Best Cheap Caribbean Vacations
To help you find the right island for the right price, U.S. News ranked the best cheap Caribbean vacations based on top recommendations from industry experts and everyday travelers. Many of these hot spots can be experienced on a budget thanks to perks like free beach access and frequent deals on airfare and hotels. Vote for your ideal bargain Caribbean getaway below, and consult this list to guide you to your next sandy retreat. Use the money you save to treat yourself to some umbrella drinks.
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With optimal scuba diving conditions and protected coral reefs, Curacao is an aquatic lover's paradise. But the island also appeals to outdoorsy types with its impressive flora and fauna, and to history buffs with its rich and unique Dutch and Jewish cultural heritage. Getting here can be pricey, but if you visit between May and November, you'll find steeply reduced hotel and flight rates. Stick to free activities like relaxing on Playa Lagun and checking out the Queen Emma Pontoon Bridge for additional savings.
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Vacationers enjoy the contrast between bustling Trinidad and serene Tobago. Plus, there's no shortage of lodging options on either of these two islands, meaning you can easily find a reasonable room rate in an area that appeals to you. If you're planning to visit for the Trinidad Carnival in late February or early March, book your accommodations well in advance to secure lower rates.
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Jamaica has long been a prime destination for tourists thanks to its laid-back culture, impressive scenery and varied attractions. You may spend more than you would in Puerto Rico or the Dominican Republic, but you can nab flight and hotel deals if you're willing to visit between June and November (hurricane season). Protect your investment by purchasing an affordable travel insurance plan before your trip. Or, arrive in April or May to enjoy budget-friendly prices without the threat of a hurricane.
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Finding a bargain in Barbados will require patience, especially if you plan to visit in winter. Warm temperatures, turquoise waters and lively festivals draw visitors in droves. If you can wait until May to experience the island, you'll find agreeable rates comparable to those available during the hurricane-prone summer months. What's more, all of the island's 70-plus miles of white sand beaches are free to visit, regardless of where you stay.
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Travelers frequently crowd this American paradisiacal territory, but if you plan far enough in advance – at least a few months – and visit outside the peak winter season, you have a solid chance of scoring a great hotel deal in the USVI. Just steer clear of the ports of call: The Virgin Islands are a popular stopping point for cruises, and prices around the docks are often inflated.
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Grenada is often overlooked, meaning those who do visit can experience the island's white sand beaches and laid-back vibes without burning through their savings. Plus, it costs absolutely nothing to walk through Grenada's colorful capital, St. George's – including its aromatic Market Square – and lounge on Grand Anse Beach's gorgeous white sand. The months from summer through fall are perfect times to visit: Deals on lodging and flights abound, and crowds are scarce.
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With several all-inclusive resorts and stunning beaches you can access for free, the Turks and Caicos Islands are a great choice for those on a budget. What's more, many resorts in this Caribbean hot spot allow travelers to enjoy complimentary water sports equipment like kayaks and paddleboards. Though hotels and flights from December to April can be expensive, you'll find surprisingly low rates and few crowds the rest of the year.
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These islands aren't the easiest to reach, but that's part of the appeal. With a lush rainforest to hike through and numerous beach bars serving tropical cocktails, there are plenty of ways to pass the time on culturally rich St. Kitts. Meanwhile, the quiet, secluded beaches in Nevis are perfect for relaxation. Finding affordable room rates in both locations is easy, but keep in mind that some attractions and eateries close during hurricane season.
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Martinique's variety of free attractions (think: Schoelcher Library, Les Salines beach and St. Louis Cathedral) and budget-friendly street food vendors make it an excellent option for a cost-effective Caribbean vacation. However, staying in popular tourist spots like Les Trois-Îlets and Ste-Anne can be pricey, especially during the peak winter and spring months. To save some coin on accommodations, stay at a smaller property in Trinité.
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Puerto Rico allows travelers to experience the Caribbean without the hassle of international travel. Plus, more low-cost American airlines now offer nonstop flights to San Juan, making it easier to enjoy the powdery sands, clear water, boutique shops and delectable seafood of the island. Mid-April to June is the sweet spot between the busy season and the rainy season where you should be able to snag some lodging or flight deals without worrying about hurricanes.
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