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Jacki
02-17-2015, 09:57 AM
What are your best money saving tips for traveling with the family?

For me, cooking a few nights during our stay saves me enough money to check out the restaurants I want to!

Andrea J.
02-17-2015, 10:29 AM
when our son was young and still our "dependent " ;) , often we'd bring his friend ben or sarah with us when we traveled to aruba and other destinations (we only have one child .)
of course, being not wealthy , we had to follow a strict budget.

we'd fly to aruba sometimes using the charters that tnt or gwv offered.
that always helped with the bottom line.

we'd prepare breakfast and lunch IN our timeshare. (usually easy things like cereal, fruit, sandwiches and salads..stuff that was easy to pack up and bring to the pool or beach.)

we'd limit the bar purchases..boy those can add up. so we'd bring our own beverages.

dinner, we tried not to skimp on aruba dining experiences and sometimes we'd order 6 or 7 appetizers for dinner and share between the 4 of us, or give the kids the option of take out pizza and burgers and then paul and i would go to a restaurant "alone". this was fine when the kids were teens and could be left alone.

activities.......dear son kevin was big into scuba diving,wind surfing and horseback riding. so loads of $ was spent on that. often due to the costs of those activities we would have to sacrifice a few restaurant dinners and that was fine! after all, we do make sacrifices for our kids.

it all worked out, no one suffered.

the not so funny thing.......about 15 yrs ago i made a posting on one of the other forums of this same topic. a nasty reply was given by one of the members and she is still posting to this very day on that site, and other bulletin boards........the reply was and i paraphrase "if you have to count your pennies and scrimp you have no business going to aruba or any place nice." her reply was one of the reasons i love this forum so much. if she dared make a snotty snarky statement like that here, her sorry butt would be deleted.

great topic jacki.

Pegmeister
02-17-2015, 12:33 PM
Some of the best times are when we scrimp and save. What's better than a bite from a food truck. Just don't get people sometimes!

cpjones
02-17-2015, 12:41 PM
Don't travel with a family..... but our favorite money saving tip is...... HAPPY HOUR.....!!! :o:rolleyes:

Traceyd14
02-17-2015, 01:38 PM
We are budget travellers not because we have to but because we choose to be so we can do more throughout the year. Don't get me wrong, we aren't wealthy, but I saw a recent comment on another site similar to the one made to Andrea.
I rely in the Internet for planning. We have a budget per day that I try to stick to so I will look at menus and prices before we go to get an idea of what we will do. If we are having a really nice dinner, we will cut back somewhere else that day. If we spend too much at a bar one day, it comes out of the next day's casino money. Little t u ings like that keep us on track.

brady bear
02-17-2015, 01:50 PM
When we travel and the hotel does not offer free breakfast.. I will get cereal, donuts or what ever for the kids
Bring my own coffee.
For lunch we will buy some cold cuts, chips and snacks ... dinner since I am a petite person I will take part of my husband's dinner
Do like the app. idea.
Cathi

act1966
02-17-2015, 02:05 PM
We really like "low" season... Everything is less crowded and the villa rentals are almost half the price. We barbecue A LOT on nights we aren't going out. I'll bet we spend half the money in low season compared to Jan/Feb.

WaltVB
02-17-2015, 02:36 PM
We bring our own booze and food for snacks by the pool and cheap drinks from the room. Our number one savings was waiting until the kids were adults so they could pay for themselves. Also for every nice dinner at a place like Barefoot, we will have a small meal in the room, usually leftovers from a previous meal.

cpjones
02-17-2015, 02:39 PM
... dinner since I am a petite person I will take part of my husband's dinner .....

Poor guy.... that must keep him petite too!;)

Andrea J.
02-17-2015, 02:49 PM
hahahahaha
Poor guy.... that must keep him petite too!;)

cindyo
02-17-2015, 04:47 PM
We usually eat breakfast in the room; bagels, English muffins and bring our own Dunks lb.

we gets lots of blocks of cheese at the grocery store with asst crackers, pepperoni , grapes and eat those snack type things for lunch beach or poolside.

