Sunday, February 17, 2008

Spring break, Daylight Savings Time, St . Patrick's Day, First day of Spring, Easter means a busy March!

This March, the use of the adjective 'Madness' seems particularly apt! With so many distractions, it will be April before we know it.

In Ontario, we're already distracted from the usual winter weariness with the new Family Day holiday long weekend (the third Monday in February; this year February 18) which was sprung on us recently, and for which no one has plans for, and for which students and teachers and their parents in the Toronto area certainly do not need, given the many Snow Days this year.

We're all a little confused, too, about what will be open, who gets the day off and who has to work. Schools, government offices, liquor and grocery stores, banks, etc are closed. Corner shops will likely do a banner business in milk and bread, and snacks!

Now with a busy March waiting for its cue in the wings, our Winter Distraction Dance card is pretty full. Here's how I see it:
  • First off, in the Toronto area, Spring Break is the week of March 10-14, though breakers usually start heading out any time after March 6; it's the busiest time of the year for Toronto's airport, Pearson International..
  • Daylight Savings time begins Sunday March 9 ( so at least the kids won't be late for school after missing an hour's sleep).
  • First day back at school is Monday, March 17 -- St Patrick's Day.
  • First day of Spring is Thursday, March 20.
  • Good Friday and Purim are the following day, March 21.
  • Easter Sunday is March 24.
  • Easter Monday is March 25.
As I see it, there are only two full weeks of classes in this area (if you discount those skiving off early for Spring Break) so March, which usually seems to drag on and on, will be over in a flash.

What has this to do with travel? you may well ask. A lot, if you are booking flights, hotels, etc or planning to travel this March.
  • Daylight Savings Time: Not every country/state/province observes this so be SURE to double check departure and arrival times, especially if traveling on or about March 9, and especially if crossing the international date line.
  • Spring break means High Season rates, and crowds, especially in the sun and fun destinations.
  • Easter, including Easter Monday, is a holiday in many parts of the world, including Hong Kong.
  • Holy Week (this year March 16-20) is a major celebration in countless other countries, including the Dominican Republic and Honduras.
With so much happening this March, don't get too distracted -- it'll be tax time before you know it!