When somebody is planning its vacation, above of all if it is a faraway destination, some questions comes to mind. Do I need a visa? Should I get any vaccine? And other similar questions.
Today Getaway DR gives you some useful advice that you should know before coming to the Dominican Republic for your vacations.
1. First of all, before you plan your vacation to a Latin American country, for sure you ask yourself if this country is safe to travel. The Dominican Republic, obviously with all the caution that you must pay everywhere in the world, is a safe country to travel. You can check out a whole article about this topic at our blog: http://getawaydominicanrepublic.com/dominican-republic-safe-travel/
2. Do I need a Visa? Yes, you do. It calls Tourist Card, it is an entry fee charged by the Dominican Republic for those who visit the country for tourism purposes only. It can be obtained online at https://www.dgii.gov.do/Tturistaweb/ or directly at the airport upon arrival in the Dominican Republic and paid for in USD, Euro or Dominican Peso. The cost is 10$. Some Tour Operators include the Tourist Card in their travel packages. You must also present a valid passport when entering the Dominican Republic. If your stay less than 30 days in the Dominican Republic you can leave without any payment. If you stay more than 30 days they charge you a fee depending on the days you exceed the 30 days.
3. Should I get any vaccine? It depends. If you are adventurous and want to put yourself in the local street foods, you should get a vaccine. You can get typhoid or hepatitis A through contaminated food or water in the Dominican Republic. CDC recommends this vaccine for most travelers, especially if you are staying with friends or relatives, visiting smaller cities or rural areas, or if you are an adventurous eater. This is just for precaution, normally there is no any risk to get ill in the Dominican Republic.
4. How should I organize my money? The official currency in the Dominican Republic is the Dominican peso. 47 DOP worth 1USD and 50 DOP worth 1EUR. You can bring with you US dollars as well as Euro and you can change them in changes that here recalled “Casa de Cambio”. Plenty places accept US Dollars but we always recommend to have Dominican peso. About credit cards in the Dominican Republic, every cardholder should inform himself at his bank about transactions in DR. Normally you can get money at the ATM with a commission of 4USD. In Santo Domingo and Punta Cana almost every place accepts payments by credit card. Las Terrenas still has places that don’t accept them so if you are traveling to Las Terrenas or other small destination of DR always bring cash.
5. Is it safe to drive in the Dominican Republic? Some people that choose DR as his next vacation destination would like to rent a car and be independent. Visit the island by yourself, getting from a city to another is nice and safe. Renting a car in DR is not that dangerous. You should consider only Santo Domingo as a dangerous city to drive due to the fact that is really big and busy. There is always rush hour and people doesn’t really respect rules. Other places of the country are pretty safe to drive and we hardly recommend to rent a car and experience this beautiful country by yourself exploring various places.
6. Nightlife in the Dominican Republic. Have you ever heard “ Party like the Caribbean?”. If you haven’t, it’s time to discover why they say like that. Dominican people loves to party and this is absolutely obvious when you go out in DR. People is always happy and positive and there are many many places all over the country to choose from to where to party. From little bars and pubs to fancy, big clubs, and discotheques. You can read about Dominican nightlife here: http://getawaydominicanrepublic.com/nightlife-las-terrenas/
7. What should you definitely bring?! Essential things that you must bring so the first things to pack in your luggage are solar cream, repellent, swimwear, sunglasses and if you are coming from Europe, Africa or Asia you will need an adapter. Moreover is always good to have an umbrella and a raincoat as we are in a tropical climate country. If you want to have more advice about what to bring on a Caribbean vacation you can check it out here: http://getawaydominicanrepublic.com/pack-caribbean-holidays-las-terrenas/
8. Prices and tipping in the Dominican Republic. Prices at restaurants normally don’t include taxes (18%) and the service charge (10%) so be careful and always count a 28% more to your bill. Also if they add a 10% of service charge, in the Dominican Republic is very common to tip. Wages are low so tips go a long way. Consider tipping 10-20% unless service is really bad, even when at all inclusive resorts. This is a great way to show your appreciation!
9. Do not trust in your weather application. This is a tropical place, occasional rain and clouds do appear for short periods of time, just don’t be scared away by your phone’s weather report. If there is even a slight chance of clouds or rain, the weather report will look like it’s cloudy all day, which is never the case unless there is a rare major storm rolling the island. So set your mind at ease and know you will enjoy your time!
10. Prepare yourself for a post-vacation depression. If everything goes like it has to go normally, and you will really experience the Dominican Republic, not just closing yourself in an all-inclusive resort, very probably you will have a post-vacation depression. Normally people who’re traveling to DR and gets to know local people, live like a local for the time of the vacation has a hard depression when gets back home. So try to enjoy the more as possible your vacation in the Dominican Republic and have a nice post-vacation depression! 🙂
Consider this 10 things before getting to the Dominican Republic and then book your ticket, make your luggage and come to visit us! For more info or details do not hesitate to contact Getaway DR we will be happy to help you!