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Aruba, Barbados or Turks and Caicos-family of 4 adults..

Aruba, Barbados or Turks and Caicos-family of 4 adults..

Oct 18th, 2006, 05:46 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2003
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Aruba, Barbados or Turks and Caicos-family of 4 adults..

Thinking about taking our 21 and 24 year old to a resort for the first week in January. Thinking about Aruba, Barbados or Turks and Caicos. Probably an AI would be economically feasible but need something of good quality...ideas?
horatio is offline  
Oct 18th, 2006, 07:09 PM
Join Date: Aug 2006
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Caveat to my response; of the islands you mentioned, I've only been to Barbados, but I have researched both Aruba and T&C for future trips. Also, AIs would not be my choice on any of those islands since they are places that are easy to get around, safe, and have a variety of dining options.

In T&C, you only have two AI options: Club Med and Beaches. I've seen Club Med described as spartan and summer-camp like, so probably not what you want, although it may have good nightlife for your kids. Beaches is family-oriented (little kids), so again, probably not the best choice for adults. Overall, I think T&C has the most limited choices with AIs. If that is where you want to go and you want to cut down costs, there are many condo type (with kitchens or kitchenettes)hotels available. However, food and drinks are expensive there. Also, there isn't much nightlife.

Both Aruba and Barbados have a larger choice of AIs. Both islands also have a number of hotels that offer optional AI. I can't recommend any specific properties, though.
beachdreams3 is offline  
Oct 18th, 2006, 07:34 PM
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The Ocean Club West resort in the Turks and Caicos do offer meal plans. Plus they are condos with kitchens and close to many restaurants
turksoldtimer is offline  
Oct 18th, 2006, 09:01 PM
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We've been to T & C and Aruba. T & C is a very quite Island. Activities are mostly water related and night life is practically non-existant. I would think the young adults would be quite bored. I know we were. AI hotels are limited. Dining is quite expensive and limited also.

Aruba has more hotels with AI options. We stayed at the Holiday Inn on their AI plan and enjoyed it. We also had a few meals outside of the hotel. Resturant choices are more abundant than T & C and many with reasonable prices. We enjoyed the food better in Aruba. Aruba also has plenty of things to see and do and lots of night life. Young adults would probably have more fun.

What type of vacation are you looking for? T & C and Aruba are complete opposites of each other. Sorry, I don't have any info on Barbados. Never been and have no desire to go there.
KVR is offline  
Oct 19th, 2006, 02:52 AM
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thank you all for your speedy replies...I had another post up for Almond Beach Village in Barbados..maybe I should look more into that one? Someone on that post did say that it was isolated so I will have to research that a little more..
horatio is offline  
Oct 19th, 2006, 03:44 AM
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I've been to all 3. Of the 3, Aruba has the most AIs.
AI's aren't neccessarily the most economically feasible-are you stuck on that, or were you just throwing it out there? AI's are great if you drink alot, eat all day, it's like a cruise on land. Usually, most people don't venture out of AI's, except for a signed up excursion. You probably need to tell us more of what you're looking for in your vacation to help you determine.
Turks and Caicos and Barbados are not really "AI" type islands. Aruba probably has the best nightlife for the kids. (Not really kids!-grown ups)
AI's are not usually the best quality, just good all around type vacations, with no worries.
Tell us more of what you like out of an island, and have you been anywhere you liked/hated, because all 3 of your picks are completely different from each other.
blamona is offline  
Oct 19th, 2006, 12:11 PM
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Okay..so if this happens and there is availibility, we would go to a good quality place where we don't have to worry about the quality of food or water..I am not set on an AI..except that I wonder how really expensive a place in Aruba or Barbados would be without one. My husband does not actually want to be "stuck" at a place where you are isolated..so I thought the strip in Aruba of differing hotels might be good..
horatio is offline  
Oct 19th, 2006, 02:53 PM
Join Date: Aug 2006
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Aruba and Barbados are not cheap, but they are both large and developed enough to offer a wide variety of options in terms of accommodations and dining. For dining, I found prices in Barbados fairly comparable to the US (East coast). There are fast food and casual places, as well as moderate and fine dining. There is a woman, Lois Swanson, who has Barbados tips that she will email to you. Search on the forum for her name. From what I've read about Aruba, I believe it is similar in terms of having a lot of options in all price ranges. If you know that your family likes to have full meals three times a day and/or have drinks on the beach/at the pool, with meals, and/or at night, it might be worth it to do AI. On the other hand, if you are light eaters or drinkers or plan to spend a lot of time away from the resort, AI probably is not cheaper.
beachdreams3 is offline  
Oct 19th, 2006, 03:44 PM
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I totally agree with KVR. Through process of elimination I would skip T&C altogether. Unless your family are divers the older ones would be bored silly. It is a relative quiet Island. We stayed at Beaches we are 2 adults and were childless. It was more for families with little ones. I have visited Barbados but and have not been to Aruba. I have several friends who love Aruba. From what I have heard from them is there is a variety of food options and prices. As there are your typical american fast food choices if one wishes to go that route. I think the weather would be warmer as it is farther south. My friends are very picky and they love Aruba and would return in a heartbeat.I have very seldom heard anything negative about Aruba. Sight unseen I would try Aruba. I would also check tripadvisors.com for any current reviews on the places you are considering.
diann is offline  
Oct 19th, 2006, 03:54 PM
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I am thinking the same and if the prices that come back to me are too high, I think just my husband and I will go to Aruba in March instead. Now, on the side, have any ofyou been to the DR...I have no interest in going as I have heard lots about the quality of food, water, etc. Weatherwise, I don't know?
horatio is offline  
Oct 19th, 2006, 04:52 PM
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I went to the DR (La Romana, Bayahibe area) a few years ago for Christmas. I got a last minute package deal that included airfare and seven nights at a moderate AI (pretty much everyone goes to AIs in the DR) for $1100 or so per person. I found the quality of the food at our resort to be pretty good, and I did not have any trouble with the water or stomach illness. The resort I was at had a purifying system for all their bars and restaurants. They left bottled water in the guest rooms and encouraged its use instead of tap water for drinking or brushing your teeth. The weather in late December was plenty warm enough - probably high 70s - mid 80s during the day, with moderate humidity. I brought light sweaters and sometimes wore a sweater in the evening, but it definitely did not get cold. I've heard that weather on the Atlantic Coast can be a lot cooler in the winter. The beach and pool were very nice, and it was a relaxing, easy girls getaway for the price.
beachdreams3 is offline  
Oct 20th, 2006, 04:47 AM
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I have only been to Aruba. Your young adults would like it there. There is nightlife with gambling and clubs. The all inclusives have been rated okay, but the food on the island is great! We stayed at the Marriott and really liked it. There are a ton of watersports to do right in front of all of the hotels. You can also travel freely around the island without any problems.
And Aruba will be hot in January. I think the Turks and Caicos will not be as warm.
Good luck
girlonthego is offline  
Oct 20th, 2006, 03:00 PM
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We also spent a week in DR about 6 years ago. It has probably grown a lot since that time. We stayed at a very nice AI the grounds were gorgeous. The food was o.k. but monotonous after a week. Again at that time there was not anything to do off the resort. My husband did become very ill after we got home. His daughter went rencently and she was very ill. I know others who go there and repeatedly and never have any issues. We will not return. It was the only place my husband was ill. He didn't drink the water, that I was aware or drink heavy either.
diann is offline  

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