13 Things you need to know before you go to Punta Cana

Traveling to a new destination is always new, and there is a lot to be said about the element for surprise. However, have you ever visited somewhere but then found out afterward about something really amazing you missed out on? How about some important travel advice that your agent neglected to pass on? Some tips that would have made your trip easier? Or maybe some insider information on the best hotel discounts which would have made your vacation less expensive?

Luckily, if you are taking a vacation to Dominican Republic this year, or planning on doing so sometime in the future, the following list should help inform you about all the advice and tips for visiting Punta Cana 2016:

1. How safe is Punta Cana?

The tourist police do an excellent job at keeping crime to a minimum in Punta Cana. It is perfectly safe during the day, but it is strongly advised not to walk along the beach in the evening and to use common sense in the busier parts of town.

2. Where is the best place to stay in Punta Cana?

There are many all inclusive resorts in Punta Cana which are of the highest quality in the Caribbean, but some of the most popular hotels are the Excellence Punta Cana, the Iberostar Grand Hotel Bavaro and of course, the Hardrock.

3. Where can I find the best deal for a vacation to Punta Cana?

You can find prices anywhere online today, but if you want to find genuine discounts (sometimes up to 60 – 80%!), it’s highly recommended to sign up for a membership at Hotels Etc who have the biggest hotel discounts in the travel industry.

4. Bring US dollars

It’s not a good idea to take a wallet full of one hundred dollar bills, but ignore the advice given to you before you left: you do not need to convert your US dollars to peso for your vacation. Everywhere in the Dominican accepts the dollar and as long as you take notes of small denominations with you, there will be no issues.

5. Be prepared

The airport in Punta Cana can seem hectic when you arrive, people searching for baggage, locals searching for family, and taxi drivers competing for your custom. This can be overwhelming, so the best advice is if you do not have any pre booked transfer to the accommodation, make sure you know how much it will cost to the hotel, and agree the price before leaving. (Return approximately $60)

6. Are there secluded beaches?

You can certainly request that the hotel organize a private tour to a secluded beach but unfortunately, there are none within walking distance. The beaches in Punta Cana are stunning, but it is difficult to find a stretch without tourists, locals, hotels, bars or restaurants.

7. Can you drink the tap water?

In general, it is not advised to drink the tap water in Punta Cana, although it is fine for taking a wash or brushing your teeth. That being said, make sure you take bottled water everywhere you go, the main reason tourists fall ill on vacation in the Dominican is not food poisoning or any sort of disease, it’s dehydration.

8. Meal reservations

Keep in mind that many of the hotels require a reservation to be made for evening meals. Don’t take a chance on this, as it could mean a very long and unhappy wait until you find somewhere with availability. Try to book your meals a day or two in advance when you get there, and remove the risk of disappointment altogether.

9. Excursions

Of course the number one thing to do in Punta Cana is relax by the pool or take a dip in the ocean, but when you grow tired of lazing about all day, there are many excursions in the area.

The most popular adventure tours are zip lining, kayaking and snorkeling all of which can be booked in your hotel upon arrival.

10. Is there a tipping culture in Punta Cana?

While nobody is there to tell you what to do, it’s important to remember the Dominican Republic has an extremely low minimum wage and they work very hard to keep their jobs. It is recommended to always tip, and anywhere between 15% and 25% is suitable.

11. On that note, is it safe to swim?

Yes, it is safe to swim on most beaches in Punta Cana but always check the weather before going out and ensure there is a lifeguard on duty.

12. Is it possible to visit Santo Domingo from Punta Cana ?

Yes, but it is not advised. If you really must go to see the Capital for a specific reason, then fine, but please know that the Capital city of the Dominican Republic is almost 3 hours drive from Punta Cana.

13. Are there secluded beaches?

You can certainly request that the hotel organize a private tour to a secluded beach but unfortunately, there are none within walking distance. The beaches in Punta Cana are stunning, but it is difficult to find a stretch without tourists, locals, hotels, bars or restaurants.

Sign up to Hotels Etc today and start saving on your vacation to Punta Cana

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