If you haven’t traveled to Jamaica and haven’t considered it, it’s time to change that.
Jamaica is one of the most beautiful destinations you can travel to. It’s a perfect destination for honeymoons, an adult get-away or a trip the entire family can enjoy.
With low travel rates, warm climates and friendly smiles glowing from resort staff, it’s a tough destination not to enjoy.
I’m sure that you probably have questions. Lots of them. I was curious myself about many things.
One of the problems I had before I was willing to consider booking my itinerary was simple in nature. When’s the cheapest time to travel to Jamaica?
After some research, here is what I have learned.
When is the cheapest time to travel to Jamaica? The cheapest time to travel to Jamaica is going to be during non-peak travel times. When traveling to Jamaica, you want to avoid Christmas break, summer months and Spring break months to get the lowest prices on your full travel package.
I assume that this aren’t the only questions you have about traveling to Jamaica.
It couldn’t be. I’m the same way and have plenty of questions and considerations I like to check off my list before making any travel decisions or jumping the gun.
If you stick around for a moment, I’m going to break down some other frequently asked questions about traveling to Jamaica and give you everything you need to know.
This should ensure that you feel confident about where you choose to book your next vacation.
Let’s break down these other considerations 1 by 1.
When’s the Most Ideal Time to Travel to Jamaica?
We already discussed when the cheapest time would be when traveling to Jamaica. This doesn’t necessarily make it the most ideal time.
Anytime you are planning travel, you should try to consider the entire picture, not just price.
Let’s assume it’s not all about price with you and that you are looking for the perfect get-away.
Traveling during the spring break months which fall between March and May would still not be advised. Jamaica is a trendy destination for students and individuals between the ages of 18-24 to travel to with no intentions of doing anything except getting wild.
If this is what you are looking for, then I suppose this would be a great time to book a flight and pack the bags.
If, however, you are looking for your resort to be more laid back, low key and relaxing, this probably isn’t the best idea.
Beaches will be crowded, music will be louder than your typical Jamaican stay, and you may have a tough time getting the excellent service you deserve from the poolside bartender.
Consider the Summer Months
This of course if total price is not your #1 concern with vacation planning this year.
If you take this advice, an alternative would be booking your trip during the summer.
During the summer the beaches have cleared, and the crowds will be much smaller and less rowdy.
However, going back to the price point issue we discussed previously, this may not be the most ideal time on your pocketbook.
The Overall Top Consideration for Smaller Crowds and Lowest Price Points
If you really want to hit the sweet spot on price and smaller crowds, consider booking during these offseason times like I stated above.
During the offseason which would include September- November, and January-February.
Not only will the crowds be at a minimum, but you can expect savings on airfare and resorts.
You can expect these savings to range anywhere from a 20 percent discount to a 60 percent discount.
Especially if you live in a colder climate country where getting away to Jamaica during these colder months could be a dream come true for you.
Now we need to move into some other considerations.
Let’s start with the weather in Jamaica and attempt to keep you on the beach and out of your hotel room. I mean, that is the point, isn’t it?
What to Watch for and What to Avoid in Jamaica
Anytime you travel to Jamaica you want to pick the best weather months possible. Jamaica is known to get heavy and frequent rain during certain times of the year.
Luckily, this happens not to be when rates for airfare and hotels are also at their lowest points.
November to mid-December you can expect the weather to range from the mid-’70s to the mid-’80s and mostly sunshine. As stated before, this is also going to be a cheap time to book travel plans.
Jamaica is also going to experience another period of heavy rain which often from the end of April until the end of May.
This would be a time to avoid Jamaica travel unless you are a fan of being cooped up in the hotel room.
You Need to Be Aware of Hurricane Seasons in Jamaica
Jamaica experiences two periods of heavy rains and experiences one time of the year known as “hurricane season.”
Unfortunately, hurricane season does fall close to one of the best travel times.
Hurricane season in Jamaica begins June 1st and last until November 30th.
This is nothing to get overly concerned with.
Yes, hurricanes are obviously dangerous. However, with excellent weather and satellite systems in place, you should know with adequate advance if this is a possibility that you may encounter on your trip.
TIP: Purchase a travel insurance just in case the weather forecast turns out to be very bad.
