Benefits & Risks of Traveling During Hurricane Season

May through November is considered “hurricane season” in the Caribbean. I’ve traveled to Jamaica in October (right during/after Hurricane Matthew–yikes!). Since it was a relatively spontaneous trip, I didn’t realize the timing of hurricane season(oops!). Once learning about Hurricane Matthew, I decided to still go and wing it! Fortunately, we got lucky and it was sunny the whole week, enough for me to get burnt!

Benefits

Cheaper

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Probably the best benefit of all! Prices of all inclusive resorts can be 20-60% cheaper during May-October. Need I really say more?

Less people

My parents went during the high season; not to mention it was around Valentine’s Day! They said it was extremely crowded, and every day they got up early to “claim” a couple chairs by the pool before breakfast. Granted, my parents are early morning risers, so it wasn’t that difficult for them! My friend and I never had to worry about claiming a spot, whether it was outside at the beach/pool, the buffets in the morning, or at a restaurant. The slightest issue we had was getting a late dinner (around 8ish) at the Italian restaurant (which was the most popular dinner choice).

Gorgeous Weather

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Hurricane season does not mean the weather will be consistently terrible for 6 months straight, though hurricanes can be unpredictable. Our trip was in October 2016, right after Hurricane Matthew has passed through; e got extremely lucky that our entire vacation was sunny, hot, and gorgeous! Minus 2 short bursts of rain during the week. Every local would tell you that Jamaican weather is unpredictable (maybe moreso than Wisconsin? ….debatable).

Travel Insurance

You can ALWAYS get travel insurance, and this is highly recommended. Regardless of weather, you never know what may happen before your trip. Through Funjet Vacations, travel insurance means you can get a refund (minus the cost of the insurance) if you cancel at any time before your trip. A $150-200 loss compared to $1,500 was definitely more than okay with us!

Other Activities

On the off chance you are there and half the week has less than pleasant weather, these all inclusive resorts have plenty of other activities! There are many indoor bars – your party doesn’t have to stop if it rains! One of the bars at ours had a foosball table, pool table, televisions playing sports (yes, American sports!) Our resort had an entertainment group that specifically planned activities for us to do. They had choreographed dances and parties, and if the weather was terrible, I’m positive they had back up ideas for how to entertain us INSIDE the resort!

Risks

Hurricane

The obvious risk of travelling during hurricane season is, of course, the hurricane. Whether it’s the worst parts of this storm, or just a massive downpour, rain isn’t fun when you’re looking forward to laying in the sun with a drink in your hand.

Construction or Renovations

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The resorts take advantage of the down time to complete construction or renovation projects. We had one restaurant and one buffet that was under construction while we were there. With two other buffets and 6 other specialty restaurants, we didn’t miss much!

Possibility of reduced staff

Since it is a low season, there may be a possibility of reduced staff. We went mid-October near the end of hurricane season and still received excellent customer service! We got to know some of the local employees there, and they were absolutely fantastic.

Would you still travel during hurricane season? Do you think the benefits outweigh the risks? Let me know in the comments below!

 

Benefits and risks of traveling to the Caribbean during hurricane season, which is May-October



18 thoughts on “Benefits & Risks of Traveling During Hurricane Season”

  • I’ve always been curious about seeing a hurricane, but only a Cat 1 or 2. I grew up in Texas and am intimately acquainted with tornadoes but haven’t yet seen a hurricane.

  • I have traveled/will travel during hurricane season twice this year. We had one hurricane in Costa Rica, but are hoping for better weather in Cuba. Will definitely buy insurance this time though – a week of bad weather can really mess with your trip.

  • I have never travelled in a hurricane area but I apply the same principle travelling off season and it rarely turns out badly. The risk of same bad weather is far outweighed by a lack of crowds and lower prices. I don’t mind if lots of the holiday catering business are closed. You get a better local experience this way.

  • I always look for things like this, coming from a part of the world that is prone to summer cyclones, like hurricanes.I remember getting caught in Texas a few years back and we had no idea it was tornado season and it freaked me out a bit. Interesting take on this article to find the pros in what can be a tough season.

  • I traveled to Costa Rica during hurricane season. I had a few people tell me it was a bad idea. But the trip ended up being wonderful! Traveling during hurricane season does not guarantee a hurricane!

    • My dad DESPERATELY wanted me to cancel my trip (which I’d purchased insurance for) because Hurricane Matthew was still around, my friend and I decided to go anyways and there was no sight of a hurricane! I’m glad your trip to Costa Rica was just as lovely!

  • I guess you just have to be prepared for the trip to be cancelled or for it to be impacted by a hurricane. The positives do make risking it sound tempting! Although a friend had to rearrange his honeymoon in the Caribbean at short notice due to a hurricane!

  • Hummm, I can see the benefits of traveling during low season but I am not sure I would risk my holidays despite the prices 🙂 But if people want to try, this is a really informative post. Thanks

  • We’ve traveled to Cancun during hurricane season and got the end of a big storm they had. We got a couple rainy days but not enough to ruin our trip. Loved the less crowded beaches. Also traveled to Costa Rica during their rainy season and got sporadic showers but prices and less crowds were completely worth it! Think I don’t mind the risk since it doesn’t always mean bad weather.

  • We have lived through a few hurricanes, including Matthew, and so traveling then doesn’t phase us much. It’s like traveling in the winter. I like that there are so many less people, plus the people you meet aren’t so overwhelmed by the number of people they see each day.

  • There are definitely pros and cons, but I prefer taking the risk of having a storm every so often. I love having less people around and you can’t beat the cheaper prices!! As long as you find a resort that has a good variety of things to do if it storms then you’re set!! We have cruised during hurricane season before and had one day of pretty bad weather, but I just made that the day I booked a spa service! Win-win!!

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