Tropical Getaways

There is a fallacy that traveling to the tropics in the middle of summer can put a real strain on your wallet. However, if you plan carefully there are a number of ways you can stretch your vacation dollar while having fun in the sun.

For example, destination is everything. Places, such as Puerto Rico offer deep discounts to travelers looking to explore the diverse island during the summer months. While temperatures may be uncomfortably hot during the day, there are many places to cool off in Puerto Rico. The island boasts 272 miles of coastline which makes tanning, swimming and scuba diving ideal activities for visitors of all ages.

In addition, Puerto Rico is rich in cultural diversity. Historic Old San Juan is home to Spanish Colonial architecture, incredible cuisine, and amazing shopping. The coastal area features a mix of charming buildings, ornate decor and vibrant eateries. While there don’t miss the historic Catedral de San Juan, which is known around the world for its awe-inspiring stained glass windows. The cathedral is also the final resting place of Ponce de Leon.

St. Thomas is another popular summer getaway. Considered the most developed of the United States Virgin Islands, St. Thomas is a mere two-hour flight from Miami. Discount airfares abound during the summer months, so if your ideal vacation includes exploring lush tropical gardens, strolling on gorgeous beaches and stretching your dollar at duty-free shops, then St. Thomas is calling.

Another bonus of traveling to St. Thomas during the summer months is that you can get all of your holiday shopping done before Labor Day. Prices on items, from jewelry to linens, china, perfume, and liquor are significantly slashed. US customs laws allow residents to bring back $1,200 in goods, duty-free. Not a bad way to end your trip to the tropics.

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Michele Cheplic

About Michele Cheplic

Michele Cheplic was born and raised in Hilo, Hawaii, but now lives in Wisconsin. Michele graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a degree in Journalism. She spent the next ten years as a television anchor and reporter at various stations throughout the country (from the CBS affiliate in Honolulu to the NBC affiliate in Green Bay). She has won numerous honors including an Emmy Award and multiple Edward R. Murrow awards honoring outstanding achievements in broadcast journalism. In addition, she has received awards from the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association for her reports on air travel and the Wisconsin Education Association Council for her stories on education. Michele has since left television to concentrate on being a mom and freelance writer.