With a record number of holidaymakers lat year, the Caribbean is still without doubt the leading tourist hotspot for North Americans. Initially Mexico was the destination of choice for most travelers but a huge increase in commercial flight itineraries in recent years has made just about anywhere down South accessible for a similar cost.
There are now close to 350 all-inclusive resorts in the Caribbean but while this certainly provides more options for your upcoming vacation, it can also make it more difficult in terms of choosing between them.
To help you make this decision we have compiled a breakdown with where you should be able to find some of the best vacation deals this Spring Break and also the best value for money destinations in 2016.
The Dominican Republic has emerged as a clear favorite and leader in terms of being able to offer value for money. The introduction of so many direct flights from Europe (nevermind North America) are a sign of the tropical island’s rise in popularity and until now this airfare has continued to stay at a very reasonable cost which inevitably allows for lower priced packages.
Punta cana, Dominican Republic
Punta Cana has by far the largest concentration of resorts in the Caribbean and is located in the very East of the island. As a rule, the majority of resorts of 3 star or above offer a huge amount of value with high quality service, great food and very comfortable rooms.
Beach lovers will find themselves in heaven arriving to almost any beach front resort in Punta Cana and there are also a couple of nice excursions in the local area. Both the Excellence and Hard Rock resorts will feature on the higher end of the costing scale but there are still some excellent deals to be had for slightly lesser luxurious resorts the Gran Bahia Principe and the Iberostar.
Tip: Steer clear of resorts at the very low end of the price range as they tend to have a very poor reputation.
Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic
This lesser known destination in the Dominican is so lesser known that most people have in fact, never heard of it. Unfortunately the beaches in this Northern part of the island are nothing to drool over like those in Punta Cana but for anyone in search of an all inclusive which is good value and nice surroundings to relax, Puerto Plata is a great choice.
In low season the prices for many of these resorts can hit rock bottom but great hotel discounts can still be found during Spring break and other busy periods. Clubhotel Riu Merengue and the Iberostar Costa Dorada are a very high quality all inclusive resorts while Blubay Villas and BeLive are not far behind in terms of the value for money the offer.
Tip; If you do not travel to Puerto Plata during Spring Break, check out some of the prices for the same resorts in the low season. You will not believe the hotel offers in this period.
Jamaica will continue to prosper over the coming years when it comes to tourism but it is still relatively new with catering to the all inclusive loving tourist. You will find just about everything you need for a relaxing vacation in Jamaica whether it be Montego Bay or the nearby beaches of Negril but do expect a primitive experience if you want to venture much further from than the local beach or the resort itself.
As they say, the west is the best and just a little bit further on from the popular Montego Bay you will reach the much smaller Negril which many believe to be a nicer alternative. There are less than 20 resorts along the strip but if you wish to stay on a 7 mile strip of white sandy beach, then Negril could very well be the best option for your Spring Break vacation.
There are some spectacular options here such as the Rockhouse hotel of the SPA retreat boutique hotel but if you are really looking for something low cost and don’t mind it being low key, you can find some real bargains along this strip. Sometimes the best option here is to avoid the high end all inclusive resorts and choose accommodation only which allows you to pay for food or drinks separately and both of these are very cheap in Negril.
Tip: Check out White Sands Negril for accommodation only or Riu Palace which often has excellent offers.
Aruba has a dry climate for the entire year round and while it can be a windy place to spend a couple of weeks, the island offers some excellent value all inclusive resorts. That being said, these resorts are aimed at the slightly more upmarket clientele than the other destinations above
Once again, the reasonable price of airfare is a contributing factor for why Aruba offers a huge amount of value for a spring Break vacation.
If you grow tired of relaxing around the pool all day and sampling the five star food on offer in most resorts, there is always the easy option of renting a car and heading off to explore the different parts of the island. Aruba is so small in fact, you can drive from one end to the other in little more than an hour.
While the Hilton Aruba and Riu Palace may not be the lowest priced resorts in the Caribbean, they most certainly offer some great hotel discounts and fantastic value to those who prefer expense a little more luxury or extra class on their vacation.
While usually one of the most popular choices for vacation, Mexico is obviously not an island like the other destinations on this list. This is largely down to the beautiful stretches of beaches along the Cancun and Riviera coastline but also because, Mexico will still offer some of the best vacation packages for Spring Break 2016.
This seemingly low cost of resorts is largely down to the large number of flights which service Cancun but then the huge number of resorts in the area has also meant for more competitive pricing than most other places. If you have visited this part of Mexico in the past then it might be worth checking out somewhere new for package offers first but for everyone else, Cancun still offers some very comfortable resorts on gorgeous stretches of beach and with many day tours to local attractions in the area, there is plenty to do.
As with anywhere, you will find accommodation at the very high and low end of the price point but a very important factor to keep in mind is that the lower end resorts will most often have a reputation for partygoers especially at this time of year. A couple of very nice resorts which offer a happy medium in this respect are Krystal Cancun and The Royal Caribbean.
Riviera Maya, Mexico
The sky blue waters along the Riviera Maya may not seem as perfect as those in Cancun but the area can offer a slightly more relaxed and sometimes upscale experience. The beaches can also seem less crowded and the area less busy but it won’t be for everyone, especially those who prefer to be in the heart of all the action and/or nightlife.
As with it’s popular neighbor, the Riviera Maya can provide some great vacation deals even at Spring Break but the best offers will be found later in the year or in the shoulder months of the summer. The Iberostar and Barcelo resorts are both very reliable choices for accommodation while the Excellence and Dreams Riviera Cancun are known for their slightly more luxurious setting.
Huge hotel discounts and all the best vacation packages above can be found on Hotels etc.