5 excellent reasons to travel off-season
Choosing to spend your holidays during the quieter months gives you the opportunity to enjoy a more relaxed atmosphere and different experiences. Off-season travel can also have more positive sustainability impact. Here are our five good reasons to travel outside the high season.
1. Support local economy
In many holiday destinations, tourism is the main source of income for locals. When the tourist season is focused around only a few months, a large part of the year can be very challenging financially for the area. Travelling off-season means that you are contributing to round-the-year need for services and provide income for locals.
More stable income also ensures that locals can develop their services. When the tourist season is longer than a few months, the locals can rely on a steady stream of visitors and know that the standard of services is worth keeping up in the long term.
2. Get better service and see more authentic culture
Busy crowds and hurried service are easier to avoid outside the tourist season. Locals will have more time and maybe they will even stop for a proper chat with you. If you want to avoid the intense commercialism targeted at tourists, you will be more successful at that too.
It is also much easier to see the true spirit and culture of your chosen destination. Instead of boarding a tourist bus, hop on a local bus and choose to see sights in your own time instead of joining a guided tour. When tourist crowds are thinner, you can see what the lifestyle of your destination really is.
3. Save money and emissions
During the low season the availability of scheduled flights tends to be better and there are seats available for more spontaneous, spur of the moment departures. This also makes comparing prices easier, ensuring you can save even more. The same goes for accommodations, there are more choice and price options available during the off-season.
You are also contributing to improving optimal capacity on the off-season flights and flight efficiency. Full flights equal better efficiency in regard to fuel use.
4. Avoid stress and queues
Traveling off-season is more laid-back and the hustle and bustle on airports less extreme. There is a lot less stress factors to travel when the biggest flurry of tourists is not around.
The same relaxed atmosphere is often continued in your destination too. Travelling onwards from the airport is smoother when there are less people around. You might not have to purchase tickets to sights months in advance, and you might even be able to get a table at one of the popular restaurants. Off-season is absolutely the best time to go see the sights that can be a bit challenging when it's busy.
5. Access unseen natural sites
Many vulnerable natural wonders are closed off during the busiest tourist seasons, so that their sustainability is not jeopardised. For example, access to certain hiking routes or nature reserves can be restricted partly or fully, so that large crowds do not cause damage to them. During the off-season these sights can however often be accessed – enabling you to have truly unique experiences.
Ecologically, it is important that the number of visitors on protected sites remains moderate. So even if the natural site is open during the high season, a visit during the low season can be a more sustainable choice.
Looking for ideas on some great off-season destinations? You can see some of our top picks here.