Tropical vacations get a lot of attention, but have you ever thought about travelling in the colder months? If you’re a fan of snow, or at least looking at snow, then there are lots of stunning Canadian destinations to consider.
From frosted peaks to historical cities to winter festivals famous around the world – some of these places are actually better to visit in the winter. Okay, but what if your travelling budget isn’t so generous?
We got you!
Here are 4 travel hacks to help you save on your next winter getaway – including travelling in the off-season: winter!
One of the easiest travel hacks to save on your trip is to be part of a rewards program for flights and accommodations. The IHG One Rewards hotel program, for example, allows you to collect points, access member rates, and enjoy late checkouts, along with other perks during your stay. It’s an easy and cost-effective way to upgrade your experience while accumulating points that you can use to save on booking your next trip.
Now as far as where to go, you should really experience Niagara Falls in the winter. These magnificent cascades are beautiful year-round, but the crowds and the heat can make them a bit of a hassle in the warmer months. Wintertime is completely magical. The falls don’t freeze, but everything around is lit up with glowing lights and dripping icicles.
If you can, plan your trip between November and January so you can experience the town’s Winter Festival of Lights. This free outdoor light festival completely transforms the city into a winter wonderland with 3 million lights on display throughout the streets. Book your stay and earn points at the Crowne Plaza Niagara Falls-Fallsview. It’s super close to the falls and downtown attractions.
Where to stay: Staybridge Suites Niagara on the Lake, 524 York Road, Niagara On The Lake, ON
Another travel hack to save on your vacation is to consider the type of hotel you book. Opting for extended-stay properties gives you more amenities that can help optimize in other areas. Having a hotel room with a kitchen, for example, means you don’t need to eat out as much, which can save you money on food costs.
If you’re planning on an extended trip this winter, then you should consider making the trek to the Canadian Rockies. These iconic mountains draw tourists from all over the world. They’re home to countless ski hills, alpine gondolas for enjoying the views without the sweat, and stunning scenery that will humble and inspire you.
Rather than booking your vacation in one of the pricier locales, try setting your home base in the town of Kamloops instead.
Where to stay: Holiday Inn Express Kamloops, 1550 Versatile Drive, Kamloops
Look Outside The City
When you’re planning a trip, it can be tempting to look for accommodations as close to the main sights as possible. But that can mean paying a lot more for your stay. Of course, if you want to spend your whole trip in a single place, this might make the most sense. However, if you’re planning to explore a larger area, looking for a hotel outside of the biggest tourist attractions can save you some serious cash.
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Whistler is another internationally renowned destination – and for good reason. The setting is unbelievably scenic, the snow sports are some of the best in the country, and the downtown village is great for losing an afternoon. Unfortunately, Whistler is also famous for having some of the priciest stays year round – but that doesn’t mean you can’t still experience it on a budget!
Try booking your stay in North Vancouver instead! You’re only an hour and a half drive from Whistler village – and it’s a beautiful drive to boot! Stop for a quick visit as you pass through Squamish, or take a day in the opposite direction to visit Vancouver. It’s multiple trips for the cost of one!
Where to stay: Holiday Inn & Suites North Vancouver, 700 Old Lillooet Road, North Vancouver
Get Around For Less
Our final travel hack is probably one of the most obvious, but that doesn’t mean it’s not worth mentioning! Unless you’re road-tripping to your destination, you can save a ton of money by skipping the rental car and opting to take transit instead! This tip may not work if you’re travelling somewhere rural, but for urban destinations, it’s a no-brainer! Buy a transit pass for the duration of your stay and get around on the cheap without needing to worry about gas.
For a picturesque urban destination that’s easy to get around, you need to put Montreal on your bucket list. This city is unmatched for European charm, and it looks like a total postcard in the winter months.
Where to stay: InterContinental Montreal, 360 Rue Saint-Antoine O, Montréal, QC
Whether you’re booking something for the winter or have your sights set on the future, IHG One Rewards is one of the easiest ways to save on stays. You’re not even limited to Canada! IHG Hotels & Resorts encompasses 19 different hotel brands that make up over 6,000 open hotels in over 100 countries – and you can rack up rewards at ALL of them!
It’s time to get planning! Where to next?