We we also bring flasks to the beach and order cran juice or mix our drinks in the room and bring down to beach in Tervis cups.

Dinners are Impt to us and we don't go cheap though.

brady bear
02-17-2015, 05:24 PM
Poor guy.... that must keep him petite too!;)

No he is a little "fluffy" hahaha
Believe me he is far from starving... lol

Traceyd14
02-17-2015, 06:27 PM
Bringing a softsided cooler for drinks is a huge saver for us too. Something else we do is drink tap water instead of buying bottled water. The taste is good, and the quality of the water is excellent. Other savings come from bringing sunblock from home that I buy throughout the year when its on sale.

ArubaAce
02-17-2015, 07:20 PM
I usually eat my breakfast & lunch in. I don't mind making omlettes for breakfast, sandwiches for lunch. The first night for dinner is usually Pizza and beer that I get as a take out from Pizza Bob. I order the largest pie so I can have left over for lunch. I buy a bottle of rum and juice which I take to the beach as a mix drink in a water bottle. I mix n match low price restaurants and for the last night I usually splurge at a pricey restaurant. Gotta do it if you want to take more trips. Last trip I saw a lot of familes usuing the resort grills which I think was great. One of the purpose of time share is to save money on food costs. Now a lot of resorts in Cancun make guests exchanging thru inteval or RCI take a mandatory all lnclusive plan at $125 per person per night which is crazy..

ArubaMike
02-17-2015, 10:25 PM
I need to take some of this advice. Our last trip was at the Tamarijn, so AI = no worries. But our next trip we are renting a house. I have a bad habit of setting a budget, making plans, and then bamm I am on on vacation and the budget goes out the window and we go and do whatever, lol. This house will have an outdoor bbq next to the private pool. So I think it is safe to say that we will eat Breakfast in, on most days anyway, then brink items for lunch to the beach. Dinner we will fire up the bbq. They key for me is being able to cook outside while jumping in and out of the pool, this way I am not missing anything.

We want to travel more, so I need to plan and make it work.

AUA1989
02-18-2015, 09:09 AM
I'm not sure where Ace, but I recently read a conversation about the changing requirement to purchase AI at the Occidental. I didn't understand some of the conversation, but I seem to remember that Occidental may be changing their "rules" and any sales will now come with a clause that the owner must purchase AI for the week they are there. Wish I could remember where I saw this.

Also, back to the money saving tips. Our tip this year is no KIDS. They have been giving us grief about it, but at 20 and 18 they can just suck it up (can I say that?) (and hey, the 20 year old daughter went to Florida over winter break, and 18 year old son will be in Florida when we go to Aruba; they're not deprived). Their Aruba funds are going to colleges:rolleyes:. I will miss them while we are there, but we will cut our food bill in 1/2; however, DH will probably use that money at the casinos, so I guess I won't be saving anything.

(ok; that convo was here, duh)

Jacki
02-18-2015, 09:14 AM
Bringing a softsided cooler for drinks is a huge saver for us too. Something else we do is drink tap water instead of buying bottled water. The taste is good, and the quality of the water is excellent. Other savings come from bringing sunblock from home that I buy throughout the year when its on sale.

The tap water in Aruba is amazing. We usually buy liter bottles of AWA and refill them during our stay. I bring a bunch of single serving powdered drink mixes for the kids and some that go very nicely with some adult additives :)

burghboy
02-18-2015, 11:04 PM
As a house renter our biggest opportunity for savings is on the rental itself. The first trip we rented a way too large Oceania Penthouse because it looked incredible. Hardly spent anytime there although the rooftop jacuzzi was great for late night. Now we rent as much house as we need and have developed a great relationship with the owner who cuts us a pretty nice discount for being loyal renters who take great care of the place. She doesn't even ask for a security deposit anymore.

Sue M.
02-19-2015, 11:50 AM
If over the years we didn't have to scrimp and save our pennies, we would never be able to go anywhere. Also, We do make sacrifices for our kids, that's life, at least we did. Half of the fun is seeing how we can save to afford our trips. I love this forum. All of the members are so very nice.

Sue M.
02-19-2015, 11:52 AM
When is the "low season" I am not sure. Thanks for the advice.

