The slow season, also known as the shoulder season, in Los Cabos in September and October used to mean less than a third of the hotels were full of travelers, and some of the resorts even used to close down.
That was the recollection of Los Cabos Hotel Association Executive President Lilizi Orci at a meeting earlier this week.
But that was then, and this is now. Los Cabos is a very different beach resort destination than it once was just a few years ago, and the occupancy numbers are starting to tell the story.
More Than Half of the Rooms Full
Even with the additional hotel rooms available in Los Cabos since the low point of the pandemic and earlier, Orci announced that she expects the hotel rooms in Los Cabos to be more than half full during what was formerly regarded as the slow season in town.
In fact, Los Cabos is ending up one of the busiest tourist destinations in all of Mexico this year.
Traditionally, hurricane season and back-to-school time in the United States meant a lull in tourist numbers until the fall and winter holiday seasons.
However, the efforts of the Los Cabos Tourism Trust and local resorts to reposition the town with more amenities and as a more luxury destination have worked to attract more visitors to the beach resort destination.
The End of Shoulder Season?
Budget travelers to Los Cabos looked forward to cheaper flights and rooms as the slower shoulder season arrived in September and October.
However, the shoulder season is not arriving at the same level of tourism numbers as it has in the past.
With the Los Cabos Hotel Association supporting the efforts of the local hotels and resorts to hold their room rates steady from the busy season to the slow season, budget travelers should not expect much relief during shoulder season slowdowns.
In fact, a recent report indicated that the current average price of a hotel night in Los Cabos was $540 per night.
Orci recently reported that the resort room rate in Los Cabos was trending towards $560 per night for reservations booked for October.
As Los Cabos becomes more popular with travelers seeking more upscale and luxury amenities and accommodations, the average room rate between the peak season and what used to be the slower shoulder season will continue to shrink.
During the months of January and July, Los Cabos was the third-highest Mexican travel destination, with an occupancy level of 81.2%.
It was behind Akumal and Playa del Carmen in the Mexican Caribbean near Cancun.
In total, more than 23.3 million tourists have visited the resort beach destinations across Mexico in the first seven months of 2023.
What Should Travelers Do?
For the best room rate on a vacation getaway to Los Cabos, budget travelers should anticipate making their reservations further in advance to take advantage of the best rate and most availability.
Promotional rates also generally appear well in advance of last-minute bookings and reservations.
Visitors should expect room rates to maintain a higher price level than in the past, with higher spikes during the peak fall and winter holiday season.
The good news is plans are underway to expand air coverage to Los Cabos after Mexico was regranted its category one safety level.
Now the Mexican-based carriers, which tend to be lower priced than their United States airline counterparts, can expand flights to the United States.
This could soon have an effect to push the cost of Los Cabos flights from the United States down due to the increased low-cost carrier competition.
That might provide at least a little more money in the budget for travelers looking for a vacation getaway to the beach resort destination.
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