Budget Travel Alert: 6 City Breaks to Take During Shoulder Season

How to save money when you travel? The answer “go during shoulder season” is not a surprising one since you can often save more than 50%.

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The following six cities which are normally unthinkable for travelers on a budget, become affordable. Here’s when to go, and how to save …

#1: Paris

“We will always have Paris,” said Humphrey Bogart as Rick Blaine in the film Casablanca, all the way back in 1942. And still today, Paris is around. More than that, it attracts millions of tourists each year. Whether loved ones, families or solo travelers, Paris offers activities for many different tastes. But it is also expensive.

So why go now? Convention business in Pairs decreases in November. For example, in 2008, the average air/hotel package price booked via Expedia for November was half the average for April, according to BudgetTravel.com.


Eiffel Tower in Paris © Anirudh Koul

About.com has quite an extensive list of things to do in Paris on a budget. For example, did you know that it is not necessary to leave a 15% tip in Paris? Parisians typically leave small amounts of change as a kindness, especially when service is good.

Another way to save is to shop at local supermarkets, such as Monoprix. Not only does this chain have lower prices (it caters to locals rather than tourists) but it is also open later than other supermarkets.

Check out The Guardian’s Paris + Budget Travel page for more tips. Conciergerie.com also has some good advice.

#2: Beijing

By November, international visitors to Beijing decrease by about 20 %. What’s more, this is also a great time to visit in terms of weather. Arrive just before the Beijing winters hit, which can be quite cold and snowy. The summers, in turn, can frequently be muggy and smoggy. Autumn, in contrast, is termed the most pleasant season for visiting, especially if you suffer from respiratory issues (Beijing’s air is very polluted).


Summer Palace, Beijing © Stuck in Customs

Again, The Guardian has some great tips to share about budget travel to Beijing. Check out their Top 10 hostels if you are looking to save even more.

#3: Buenos Aires

December marks the high point of US visitors to the South American capital. But in November, a flight from New York City, for example, can be 100 dollars cheaper.


Tango in Buenos Aires © Andy Hares

Head to ABC News to read about Ron Claiborne’s article on why the long flight to Buenos Aires is still worth it. Travel + Leisure also has a great piece up on Affordable Argentina. With a little bit of research, you too can plan a budget trip to the capital of tango.

#4: London

British Airways usually has deals that are 1/3 off in October. With fewer tourists around, you will also have more room to explore museums.


Big Ben, London © sanforaq8

Check out this Mini Summer Guide for a trip to London on a budget. “In London the secret is simple: knowing where the bargains are,” writes the author Reid Bramblett, who shares precisely these tips with his readers. Look and you shall find.

#5: Marrakech


Marrakech © vtveen

Europeans all come in December, but in September, you can expect discounts of up to 50%. Sunny weather, in turn, stays at 90 degrees.

A great option for saving is to stay in a Riad. Check out this site, for example, for some deals. Travel Marrakech also provides some good advice.

#6: Jaipur

Shoulder season in India is from August 1- 30, November 15 – December 10, and December 26 – January 24. CNNGo, for example, reports that Jaipur is the most affordable destination in all of India. This information is based on a TripAdvisor.in survey, which compared the comparative cost of traveling to 11 Indian cities between June and August this year.

Visit Hotelkhoj.com for accommodation options in India.


Jaipur © Himalayan Trails

  1. great post Isabel . when you travel the world that moment really unforgettable for you. In the world such destination are that we never forget.

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