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      05-08-2012, 08:39 AM   #1
mccannable
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Vacation advice

Wife and I are going on vaca in July. We are trying to keep this one on a decent budget so plane tickets under 1k. I would like to get out of the US but most anything over seas tickets are $1200 plus. We do not have alot of international traveling experience and do not want to be in too much danger. any ideas or advice is appreciated.

places we have thought of:
Costa Rica - I would like to travel with another couple but no one can go then(friends are buying houses/moving/poor)
Virgin Islands - seems kinda boring but cheap
or just go to Southern California but that doesn't excite me.
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      05-08-2012, 01:10 PM   #2
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Costa Rica is pretty inexpensive. I was there about 15 years ago and everyone was really friendly.

Virgin Islands are fine. I find them to be overrun with tourists most of the year which is a bit of a turn off to me. I have been to St.Thomas, St.John, Antigua twice, Dominica, and Turks & Caicos. My favorite place in the Caribbean by a mile was T&C. They use the dollar, speak English, and Grace Bay is the most beautiful strip of sand I've ever seen. It can be very reasonable depending on the time of year. We flew home on Thanksgiving day and we had the plane virtually to ourselves (maybe 20 people on a 737). It's a quick trip for you so I would put that on the list.

I was just in Italy as well and had a great time. I booked my ticket 5 days before I left and it cost me $1,000 but I also fly out of NYC which is a major hub with hundreds of flights each day. Again, love every second of it.

Only vacation I ever felt unsafe on was to Cabo San Lucas. I struggled to find even one redeeming factor of that place. Water is so deep and rough that you can't really swim, people are scummy, and it's not pretty in the least. Skip it.

Kauai is my favorite tropical destination but that's likely out of your budget - not to mention that Hawaii is not international, despite being a world away from everything American.
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      05-08-2012, 02:02 PM   #3
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Thanks for the insight. Costs rica looks nice but it's an hour and and half cab ride to the nice beaches and I hear cabs are rough and frequently try to price gouge. But that's just what I have read.

Seems like all euro flights fly through NYC which is prob why it's a little cheaper.
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      05-08-2012, 02:03 PM   #4
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Lots of destinations in Mexico that would be within your budget and let you get out of the US. I've been to Cozumel a couple of times and always enjoyed it. Good weather, shopping, snorkeling/diving, etc.

I can't speak to Costa Rica because I haven't been there yet.
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      05-08-2012, 02:16 PM   #5
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Im going away with my gf may 19 to montego bay 1300 ea. staying at grande pallendium for 6 nights
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      05-08-2012, 02:54 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mccannable View Post
Thanks for the insight. Costs rica looks nice but it's an hour and and half cab ride to the nice beaches and I hear cabs are rough and frequently try to price gouge. But that's just what I have read.

Seems like all euro flights fly through NYC which is prob why it's a little cheaper.
Why don't you just stay at the beach? That would eliminate the cab ride portion. Part of the adventure of international travel in being outside of your comfort zone.
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      05-08-2012, 03:08 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KingOfJericho View Post
Why don't you just stay at the beach? That would eliminate the cab ride portion. Part of the adventure of international travel in being outside of your comfort zone.
The airport is always from the beach. I hear the pushing my comfort and I am probably worried about nothing. But if a problem did arise I'm not really the fighting type(and it shows).

We went to cozumel on a cruise stop. It was cool. We rented a scooter and had fun. Not a huge fan of cruises though.
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      05-08-2012, 04:29 PM   #8
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Check out Curacao...but don't stay in an all inclusive, I think that would be boring. Get a boutique hotel downtown and explore.

We always felt safe walking around (even through this one area that was pretty bad and we probably shouldn't have gone through, but was far away from downtown) they use the U.S. dollar as well and there is various things to do. Should be a fairly cheap flight I'd imagine.

The drawbacks are that if you stay downtown you have to take a cab to any of the beaches, most hotels offer free shuttle to one of the beaches though, and there are generally cruise ships coming in once a day or once every two days, so downtown becomes flooded with people during the day (can be good or bad I guess, depending on how you look at it), but reasonably quiet at night.

Great restaurants though (not very cheap, but food is really good).
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      05-08-2012, 04:31 PM   #9
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      05-08-2012, 06:33 PM   #10
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The trick with the Virgin Islands is to avoid the US VI, and go instead to the British VI. If you can afford it, the exclusive island resorts (e.g., Peter Island) are very nice.

Last edited by Foodle; 05-08-2012 at 06:39 PM.
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      05-08-2012, 06:35 PM   #11
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come to canada..
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      05-08-2012, 06:56 PM   #12
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      05-08-2012, 07:47 PM   #13
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Well, my way is to purchase everything and I mean everything on VISA, pay the bill at month end of course. The VISA plan I have is I get 1 Air Mile for every dollar spend. So we go First Class to Europe every second year only pay the tax on the air ticket. This year we shall go to Paris, France and London, UK for a 3 week vacation.

You be surprised how quickley the air miles add up The VISA plan is $150-/Year well worth the first class air tickets.

For a nice destination if you go (sometime in the future Spain and or Italy is recommendsed). California is always a great destination. Love that Coastal Highway No. 1

Have a super vacation wherever your travels might take you
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      05-08-2012, 08:02 PM   #14
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Try Newfoundland

Depending on the sort of vacation you're looking for you might consider going way north to Newfoundland. My wife and I did some trekking/climbing in Gros Morne Park a few years back in July and really enjoyed it. Good if you're into hiking and don't mind variable weather, but not recommended if you're looking to lie around on a sunny beach.

In a similar, but a bit less exotic/expensive, vein you might try the Adirondacks in northern NY state. Lots of neat kayaking, canoeing and hiking there too and the weather in July is usually quite nice.
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      05-08-2012, 09:53 PM   #15
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Turks and Caicos is nice - IMO, better than the Virgin Islands. But Exumas is even nicer than T & C. If you like peace and quiet and beaches that are empty that is. It depends a lot on what you want from your vacation. Do you want privacy or night life? Shopping or no shopping? Great dining or local cuisine? I personally think Kauai is the best blend of everything for an island vacation.
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      05-08-2012, 10:22 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alter Peter View Post
Well, my way is to purchase everything and I mean everything on VISA, pay the bill at month end of course. The VISA plan I have is I get 1 Air Mile for every dollar spend. So we go First Class to Europe every second year only pay the tax on the air ticket. This year we shall go to Paris, France and London, UK for a 3 week vacation.

You be surprised how quickley the air miles add up The VISA plan is $150-/Year well worth the first class air tickets.

For a nice destination if you go (sometime in the future Spain and or Italy is recommendsed). California is always a great destination. Love that Coastal Highway No. 1

Have a super vacation wherever your travels might take you
I have a lot I miles on my southwest card because we fly a fair amount in the states too.


Lots of good ideas. I will be doing some research on some of these ideas(minus Canada).
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