Best Last-Minute International Labor Day Vacations
Photo Credit: Photo credit: Jacky Huang

Photo Credit: Photo credit: Jacky Huang

Best Last-Minute International Labor Day Vacations

calgary , Cartagena , Colombia , Copenhagen , Denmark , Guayaquil , Ecuador , Panama City , Panama
Parker Diakite
Parker Diakite Aug 22, 2023

As the summer season ends, it’s time to plan one last getaway before heading into fall. There’s no better time than Labor Day to plan a vacation because most people have off for the federal holiday. This allows travelers to maximize those PTO days during the long weekend and plan perfect Labor Day vacations.

According to AAA booking data, more Americans plan to travel on Labor Day Weekend. Domestic bookings are up 4 percent, and international bookings are up 44 percent compared to 2022. This year marked an expensive summer season, as the travel demand increased dramatically.

The good news is there’s still time to grab a travel deal before Labor Day. The countries on the list reflect Labor Day vacations that tend to be safer during the Atlantic Hurricane Season.

Cartagena, Colombia

While hurricanes in Cartagena are rare, September is considered the rainiest month of the year. September also marks the end of the busy tourist season, so if you don’t mind a few rain clouds, you can enjoy Colombia’s Caribbean coast without the crowds.

You can purchase round-trip flights to Cartagena from Washington, D.C., Fort Lauderdale, Houston, Tampa, Minneapolis and Orlando for less than $600 round-trip. The best flight deal for Labor Day weekend leaves from Miami. Use Aug. 31 through Sept. 6 as your travel dates for a round-trip flight for less than $500.

Calgary, Canada

Similar to Cartagena, Columbia, September marks the start of the best time to visit Calgary, Canada, as the crowds from summer dwindle. September also marks the music, art, and food festival season. Cirque du Soleil, the world’s largest theatrical company, visits Calgary, Canada in September.

The first week of September also marks the start of another essential festival: Le Burger Week. It’s a great way to support local businesses as everyone braces for what organizers call a “patty party with bun fun.” A trip to Calgary wouldn’t be complete without visiting the iconic Banff National Park, known for its surreal landscape of mountains, lush green trees, and turquoise glacial lakes.

Round-trip flights from San Francisco, Los Angeles, Atlanta, New York City, Houston, Austin, Philadelphia, Chicago, Washington, D.C., and Dallas can be purchased for less than $600. Travelers will find the best deal for a long Labor Day weekend getaway in Phoenix. Use Aug. 31 through Sept. 6 as your travel dates for a round-trip ticket for less than $550.

Panama City, Panama

With Panama’s location right above the equator, Panama City is another destination that’s usually safe during Hurricane Season.

The first place on your itinerary should be visiting the San Blas Islands. You can explore the home of the Guna Yala people, who are indigenous to the islands. Then, head to the International Festival of the Sea in Bocas del Toro. It’s a five-day event serving fest-goers local cuisine and featuring local handmade crafts. There are also folkloric presentations and dances to learn more about the local culture.

Departure cities, including San Antonio, Austin, Durham, North Carolina, and Boston, have round-trip flight deals to Panama City, Panama, for $450 and less. Round-trip flights from Miami are the cheapest. Use Aug. 31  through Sept. 6 as your travel dates for a round-trip flight for less than $450.

Fort Lauderdale, Florida, To Guayaquil, Ecuador

Ecuador’s port city, Guayaquil, is known as a gateway to Pacific beaches and the Galapagos Islands.

Pack your appetite. Guayaquil is a city known for its gastronomy. Take a food tour or a cooking class to learn about Ecuador’s flavors and gastronomic history before learning from a chef how to make local dishes and bring them home. You can book a gastronomic workshop and tour on Expedia. You can also book a half-day city tour to visit sites, like Parque de Simon Bolivar for its iguana population, explore the panoramic views over Guayaquil and the Guayas River, or take pictures in front of colorful wooden homes in the Las Peñas neighborhood.  

The best flight deal to Guayaquil leaves from Fort Lauderdale. Use Aug. 31 through Sept. 5 as your dates in Expedia for a round-trip ticket for less than $500.

New York City To Copenhagen, Denmark

According to Hopper data, tickets to Europe this summer have averaged $1,200, but this deal gets you to Copenhagen for less than $900, if you book fast on Expedia. The weather will be slightly more relaxed than you’re probably used to in the summer, as temperatures average between 53 and 63 degrees.

Denmark is one of the best places to ride a bike. The roads are bike friendly, which makes it a safe place to hop on two wheels to visit popular sites and landmarks.

Have you taken Travel Noire’s vacation persona quiz? Travelers described as city connectors will have a field day inside Copenhagen’s Louisiana Museum of Modern Art. It is not only beautiful on the outside as idyllic views of the sea surround it, but inside is home to the world’s most beautiful artworks and paintings.

The cheapest flight to Denmark leaves from New York City on Aug. 30 and returns on Sept. 5. A round-trip ticket can be purchased for less than $900 on Scandinavian Airlines.

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