we visited Rome again. Huge difference. It was like a completely different city, and we were actually able to enjoy ourselves. The weather was still fairly pleasant, and it wasn’t crowded at all. We could actually walk around and see things! We actually took pictures! Plus, as if you need another reason to visit Rome in winter - it is ARTICHOKE SEASON!
So next time you are planning your trip - especially to a major travel destination - consider these reasons why off-season is the best season:
1. FEWER CROWDS AND FEWER TOURISTS!
The main reason we travel during the off-season is to avoid crowds. There are far fewer tourists in town when you are traveling during the off-season, which means you might actually get to see the sights you traveled so far to see! You’ll have more elbow room and shorter lines at attractions and not feel quite so rushed and stressed when you go out for the day.
2. THE PRICE IS USUALLY MUCH CHEAPER
Since fewer people travel during the off-season, flights, hotels and car rentals tend to be cheaper, which means you can stay longer or visit more places on the same budget you would have if you travelled during high season. Check all of your options and different dates to find the best availability and pricing before you lock down your trip.
3. BETTER, MORE UNIQUE PHOTO OPPORTUNITIES
Not only will your photos not have as many tourists in them blocking the view, but you can probably get more interesting angles since it will be easier to move about. Your travel photos have the potential to be much more unique if they are taken in not-so-ideal weather. Since most people visit Rome in the summer, their photos of the Colosseum or St. Peter’s will look almost identical to each other - full of random sweaty strangers and full sun!
4. LIVE LIKE A LOCAL
With fewer tourists clogging up the place, it is easier to find out where the locals go to eat and have fun. The locals will be friendlier and more receptive to you since they are not frazzled from having to avoid tourists everywhere they go, and business owners will be more helpful as well. Traveling during the off-season will help you experience a town the way that locals do, and you can really get the true feel of the place and culture.
5. MORE FLEXIBILITY
Since fewer people travel during the off-season, it is easier to get last minute hotel reservations and tickets to attractions and shows. This means it is much easier for your trip to take a spontaneous turn if you’d like to go somewhere else, take an unplanned tour or extend your trip!
In short, traveling during the off-season will save you money, time, and your sanity. You will have a much more authentic experience, take much better travel photos, and be able to be a little more spontaneous if you wish. We highly recommend it.
Where have you travelled to in the off-season, and what was your experience? Let us know in the comments!
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