The Cheapest Places to Travel for Each Month of the Year
You’ve heard the myths: Tuesday is the best day to book airfare. Wednesday is the best day to fly. January is the cheapest month to travel. All of them are up for debate, to a certain extent. But according to new data from Booking.com, you can count on getting good hotel values by picking the right destination for the right time of year.
So what causes prices to dip so low in certain months? The reasons vary. In some places, you’ll see hotel deals following a big national holiday—often times, one that doesn’t register here in the United States. You can also bet on serious shoulder season values, when the weather in a destination is still great but crowds have gotten a bit thinner. Even bouncing back from major tourism events, like the tennis opens and big-ticket conferences, can create pockets of deep savings during particular months—or even weeks—of the year, if you know to look for them.
Here, your month-by-month guide for great vacation deals in 2016.
This piece originally appeared on Travel + Leisure.
Visiting Melbourne in January means you can take advantage of low rates between the Christmas rush and the Australian Open, both of which draw tons of travelers. The average room goes for $150 in peak season—already a good deal—but going now means you can book a great place to stay for roughly $112 per night.For more of the cheapest places to travel throughout the year, go to Travel + Leisure
Hawaii is at its most expensive over New Years, but come Valentine’s Day, this ultra-romantic spot offers surprisingly good prices (we’re talking a 40 percent dip in hotel rates). Maximize your savings by heading to the island in the first week of the month, when values are at their very best.
March: Buenos Aires
International: Buenos Aires
It’s not quite a warm weather getaway, but springtime in the U.S. translates to temperate autumn in Buenos Aires—a perfect time to explore on your own two feet. You can find four-star accommodations for as little as $55 (really!), which more than justifies the long-haul flight.
The Second City should be first on your list come spring, when hotel rates dip to 54 percent cheaper than peak season prices, says Booking.com. The blustery cold of winter has passed (and so too, the crowds from this year’s Architecture Biennial), so you can choose whether to check out the splashy new concessions along Lake Michigan or hit the city’s fabulous museums and restaurants.
Sure, it’s a global capital—and never a cheap ticket—but London offers surprising value if you go after May Day (the bank holiday falls on May 2 this year). The average nightly rate for the week that follows: $216.
June: San Antonio, Texas
Domestic: San Antonio, Texas
It’s stealing all the attention away from Austin, its neighbor to the north, and with good reason: San Antonio is now home to a buzzy restaurant scene and the beautiful new Emma hotel, designed by Roman & Williams and set in the former Pearl Brewery. It’s also 49 percent cheaper to stay here than it is to stay in Austin (average rates at this time of year hover at $164 for a four star spot) and you’re still just an hour’s drive away.
Heading to Sydney during the middle of our summer means a reprieve from ultra-hot days—and savings of 44 percent on peak season hotel prices according to Booking.com’s data. But don’t let the idea of winter in July scare you away—the temperatures stay in the oh-so-pleasant upper 60s.
August: New York City
Domestic: New York City
Double check that your hotel is well air-conditioned—New York City summers can be stifling. But they’re a great excuse to hit trendy juice bars (we love Joe and the Juice in Soho) and take advantage of summer events, like outdoor New York Philharmonic concerts and Shakespeare in the Park, which are totally free to attend. Stay in the last week of the month for the deepest discounts on accommodations.
There’s no bad time of the year to visit perennially dreamy Rome, but September is the best. Since many Europeans take off for the month of August, the city is back to its normal bustle—sans local travelers. That translates to great values, along the lines of $131 per night for four-star hotels.
October: New Orleans
Domestic: New Orleans
How does NoLa for Halloween sound? Pretty good, when you consider that the last week of the month is the cheapest time of year to visit. Hotel rates plummet to $202 on average per night—a whopping 34 percent less than the week of Mardi Gras, Booking.com’s study found.
November: Rio de Janiero
International: Rio de Janeiro
If you’re in Rio, chances are you want to lay out on Copacabana Beach—and in November, the temperatures are just right, with highs in the low 80s. The most expensive season here is late December, when prices are 37 percent higher.
December: Las Vegas
Domestic: Las Vegas
There’s no bigger, bolder way to celebrate the holidays than with a trip to Vegas, and if you’re lucky, you might even win it big at the tables and subsidize your shopping list. Do it all while enjoying the year’s lowest hotel rates—with an average of $84, they’re up to 60 percent off—which you’ll find on the third week of the month.