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Published 29 November 2022

Shoulder Season Travel: The Best Kept Secret of the Savvy Traveller

Embrace the shoulder season! What is the shoulder season, you ask? It is that sweet spot between high season (when everyone and their mother is on holiday) and low season (when half the attractions are closed). The weather is still pleasant, accommodation rates are lower, and there are far fewer crowds. Here are a few more reasons why you should travel during the shoulder season.

Avoid the crowds

If you’re sick of jostling for space on crowded beaches or waiting in line for hours to get into that must-see museum, shoulder season travel is for you. Fewer people means more space to yourself to enjoy all that your destination has to offer. And who doesn’t love a little extra personal space on holiday?

Get more bang for your buck

Flight and accommodation prices are typically at their lowest during shoulder season, since there is less demand from travellers. This leaves more room in your budget to splurge on activities or souvenirs… or just save some money for a rainy day. Who knows, you might even be able to snag that ocean-view room you’ve always wanted!

Enjoy better weather

Believe it or not, shoulder season can actually offer some of the best weather conditions for travel. Late spring and early fall tend to offer mild temperatures and consistent rainfall, which makes for perfect beach weather.

But It's Not All Sunshine and Roses...

Of course, there are a few downsides to shoulder season travel. While you can be lucky with the weather, it can be a bit unpredictable too — you might run into a rain shower here or there (or in some cases, an entire week of rain). And since few people are traveling during shoulder season, some businesses might not be open.

But these downsides are nothing that a little planning can't solve. For example, if you're worried about the weather, make sure to pack appropriate clothing and/or plan your activities around the forecast. And if you're worried about businesses being closed, do a little research ahead of time so you know what will be open when you're in town. Trust me, the pros of shoulder season travel far outweigh the cons!

Destinations to consider for shoulder season travel

If you're not sure where to go, don't worry – we've got you covered. Here are five examples of amazing places to travel in shoulder season. So what are you waiting for? Start packing!

Florence, Italy

Travel: April to mid-June and September to October

Florence is a beautiful city to visit in the shoulder season as the weather is cooler than in summer and there are fewer tourists than in peak season. The city is home to a number of historic landmarks and museums, including the Duomo, Uffizi Gallery, and Palazzo Vecchio.

Cape Town, South Africa

Travel: March to May and September to November

Cape Town is a beautiful city located on the southwestern coast of South Africa. The city is known for its stunning beaches, vibrant nightlife scene, and Table Mountain views. Cape Town is the perfect shoulder season destination as the weather is cool and comfortable and there are fewer crowds than in peak season

Victoria Falls, Zambia

Travel: June and November

Victoria Falls is one of the most spectacular natural wonders in the world. The falls are located on the Zambezi River between Zambia and Zimbabwe and are a must-see for any traveler to Africa. Victoria Falls is the perfect shoulder season destination as the weather is cool and comfortable and there are fewer crowds than in peak season.

Cusco, Peru

Travel: September to November and March to May

Cusco is a beautiful city located in southeastern Peru. The city is known for its Incan ruins, colonial architecture, and lively nightlife scene. Cusco is the perfect shoulder season destination as the weather is cool and comfortable and there are fewer crowds than in peak season.

Siem Reap, Cambodia

Travel: April to May

Siem Reap is a small town located in northwestern Cambodia. The town is best known for being the gateway to the ancient temple complex of Angkor Wat. Siem Reap is a great shoulder season destination as hotel prices are significantly lower than during peak season and the weather is still warm at this time of year.

So what are you waiting for? Shoulder season is the perfect time to travel—you'll enjoy cheaper airfare and accommodations, smaller crowds, and overall quieter destinations. Just make sure to do a little planning ahead of time so you know what to expect weather-wise and which businesses will be open. And before you know it, you'll be on your way to enjoying all that shoulder season travel has to offer.

Inspired to book your next holiday, be sure to check out the latest flight deals on our deals page. Who knows, you might just snag a great deal in shoulder season. Happy travels!

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