By Allie E. Almario
If you’ve got a flexible schedule, consider choosing to travel when it’s NOT the most popular time of the year to go to your favorite destination. First of all, let us define when exactly is shoulder season. Shoulder season traditionally refers to the period between the high and low seasons of a given destination, according to Tripsavvy. For most of South America, those months are generally April, May, October and November. Dates can extend in either direction by a couple of weeks.
1. Temperate Weather
During shoulder seasons, you’ll avoid temperature extremes – the heat and humidity of the summer, and cold and winds of winter. To be fair, traveling in shoulder season may mean packing extra layers of clothing.
Summer season can also be somewhat rainy, so traveling just after a rainy summer might mean photos with lush, green landscapes. But don’t forget to pack that waterproof jacket, just in case! And if you are traveling in spring, for some mammal species, that means lots of new babies if you are on a wildlife trip, and inspiring gorgeous flower blooms in gardens and nature parks.
2. Less Crowds
As a bonus, shoulder season usually means a lot less people are headed to that spot. And that might mean parks with less people on the trails, more flexibility in hotel choices, and less traffic to get from place to place. Hiking permits may be easier to get, and if you’re lucky and a hotel is feeling generous, you might get an upgrade or two while at a hotel which has lower occupancy. You won’t need to get up quite as early to beat the crowds to get to a famous iconic site.
Traveling during shoulder season can sometimes help your budget tremendously. International flights might be cheaper, and many hotels lower their rates to attract travelers. That might mean you can stretch out your trip by an extra day or two to take advantage of better pricing. Being flexible might net you some great deals, especially if you decide on traveling spontaneously – you might just score a last-minute deal.