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The Great American Eclipse is in just five days, so that means that this is really your last call to decide you if you want to be a part of it, and it also means that the weather forecasts are coming into clearer view. There aren’t many events where weather plays quite as dominate of a player as this since storms or even signifiant clouds, fog, or haze, or smoke can block your view of what truly sounds like a really cool phenomenon when you understand everything that happens during a total eclipse.
My oldest daughter and parents are traveling north to the 70 mile wide path of totality this weekend, and so far everything is on track for their adventure. They have their hotel, flights, and car rental all reserved on points. Their hotel is pretty much on the line of totality, so they don’t have to travel a ton to see the eclipse unless weather throws a wrench in their plans, in which case I’m sure they will be hitting the highways in the pre-dawn hours to find a better viewing spot. Depending on where you are viewing the eclipse, traffic could be pretty intense on the day of the event.
If you are still hoping to book a flight to see the eclipse, or are now thinking about an alternate viewing spot if your original plans are clouding up, then here are some examples where I found saver awards to cities near the eclipse path available today using United miles:
- San Francisco – Nashville (Saturday)
- Houston – Kansas City (Saturday)
- Newark – Portland (Saturday in first class)
- Houston – Jackson Hole (Thursday)
- Denver – Eugene Oregon (Friday)
- Chicago – Charleston (Saturday in first class)
Of course you will have many more options if you are willing to pay standard or higher award rates, and frankly coming home within a day or so of the eclipse will probably require a standard award, if you can even find that. You may want to not rush right back to the airport on Tuesday if you are hoping to use miles at this juncture to see the eclipse.
Just like when I helped my parents book their trip a couple months ago, the middle of the country still seems to be your best bet in terms of remaining deals, flights, and hotel rooms. The weather forecast for the middle of the country for Monday as it stands today is okay-ish, depending on your exact location, but there is no doubt there are more travel opportunities using miles and points in places like Kansas and Missouri than in the Pacific Northwest or on the East Coast close to Charleston, South Carolina.
The Pacific Northwest will be slammed with people because the weather there is historically more favorable this time of the year for clear viewing, and it is frankly just an awesome destination. The Southeast is slammed because it is simply the closest available destination for so many people. However, the middle of the country offers far more opportunities to get close to the line without paying through the nose or having to just sleep in your car…assuming you can even get a rental car at this point, which absolutely should not just be assumed. If you hit a wall looking for hotels, consider just bringing along a tent as campsites under $100 are still available.
Now that we are just days away from the big event I would love to hear where you are going, how you are getting there, and whether weather is playing a hand in your plans.
Editorial Note: The opinions expressed here are mine and not provided, reviewed, by any bank, card issuer, or other company unless otherwise stated.