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'BEST' 'budget' package outside of Mexico, DR and Cuba

'BEST' 'budget' package outside of Mexico, DR and Cuba

Old Dec 2nd, 2010, 06:33 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Nov 2010
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'BEST' 'budget' package outside of Mexico, DR and Cuba

Will be travelling with my girlfriend next february somewhere in the Caribbean. Because of our budget, our agent has only recommended resorts in Mexico, Cuba or DR.

Our budget? Maximum of $2000 each, for flight-hotel. Most of the packages I've seen for 3.5+ star hotels START at around $2-2500 and go up from there.

Is it possible to have a fantastic vacation, stay in a 3+ star hotel, OUTSIDE of DR, Cuba and Mexico, on our limited budget?

Thanks for any and all replies!
eco_bach is offline  
Old Dec 2nd, 2010, 07:21 AM
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Where are you flying from? Lots of smaller, and very nice properties, are not to be found in packages.
JeanH is offline  
Old Dec 2nd, 2010, 07:31 AM
Join Date: Jul 2007
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You don't say where you are traveling from and that could have a big impact on how much you spend on airfare and have available for accommodations and food. the reason your travel agent has suggested the Dominican Republic, Mexico & Cuba is those destinations are noted for having an abundance of moderately priced "All inclusive" resorts that are in your price range. Also, since you are planning a trip in February you should be aware that you are going in High Season when hotel have the highest room rates of the year.

You might check out resorts on Antigua, there are a number of moderately priced resorts on that island.

I noticed you tagged your post "Saba, St. Barth's, St. Kitts & Nevis and St. Lucia. Let me offer up some comments:

Saba: you can probably find accommodations in your price range but getting to that island will entail a connecting flight (usually via St. Martin) which will add to your overall costs. There are no "All inclusive Resorts" on the island and it DOESN'T have any beaches. Go here if you are into hiking and diving.

St. Barth's - This is perhaps the most expensive island destination in the Caribbean and like Saba, you have to take a connecting flight or ferry from St. Martin which will add significantly to your transportation cost . You probably should save this island for a time when you have a larger budget.

St.Kitts may meet your needs, Check out the Marriott they sometimes have special promotions and offer an optional "all Inclusive" plan which may be in your price range. also look at Timothy Beach resort - they have relatively moderate room rates and offer an optional Meal plan (breakfast & dinner).

Nevis - is a somewhat more expensive destination than St. Kitts but check out Oualie Beach Resort, Hermitage Inn or Mount Nevis Hotel to see if they are in your budget range.

St. Lucia has a few places that may fit your budget but not many in your price range will be all inclusive.

You'll get the biggest bang for your buck in the Dominican Republic, Playa del Carmen, Cancun and Cozemel.

Lastly, look at resorts in Belize - you may be very pleasantly surprised with the prices you find.
RoamsAround is offline  
Old Dec 2nd, 2010, 12:34 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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The airfares to Belize are generally very high. Running about $750.00 from the midwest right now.
JeanH is offline  
Old Dec 2nd, 2010, 01:50 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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I don't know specifically about the Caribbean islands you are asking about, but my questions generally to your numerous inquiries:

Where are you starting from?

Have you considered planning your own trip? Not doing a packaged deal.

I don't do all-inclusives or packaged deals but I can & do go (from Seattle) to either Puerto Vallarta Mexico or Waikiki Oahu Hawaii and stay for 10-days for under $1500 TOTAL and that is for one person solo. A couple would be even less pp because of sharing the room expense. That's the full amount I spend for my roundtrip airfare, a 3-star hotel, ground transportation, meals and entertainment.
suze is offline  
Old Dec 3rd, 2010, 04:11 AM
Join Date: Oct 2010
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Gosh, it certainly seems like you should be able to find something decent for $4,000 total, even in February. Lots of deals out there, you might want to check out skyauction.com, cheapcaribbean.com, travelzoo.com. I am going to suggest a few places that out of all the places I have stayed in the Caribbean, received my "best value" designation for high season, though they are not on islands you tagged. First of all, check out Curacao -- in particular the Curacao Marriott although the new Hyatt is supposed to be very nice and there are lots of deals right now (skyauction has a buy it now option). Neither are typical AI's, but I think have an AI option, although not sure I would recommend that in Curacao where there are lots of good restaurants. There are also some AI's like Breezes etc. It seems to me that if you book the trip separately and pay about $1,200 or so for airfare, and $200 or less per night, that leaves about $1,400 for food and drink which should be plenty but only you can decide that. I have seen both Marriott and Hyatt for less than $200 per night. Also, you might check out the Playa Del Carmen area which I think was suggested -- we stayed at the Shangri La Caribe, now the Mahekal and it's a great value in high season, not a typical AI but breakfast and dinner are included. All of Roamsaround suggestions are good ones and some of those on that list were ones I was going to mention. Good luck!
allisonjames is offline  
Old Dec 3rd, 2010, 10:26 AM
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Aruba might work for you. Maybe St. lucia, but the others you have mentioned most likely will be above your budget.

Good Luck.
TPAYT is offline  
Old Dec 3rd, 2010, 10:48 AM
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I also agree with above posts to check out Expedia, Cheap Caribbean, etc. Another good site is www.vacationstogo.com

It starts out with cruises, but if you scroll all the way down, it lists all-inclusive resort deals.
TPAYT is offline  
Old Dec 3rd, 2010, 11:19 AM
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You might also expand your search by checking out places Roatan. Good luck!
Weadles is offline  
Old Dec 5th, 2010, 06:59 AM
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You didn't exclude Jamacia. You'll find some reasonable priced AI's in Montego Bay, Negril and Ocho Rios. Look at the Iberostars, Secrets and RIU's.

You can probably do the Holiday Inn or some of the small hotels on Eagle Beach in Aruba for that budget.

We've done many package AI's for around $3,000 total, but we don't go in high season. We usally wait until May or November.

Try beachdestinations.com
KVR is offline  
Old Dec 5th, 2010, 08:16 AM
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I think Jamaica's an excellent additional suggestion. I particularly like Negril.
suze is offline  
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