When you purchase travel insurance, you give yourself some freedom and peace of mind. This would allow you to book during the “best weather time” and the “cheapest time” for traveling to Jamaica.
If fate did happen to strike and a hurricane was in the forecast, the travel insurance should allow you to obtain a full 100% refund of your travel plans or book that a trip later in the year or at an alternative time.
Also, travel insurance will cover other odds and ends that can be beneficial in the event, the unknown does happen. Never a bad decision to consider adding travel insurance to your vacation package.
Now we need to dive into some more of the fine details. Details such as how are you going to pay for anything in Jamaica?
What Currency Do They Use in Jamaica?
Another common consideration with any travel is the currency that’s accepted in foreign countries.
We don’t want to show up anywhere with no means of paying for goods and services.
Most tourist and vacation spots in Jamaica are going to use both the Jamaican dollar and the US dollar.
However, keep in mind that if you have excursions planned that are not necessarily in the tourist industry, you may only be able to use the Jamaican dollar.
TIP: It would never be a poor choice to have both handy.
You never know where your vacation may lead. This wouldn’t apply to US coins. Only the US dollars.
Let’s assume you are staying in Montego Bay (a very common tourist resort filled area), you could use both forms of currency and often waiters, bartenders, and other service providers will be happy to accept a 5-dollar US tip.
Now that you know which form of currency to bring with you, it’s also important to know how much the entire trip is going to cost including airfare, hotel pricing, and food/recreation expenses.
Let’s dive into these costs and see if it will fit in this year’s travel budget.
How Much Does It Cost to Travel to Jamaica?
First and foremost, many of these costs are going to depend heavily on what you intend on doing while staying in Jamaica. How many excursions and additional activities do you plan on participating or partaking in?
Are you going to swim with the dolphins (recommended) or take any other sightseeing tours?
These can add up quickly when booking your trip. Most booking platforms will allow you to add these packages before checking out online.
I’d also highly recommend taking this approach if you typically plan excursions on vacations.
If you don’t, vendors and sales rep for these excursions will be waiting for you in the hotel lobby ready to pounce.
Maybe that’s something that doesn’t bother you, but it’s something that’s not for me. Never has been, never will be.
Let’s break down these costs briefly.
#1 Airfare in Jamaica’
The first thing to always keep in mind, is that airfare prices can change daily. If you are looking for the cheapest times to travel to Jamaica, scroll back up and re-visit when we previously stated that time would be.
If not, let’s assume you planned on traveling to Jamaica today (2 Feb 2019), your prices would look differently than they may look tomorrow or even next month. I directly went to google and compared rates assuming we were going to catch the next flight.
Depending on where or which country you are flying out of, you can expect airfare to range anywhere from USD 300 round trip to USD 800 round trip.
REMEMBER: It’s always recommended to compare rates and considering booking as a full package to eliminate as much cost as possible.
#2 Hotel Pricing in Jamaica
This is also going to vary. It’s going to depend if you are staying at an all-inclusive resort or a resort on the outskirts of these tourist areas.
Hotels online for Jamaica currently show pricing ranging from USD 189 for a Courtyard Marriot all the way to USD 712 to stay at the Iberostar Rose Hall Suite (A Much Higher End Establishment).
It will depend on what you are looking for, and again, it always depends if you book as an all-inclusive getaway.
#3 Restaurants and Pricing in Jamaica Pricing and Recommendations
Once again. This depends. If you have booked an all-inclusive trip. If you have, you should be able to eat most of your meals for free. It’s part of the package. If, however, you paid for all items separately, then it’s an entirely different story.
An average lunchtime menu meal at a restaurant cost 808 dollars (Jamaican Money).
It will depend on where you live currently for how this translates into Jamaican dollars.
You can use a simple currency converter online to compare these rates. 808.00 Jamaican dollars = 6 dollars US money if that helps you break it down a little further.
Now, where should we eat while visiting Jamaica?
If you are on a non- all-inclusive trip, you are probably looking for some top recommendations.
Keep in mind that these will vary significantly based on where exactly you are staying and how easily you can access some of these establishments.
Here are 3 great options to try out.
