The Ottumwa Courier

Local News

November 20, 2012

Travel plans ramp up

Southern Iowans looking for holiday getaways

ELDON — Thanksgiving is more than the start of the holiday shopping season, it’s also the beginning of the holiday travel season.

This year, AAA estimates slightly more Americans will hit the road — 43.6 million will travel at least 50 miles from home, up 0.7 percent from 2011.

However, airline passengers will likely be down this Thanksgiving, AAA estimates 3.14 million, down from 3.2 million last Thanksgiving.

But Shauna Snyder of Destinations by Shauna in Eldon, said there are plenty of southern Iowans who will be traveling this holiday season, especially around Christmas.

“Cruises have been very popular for me this year,” she said.

Snyder added that traditional winter getaways — Mexico, Hawaii and Walt Disney World in Florida — are still popular for southern Iowans.

“And Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic is another good alternative,” the Eldon travel agent suggests.

But Snyder is quick to point out that most of her clients scheduled their winter/holiday vacations well in advance.

“You know, maybe with some cruises, you can still book (last minute), but airfares you really have to book ahead,” she said.

How far ahead?

Travelers might want to start firming up plans for the 2013 holiday season no later than this spring, even February or March.

And while there are low-fare carriers like Allegiant and Southwest now flying out of Des Moines, Snyder hasn’t seen a great drop in prices, yet.

And while it may be too late to find a great last-minute deal for a winter getaway now, Snyder said southern Iowans may want to start planning now for summer travel.

“Alaskan cruises for sure, Europe, it’s good to book those things early,” she said.

But what about the veteran travel agent? Where does want to go on her next trip?

“I would love to go to Bora Bora ... the South Pacific is fabulous,” Snyder said.

Text Only
Local News
  • 0422 Eagle photo On a wing and a prayer

    LAKE RED ROCK — Protective gloves aren’t uncommon when dealing with a sick patient, though they’re not usually heavy, leather welder’s gloves. But, then, the patient usually doesn’t have toenails designed to puncture flesh. Or a sharp beak. Diane Mas

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0420 OTT Gothic house easter web-color photo American Gothic House celebrates Easter weekend Kids participate in an egg roll competition Saturday on the American Gothic House lawn in Eldon. Families were invited to come and participate in Easter-themed events and make crafts. They also had the opportunity to dress up and pose in front of the

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0422 OTT Egg hunt color photo -L On a roll this Easter ELDON — If you pulled up to the American Gothic House Center Saturday afternoon at moments before 1 p.m., you probably had to park halfway down the road. Cars filled the parking lot and spilled out onto the street as parents and kids from all over so

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Ups and downs OTTUMWA — Iowa's governor and his lieutenant seemed thrilled with part of the employment news Friday. Gov. Terry Branstad's Twitter page said: "BREAKING: Iowa's employment reaches all-time high of 1,615,200." Iowa Workforce Development confirms the n

    April 18, 2014

  • Those who came before OTTUMWA — There is so much information on researching genealogy, beginners may not know where to start. But experts and knowledgeable amateurs will offer help as they gather for a free Family History Fair to share which websites are worthwhile and wh

    April 18, 2014

  • 0419 OTT Tree planting color photo -T -M -L Young Ottumwans show their green thumbs OTTUMWA — Several of Ottumwa’s cemeteries and parks were recipients of new trees this week as Ottumwa High School students and Eagle Scouts dedicated their time to planting dozens of trees around the city. Students from the OHS JROTC class were at Ot

    April 18, 2014 4 Photos

  • 0419 OTT Prayer Walk 2 bw photo -L -M -T On a journey OTTUMWA — The seven blocks through the center of Ottumwa took more than an hour and a half to walk as 25 people prayed and read Scripture to reflect on the events of Good Friday. Led by the Ottumwa Area Fellowship of Pastors, the walk began at First

    April 18, 2014 3 Photos

  • 0419 OTT drought map -L -T -M Drought weakens grip on Iowa OTTUMWA — Last weekend saw the first significant rains in quite some time for the Ottumwa area. How long? The last day with at least a half-inch of rain was back on Nov. 20. It was a welcome rain, arriving after the ground had thawed. That allowed at

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Eugene Clark STOCKPORT — Eugene Morris Clark, 90, of Stockport, died at 5:30 p.m. April 17, 2014, at Good Samaritan Health and Rehabilitation Center, Ottumwa. Graveside services will be at 11 a.m. Monday in Spencer Cemetery northeast of Stockport; Pastor Richard

    April 18, 2014

  • Civil War Round Table visited by baseball historian OTTUMWA — The Civil War Round Table was treated to a special guest Thursday night and a presentation about how baseball during the Civil War era helped shape Iowa as we know it. John Liepa, former history and political science professor at Des Moines

    April 18, 2014

Photo reprints