As a villa specialist and travel expert on all things Providenciales (Provo), Turks and Caicos, I have learned a lot from both booking guests and traveling to the island myself. Here are a few tips and tricks that I personally follow to save $. Many of these tips could be applied to travel to any destination, but I have focused on Provo!
1.Having your own Kitchen Saves you Bukoos!
We all know that a huge expense of life is food and drink. Most of us have learned to budget this huge money vacuum of feeding ourselves by cooking. The same idea can be applied on vacation! Staying in a villa with a kitchen could be priced higher than a hotel, but how much could you save if you cooked 1-2 meals in each day? I always start my trips with a visit to the grocery store or market. I stalk up on water, fruit, snacks, sandwich fixings and breakfast foods. Visit the fish market to buy some fresh caught fish to slap on the grill, and have some amazing seafood for a fraction of the price you would pay at a restaurant.
2. Last Minute Travel can Save You BIG
Not everyone has a schedule flexible enough for traveling last minute, but if you do, you can save big. Many vacation rentals will offer a discounted rate for dates within 2-3 weeks. Not only does it save you money, but it’s invigorating to be spontaneous!
3. Travel during the Off Season
Winter is the high season for Caribbean travel, meaning that from November-April people are flocking to escape the cold and trade their coats for swim suits. When demand goes up, prices follow; therefore vacation rentals and flights tend to be priced significantly higher during high season. The highest in demand weeks of the year are New Year’s week and Christmas week, and the rates are the highest of the year as well. I have a lot of guests who request those dates and are shocked by the rates. If you travel May-October, the rates are much lower and you could save on flights as well.
4. Talk with an Expert
Every destination is different and requires you to plan accordingly. I refer guests to excursion providers I use myself, and since we do not gain a commission from referring guests to any providers, I have no incentive to send guests to the most pricey options. Speaking with a local person or expert on your destination can save you money in many ways, from referring you to the best authentic restaurant (not the over-priced tourist trap) to advising on the best days to arrive and depart for flight pricing.
5. Know what to Pack
It’s important to speak with an expert too so you know what to bring to the island. I always advise guests to purchase and pack a snorkeling mask and hose when visiting Turks and Caicos, since I know that renting or buying them on island can be very expensive. Likewise, packing sunscreen, bug spray and clothing detergent can save you money.