Top 3 Restaurants to Try in Jamaica
#1 Miss T’s Kitchen, Ocho Rios
Miss T’s Kitchen is not only kid-friendly and a comfortable setting but a beloved and favorite dining spot in Ocho Rios. It’s been known to have very stylish décor and affordable prices. Expect to pay around 23.00 US dollars for a full-fish meal or up to 10-12.00 US dollars for a kid’s meal or “non-entrée meal.”
#2 House Boat Grill Restaurant, Montego Bay
Another restaurant option that’s going to boast style and beautiful views. Also, it’s just a unique place to grab a bite to eat. The meal can be designed as a romantic meal with your spouse overlooking the water or a kid-friendly lunch with the entire family.
House Boat Grill serves seafood primarily as its specialty so if this isn’t for you, it’s advisable to try another option.
#3 Mystic India, Whitter Village
Mystic India is going to offer just about everything. From full wedding catering options to boxed lunches to take on the go. It’s one of a kind authentic Indian Cuisine establishment, but it’s known for incredible service, friendly staff and budget-friendly pricing. A must try if it’s accessible during your stay in Jamaica.
Fun Activities in Jamaica The Entire Family Can Enjoy
What about activities? What can we do for fun? In Jamaica the options are endless. I’m going to keep it limited to the top three excursions that everyone should try in Jamaica. If you are fearless that is.
Climbing Dunn’s River Falls and Bob Marley’s Nine Mile
With this combo set up, you won’t only get to visit Bob Marley’s hometown, but you get to take a beautiful hike up the famous Dunn’s River Fall. Be sure to pack some climbing shoes. Dunn’s River fall is a hike filled with climbing rocks while taking in the breath-taking views of the famous waterfalls.
Swimming with The Dolphins
This is located just outside of Montego Bay. It’s a day that can be packed with fun for just you and the spouse or the entire family.
You will get to swim and interact with the dolphins, but you will also get to take a ride on the dolphins back/fin while cruising through the water.
If you’re one of the lucky chosen ones, you may even be selected to spend the day with a dolphin trainer. A must try excursion.
Ziplining in Jamaica, Adventure Tours
Those who are brave enough can also give ziplining a try. Adventure tours will take you to Cranbrook Botanical Gardens located between St Ann and Ocho Rios. It’s a series of 9 zip lines that reach 660 feet long and 45 feet high. For those brave enough to try, it’s a must do an excursion.
Safety Considerations When Traveling to Jamaica
Jamaica is known to have a bad rap sheet for violence and petty crimes. Unfortunately, in recent history, it’s not 100% limited to locals only.
Tourist have also been victim to crimes while visiting Jamaica. For the most part, if you are staying in the tourist and resort areas, you won’t have much to worry about.
If, however, you plan to travel to Kingston (capital of Jamaica) for sightseeing, you would want to exercise caution. Especially if traveling at night or traveling alone.
Negril and the outskirts of Montego Bay are also known to experience more crime than other areas of Jamaica. Exercise some good judgement and caution when strolling these areas.
Airport and Other Considerations
In Jamaica, travel is user-friendly, but it’s also quite lengthy. The airport is not located in the most ideal spot for making your travel time to your resort a short hop and a skip.
You could be looking at an hour plus ride by vehicle (van) to transport you to and from the resort to the airport.
Outside of that, expect some heavily armed guards with German Shepard dogs to be greeting you and walking the airport check-in areas.
Don’t worry, they aren’t after you.
Believe it or not countries like Jamaica were once known for heavy drug smuggling so the airports in these countries may feel just a bit different when it comes to personnel working behind the body scanners.
Is Jamaica Child-Friendly?
Most of you probably want to know if you can bring your child to Jamaica with you. If you do, is it safe?
Yes, Jamaica is, and the resorts are known to be very accommodating. In areas such Montego Bay, the resorts are geared towards attracting families with younger children.
These resorts will have adult pools and kid pools to accommodate your travel plans.
Jamaica Is One of The Best Vacations You Will Ever Take!
Jamaica welcomes tourist with open arms and friendly smiles. Staying in the areas discussed previously will never be a choice to regret. Also, traveling during non-peak times can save you a bundle.
With the year-round warm temperatures, beautiful blue oceans and plenty of excursions for you and the entire family, it’s a must consider destination for your upcoming travel plans.