Santo Domingo


Lifestyles Resort Puerto Plata

Lifestyles Resort Puerto Plata

UK to Dominican Republic Travel Tips

The Dominican Republic is one of the most important Caribbean islands and one of the preferred holiday destinations for many UK holidaymakers. According to the Dominican authorities, more than 200,000 British tourists visit this Caribbean nation each year, and it is not difficult to understand why.

Although relatively small in size, this island offers a variety of attractions that go beyond its beaches and nightlife. The Dominican Republic is home to no less than 14 national parks and to numerous historical towns and villages that will delight the visitor with their rich heritage. The island’s capital, Santo Domingo, is a designated UNESCO site thanks to its well preserved examples of colonial architecture. There are 26 golf courses located in some of the island’s most stunning locations, and as a result, the Dominican Republic is a premier destination for golf enthusiasts from all over the world.

And of course, there is the beach life. The coastal towns of Puerto Plata, Punta Cana, and La Romana are home to miles of beaches of breathtaking beauty, which are often the backdrop for weddings, honeymoons, and other special occasions. The popular resorts of the coast also make for a great base from which it is possible to explore other destinations, like the coffee growing mountains of the interior and other less well-known fishing villages on the island’s eastern coast.

However, being 9 hours away from the United Kingdom, the Dominican Republic still remains a long haul destination, and as such, booking a holiday to this Caribbean island can be an expense that turns out heavy on the pocket. If you are planning the holiday of a lifetime in the Dominican Republic and want to know how to go about finding the best deals to the island, this article will tell you everything there is to know about it.

Tips for finding the best deals from the UK to the Dominican Republic

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Hurricane Sandy map 10-25-2012

Hurricane Sandy map 10-25-2012

While those of us living in the middle and upper portions of the Dominican Republic have had constant rain and power outages (more than normal), there is far more damage due to Hurricane Sandy in the South and South west portions of the island.

By midday today (10/25/12) 625,000 people have been evacuated and 62 towns cut off due to overflowing rivers like the Yaque Del Sur and downed bridges. 11 provinces are on high alert with 48 communities in Azua cut off from the Yaque del Sur overflowing.

Higuero International Airport (aili) cancels flights

While the Las Americas International Airport (aila) is still operating normal, the Higuero International Airport north of Santo Domingo has had to cancel several flights due to the downpours.

Hurricane Sandy Causes Power outages

While this one has been a little tougher to prove, apparently the entire countries power system went down early this morning. While I frequently have power at this time (my time of writing this article), we lose power so often it is hard to tell for sure if it is just our time to have our power turned off or if the outage is due to the storm.

Either way, if you are running on inversor, it would be a good idea to (more…)

If your travel plans this week include checking out the Capital, Santo Domingo you should note that there is a protest, often called a huelga meaning strike, planned for Friday, Oct 12, 2012. Even if the protest remains peaceful that will mean heavy traffic jambs in the area with people blocking the streets and quite often burning tires and other objects in the street.

This protest is planned and there will probably be a heavy police presence so much of the damage and fires will likely be avoided, the congestion will not. You should try to arrange your travel plans so that you are no where near these two areas at any time on Friday the 12. It is not safe for foreigners to be caught in the local huelgas and protests.

There are two areas that will be directly affected by this protest:

  • In Front of the Congress Building, with the official start of the protest beginning at 9am Friday the 12th
  • At Parque Independencia, with the official start of the protest beginning at 5pm, Friday the 12th.

Past Protests and Huelgas

Huelgas and Protests are very common in the Dominican Republic. (more…)

If you live in the Santo Domingo area you are probably aware of the Agora Mall recently opening up. Along with giving you a new place to shop there is also a possibility of being able to get a job among the about 2000 jobs that will be offered by the 180 shops (when and if they are all opened). Before you get your hopes up too high though, if you are a foreigner Agora Mall Jobs might be a little hard to get.

Jobs For Foreigners

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Sambil Mall in Santo Domingo will finally be opening up. After years of delays the new mall is scheduled to be inaugurated on October 30th, 2012. This new mall will not only be bringing in quite a few foreign stores of interest to both ex-pats living here but also to locals looking to be able have a wider selection of American and other foreign products to choose from. Sambil Mall is also expected to in time bring over 10,000 new jobs to the Santo Domingo area.

