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Fall is a Great Time to Travel to the Caribbean!

Fall in the Caribbean could be described as “the endless, perfect summer”.  The weather is warm – mid-to-upper 80s – but not scorching, there is typically less rainfall, summer crowds have returned home and winter crowds haven’t arrived yet. In addition, you’ll have the beaches practically to yourself, rates for accommodations are discounted and even airfares tend to be lower due to a decrease in demand. Let’s go!

But what about hurricane season? With Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria in the news, it seems that an autumn getaway to the Caribbean is risky. Not quite. The geographic span of the Caribbean is so vast, that even when a hurricane is affecting one area, much of the rest of the region is likely enjoying beautiful weather.

Consider these tips when planning a fall visit to the Caribbean:

Consider traveling later in the fall. Hurricane season is officially from June through November, but nearly 75% of major storms hit between mid-August and mid-October.

 

Choose the right location. Southern Caribbean countries like the Dutch Caribbean islands of Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao are generally less affected by hurricanes. So are the windward islands of Trinidad, Tobago and Grenada. The same is true for the Central American countries of Panama and Costa Rica – both of which have lovely tropical climates and beaches. And don’t forget Mexico. The Riviera Maya has wonderful resorts, plenty of things to do, sandy beaches and ancient Mayan ruins that will make any vacation an enjoyable experience.

 

Consider a cruise. Cruise ships can literally outrun a hurricane. They can (and will) alter their itineraries to avoid the storm, so you can enjoy the sunshine. The trick is to remain flexible. An eastern Caribbean cruise could end up being a western Caribbean cruise. Either way, you’ll still have fun!

Invest in travel insurance. Travel insurance is always a good idea and especially during hurricane season. Your best bet is a comprehensive policy that includes medical coverage, emergency travel services, baggage protection and trip-cancellation and trip-interruption coverage. AAA offers a variety of travel insurance policies and our travel agents can help you decided which one is right for you.

 

This has been a particularly devastating hurricane season for the Caribbean. It may take many months for some of the islands to recover. Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, the British Virgin Islands, St. Maarten, Dominica and Turks & Caicos were particularly hard hit.

However, a good many other islands are fully functional and still offering warm welcomes to their shores. For travelers looking for the sun, sand and turquoise waters of the Caribbean, there’s no reason to put your plans on hold and travel to these untouched islands:

Aruba * Bahamas * Barbados * Bermuda * Bonaire * Curacao * Dominican Republic * Grand Cayman * Grenada * Jamaica * Nevis * Saint Lucia * St. Kitts * St. Vincent & the Grenadines

The islands of the Caribbean depend heavily upon tourism for their livelihood and AAA sends thousands of visitors to these tropical shores yearly. If you would like to help the recovery efforts for those impacted by Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Maria, the Salvation Army is accepting donations specifically targeted for Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Maria relief.   Donate online at: HelpSalvationArmy.org or All Hands Volunteers at hands.org 

Our thoughts and prayers are with our American neighbors in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands as well as the other affected islands as they rebuild after Hurricanes Irma and Maria.

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