Caribbean resorts and travel bookers slashed prices after the season’s first big hurricanes swept through and scared off travelers. Powerful Hurricane Dean slammed into Mexico in late August, and Hurricane Felix devastated Honduras this week. Hotel and tourism officials rushed to assure vacationers they were open. “They’re all yelling and screaming to people that, ‘We are back open,’ ” said Steve Cosgrove, president of Dynamic Travel and Cruises in South Lake, Tex.
Resorts in Mexico are so desperate for business they are offering great deals, said Michelle Higgins in The New York Times (free registration required). The all-inclusive Blue Bay Getaway in Cancun is offering 30 percent off its normal rates up to Dec. 20; in Jamaica, Chukka Caribbean Adventures is offering buy-one-get-one-free natures tours; and Francis Ford Coppolla’s Turtle Inn in Belize was booked solid for Christmas, New Year’s, and Easter, but cancellations after the recent storms opened up some space.
The beachfront Reef Resort in Grand Cayman has tried to come up with a storm-proof deal, said The Washington Post (free registration required). It’s Hurricane Season Sale includes 25 percent off regular rates on stays through November, a complimentary Hurricane Eraser cocktail, and a “generous hurricane guarantee.”
It always pays to be on the safe side, said Diana Dawson in the Los Angeles Times (free registration required). So do some homework before you “jump on deals that exist thanks to the risk of rocky weather.” Stay informed about the weather; check your airline’s cancellation policies; ask your hotel about hurricane guarantees; and consider shelling out a little extra for travel insurance. If you plan ahead, you can avoid “much of the heartache and expense” the winds can bring.