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Aruba, Puerto Rico, or Hawaii?????

New York City, New...
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Aruba, Puerto Rico, or Hawaii?????

Hi, for those of you with lots of experience on beach vacations, I need your advice!

Here's some background info:

did a timeshare presentation where we were offered an island adventure in either Aruba, Oahu, Maui, Montego Bay Jamaica, or San Juan Puerto Rico...our choice

Its just me and my boyfriend, we are in our twenties, and we dont mind doing local stuff or going off the beaten path

Ive been to Jamaica before, and they are only offering a 5 day 4 night stay, so I PAY AIRFARE.

Here's what it looks like in Feb:

Aruba $550

Oahu $750

Maui $850

San Juan $300

Few questions:

1. which is the better island out of these 4? I know very little about Hawaii.

2. Because they are paying for the room and hawaii is generally most expensive, should i choose that one because its less likely to have $$$ to go there again? Or should i take the free accomodations, and go to San juan for $300 airfare and call it a day?


Burlington, Vermont
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1. Re: Aruba, Puerto Rico, or Hawaii?????

I wouldnt fly all the way to Hawaii for 5 lousy days. Thats a long flight. So I would choose between Aruba, Puerto Rico or Jamaica. I have only been to Aruba, and I love it. So thats my vote!

Destination Expert
for Aruba
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2. Re: Aruba, Puerto Rico, or Hawaii?????

I wouldn't fly to Hawaii for 5 nights either....and probably will never get there because I simply can't handle the thought of flying that far, but that's another issue! :)

I would try to get the most for your money by doing research on the timeshares they are offering and seeing which one gets better ratings or may be the nicer among all of them - the biggest bang for your buck. Of course since you are on the Aruba forum, you will get a lot of thumbs up for Aruba. Which timeshare in Aruba are they offering you? I have never been to Puerto Rico or Jamaica, so I can't comment on those locations.

North Cape May, Nj
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3. Re: Aruba, Puerto Rico, or Hawaii?????

My choice would have been Maui but, as others have said, 5 days is too short.

Can't go wrong with Aruba.

Hull, Massachusetts
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for Palm - Eagle Beach
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4. Re: Aruba, Puerto Rico, or Hawaii?????

I have to agree Maui would have been the one except that's just too far to go for five nights. I think the beaches in Aruba are way better than PR and since you've been to Jamaica-didn't you say-that leaves this board's favorite of Aruba. I loved the beaches in Jamaica, but the safety and hassleless nature of the Auban people-no one chases you on the beach to buy anything, wins Auba hands down.

Fairfax, Virginia
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5. Re: Aruba, Puerto Rico, or Hawaii?????

Another vote for Aruba. The beach is a softer white sand. The water is warmer and the snorkeling is better. The food is better as well. I lived on Oahu for 27 months, visited Kauai twice, visited PR and have never been to Jamaica.

Also, agree that 5 days is too short all the way to Hawaii which also is more crowded.

White Plains, New...
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6. Re: Aruba, Puerto Rico, or Hawaii?????

Where in Maui and where in Oahu. Not to far to fly. Of course Aruba is a short flight but Maui is great and so is Oahu. What Timeshares? Consider the offer. Will you ever go to Hawaii again?

Niskayuna, New York
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7. Re: Aruba, Puerto Rico, or Hawaii?????

Teach, the OP is traveling from New York. That is an awfully distant flight for five nights. Heck, I went to Arizona for four a couple of years ago and I don't know that I'd do THAT again. With the time change, bah. I'm voting for the Caribbean, too.

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8. Re: Aruba, Puerto Rico, or Hawaii?????

I would rule out San Juan PR. Have been there and took a cab to the beach about noon with my friend a young attractive girl. The cab driver was worried about our safety and told us he would take us to the Westin hotel beach because they have security there. If I can't venture out to the beach in broad daylight then I don't want to go. That is what I love about Aruba. I have been there by myself and never felt unsafe.

Astoria, New York
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9. Re: Aruba, Puerto Rico, or Hawaii?????

I've been to all except Hawaii and that is just way too far for just a few days. You've been to Jamaica that leaves San Juan and Aruba. I would personally pick San Juan because I wouldn't mind leaving after just 5 days, I would have fun in those 5 days but I won't be crying when I leave. If in Aruba you would have to drag me out while kicking and screaming.

I think you should choose based on what you expect from the trip and want to do while there.

Aruba is a great beach vacation. It is also a desert not lush like PR. There is gambling, awesome restaurants, great sight seeing, shopping is so-so but it's there. A few fun beach bars, lots of happy hours and you will find some nightlife but not a party seeking vacation. It's also more casual than San Juan where people get very dressed at night. Going of the beaten path is not a problem, use common sense. Very little poverty in Aruba but you can end up in some very shady looking areas.

San Juan is an awesome place to party, bars and clubs are plentiful and are open until the wee hours of the morning. There is also gambling, great sight seeing (rainforest is amazing), definitely lush and more "tropical" looking than Aruba's appearance outside resorts. There is excellent shopping and excellent food. No matter what time you get hungry you will find food. Plenty of 24 hour options. Beaches are just so-so, although there are great beaches to be found in PR, just not San Juan but they serve the purpose just fine. Going of the beaten path can get scary looking in the seedy areas. You will find lots of poverty in certain areas and an occasional homeless person sleeping on the sidewalk even by the resorts. They never bothered anyone, just slept there. San Juan is a city by the ocean and has a city feel. Heavy police presence up and down the main road so I felt it to be very safe, again, use common sense.

Good Luck!

Edited: 24 September 2011, 02:50
10. Re: Aruba, Puerto Rico, or Hawaii?????

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