Jacki
02-19-2015, 12:04 PM
When is the "low season" I am not sure. Thanks for the advice.


Mid April to mid December is considered low season.

Lianac
02-19-2015, 12:27 PM
We always buy breakfast foods, plenty of snacks and lots of water and other beverages to keep in our timeshare. Dinner is always out but we don't see a need to eat out morning noon and night. Leftovers from some of the best restaurants we have ever eaten at for lunch are always good as well.

Just waiting until April 15th to board that plane for 3 wonderful weeks in Aruba!!

Jacki
02-19-2015, 01:32 PM
We always buy breakfast foods, plenty of snacks and lots of water and other beverages to keep in our timeshare. Dinner is always out but we don't see a need to eat out morning noon and night. Leftovers from some of the best restaurants we have ever eaten at for lunch are always good as well.

Just waiting until April 15th to board that plane for 3 wonderful weeks in Aruba!!

Hi Lianac!! Welcome to the posting side of the forum :)

brady bear
02-19-2015, 08:07 PM
Got this coupon card coming in the mail... good till the end of December
If anyone wants it when I am forced to leave Aruba against my will... can have it.
Would like to share the wealth. Lots of discounts on many places.
Cathi

Sue M.
02-21-2015, 01:51 PM
Thank you. It is good to know for us new people.

Millszey
02-21-2015, 06:43 PM
The wife and I just got back from Aruba on Monday the 16th. We saved a ton of money by shopping at Ling and Sons (IGA grocery store) The prices were fair and the selection of products was good. If you are looking for fresh seafood head to Zeerover were you can buy shrimp by the kilo. While you are there have a drink right on the water...great location and wonderful people.

schexc
02-21-2015, 06:51 PM
We're a little flexible with our travel dates in the late winter and early fall, so the first thing we do is watch the airfare. If we can find a round trip for $435pp or less we take it. We also use our rewards credit card, Capitol 1, for travel credit and can usually accrue enough points for at least one free ticket.
The first two times we went to the island we stayed on Palm Beach, but now we rent a condo in the Noord area. We've found that we save a ton, which allows us to rent a car while we're there and really enjoy the island. Even with car rental we're way ahead of the game.
We stock up on food and beverage, usually from Super Foods, so that we can provide for ourselves in the morning and early afternoon, while we hang around the pool. We also carry a soft pack cooler to bring with us, just in case we get thirsty...Later in the day we'll head to a local restaurant for a light snack and beverage. After that we'll make our way to the beach, usually close to a location that is offering a happy hour. We'll usually stay in that location and watch the sunset.
Once a week we'll go to a restaurant in the tourist area for dinner. Sometimes it's a repeat but we usually try at least one new place. Other nights we'll look for a local place, away from the tourist area, for a late night snack and beverage.
We've also gotten to the point where we'll avoid and checked baggage fees, as we travel only with a carry on.
We get to the island often enough to have realized that it can't all be done in one trip. This makes for a much need relaxing and money saving vacation.

Andrea J.
02-21-2015, 07:10 PM
welcome to the aruba .com community forum

:)


The wife and I just got back from Aruba on Monday the 16th. We saved a ton of money by shopping at Ling and Sons (IGA grocery store) The prices were fair and the selection of products was good. If you are looking for fresh seafood head to Zeerover were you can buy shrimp by the kilo. While you are there have a drink right on the water...great location and wonderful people.

littlejen22
03-05-2015, 03:06 PM
My husband has Platinum status so we don't have baggage fees so we bring everything we need including floats, pool noodles and dollar store sand buckets for the kids and then the kids enjoy finding people to give them to on our last day, everything we bring is from the dollar store so we probably save $50 or more.

brady bear
03-05-2015, 06:03 PM
Thanks for reminding me... flying southwest and each can have two suitcases and one carry one.
Think I will bring my little travel coffee pot... (need my coffee before I can do a "thing" lol)
My own floats, air pump, those little mios to put in water and make awesome drinks.. and of course snacks.
Need my bedtime snack. lol
Do have some of my things ready to go.. tickets, passports, hotel reservation .
Usually we stay the night before through www.buyreservations.com stay the night, they take us to the airport, leave our car for up to 14 days.. nice breakfast too. This time since we are leaving when I get out of work early 6am will just pay the difference and go straight to the airport.
Won't have to worry about shuttles and etc.

brady bear
03-18-2015, 03:12 PM
Another few Questions ?
In Aruba do they have are normal voltage for the hotel?
Found a very cheap 12 cup coffee pot ($8.00) just so I can have my morning fix before I head out.
Will bring my own DD coffee, equal and creamora.
Was wondering if this is allowed?

