MEMPHIS, Tenn. — While Labor Day marks the end of the summer season, it also marks the beginning of fall travel – and some deep discounts.
Roadways will be packed with families taking short trips over the Labor Day weekend. Plus, there are those that decided to splurge on a final summer getaway.
But seasoned travelers know the real bargains have just begun.
“It’s a supply and demand thing, you don’t have the crowds, so if you don’t have the crowds, now, hotels and resorts are going to be looking for people to come in,” AAA’s Cheryl Keating said.
She added the rule is simple: the time to get away is when kids go back to school.
It’s known in the travel industry as the shoulder season, sandwiched between summer and winter, and it brings some of the best bargains.
“We’re talking very often almost 50 percent than what you’d pay during high season,” Keating said.
Keating says if you’re looking to save, the Caribbean is always a good spot.
We also found deep discounts on travel websites, like a six-night stay in the Bahamas for less than $300, and nearly $800 off a trip to Iceland.
If you want to stay closer to home, that could be even cheaper, as hotels and tourist attractions have slashed prices too.
“Unless they’re having conventions, they’re looking for people to come visit, so even if you’re thinking about Atlanta, Chicago, Las Vegas, or California,” Keating said.
Several airlines lowered fares for fall travel. Just be prepared for plenty of blackout dates and for seats to go quickly.
It’s also hurricane season, so keep that in mind when you plan.
As for how long the discounts will last, Keating said, “Take away Thanksgiving and of course fall breaks, around December 15th, and then the prices are going to go back up.”
Believe it or not, fall is also a good time to start budgeting and planning for your vacation next year. Travel agents say that’s when a lot of the travel packages are released.