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Some thoughts on our recent Aruba trip...

Washington DC
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Some thoughts on our recent Aruba trip...

Wife and I enjoyed a recent trip to Aruba, our very first. Here are some thoughts that may help future travelers:

1. We enjoyed the high rise hotel area in Palm Beach, which is where we stayed. Plenty of great restaurants and stores all within walking distance. An all-inclusive package may be unnecessary if staying in this area. It gets festive during the night, but not rowdy. Very safe with lots of tourists walking around.

2. The heat is not as suffocating as we experienced in Mexico. There is always a nice breeze.

3. Do rent a car even if you don't plan to see much of the island. It may be more cost effective and convenient than taking a taxi everywhere. Traffic is negligible.

4. There is a certain Latin feel and vibe to Aruba. This maybe due to the many travelers as well as workers from South America.

5. Avoid the fast food chain restaurants. I believe a Big Mac combo is around $10.

6. Arrive at the airport 3 hours prior to departure. It takes a while due to numerous security checks and having to go through US customs/immigration. Oh and after checking-in your luggage at the airline counter, you'll have to grab them once again for US Customs.

New York
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1. Re: Some thoughts on our recent Aruba trip...

We almost left our luggage in Aruba and only found out by accident that we had to pick them up on the conveyer belt before going through US customs. I especially felt the Latin vibe when we went to El Gauchos to eat. That is one thing I really like about Aruba is that you feel safe traveling about.

Lynn, Massachusetts
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2. Re: Some thoughts on our recent Aruba trip...

The good thing about US customs there is you just grab your bags and go home once back in the states....glad you enjoyed yourself...

Minneapolis...
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for Aruba, Palm - Eagle Beach
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3. Re: Some thoughts on our recent Aruba trip...

I was trying to think of the last time I had fast food in Aruba and I think it was a downtown Wendy's in 1996. I've often wondered what the prices were like now and if they were close to U.S. prices or not.

Thanks for the great info and welcome back!

Edited: 24 August 2013, 23:18
New Jersey
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for Aruba
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4. Re: Some thoughts on our recent Aruba trip...

Interesting that you felt a Latin vibe. Although i know a fare amount of workers are from Colombia i find the Island to have much more of a Dutch/American feel. Especially the American in the last 3 years. I guess it depends on where you hangout.

Vancouver BC
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5. Re: Some thoughts on our recent Aruba trip...

All the food items at McDonald's are listed in Aruban Florins. If I recall a McChicken Combo was around 10 Aruban Florins which is less than $10. US. I found that Wendy's, Burger King, Quiznos / Sbarros and other restaurants priced there food items in Aruban Florins as well.

Minneapolis...
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for Aruba, Palm - Eagle Beach
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6. Re: Some thoughts on our recent Aruba trip...

If it's 10 Florins then it would be approx. $5.50 in USD.

Forest Hill...
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7. Re: Some thoughts on our recent Aruba trip...

Enjoyed your TR. Thanks for the tips and glad that you had a good time

Amelia Island...
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8. Re: Some thoughts on our recent Aruba trip...

I avoid fast food places at home, so would never consider them in Aruba. So many great restaurants in Aruba, we never get to all that we want to try!

We do like clearing U.S. customs when departing...so much better than in Miami.

Olympia
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9. Re: Some thoughts on our recent Aruba trip...

We went to McDonalds on our first trip, for the sole purpose to get a Royale with Cheese box for a friend (Pulp Fiction reference). Sadly, we learned they offer the American Quarter Pounder instead. As expected, the food was just as boring as in the U.S. (which works well for some people).

Boston, MA
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10. Re: Some thoughts on our recent Aruba trip...

Don't think we have ever been to Aruba and NOT had a McDonald's Egg McMuffin at least one morning as it is the BEST hangover cure I know . . .