Should I bring my own beach towels or do you think the Ren. will have them. Don't want those "little towels."

We never flew to an island always done cruises...
Will we go through customs at MCO before Orlando and then again in Aruba.... vs when flying back home

I know it is a lot of questions.. but being OCD (my son calls it CDO cause everything has to be in order)

Will we need any real dressy clothes or can we dress nice casual ?

Any tips would be so greatly appreciated.

Thanks...

cpjones
03-18-2015, 03:43 PM
OK..... regular 110v for hotels.... most hotels provide in room coffee pots the towel hut will have beach towels for your use. Immigration entering the island and then customs when you leave. BB... regarding clothes casual is good for most every place. I have never worn long pants in Aruba. Pack half of what you think you'll need and it will still be too much to bring...!

Andrea J.
03-18-2015, 06:58 PM
i answered in bold
Another few Questions ?
In Aruba do they have are normal voltage for the hotel? SAME AS USA
Found a very cheap 12 cup coffee pot ($8.00) just so I can have my morning fix before I head out. Renaissance has 1 cup Pod type (not keurig compatible)
Will bring my own DD coffee, equal and creamora.
Was wondering if this is allowed? Yup allowed

Should I bring my own beach towels or do you think the Ren. will have them. Don't want those "little towels.Ren provides beach and pool towels

We never flew to an island always done cruises...
Will we go through customs at MCO before Orlando and then again in Aruba.... vs when flying back home.

You will pass thru Aruba Immigration and Aruba Customs in Aruba. When you depart Aruba, you will pass thru Aruba Immigration and then USA Customs in Aruba :) Once you get back to Orlando you will not have to go thru customs again

I know it is a lot of questions.. but being OCD (my son calls it CDO cause everything has to be in order)

Will we need any real dressy clothes or can we dress nice casual ?Casual. nice shorts and tops are perfect for dinner or sun dress. men= shorts and a collared short sleeve golf type shirt.
Any tips would be so greatly appreciated.

Thanks...

cindyo
03-19-2015, 06:29 AM
We used to bring dunks, sweet and low and creamora for Renn visit. Honestly the little Mariott coffee pod thingy is actually very good. We do bring the fixings to Surf for their reg ole coffee maker.
ALSO to note dunks is steps outside the door in the Renn marketplace, Starbucks too! Get you donuts, muffins, sippy cups there .
They refill those things for a nominal fee. And I mean steps away!!
just good info to have.

brady bear
03-19-2015, 09:38 AM
Thanks for the quick response,
all great info
Will pack very light. Leave room in my suitcase for extra stuff to take home.

AUA1989
03-19-2015, 02:14 PM
Listen to CP!!! Don't over pack. I'm trying, really I'm trying. I've been packing for a month now. I started with large piles of everything I thought I needed to take. Every so often I take a couple things out. Last night I took out another 4 shirts.

I've always worn a skort, longer shorts or a pair of thinner black wide legged lounge pants to dinner with a simple top. I have about 5 dressier tank tops and a bolero type sweater. DH wears shorts and a nice shirt to dinner; never a tie. You really only wear your dinner clothes for a short period of time each evening that you can wear them again.

Most resorts/hotels have full size beach towels. The nice thing about using their towels is that you can exchange them when yours becomes too wet. It's nice not to have to drag towels back and forth.

