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St Maarten on a budget?

New York
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St Maarten on a budget?

Hello all,

Last winter my fiance and I spent a week in West End, Roatan, Honduras. We absolutely loved the laid back atmosphere with its sand streets, youthful atmosphere and affordable restaurants. We would love to return, but now that Honduras is in the midst of a military coup we think we should find somewhere else to vacation this winter.

I am a resident and she is in nurse anesthesia school, so we are forced to travel on a budget.

Can St. Maarten be affordable?

We can fly there for free with frequent flier miles, but online I am mostly finding $$$$$/night hotels and resorts and articles about nightclubs and casinos. I don't associate casinos full of Europeans with budget travel.

Any suggestions on hotels, restaurants, bars, etc will be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,

Roman

Staten Island, New...
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1. Re: St Maarten on a budget?

You can save $ $ $ with last minute travel using the RCI official timeshare website, no membership required, no presentations, limited availability for travel within one month - prices as low as $329.00 for a week, yes, for a full week...click on "last minute vacations"

http://www.wyndham-vacations.com/resorts.html

Longer time frames cost more.

many budget restaurants as well:

Lolos in Grand Case and elsewhere.

Pizza Pasta in Maho

Le Piment in Orient Village

are just two of many...

http://www.sxm-restaurants.com/

OIB, NC
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2. Re: St Maarten on a budget?

Stay in a timeshare with kitchen.

Hit the grocery stores on the french side for gourmet goodies like raw milk cheeses, inexpensive wine for dining on your balcony.

Get to the bakery for delicious croissants, fresh baguette, pastries, for breakfasts on the balcony.

There are plenty of local food restaurants that have great food and won't break the bank.

Yes, it can be done.

New York
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3. Re: St Maarten on a budget?

Thanks for the suggestion.

Any specific websites you recommend to find a retnal?

New Jersey
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4. Re: St Maarten on a budget?

Check out Bobcats website. Great deals on timeshares.

New York
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5. Re: St Maarten on a budget?

Seems my week of vacation doesn't line up with their availability (1/9-1/17/10), but I've sent them an email and am waiting for a response.

Thank you for the timeshare recommendation.

New Jersey
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6. Re: St Maarten on a budget?

Remember, you are planning to go in "high season". Expect hotels to be much more expensive. If you could travel before 12/15/09, you will find much better deals. Especially now, many hotels are offering substantial savings. Good luck!

Cupecoy Bay, St...
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7. Re: St Maarten on a budget?

Check here for some bargains also.

http://sintmaartenrentalweeks.com/

Also check out www.tshellinn.com and www.lesbalcons.com

We did the island on a budget for years. It's easy to do if you have a small kitchen, or at least a fridge. Hit the grocery stores for some fine cheeses, deli meats and breakfast stuff. Fruits, yogurt, whatever you like. Enjoy breakfast on your balcony and pack a lunch with a delicious baguette from any of the fine french bakeries all over the island. Booze is cheap here, so bring your favorite beverage along for a day at the beach.

Dining can easily be done on a budget. Hit the happy hours and perhaps get half price appetizers. Some of our faves for dinner for about $10 - $15

Buccaneer Beach Bar

Lady C

Gutside

Yvettes

You'll get tons of other suggestions.

North Carolina
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8. Re: St Maarten on a budget?

One thing we do is to go out for lunch, or a great dessert instead of dinner. You can still enjoy a great meal at some of the best places, but lunch does cost less.

Get a place with a kitchen so you can cook some meals, and make a great beach lunch of cheese great French bread and fruit...healthy, light and good snacking all day!

Plenty of great, and reasonable places to eat.

Have been to SXM many trips on a budget, and always had a great time! Enjpy the trip.

Staten Island, New...
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9. Re: St Maarten on a budget?

biostudent

I have found over the years that saving money requires a give and take. One must be flexible as to travel dates, destinations & accommodations. A small adjustment in these areas could save you $ $ $ .

St Martin / St...
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10. Re: St Maarten on a budget?

What I can tell you is that if you are flying for free, are not into casinos nor high end restaurants and drinking expensive concoctions, you can eat for at most as little as $18 for two every night and not miss a beat. There are a plethera of low cost places to eat, especially pizza, rib and hamburger places all around the island. Plus, if you are that much into budgeting, you can easily shop at the local large grocery store and prepare your meals instead, especially if you rent a timeshare that has a kitchen.

In other words, if you want to go to the island to vegg out and relax, take in the colors and enjoy the weather, then you can certainly go there on a budget. And finding a place to stay can get tricky but it's all about doing your homework. Depending on your travel time, you can get very good prices in any one of the many timeshares on the Dutch side. And if you cannot afford to rent a car, renting a place near a decent beach and close to the local bus system can save you even more so that you don't sacrifice seeing the entire island. The local bus system is very limited as to where they can drop you off (they only drive along the main roads) but at least it's a start.