When it comes to planning a trip, it might seem like it makes the most sense to go traveling in the summer time, but for the seasoned traveler who may be doing it on a budget, the best time to go is actually during the low season There are HI USA hostels in multiple prime locations around the country where there are plenty of awesome winter sights or the weather is actually better during this time of the year. So don’t wait around for the “right time,” because that time is now!
It’s cheaper to travel during off-peak seasons
From flights to your bed at the hostel, rates are going to be much more favorable if you book your stay when there aren’t many other travelers to compete with. This winter, many HI USA hostels are running special deals on dorms and private rooms, and city restaurants and attractions tend to the do the same or offer generous specials to attract more people. This means you’ll be able to spend more on the fun things and a little splurge won’t hurt the pocketbook.
HI hostels running special deals this winter include:
And HI Los Angeles Santa Monica, where all economy dorm beds are just $25 through Dec. 23
It will be less crowded (almost) everywhere you go
Probably one of the greatest perks of traveling outside of the busy summer time is that there’ll be fewer crowds to contend with, meaning that you’ll likely have the great attractions to yourself (all the better for the perfect Instagram post) and won’t have to wait in long lines to see them. And at the hostels out in nature like HI Eagle Home Hostel in Wisconsin and HI Marin Headlands in California, you can enjoy the scenic trails and really spend quality time with Mother Nature without encountering another human for hours.
Many places make excellent winter destinations
Whether you’re the type person who loves the coziness of cold snowy days or you prefer to avoid the white stuff completely and seek the sun, there’s somewhere in America you can go to find just what you’re looking for. Hit up HI Boston and HI New York City for big city White Christmases or gather a gang and rent out HI Harper’s Ferry in Maryland for a cozy, secluded group getaway. If you’re looking to be a little warmer, your best bets are the hostels in San Diego, Los Angeles, Miami and Hawaii where it seems like summer is perpetual
You’re more likely to have an authentic local experience
When the busy tourist season ends a lot of places get back to “normal” and the locals come out of hiding to reclaim their favorite places, which also makes it a perfect time for travelers looking for authentic experiences and off-the-beaten-path spots. The locals are likely to be even friendlier because they won’t be so tired of being bombarded by out of towners, and tour guides also tend to be more open and detailed because they can be more personal with smaller groups.
You can witness and experience seasonal natural phenomena
From great whale migrations near HI Point Reyes to blue crab season at HI Baltimore, there are some things that you just won’t be able to experience during the summer because Mother Nature’s in charge. Head to HI Washington D.C. to witness the blooming Cherry Blossom trees in the spring or visit San Francisco in the fall because this is when the City by the Bay usually has its best temperatures (with half as many tourists). With the right planning, you can have an amazing experience with fewer crowds, less expense, and a whole different kind of magic.
Now that you know when to travel, here’s how to travel on a budget to maximize the savings, and be sure to check out our Free for All series for awesome things to do around the country for absolutely free as well. Don’t forget to share you off peak travel experiences with us on Facebook and Instagram!