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Home Vacation Why Americans Now Need To Book These Three Vacation Days In April 2024—Before Everyone Else Does

Why Americans Now Need To Book These Three Vacation Days In April 2024—Before Everyone Else Does

by Staff

Forget Memorial Day, Labor Day and Thanksgiving: what are you doing on Monday, April 8, 2024?

On that day, as many as 50 million—and certainly 32 million— people in the U.S. will gaze skywards and see something spine-tingling. Another 10 million in Mexico and Canada will also have nature’s most incredible experience—totality during a rare total eclipse of the sun.

However, the requirements to travel are so specific that you need to book the time off work now and get your travel plans in place as soon as possible. It’s only 100 days from today!

After all, there is already a rush on hotel rooms and experts predict that it will be like 50 Super Bowls happening at the same time.

Unless you’re already in or near the path of totality, you’ll need to take Sunday, April 7, and Tuesday, April 9, off work, too—so you can get in place beforehand, long before the last-minute crowds jam the roads—and leave the morning after when the streets will have calmed.

Here’s what you need to know about the 2024 total solar eclipse:

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Totality Is Coming To America

A total solar eclipse is coming to North America—and everyone is going to want to be there. Such an event last happened on April 21, 2017, but don’t be fooled.

Total solar eclipses—when the moon blocks the sun in a perfect alignment and the sky darkens for a few minutes—occur in the same place on Earth roughly every 375 years. Of course, it’s less than that for a continent the size of North America, but the moon’s shadow won’t again fall on the contiguous U.S. states until 2044. It’s 2045 until there’s another total solar eclipse anything like 2024’s.

MORE FROM FORBESEclipse 2024 Will Be Like ’50 Super Bowls Happening At The Same Time’

Great American Eclipse

The last event in 2017, the “Great American Eclipse,” was massive, and in 2024, it will be even more significant. Back then, 2 minutes 40 seconds of totality—darkness in the day—occurred in parts of 14 contiguous U.S states: Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas, Iowa, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina. Those inside the narrow path of totality could remove their eclipse glasses for a few minutes to see the sun’s white outer atmosphere, its corona, shine

as totality struck. For many, the experience of seeing the sun for the first time—a star hanging in space, looking like a black hole in the sky—was profound.

Path Of Totality 2024

And it’s about to happen all over again, but this time for up to 4 minutes 28 seconds. This time, the path of totality—115 miles wide, on average—will cross parts of three states in northern Mexico, 15 U.S. states and three Canadian Provinces:

  • Mexico: Sinaloa, Durango and Coahuila.
  • U.S.: Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Michigan, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine.
  • Canada: Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland.

Only those within the path will experience totality; everyone else in North America will see just a partial solar eclipse through solar eclipse glasses.

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Eclipse Vs. The Masters Vs March Madness

If you plan to go see Golf’s Masters in Augusta, Georgia, in 2024, think again. It may be one of the four men’s major golf championships in professional golf, but with just a 76% partial solar eclipse, you don’t want to be anywhere near Augusta on April 8, 2024. Similarly, basketball’s March Madness 2024 NCAA championship game ends on Monday, April 8 at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona, which gets just a 63% partial solar eclipse.

Ignore anywhere on this interactive map that isn’t in the path of totality—the pink lines (with the central blue line giving you the longest time in the moon’s shadow.

Rarity Of Totality In North America

For geographical and chronological context, the following total solar eclipses after April 8, 2024, are:

North Americans have been handed a golden opportunity to experience totality—so go book those three days off and get planning!

I’m an expert on eclipses—the editor of and author of The Complete Guide To The Great North American Eclipse of April 8, 2024. For the very latest on the total solar eclipse—including travel and lodging options—please subscribe or check my main feed regularly for new articles.

Wishing you clear skies and wide eyes.

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