Aruba sounds so exotic, doesn’t it? Did you know you can fly there for less than $500? Less than $300 sometimes, depending on where you’re coming from? Did you know it’s possible to enjoy without going broke?
I love cruising, so the ABC islands (Aruba, Bonaire, and Curaçao) have been on my bucket list. There are plenty of cruises that’ll take you there, but why not fly and spend more than a few hours at a place you’ve been dying to go?
How do you find cheap flights?
First, do a basic google search with your closest airport code. That’s simply how I found my plane tickets. Other great resources are SkyScanner, and signing up for flight deals like FareDrop and NextVacay.
Once on Aruba, other than shelling out to the see the famous flamingos, we spent the rest of the time having a ball with minimal spending. It is possible to enjoy paradise and not spend a ton! We chose to rent a car, but you wouldn’t have to in order to enjoy yourself. A midsize car for a week was abou $300. Jeeps and big rigs are common here, but unless you’re planning some serious off roading, it’s not needed.
Fun fact-I don’t think there’s a single stop light in Aruba. It’s all roundabouts!
There are two different “hot spots” we enjoyed in Aruba that are very walkable and offer a feast for the eyes. Downtown Oranjestad is one, and the other is a few miles up the coast in the Palm Beach area.
Downtown offers the marina, a large mall, endless restaurants and an outdoor market. This is where the cruise ships stop, but it’s not as crowded as you might think. You can easily entertain yourself in this area without spending much.
Palm Beach offers another mall, restaurants, outdoor entertainment, and a cool atmosphere at night. Plus, you have the beach right there!
Heading to the southern end of the island, we found some wild donkeys on our way to Baby Beach. We drove around the neighborhoods and entertained ourselves for a whole afternoon. We found a food truck and got some great, cheap, local treats!
Back up north is the California Lighthouse. We paid $5 each to climb the 100some stairs to the top for great great views-and even greater wind! Again, this was another whole afternoon moseying our way up north and taking in the views. Costs were minimal.
I’ve found in my travels that the getting there is the biggest cost when going somewhere. Wait for a good deal and just get there! Once you’re there, there is plenty to do without having to purchase excursions every day of your vacation. Especially at a beach destination like Aruba, it’s mighty nice to just sit back and relax—which is totally free!