By William Hern√°ndez
on May 1, 2024
Read in 2 min

October is a great time for fairs, festivals and festivities. But which events in the U.S. are worth the getaway? Even more importantly, which ones will be kind to your wallet? If you're looking for cool autumn trips to take on a budget, here are just a few ideas.

1. Oktoberfest

You can't talk about October festivities without mentioning Oktoberfest. Though the main event is held in Germany, there are always dozens of copycat celebrations in major U.S. cities like New York, Denver, Cincinnati, Minneapolis and San Fransisco.

What is Oktoberfest? It's basically an ode to beer. Good events will incorporate other aspects of German culture as well, but underneath the songs, costumes and sausages, most people go to Oktoberfest to get buzzed. If you're the type to make friends with perfect strangers while you're both slinging back a cold one, you'll love this annual booze fest!

2. Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta

You won't believe your eyes at the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta. The sky becomes crowded with hundreds of big, multicolored hot air balloons, and only some of them have the "traditional" shape. Others are designed to look like animals, letters, foods, monsters, mascots, and anything that their builders can dream up. They basically parade floats powered by hot air!

Visitors to the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta can enjoy the sights from the ground or take a trip of their own with a hot air balloon tour. You should probably hit the air at least once to cross it off your bucket list. It's an experience unlike any other!

3. Bridger Raptor Festival

The Bridger Raptor Festival offers the rare chance to see a golden eagle migration. It takes place deep in the heart of Montana, so the weather will be nice and chilly in the autumn, but it'll be worth the cold nose and crunched leaves when you see these beautiful birds in flight.

Another nice thing about the Bridger Raptor Festival is that it won't cost you a dime. It's open to the public as a no-fuss, no-cost event, so if you're looking for vacation ideas on a budget, it doesn't get better than free!

4. The Annual Pumpkin Festival

If you're a sucker for pumpkin spice lattes, you won't want to miss the Annual Pumpkin Festival. It's held every year at the Stone Mountain Park in Georgia, and it's a big, bustling event where you'll find all kinds of games, rides, activities and booths.

It's particularly nice for the little ones. If you're looking for a place to travel with kids, this is your best bet. They can get their face painted or enjoy storytime with the locals while mom and dad join a pie-eating contest or learn how to make their own cider. Everyone wins!

5. Festival of the Dead

Last but certainly not least, nothing says "October" like a Halloween festival. The Festival of the Dead is held every year in Salem, Massachusetts, and as you might expect from the name, it's a celebration of everything ghostly and ghastly.

Tour a haunted house. Get your palm read. Attend a masquerade ball with costumes and live music. There's always something happening at the Festival of the Dead, so it's a great getaway to take during the spookiest time of the year!

This is not for legal or financial advice. Please consult a legal or financial advisor for your specific situation.