Travelling during Christmas and the New Year is so overrated. It is the most expensive time to travel, yet even after parting with a ton of cash, you will rarely get value for your money. As we get to the end of the year, many of us are planning to travel during the festive season, but this is not the best time to travel in Kenya.
If you travel to the beach, everyone, plus their extended family will already be there. Forget about having a proper swim because the pool will be so crowded you will barely be able to see the rail. Fancy a drink in the pool bar? Unless you’re up at 6 AM to book your spot, forget about that too.
Travel during the festive season can be a nightmare. But sadly, it’s the only way a lot of us know how to travel. Yes, we all want to take a Christmas holiday, but why not avoid the drama of holiday travel, take a break a few days before Christmas, and have a proper vacation?
November and early December is a wonderful time to travel in Kenya and here are some reasons why.
It’s A Cheap Time to Travel In Kenya
What’s the most expensive holiday you have taken in Kenya? Would you pay over Ksh. 80,000 per night? What kind of experience do you even get for that much money, and is it really worth it? The best way to find out what an expensive holiday in Kenya looks like is to look out for November and early December discounts. Prices drop by as much as 50% and places like Sasaab in Samburu where rates are typically around Ksh. 100,000 per night, will be accessible to you at half-price. Now, you can find out what kind of holiday you get for that price.
Discounts and Free Nights
Not only are rates low, but you will also get offers for free nights, especially at the Coast. Book 4 nights, pay for 3 offers are common as hotels rush to fill up rooms during this low season. For most places, rates are their lowest from November 1st to Dec 19th and room upgrades are dished out to anyone who is willing to ask.
Empty Pools, Uncrowded Beaches, Traffic-free Safaris
Nobody likes a crowded pool. Nobody wants to have a cold meal because the buffet line just went on and on. You want your kids to enjoy the playground. How do you tell a 4-year old that he has to wait for seven other kids to have their turn at the swing? Imagine the tantrum that ensues and how it just might ruin the entire day for everyone.
When you travel before Christmas, you show up at the pool, after a breakfast that you did not have to wait for, and you have a conversation with yourself that goes something like this. “Should I hang out in the pool bar? Should I take the pool bed under the shade, or directly in the morning sun? Maybe I can move later if the sun gets too hot.”
An uncrowded hotel means you actually have choices and access to amenities when you want them. When you’re not one of hundreds of vehicles in the national park, the game viewing experience is so much better. Because we are all waiting to travel after 20th December, hotels are virtually empty in November and early December so when you travel on these dates, you get a proper holiday!
Refurbished Facilities, Better Service
Hotels usually close for renovations to prepare for the high season because when you have a full house, it’s important to give a good impression. Everything is replaced, restored or newly refurbished in preparation for Christmas. So when you travel just before Christmas, it’s like staying in a brand new hotel, with new menus, new linen, fresh coats of paint. Everything is in proper working condition!
And it goes beyond the amenities. Even the staff have a bounce in their step! Perhaps something to do with the euphoria that comes with the anticipation of Christmas.
Travel before December 19th. The kids are at home already, you’re mentally in holiday mode anyway, and the experience is just so much better.