A month-by-month travel guide on how to make the most of the warm weather to see Canada and beyond
TORONTO, May 15, 2018 /CNW/ -- From the May long weekend all the way until Labour Day, summer is one of the busiest travel periods for Canadians. The good news is, according to Expedia data1, June is the cheapest month to get the best airfare this summer. But what about the rest of the trip? Accommodation, car rental and activities – it all adds up. Expedia's travel experts have pulled together a travel guide that will help Canadians make the most of their summer without breaking the bank.
Summer is the time for longer trips for Canadians, with the average hotel stay between June-August totaling six days, versus an average of four during the rest of the year. And with so many unique elements to explore across the country, from vineyards in Kelowna, to cycling trails in Quebec, domestic travel continues to be a popular choice for Canadians during the summer months. Not surprisingly bigger cities such as Toronto, Vancouver and Calgary ranked high as top searched destinations on Expedia.ca2; however, less busy and smaller destinations including St. John's, Winnipeg and Victoria also made the list.
When it comes to getting around, the classic summer road trip is still a smart option. "Building that element into travel plans is a great way to see the country. There are so many hidden gems right in our own backyard, so consider flying into a major airport, picking up a car and hitting the road," said Jennifer Callegaro, Head of Brand Marketing for Expedia brand in Canada. "Expedia's insights show that when travellers bundle their hotel and car on Expedia, this can translate to significant savings. And when travelling with multiple people, this is a great way to keep costs down."
Consider timing if the plan is to incorporate a road trip. The most popular date for Canadians to rent a car is the Friday before a long weekend and by reserving last-minute or within a two-week window of the trip, this provides the best savings opportunity. In fact, 40 per cent of people who book a car and bundle it with a hotel at the same time end up getting the car rental for free3, as reserving these together can lead to an average savings of up to 15 per cent.
The great Canadian travel guide: Where and when to find the best deals & hidden gems
June – Take a trip out west or up north
- The early bird gets the worm – according to 2017 flight data, the first week of June is the cheapest in the month. In fact, it's nearly 10 per cent cheaper than the rest of the month, so if schedules allow, kick start summer straight away. Avoid the last week of June, as according to Expedia data that's the most expensive time.
- Keen to check the west coast off the bucket list? There's no better time than June. Based on Expedia data, Kelowna, Nanaimo and Victoria made the list for cheapest airfares this month. Kelowna is nearly 15 per cent cheaper and for a bigger city, Vancouver is over 20 per cent cheaper this month 4.
- Road trips are a great way to see the picturesque Rocky Mountains – get up close! If considering Alberta, flights to Edmonton are over 20 per cent cheaper or similarly, flights to Calgary are nearly 15 per cent cheaper in June4. Rent a car and drive out to one of the province's breathtaking national parks.
- Canadians interested in getting off the beaten track and into the outdoors should consider Yellowknife. In June flights are over 10 per cent cheaper 4 and it's a great time for spotting wildlife, such as wood bison, moose, and black bears.
July – Experience city and country in Quebec
- The cheapest week for travel in July is right in the middle. On the flip side, the start of the month is the most expensive, when travel is almost 10 per cent more, all according to 2017 Expedia flight data.
- This month plan to explore Quebec – from the old historic quarters of Montreal and Quebec City, to biking in Mont-Tremblant, it's the best of city and country life. Travel to Quebec City is up in demand by over 20 per cent5 and top foodie destination Montreal was one of the most popular searched destinations for travel in July according to Expedia data.
- For those looking to get outside and try something new, travel to Quebec's beautiful and quaint city of Gaspe. Quickly growing in popularity and becoming more affordable, this seaside destination has increased in demand by more than 130 per cent 5 and is nearly 30 per cent cheaper based on 2017 flight data.
August – Sit back and slow down on the Atlantic
- The cheapest week to travel in August is right at the end of the month, heading into the Labour Day long-weekend – the perfect time to squeeze in one final summer trip. The most expensive week is right at the start of the month, so avoiding this can help Canadians save.
- The most popular east coast destinations based on demand include: Halifax, St. John's and Moncton. All great starting spots for a road trip. In fact, St. John's, Newfoundland & Labrador is up in demand by roughly 25 per cent 6, according to 2017 flight data.
- If Moncton is the base, both Hopewell Rocks and the beaches in Shediac are under an hour drive from the city – perfect for the travelling family.
To explore Canada this summer, visit Expedia.ca. Book from June 1 to June 30, with travel from June through December 17, 2018 for savings of up to 20% on properties across Canada.
Go global: most popular international destinations
And if Canadians have their heart set on travelling internationally this summer, there is no shortage of new and old favourites. The most popular international destinations for Canadians this summer based on demand include:
- US: Los Angeles, New York, Las Vegas, San Francisco, Orlando, Chicago and Seattle.
- Europe: London, Paris, Rome, Athens, Barcelona and Lisbon.
To read more insights on summer travel, please visit the Expedia Canada Travel Blog.
1All data based on 2017 demand data on Expedia.ca
2All data based on 2018 search data from January 1-April 15 with travel for June 1-August 31 on Expedia.ca
3All data based on February-April 2018 global hotel + car package demand data.
4All data based on 2017 flight demand data on Expedia.ca with a 2017 booking window and a 1-30 June 2017 travel window compared to a similar booking and travel window in 2016
5All data based on 2017 flight demand data on Expedia.ca with a 2017 booking window and a 1-31 July 2017 travel window compared to a similar booking and travel window in 2016
6All data based on 2017 flight demand data on Expedia.ca with a 2017 booking window and a 1-31 August 2017 travel window compared to a similar booking and travel window in 2016
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For further information: For further information or to schedule an interview, contact: Mary Zajac, Expedia Canada, email@example.com, (416) 202-8736., https://www.expedia.ca