You Decided to Book a Trip to the Punta Cana Dominican Republic – NOW what (Part 1)

First, of all, we hope you are booking this fabulous trip to Punta Cana Dominican Republic with Fox Travel. We’ll make it the best trip ever with all the perks available to travel agents!

Second, Dominican Republic is fully operational and all of the resorts are in their usual outstanding condition despite Hurricanes Harvey and Irma.

Next, let us help you prepare so that you can enjoy this incredible Caribbean destination to the fullest.  We have learned through the years that the more information that our clients have before their trip, it makes for a more relaxing and memorable travel experience. In this first installment, we talk about the nuts and bolts of successful travel to Punta Cana Dominican Republic.

TIP: Print out the two installments about Punta Cana and take it with you as a mini-guide.

So, let’s get started with the nuts and bolts info that will send your trip “over the top:”

Punta Cana Dominican Republic

What money do I use? The Dominican peso (RD$) is the official currency of the DR, but U.S. dollars are just as easily accepted throughout the country. (U.S. coins are not used or accepted.) Major credit cards are accepted at many tourist areas and ATMs are found in the majority of Dominican Republic cities and at most resorts.

How do I set my watch? The local time zone in Punta Cana Dominican Republic (DR) is on Eastern Caribbean Time (GMT-0400). In the winter this is one hour ahead of Eastern Standard Time. The DR does not observe daylight savings time.

Do I Tip? Tipping is the norm throughout the island. Tips are commonly given to taxi drivers, hotel maids, tour guides, servers, spa personnel, etc. Watch your restaurant bills as many establishments add a 10 percent tip to the bill. However, it is customary to give a bit extra up to 10 percent in additional tips. If you had great service, be sure and let your server know with a little extra tip.

What is the Legal Drinking Age? 18 years old. Each person is required to give a passport at check-in or to prove their age at restaurants and bars.

What airport do I use?  That depends as there are several.

TIP:  There are direct flights to the Dominican Republic. For example, there are direct flights from Houston to Santo Domingo and Punta Cana Dominican Republic. Miami, Charlotte, and Atlanta are direct to Santo Domingo.

Santo Domingo: Las Américas International Airport (SDQ), the second most visited airport in the DR, Las Américas is 30 minutes from the capital and very close to the tourist areas of Boca Chica and Juan Dolio.

Joaquín Balaguer International Airport (JBQ), also located in Santo Domingo and sometimes referred to as La Isabela, handles mostly domestic flights.

Punta Cana International Airport (PUJ), the country’s largest and most popular airport, serves the Punta Cana and Bávaro regions. Many hotels are only a 10 – 35-minute taxi ride from the airport.

La Romana International Airport (LRM), located just 10 minutes from the town of La Romana and 20 minutes from Bayahibe, consists of a single terminal with four modern gates in the style of an old sugar mill.

Puerto Plata: Gregorio Luperón International Airport (POP), this airport is only 20 minutes from the north coast city of Puerto Plata. Nearby tourist destinations include Playa Dorada, Sosúa, Cabarete, Playa Grande and Cofresí.

Samaná: El Catey International Airport (AZS), El Catey is 20 minutes from the city of Samaná and 30 minutes to the destinations of Las Terrenas and El Portillo on the northeast coast.

Santiago: El Cibao International Airport (STI), located 15 minutes from Santiago in the central region, El Cibao offers easy access to nearby La Vega, Jarabacoa, Constanza, San Francisco de Macorís and Moca.

What are the Entry Requirements into the Dominican Republic?  All foreigners who enter the Dominican Republic need a passport which is valid for at least 6 months after their date of return to their point of origin. Visitors must also fill out embarkation/disembarkation forms. The forms must be filled out before entering the immigration line.

Travelers visiting may need to purchase a $10 tourist card per person which permits a 30-day stay depending upon their passport country. It is available for purchase online and at booths near the immigration lines at all airports in the DR. The card, which looks similar to a credit card and has a microchip, will be collected prior to entry into the country. U.S. citizens do not need a visa when traveling to the Dominican Republic.

OK, Now that we have the nuts down.  Let’s get to the bolts – What will I see and do?

In my next blog, I will really drill into the fun stuff:

  • Suggestion Entertainment and Activities
  • Sports to Participate in and Watch
  • Great Sightseeing and Day Trips
  • Cultural and Local Activities
  • Weddings and Vow Renewal

Did you know that travel agents have the inside scoop? We often have access to specials and perks that are not publically available. We also know the resorts, the deals, the feedback from other clients about specific resorts and which resorts are ideal for your budget.

Another advantage of using a travel agent is convenience. Recently, during Hurricane Harvey, several Fox Travel client’s flights canceled. The Fox agent they booked their travel with rebooked their flights three times and rebooked the resort for them. Because they had purchased trip insurance, which we always recommend, our travelers had no additional costs. They were “forced” to extend their stay five days and could relax knowing everything was being handled.

TIP: Always buy travel insurance. In the unlikely event that you need it, it can save you hundreds if not thousands of dollars.

Enjoy Alma’s other blogs on Punta Cana:|

If you would like more information about trips to Punta Cana for family, romantic or travel with friends, contact Alma or one of our other travel experts. It’s easy as 1-2-3.

  1. Give us a call M-F from 9 am to 6 pm (1-800-256-2128)
  2. Send an email to alma@foxtravel.net
  3. Send a message using the contact form below

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Punta Cana Dominican Republic

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Alma Lee

Travel Counselor at Fox Travel Texas
I have been in the travel industry since April of 1973 when I joined American Airlines in Dallas/Fort Worth.During my 31 years with American, I worked in many departments including International Reservations, Domestic and International Tours, Platinum Desk and Baggage Service.Most of those departments required that I travel extensively in a consultant role for work.Because of this incredible benefit, I have also traveled all over the world as a “not so accidental tourist.

Put me to work on your next great adventure or small getaway.
Alma Lee
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