Here is my beach fave beach tip; put a small bottle of baby powder in your beach bag. It is the best thing for getting sand off your feet. Just sprinkle it on and wipe it off. The powder dries the sand instantly.

amumma
03-19-2015, 03:10 PM
As far as saving money in Aruba (or any vacation for that matter) is concerned, my wife and I always try to find a grocery store. Luckily when we were in Aruba, we found Super Food right down the road from the Amsterdam Manor and grabbed just a loaf of bread and some nutella for breakfast. Kind of a strange breakfast, I know, but the price was right and it covered us for about 7 of our 10 days down there. For drinks, we made sure to go to Stefan's Happy Hour at the Amsterdam Manor (aside: I hear Stefan has been replaced by a bartender named Peter who everyone seems to love. Can anyone confirm? And does anyone know what happened to Stefan?) and we also brought our own booze so if we wanted something like a Pina Colada or something, we could order it boozeless, save a couple bucks, and booze it up ourselves.

We also tried to keep lunches cheap, opting for something quick at Passions Beach Bar or The Islander Grill over at La Cabana. Good for the price and left us a little extra coin to spend on dinner.

Oh, and make sure you bring enough sunscreen. The cost of sunscreen down there is a tough pill to swallow.

Traceyd14
03-19-2015, 04:46 PM
I'm with you on the sunscreen. I watch the prices year round and order online when I see a good deal. We use a ton of sunscreen at home and on vacation. For anyone who has flex-spending for medical expenses through work (FSA), any sunscreen over 35 spf qualifies as an eligible expense so you can spend your tax free FSA money to get reimbursed when you buy it. We always buy 35 and 50.

We try to save on breakfast since we don't really like much breakfast type food. Last trip we bought some of the worst bagels I have ever tasted from Superfoods. Next time I think we may just do cheese and fruit. Also if you have room in your suitcase, pringles are travel friendly chips because of their containers. We haven't brought them from home yet, but I think we will next time.

jaysonmoore892
11-22-2015, 01:52 PM
You're definitely right! I also do the same thing the whole time I took a vacation with my whole family. Cooking on your own instead of going out every meal (breakfast/lunch/snack/dinner) is undoubtedly helpful when you're on budget, seeing the bunch of the members to pay for.

Andrea J.
11-22-2015, 02:00 PM
hello jason and welcome to the aruba.com community forum
You're definitely right! I also do the same thing the whole time I took a vacation with my whole family. Cooking on your own instead of going out every meal (breakfast/lunch/snack/dinner) is undoubtedly helpful when you're on budget, seeing the bunch of the members to pay for.

Darlingqueen
06-09-2016, 09:19 AM
Andrea, I just came back from our first trip to Aruba last week (we are Canadians and are HOOKED LOL) My hubby even wants to retire there LOL.... I find comments that people make that are rude just reflects on them and would be outraged if someone said that to me.... I am not rich but chose to be "picky" on how I spend my money and I can honestly say that I am so glad I brought in my suitcase lots of snacks and coffee and even my gluten free bread down to Aruba LOL... I am so glad I found this board because prior to me leaving is where I got all my good advice from.... One of the ONLY things I had a pet peeve in Aruba was there are NO PUBLIC WASHROOMS on the beaches.... (I had to take a dump one day and drove all the way to a McDonalds cause I wasn't going to make it back to the villa LOL)..... Next year is already booked and I will be bringing HALF the clothes and MORE gifts for the couple we rented the house from as they were as sweet as pie and LOVED us ! I even brought my homemade Portuguese hot sauce and bought fresh shrimps from ZeeRover (sp?) and did a cook out with them on our last night! Favorite beach- Malmok -hands down (went four times LOL)

Jacki
06-09-2016, 09:24 AM
Andrea, I just came back from our first trip to Aruba last week (we are Canadians and are HOOKED LOL) My hubby even wants to retire there LOL.... I find comments that people make that are rude just reflects on them and would be outraged if someone said that to me.... I am not rich but chose to be "picky" on how I spend my money and I can honestly say that I am so glad I brought in my suitcase lots of snacks and coffee and even my gluten free bread down to Aruba LOL... I am so glad I found this board because prior to me leaving is where I got all my good advice from.... One of the ONLY things I had a pet peeve in Aruba was there are NO PUBLIC WASHROOMS on the beaches.... (I had to take a dump one day and drove all the way to a McDonalds cause I wasn't going to make it back to the villa LOL)..... Next year is already booked and I will be bringing HALF the clothes and MORE gifts for the couple we rented the house from as they were as sweet as pie and LOVED us ! I even brought my homemade Portuguese hot sauce and bought fresh shrimps from ZeeRover (sp?) and did a cook out with them on our last night! Favorite beach- Malmok -hands down (went four times LOL)


