air travel tips

The 10 best things to do In a Caribbean Port.

A cruise to the Caribbean gives you the chance to partake in many fun and diverse shore excursions. Whether you want something action-packed or laidback, you can find your ideal activities ashore. Consider these:

  • Ziplining – While in port in St. Martin/St. Maarten, visit Loterie Farm at Pic Paradis, where you’ll find not only ziplining but also an obstacle course high up above the trees.
  • Rainforest Hike – Lush & green St. Lucia is a prime Caribbean port for this activity. See the island’s  exotic flora and fauna, and learn about the rainforest’s history and ecology — and its effects on the island — from your tour guide.
  • City Tours – A city tour through San Juan, Puerto Rico is ideal due to the many historic places located right in the city center.
  • Shopping – In St. Thomas, an island especially known for its duty-free shopping, partake in an excursion that takes you to some of the best shopping spots on the island.
  • Snorkeling – The Antilla Shipwreck in Aruba is a favorite spot, as it’s shallow enough for snorkelers (not just scuba divers) to get a good look at the wreck.
  • Waterfalls & Swimming Holes – In Jamaica, visit Dunn’s River Falls and swim in the water at its base. In Aruba, visit the Natural Pool, which is formed in the middle of large rocks in a scenic location by the island’s coastline.
  • Play With Animal/Sea Life – If you’re an animal lover, the Caribbean is going to make love them even more, with the opportunity to see dolphins, monkeys, lizards and ride horses along the beach. At Stingray City in Grand Cayman, you can swim with hundreds of stingrays, who make their home in the bay and are used to human touch.
  • White Water Rafting – A popular place to do this is in Jamaica, down the Rio Bueno River, which takes you through fast rapids and tropical scenery.
  • Local Drinks – A distillery or brewery tour is a tasty way to get in touch with the local side of an island. In the Dominican Republic, try some sips of its famous rum while visiting a local distillery. While in San Juan, you can take a tour and sample many versions of rum from their famous Bacardi Rum Factory.
  • Ancient Sites – Many Caribbean cruises make stops along the eastern coast of Mexico near Cancun. While there, visit the ruins of Tulum to see remnants of the way ancient Mayan civilizations lived.

Bargain Travel specializes in cruise packages to the Caribbean with all the major cruise lines. Please contact us at 1-800-820-4567 or send us a cruise quote request so we can plan and book your next exotic cruise vacation!

How To Get Hotel and Airline Upgrades

Get Upgrades When Traveling

Everyone deserves to enjoy VIP treatment on vacation. After being stuck in small, cramped airplanes, bad weather or a terrible hotel room, it’s nice to enjoy the perks of an upgrade. These tips will help you make the most out of your travel, whether it’s for business or leisure, everyone deserves to know how to get hotel and airline upgrades!

Be Nice to Receive an Upgrade

One of the simplest and easiest things you can do to receive a hotel or airline upgrade, is to be polite and friendly to the desk clerk. Even if you just want a bigger bed, better view or to be placed as far away from the ice machine as possible, just ask. Being personable, friendly, polite and courteous will definitely give you a better chance than if you are pushy and unpleasant.

Book Hotels and Airline Tickets Over the Phone

While most of the time people are now using sites like Expedia, Kayak, or Travelocity to book their airline and hotel packages, it’s better to do these things over the phone. Making a personal connection with the hotel staff will allow you to mention any special circumstances you may have that could actually lead to an upgrade. Anniversaries, first time visiting the city, birthdays or romantic vacations are sometimes available for upgrades! If the staff can match an actual human with the reservation name, they’ll be more likely to help you out and give you a few extra perks.

Sign Up for Frequent Traveler or Stay Card

Since you’ve already made a personal connection with the staff from the hotel or airline, ask about frequent traveler or stay cards. Frequent travelers are much more likely to receive upgrades and staff will be more likely to fulfill any special requests. The more you show brand loyalty to a certain hotel or airline chain, the more you’ll benefit. Also, the next time you stay at the hotel you love, ask to talk to the manager and tell him why you like the hotel so much. From there on out, you’ll always have an outstanding relationship and get the best vacation treatment.

Book an Early Flight and Board Late for Possible Upgrades

Since there are generally fewer passengers on early flights, there is less competition for seats. Check in a few hours before your flight and you might be one of the first passengers to put in an upgrade request. If that doesn’t work, try to board your flight as late as you possible can. When you board the plane late, there is a better chance for coach to be oversold. Well-dressed passengers have an advantage when it comes to this kind of upgrade technique, so make sure you dress sharply if want to try and get an upgrade this way.

Book Hotel Rooms on Slow Days

If you travel to a hotel during low-occupancy time, you are more likely to get an upgrade. Unlike on airlines, hotels are more willing to bump you up to a vacant suite or other amenities you might not normally receive. If you’re traveling to a business hotel on the weekend, the staff will be more likely to upgrade you to try to impress you and gain future business.