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Thanksgiving Is Actually a Great Week for International Travel

It’s the end of October, which means many of us are starting to turn our attention to the upcoming holiday season. Maybe that thought fills your mind with blissful images of twinkling lights, browned poultry, and joyful family gatherings. If so, power to you. But if you’re one of the many people who view the hoopla and togetherness with more than a sprinkle of dread, I am here to offer you a timely reminder. 

Thanksgiving is a great time to watch football and overeat with your family. It is also a fantastic time to travel internationally if that suits you better. 

Wait, what? Isn’t Thanksgiving week notorious for jammed airports and sky-high airfares? Yup, that’s totally true. But as the industry insiders at Scott’s Cheap Flights just reminded readers of their newsletter, that’s only domestically. Flights within the U.S. might be a nightmare, but if you’re looking to take advantage of recently reopened borders for either personal or professional travel, international flights are generally cheap and available Thanksgiving week. And many destinations are particularly lovely this time of year. 

On burnout and borders 

With the latest coronavirus wave having crested in many parts of the world, countries are slowly starting to reopen their borders to vaccinated foreign tourists. The U.S. recently reopened borders with Mexico and Canada and many European countries are welcoming vaccinated American tourists. Even some countries in Asia, like Thailand, are gingerly opening up a few tourist hotspots. 

If, after nearly two years of pandemic burnout and extremely limited travel opportunities, taking advantage of that new openness sounds appealing to you, Scott’s Cheap Flights points out that Thanksgiving is an untraditional but advantageous time to act on your travel daydreams. 

“The millions of travelers flying domestically are, by definition, not traveling internationally. For airlines, it’s a feast-time domestically and a famine-time internationally. What do airlines do to fill all those planes flying to Paris and CancĂșn and Barcelona? Simple: slash the fare,” explains the deals site. 

Those lower prices aren’t the only reason you might consider planning a getaway for Thanksgiving week. Kids and employees are also generally off for a few days making logistics easier (entrepreneurs, you’re the boss so give yourself a break), and plenty of destinations are relatively uncrowded but not yet unpleasantly freezing in November. The rest of the world also works Thanksgiving week, which makes it a potential choice for long delayed international business trips as well. 

“Late November is when many European Christmas markets begin popping up,” Scott’s Cheap Flights reminds fans of bratwurst and mulled wine. Plus, hotels and car rentals are generally reasonable too (and you’re unlikely to end up arguing with any uncles about politics during your travels). 

Sorry, you still have to convince mom.

Will these reasonable arguments convince your mom not to be miffed if you decide to skip the big family meal in favor of five days in Paris? That I cannot guarantee at all, but if you’re an entrepreneur who has had a heck of a couple of years trying to stay afloat amid pandemic craziness, let this post just serve as a reminder that you deserve a holiday. Now might be a good time to think about taking one. 

The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.

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