Five hacks for making peak season travel easier

City Hall Park

City Hall Park, New York

Winter is peak travel season. If you have booked a trip, or are looking to do it soon, there are some tips to help make it easier to travel when it seems like everyone else is doing the same.

It’s a little late for some of my main tips for peak travel like booking early, but these quick tips I have found helpful.

1.My main tip is to relax

 

Brooklyn Botanic Garden, New York

Brooklyn Botanic Garden, New York

 

 

Depending on where you’ve chosen to go, accept that it’s probably going to be busier than you like and just go with it. There will be crowds at main attractions, top sites and sometimes for food. It happens when you travel to popular destinations during the peak season! Being prepared may help you find it’s better than expected!

2.Connect with locals

NYC Little Italy Street Art

Audrey Hepburn by Tristen Eaton, street art in Little Italy, New York

Locals are the best way to find out how to avoid most of the busiest spots and navigate around your destination.  If you haven’t already found accommodation, try staying with a local by couchsurfing or through vacation rentals by owners. If you’re not comfortable staying with others, try citysocializer.com. Through this site, you can find people to meet up with for dinner, drinks or a show.

3.Take the path less traveled

Verrazano-Narrows bridge in Brooklyn and Staten Island, NYC

Spot off to the side to capture the Verrazano-Narrows bridge, Brooklyn and Staten Island, NYC

Discover secret spots by getting to know people that work at stores, in hotels or security guards, taxi drivers, and bartenders. They can steer you to amazing sites and places to go that tourists don’t know about giving you two bonuses. One, an experience like no one else you know has had and two, it will be far less busy.

Ask people for restaurant recommendations too. Try staying away from touristy locations to eat for a few reasons. It is less busy, cheaper and you get more authentic tasting meals. Tourist spots sometimes make the food a bit different than you would typically find; it helps appeal to a broader range of taste.

4.The earlier…the better

Central Park in Winter

Winter in Central Park, New York

When you’re traveling during the peak season, everything will be busier. Give yourself plenty of time to get to where you need to be to ensure you’re not late for your travel time or for pre-booked things to do.

The earlier you start, the less busy things usually are, so wake up as early as you can while still being able to function happily.

5.Pre-book and look for time and money savers

Rockefeller center skating
Skating at Rockefeller Center, New York

If you have specific things you want to see and do, book them before you leave, and the earlier, the better for availability. Keep your eye out for bookings that allow you to bypass lineups. You will be thankful you did!

Pre-booking can sometimes save you money. It’s happened to me before when the price was higher at the destination.

Check groupon.com and livingsocial.com for discounts on shows, tours, spas, and restaurants.

These are some of my tips for getting the most out of my travels when it’s peak season. What are some of yours?

 

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