Sambil Job Openings

Of the over 10,000 new jobs about 4,000 are expected to be directly related to the mall while 6,000 are expected as indirect mall related jobs. The new Sambil Mall Job Openings will be in a large variety of different skills. Along with the usual food, (more…)

Area of Isaac tropical storm winds 8/24/12 8am

Area of Isaac tropical storm winds 8/24/12 8am

(8/24/12) After a relatively peaceful night in the DR Tropical Storm Isaac’s storm force winds have reached the coast of the Dominican Republic. Wind speeds are considerably lower than predicted with maximum sustained winds of 50 mph instead of the expected 75+ mph hurricane force winds.

Tropical Storm Force Winds Reach the Coast

As seen from the illustration the 50mph winds (area in orange) are up against the southern coast of the Dominican Republic as of 8am Friday morning with the general path of the storm moving in a westernly direction. Later today the path of the storm is expected to return to it’s west by northwest direction taking it over a portion of Haiti.

It was expected that Tropical Storm Isaac would have gathered considerably more strength by this time. At this point the hurricane warnings and watches have been dropped for the Dominican Republic leaving only tropical storm warnings, although there is still a hurricane watch for Haiti.

Preparation for Isaac

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Due to the hurricane predictions for Tropical Storm Isaac, JetBlue is allowing for a fee waver for passengers that want to make flight changes to and from Punta Cana, Santiago, Santo Domingo, Puerto Plato, and La Romana.

Tropical Storm Isaac is expected to have hurricane force winds by the time it reaches the Dominican Republic later today causing delays to flights to Dominican international Airports.

For more information on JetBlues ticket fee waver you can go to (more…)

Due to the path of Tropical Storm Isaac, American Airlines has already made updates to their Caribbean Travel Policy (see link below) allowing ticket holders to change their flights to and from La Romana, Dominican Republic (LRM), Punta Cana, Dominican Republic (PUJ), Santiago, Dominican Republic (STI) and Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic (SDQ) as well as other destinations in the Caribbean.

As per the AA website if your travel date is between August 22-26, 2012 and was issued no later than Aug 22, 2012 you can change your travel date to between Aug 22-26 and the ticket reissue charge will be waved for one ticket change. You can call their 800 number to make the change at 1-800-433-7300.

Tropical Storm Isaac is expected to reach Punta Cana Thursday and may have reached hurricane force winds by this time. Punta Cana is at this time at a tropical storm watch with the rest of the northern part of the Dominican Republic while the southern part of the Dominican Republic is at a hurricane warning. The storm is still too far out to know where the center of the storm is going to pass.

There is a greater likelihood of Isaac producing hurricane force winds for La Romana, Boca Chica, Santo Domingo and other cities on the .southern coast of the DR.

We will be continuing to post updates (more…)

Map of Tropical Storm Issac 8/22/12

Map of Tropical Storm Issac 8/22/12

(8/21/12) Tropical Storm Issac is moving up through the leeward islands on a direct course to Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic. The storm is expected to pass by Puerto Rico Thursday and start affecting the Dominican Republic Thursday evening to early Friday.

As of the 2pm AST report on wed, aug 22 the center of tropical storm Issaac is about to pass over the leeward islands with maximum sustained winds of 45 mph.

Isaac Reaches the Dominican Republic

We’ve started a new post with the updated information on Tropical Storm Isaac once it reached the Dominican Republic. Check Isaac hits the Dominican Republic for the latest information.

Isaac Hurricane watch as of 8/22/12

Isaac is expected to reach hurricane strength as it is passing by Puerto Rico Thursday. There is a Hurricane watch for Puerto Rico, Vieques, culebra and the US and British Virgin Islands.

There is also a hurricane watch for the entire southern coast of the Dominican Republic from Isal Saona west to Haiti including La Romana, Boca Chica and Santo Domingo.

Isaac Tropical Storm Watch

The entire north Coast of the Dominican Republic is under a Tropical Storm Watch (more…)

Magicjack continues to explode in popularity. The ease and cost effectiveness of using Magicjack to make long distance phone calls into the United States has turned this into a must have product for people living (or traveling) abroad and wanting to call friends and relatives in the states cheaply. Unfortunately some only hear about Magicjack once they get to the Dominican Republic. That can be a bit of a problem when buying and mailing items is a little problematic in the DR.

A while back Magicjack was emailing looking for distributers in the DR. While it doesn’t seem that too many Dominican companies decided to start selling them (I would have thought La Sirena would have been a good choice). One of Magic Jacks first distributers does have them available here. You can find Magic Jacks at the Santo Domingo Radio Shack. (more…)

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