TORONTO -- (Marketwire) -- 10/03/12 -- The leaves are changing, the days are getting shorter and the temperatures are cooling. Fall is definitely here. And, for Canadians, that means that winter is just around the corner. According to Cheapflights.ca, the online leader in finding and publishing travel deals, Canadians are getting a head start on travel south.
The Cheapflights.ca team of experts took a look at the site's travel data to find out which destinations are spiking right now in popularity among Canadians. The team compared searches for flights in October, 2012, versus September, 2012, to come up with its Top 5 October In-Demand Getaways for Canadians, a rundown on where travellers are headed (and why) as they look to celebrate the upcoming Thanksgiving long weekend, experience Halloween abroad or take advantage of the off-season deals.
Below are the top three destinations, all of which have seen more than a 200% increase in flight searches over last month, to top our list. They all promise sun, fun and seasonal appeal:
•Fort Myers (up 456% over Sept., 2012) - While the snowbirds are starting to trickle in, our guess is it's the shoulder season appeal that's attracting many travellers to this popular beach community. If you love warm instead of hot, are not interested in dodging hurricanes and want to beat the high-season costs, this is a great time to go to the Gulf Coast. (And, if the real estate reports are right, the strong Canadian dollar is making vacation home shopping here a popular shoulder season activity too.) Of course, fish also react to the slightly cooler air and water, which also makes October a prime time for anglers to head to the Fort Myers area to chase the migrating tarpon as well as the fall crop of red fish and mackerel.
•Phoenix (up 302% over Sept., 2012) - As the heat breaks in the desert, in-the-know folks will tell you now's the time to go. While the flux of winter residents is slowly beginning, everything is lower key, including the prices. October is a great transition period, boasting signs of autumn -- from pumpkin picking to haunted houses -- without the real threat of winter. The average daily high temperature falls back into the double digits, creating the perfect window to break 100 in a round of golf -- in temperature and greens fees as well as your score. Like many other cities, Phoenix plans a full line-up of festivals for this mild-weather month, offering locals and visitors alike a mix of food, wine and beer celebrations. And, with an estimated 1 million Canadians expected to visit Arizona this year (says the Canadian and Arizona Business Council), lines at such events are going to get long as the snow starts to fly up north.
•New Orleans (up 286% over Sept., 2012) - Voodoo is always in the air in New Orleans, but never more so than in October. Revelry turns otherworldly for the entire month with events for both children and adults. As you might imagine, the French Quarter on Halloween night is chaos, with masks and costumes helping people distance themselves (more than usual) from their everyday personas and responsibilities. Leading into the big night, however, there are street parties and a three-day music festival, the Voodoo Music Experience (Oct. 26-28) that draws huge crowds with headlining performers such as Neil Young (a fellow Canadian) and Green Day, as well as popular locals like Irma Thomas and the Preservation Hall Jazz Band. With the threat of hurricane season over and the humidity dropping daily, it is an easy time to fall under the spell of this unique city.
Rounding out our list of cities that saw the biggest jump in flight searches for October on Cheapflights.ca are Key West (up 258% over Sept., 2012) and Puerto Vallarta (up 245% over Sept., 2012). To find out why these cities are worth a trip this month and to read Cheapflights.ca's complete Top 5 In-Demand October Getaways for Canadians, visit www.cheapflights.ca/promos/top-5-in-demand-october-getaways.
About Cheapflights Media
Cheapflights Media is an international media network helping over 11 million visitors a month find top travel deals. Our Cheapflights brand was launched in 1996 and pioneered the online comparison of flight deals for users. Today, users compare a wide range of deals from hundreds of partners including online travel agents, consolidators and airlines to find the very best flight deals. With a mission to be the starting point for travel, Cheapflights works to deliver the industry's best airfare bargains, expert tips and inspiration. There are currently Cheapflights sites in the U.K., U.S., Canada, Germany, Australia & New Zealand, France, Italy and Spain. For more information, visit www.cheapflights.ca. Our newest brand, Momondo, is a leading travel search engine for finding comprehensive worldwide pricing and availability on airfares. Winner of several awards, the site is ideal for users on specific travel schedules. For more information, visit www.momondo.com.
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