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Old 08-14-2012, 02:33 AM
 
Location: Chicago, IL
51 posts, read 219,997 times
Reputation: 48

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Hi,
I would like to visit some island in the Carribean with my girlfriend. My concern is safety and prices. I know that there are some places in the Carribean that can be dangerous for white people. Which islands wouldn't you recommend? Of course I doubt it would be not safe to be in a resort, but I'm thinking of going to a city or renting a car and driving around.

Also, which islands are cheaper and which ones are more expensive?

Anybody know if there is a chance to get to any island directly from Chicago on only one plane?
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Old 08-14-2012, 09:58 AM
 
Location: N26.03 W80.11
326 posts, read 828,155 times
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The islands that are cheaper for you will probably be the US Virgin Islands or Puerto Rico. You also will not need a passport for these islands since they are U.S. You can rent a car in the USVI, but you will be driving on the left hand side of the road, but the cars are the same as in the states. Puerto Rico drives on the right side, but driving in Puerto Rico can be scary and most of the signage is in Spanish. Not that big of a deal, but it can be a bit disorienting.
You most likely can get non-stop flights to St Thomas or even St Croix from Chicago. Try Spirit or United. St John would require a flight to St Thomas and then a short ferry ride over. There are probably many flights to various cities in Puerto Rico from Chicago.

If you have your passports you could probably fly to Cancun in Mexico from Chicago non-stop. While Cancun isn't an island, it's an easy trip down to Cozumel or over to Isla Mujeres if you must be on an island. This is probably the most economical of trips.

While technically not the Caribbean, you could go to the Bahamas from Chicago. Generally in the sense of tourism the Bahamas are lumped in with the Caribbean. Driving there is also on the left so if you aren't comfortable with that you probably won't want to rent a car.

Another non-Caribbean option, but Caribbean-y in feel would be to fly non-stop into Miami or Ft Lauderdale and rent a car, which are pretty cheap to rent imo, and drive down into the Keys. Nice water, a few good beaches, lovely drive and prices really aren't that high until you reach Key West or some of the really high end resorts along the way. Even in Key West there are deals to be had if you look. Also, you won't have to deal with the passport issue if you don't have them.
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Old 08-14-2012, 11:37 AM
 
Location: Chicago, IL
51 posts, read 219,997 times
Reputation: 48
Thank you. I am somehow not interested in Puerto Rico but USVI sounds cool. It's a good thing that passport is not needed there. I will check for direct flights. Do you have any clue if USVI are more expensive than states-islands, like Dominica, Dominicana, Grenada etc? Are prices comparable to those on mainland US? I mean, hotel, car rent, food at restaurants etc...
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Old 08-14-2012, 04:51 PM
 
1,446 posts, read 4,054,650 times
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If you are concerned about "danger to white people" than the USVI is NOT the place for you. I have gone, and would go again to St. Thomas; but I am more of a veteran to traveling in the developing world where such incidents have taken place. Most people are very friendly in the USVI and will not touch you but...St. Thomas and St. Croix, the two largest of the USVI, have very high homicide rates. You can read more about it on recent articles that should also be found on the web. So search for yourself if you do not believe. I am not trying to scare you away, because most tourist areas will be reasonably safe to visit. It is just the sound of you opening statements suggest that this is your first time to the region and you are very concerned about safety. St. John, the other important large island is much safer than the other two, but it is not "Mayberry USA." If you are really concerned about finding someplace safe, I suggest St. Barts (very wealthy area with minimal crime). Also, may I suggest Bermuda (I know it is not technically the Caribbean) and the Cayman Islands. These are also more developed territories with much lower violent crime rates than other islands.
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Old 08-14-2012, 05:50 PM
 
Location: Chicago, IL
51 posts, read 219,997 times
Reputation: 48
Many thanks. You know, it's not that I'm extremely scared about crime and I wouldn't care if I was going alone. But I'm going with my gf and I don't want to risk that somebody may hurt her if you go to a wrong place. We were supposed to go to Guadeloupe but after watching a documentary about gangs raging there we changed our mind.

Thank you, I will do some research about these three islands. St Barts looks fine, 90% white. But must be more expensive I'm.guessing...
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Old 08-14-2012, 09:07 PM
 
367 posts, read 760,979 times
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San Andres and Providence islands in Colombia are nice getaways, if you want the small island experience.
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Old 08-16-2012, 04:44 PM
 
Location: Tampa, Florida
74 posts, read 103,295 times
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I've been to about seven different nations. I think I like Guadeloupe the best. It's so beautiful.
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Old 08-22-2012, 04:04 PM
 
20 posts, read 13,556 times
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bahamas is very nice.
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Old 08-26-2012, 12:15 PM
 
Location: chicago area
4 posts, read 51,823 times
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Default carribean

There is always of danger with two women traveling together, but I would not be overly worried about USVI. We (married couple) went to St. Croix and stayed near the Christainsted area and had no problems. Rented a place from the VRBO website and rented a car and had a great time. Of course, you have to exercise the normal cautionary protocols when out and about, but there should be no problem. We also went to St. Lucia (twice) and loved it. It is more the all inclusive resort type with plenty of excursions. A little more expensive, but lots to do. Sandels was our choice. They have three resorts with shuttles going between the three. Great time.
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Old 09-13-2012, 07:11 PM
 
641 posts, read 824,325 times
Reputation: 512
I've always liked Barbados best.

Nice vibe, beaches, and locals are friendly
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