If you live on the East Coast, you may even be able to drive to a nearby homeport, such as Baltimore, New York, Miami, or Charleston, and cruise all the way down to the Caribbean without even having to fly. Note: Keep in mind that most cruises are not all-inclusive. Things like shore excursions, specialty restaurant fees, gratuities, drinks, and other extras are generally not accounted for in your base rate. Look for package deals.
You can often save by booking your airfare and hotel together at sites like CheapCaribbean. Look for freebies. Choose the right time of year. The busiest and most expensive times to travel to the Caribbean are the winter particularly over the holidays and the spring break season. Hurricane season runs from June 1 through November Hotel rates are almost always lower during this wetter time of year. You might also want to purchase travel insurance in case a storm does disrupt your trip.
In many parts of the Caribbean, bargaining for a better deal is an essential part of everyday life. While you may not be able to negotiate much in a big duty-free store or a supermarket, where prices are generally fixed, there are plenty of open-air markets where you can try your haggling skills — and often pick up a great souvenir for a song. Bring plenty of U.
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In many Caribbean countries, U. The more U. See Money Safety for more tips. Skip the exchange counter. Similarly, credit card purchases are also subject to the interbank exchange rate. Some resorts and hotels also add a service charge onto your bill to cover tips for various members of the staff. Call ahead to find out before you leave money in your room for your housekeeper or other service people.
See Tips for Tipping Abroad. Use public transportation. Many Caribbean islands have local public bus systems — usually small, colorful vans that serve the major routes and towns across the island. Fares on these vans tend to be extremely inexpensive. A few islands with particularly strong local bus systems include Aruba, Puerto Rico, and Curacao.
Service may be limited or unavailable on Sundays or in the evenings. Share the expenses.
One common way to see a Caribbean island is to hire a local cab driver to give you a tour. The price of the tour is often charged per car, not per person — so if you can find other travelers from your hotel or cruise ship who want a tour too, you can split the expense. Be sure to confirm the total price before you get in the cab.
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We sometimes use this information to communicate with you, such as to notify you when you have won one of our contests, when we make changes to subscriber agreements, to fulfill a request by you for an online newsletter, or to contact you about your account with us. We do not use your personal information to make automated decisions.
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