Sounds like a great time - of course you are hooked! lol

Would you consider writing a little more about your trip in the "My Aruba Story" section? I would love to read about Aruba thru the eyes of a new visitor!

Andrea J.
06-09-2016, 09:30 AM
Welcome to the posting side of the Aruba.com community forum!

Aruba is, in the process of public bathrooms on the beaches.
There is one at Arashi......(not yet open), one at Eagle.........(not yet open) one at Surfside..........unsure if open.
I think there are others.

vallond
06-29-2016, 08:13 AM
Depending on where you go out to for dinner on evenings, some places tend to be very generous with the portions which would make it too much to eat in one sitting. Leftovers can be used for breakfast and maybe lunch for the following day. Sunday Barbecue from New Wi-Tai restaurant was enough for dinner Sunday evening, in addition to breakfast and lunch on Monday.

schexc
06-29-2016, 03:19 PM
Where is this located?


Depending on where you go out to for dinner on evenings, some places tend to be very generous with the portions which would make it too much to eat in one sitting. Leftovers can be used for breakfast and maybe lunch for the following day. Sunday Barbecue from New Wi-Tai restaurant was enough for dinner Sunday evening, in addition to breakfast and lunch on Monday.

CK1
06-29-2016, 06:09 PM
Where is this located?

Rte 3, corner to Washington :)

https://www.google.com/maps/place/New+Wei+Tai+Restaurant/@12.5648442,-70.0365875,15z/data=!4m5!3m4!1s0x0:0x57270e591bec3cf1!8m2!3d12.56 48442!4d-70.0365875

schexc
06-29-2016, 08:25 PM
That's where I thought it was. Been by there a zillion times, but couldn't place the name to the location. Thanks!


Rte 3, corner to Washington :)

https://www.google.com/maps/place/New+Wei+Tai+Restaurant/@12.5648442,-70.0365875,15z/data=!4m5!3m4!1s0x0:0x57270e591bec3cf1!8m2!3d12.56 48442!4d-70.0365875

CK1
06-29-2016, 09:25 PM
That's where I thought it was. Been by there a zillion times, but couldn't place the name to,the location. Thanks!

My pleasure. :)

Please let us know how your liked it there whenever you have a chance to visit there.

vallond
06-30-2016, 07:39 AM
New Wi-Tai is located on the corner after the Valero Gas Station and just before the Bank( CMB I think)... They start their barbecue around 11am, trust me it is really good. There used to be another place known as Uncle Kenny's Barbecue. Not too certain if he is still in business or not.

Rini James
02-16-2017, 04:18 AM
I usually carry snacks like dry fruits, wafers, and other things. I avoid shopping at the expensive places. :D

leopardnaturecamp
03-09-2018, 08:27 AM
Don't travel with a family

Andrea J.
03-09-2018, 08:30 AM
wow, all the way from faridibad india!
welcome.

Don't travel with a family

Jacki
03-09-2018, 08:44 AM
Don't travel with a family

Hahahah - I guess that's one way ;)

cpjones
03-09-2018, 11:09 AM
Don't travel with a family

Welcome...... yeah, it would save some money.... but wouldn't have the same meaning!

WaltVB
03-09-2018, 11:28 AM
Namaste! Welcome to the forum!

coldsteel337
03-09-2018, 05:28 PM
We have a nice kitchen and dining area and will have breakfast most mornings in "our place". Unlimited food, better service & we save a bunch of money. Most lunches and dinners are out in restaurants although we will occasionally pick up food and bring it home to eat . We ( me mostly ) save a lot by drinking in Dutch ExPat bars and other places that cater to locals. I am a fan of Furmins and 080.