One of the many outstanding beaches in the Turks and Caicos. Leeward Beach, Providenciales.
Before deciding whether to go with a vacation package, it’s important to know the general value of the individual items.
Packages can be a good deal, but don’t get thrown off by some freebies such as a
rental car (which can be a true economy class car worth less than $250 for a week’s stay).
Turks and Caicos is one of the more expensive destinatinos in the Caribbean, especially on an average room rate per night figure. However, the increased number of flights (and as such competition between airlines) can bring your overall trip price down a little.
Grace Bay Beach has a range of
beachfront hotels, and the overall quality and star-rating does vary. Even at the same hotels, different packages often feature different rooms, from prime beachfront and ocean-view rooms to garden-view units.
Overall, you’ll be best served to simply get the individual item prices and then checking for a package. It’s definitely possible to save, but be advised on the cancellation and change policies, as this is typically more restrictive in a package than individual flights, hotels and rental cars.
Your first decision should be whether to book an all-inclusive vacation or an a-la-carte trip. If you’re interested in staying at
Beaches Turks and Caicos or
Club Med Turkoise, both offer their own vacation packages which bundle
flights with accommodation.
Booking direct will usually result in the lowest rate. Travel agents are usually able to match the price, and have the advantage of a more personalized experience. In addition, travel agents may be able to assist in booking additional
activities and things to do.
A shallow dive site on Providenciales.
Packages can save money for one reason: commissions
Hotels, especially non-chain hotels, can typically pay between 10-20% in commissions to the big OTAs such as Expedia, Booking.com and other sites.
As more items such as flights, hotels, and cars are added, the overall commission typically declines, and as such saves you money.
September through November are the slowest months of the year in terms of tourism in the Turks and Caicos. As such, you’ll find the best deals then.
This extends beyond your flight and hotels.
restaurants, and other activities such as
water sports are typically cheaper thanks to fewer tourists and more competition between vendors.
Boat rentals in Turks and Caicos.
You don’t always get points with a package
Depending on the vacation package booked, your flights may not be eligible for miles. It all depends on what class (price class, not seating class) of ticket is bundled with the hotels.
This also applies to hotels, however, nearly all of the
hotels in the Turks and Caicos are independent and not affiliated with one of the large international chains such as Marriot, IHG, Hilton or Wyndham.
Providenciales International Airport (PLS) sees the most flights on Saturday. Logic would suggest that this would be the most expensive day for flights, however it isn’t always the case as there are simply overall more scheduled flights on Saturday.
As always, simply check different days of the week for the best deal.
The Caribbean House Evolution boat and music festival at Water Cay.
Watch out for the multi-stop flights
Many of the major OTAs were offering packages with horrendous flights with multiple stops. 10+ hour flights could be ‘upgraded’ to non-stop for under $25 in several cases.
Make sure you compare the room types
Packages feature the same airline route and hotel, didn’t always offer the same room type. With some hotels, there’s a big difference between the beachfront rooms and the ‘garden view’ rooms.
Cancellation policies can be quite a bit worse
The cancellation policies can be a lot stricter with a bundle versus flight and hotels separately.
You’ll get different results based on Windows, Mac, Android and iOS.
An analysis for vacation packages to the Turks and Caicos conducted on the main popular travel websites showed that different devices and operating systems feature different results. Notably, on lower-end Android devices, cheaper packages were pushed first compared with a new iPhone.
Whereas a difference in actual price wasn’t observed, iOS users should be aware that cheaper and lower-cost options are available, however you may need to look a little further.