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-   -   Vacation Help Needed (https://www.fodors.com/community/caribbean-islands/vacation-help-needed-1169321/)

starion Dec 19th, 2016 07:41 PM

Vacation Help Needed
 
We are looking to travel the second week of January, but we need some help. We have two kids ages 2 and 5. We are a bit concerned about mosquito transmitted viruses. We are planning to go away for 4 days. We are traveling from NJ and this will be our first plane trip with the kids so would like to stay under a 4-hour plane trip. Just for reference, from NJ, Turks and Caicos is about 3 hrs and Puerto Rico is about 4 hours.

Parameters:

1. Somewhere warm enough to swim;
2. Drier island to reduce likelihood of mosquito bites.

Prefer an all-inclusive resort.

Any additional feedback regarding mosquitos would be welcome!

WoinParis Dec 20th, 2016 01:11 AM

Playa del Carmen, Mexico.

RoamsAround Dec 20th, 2016 05:32 AM

You are planning a trip to the tropics and definition that means they all will all have their fair share of mosquitos. It really isn't going to matter that much if it's a "drier" or wetter island.

The number of mosquitoes and no-see-ums you may encounter on any given island are more a factor of habitat, recent weather conditions and time of day. They are more prevalent in dense rain forests or areas of heavy vegetation and around salt ponds or other standing waters. They are more active at dusk or just before dawn in those areas and along the beach where the sand meets the surrounding vegetation and after periods of prolonged rain and/or when there are light or no breezes. The point being is those "conditions" can occur anywhere. Generally speaking mosquitoes are not a big concern during the day.

You can lessen your chances of a "close encounter" by using a good insect repellant (especially at night if you are on or near a beach), and, again in the evenings, by wearing long pants and long sleeve shirts. Also, refrain from using perfumes, colognes, after-shaves, scented hair sprays, scented body splashes and similar products as the "sweet aromas" act as an attractant.

for anyone to make meaningful recommendation for specific resorts it would help if you could give us a budget range for accommodations. please give an actual dollar amount, not some nebulous term like "affordable", "won't break the bank", etc. as we have no idea what you can afford or how "strong" your bank its.

If I'm not mistaken the only two All inclusive reports in the Turks & Caicos are Club Med (probably not really suitable for a family with young children) and Beaches which is perfect for families but it is very expensive.

There are no All inclusive in Puerto Rico.

Caribbean destinations with an abundance of All Inclusive resorts include the Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Cancun, Cozumel and Playa del Carmen. You'll find some All Inclusives on Antigua and a couple on St. Lucia. So, you might want to narrow your search to those islands.

starion Dec 20th, 2016 06:39 AM

Thank you so much for the replies. I will certainly check out Playa del Carmen, and I certainly appreciate the detailed response that followed!

We will be traveling for 3 nights. I think I would like to be between $2,000 to $3,000. My daughter is under 2 so I won't have to purchase a plane ticket for her. I think that would roughly be about $1.4k for the plane trip and $500-$600 per night for accommodations. Of course I would not complain if we came in on the lower side, but I could go up in budget if we had to. We haven't taken a flyaway trip in 5 years so feel like we can indulge if we have to up the price.

RoamsAround Dec 20th, 2016 07:24 AM

Honestly, you might want to re-think your plans if you are only going for 3 nights. Even with a 4 hour flight when you take into consideration travel to/from the airport and airport "waiting time" (most airlines tell you to arrive 2 hours early) you will be spending the better part of your first and last days "traveling" which effectively means you only have 1 full day on the island. Seems like an awful lot of trouble and money to haul around luggage and 2 young children for such a brief trip.

RoamsAround Dec 20th, 2016 08:17 AM

Typo , sorry. that should be "...you only have 2 full days..." - still a short visit when traveling with 2 young children.

suze Dec 20th, 2016 10:10 AM

I would wait until you had more time. I can't see spending all that effort and money to take a family of 4 on a big trip that only lasts a couple days.

starion Dec 20th, 2016 12:15 PM

I have the entire week off so I could extend the vacation if we felt we needed more time. I'll bring that up with the wifey, I'm sure she won't object to more days.

Antigua and St. Lucia might be a bit too far for us. That leaves Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Cancun, Cozumel and Playa del Carmen so far.

Any other suggestions on destinations? Thanks in advance. (Special thanks to RoamsAround!)

blamona Dec 20th, 2016 01:22 PM

with your budget, Mexico and DR are your only choices

Beaches AI in Turks runs around $1800 nightly in January!

suze Dec 20th, 2016 01:29 PM

<that leaves Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Cancun, Cozumel and Playa del Carmen so far.>


No, none to add, that list is OK.

I'm not a huge fan of the DR but I love both Jamaica and Mexico.

starion Dec 20th, 2016 01:45 PM

Awesome!!!! I'm really looking forward to researching these spots (other than turks!!!! at $1800 a night, wow!) lol

suze Dec 20th, 2016 02:45 PM

A good place to get an overview of what is available is by using

http://www.cheapcaribbean.com/

Just to get an idea of what All-Inclusives run in the various places. What is available from your home airport. With the disclaimer, I've never used them to actually book but (like Expedia) I find it handy for research.


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