FFF Travels: Puerto Rico for $1000 or less

Hey, Financially Fit & Fab readers! Welcome to the third installment of FFF Travels where I share details on traveling for less! If this is your first time here, welcome! The first two installments featured trips to the Dominican Republic and Panama.

The third installment of FFF Travels features a 5 day 4 night trip to Puerto Rico that I took November of 2014!  This was prior to my serious travel hacking days but I still managed to spend much less than $1000 on the trip.

Got a story to tell about traveling for less than $1000? I’m sure the readers would love to hear it! Shoot me a message at [email protected] so we can chat further! 

FFF Travels- Puerto Rico for $1000 or less

Flight + Lodging

Planning the perfect trip, always starts with a flight deal.  I started withGoogle Flights looking for the best deal that I could find for dates of the trip.  Unfortunately, the prices weren’t budging for the dates even though I used all my typical tricks – trying different dates, flying from a nearby airport, and even buying two one-way tickets.  Nothing worked!

I ended up booking the deal through Southwest.  It was $1240 for 2 plane tickets and a 4-night stay at a Wyndham Hotel near El Yunque Rainforest.  Since the flight was through Southwest, free checked bags were a benefit!  In addition, I signed up with the Southwest Rewards program so I earned points through the purchase.

During check-in, the hotel concierge mentioned that if I took an official “tour of the resort” , I could receive an additional $75 off the room bill.  Unfortunately, this credit couldn’t be used for the room since I paid for that in advance.  However, the $75 covered the valet parking fee for the trip!

Total Flight + Lodging per person – Resort Credit = $582.50 per person

 

Transportation

After thorough research on Puerto Rico, I decided to rent a car.  All the sites we wanted to see were within driving distance of each other!  This provided flexibility to travel without shelling out additional money for Uber’s or Taxis.  I ended up finding an amazing deal on a rental car through Priceline.  The rental car was only $4 per day!  After taxes and fees, the total rental car bill was $50.

On the last full day of the trip, I ventured to a smaller island called Vieques for a day trip.  It cost less than $10 to take the ferry to Vieques.

Between splitting the rental car and the ferry, transportation was $35.

 

Food + Drink

As mentioned in some of my previous travel posts, I love to live like a local when traveling.  This means indulging in eateries that locals in enjoy.  My favorite food experience was in Old San Juan, Puerto Rico.  Instead of just trying one restaurant, I tried 4 different restaurants stopping at each location for a different portion of the meal.  It was a progressive dinner as sorts.  One bar for drinks, the next location for appetizers, the third location for the main course, and the last location for dessert!

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Although I experienced a few local restaurants, I also ate in the hotel.  With the Flight + Lodging package through Southwest, I received a $25 food & Beverage Credit each day.  Being the financially fit and fab traveler that I am, I used that $25 credit every single day.  This turned out to be another benefit of booking the travel directly through Southwest.

Overall, food and drink per person was $150.

 

Entertainment

Although I’m not huge on tourist activities when traveling, there were three sites I wanted to see in Puerto Rico: The Bacardi Factory, El Yunque Rainforest, and Old San Juan. Instead of purchasing official tours for the sites, I was able to explore the sites on my own!

Finally, I started asking friends that had visited Puerto Rico recently or that had family from Puerto Rico. To my pleasant surprise, The Bacardi Factory offered a free tour which included 2 shots!  I also learned that is possible to tour both El Yunque Rainforest and Old San Juan without a tour guide. The key catch was that you need a car to get around to the sites.  Luckily, I already planned to rent a car so I was in business!

Tours = Free!

 

Overall, Puerto Rico was an awesome getaway and I can’t wait to go back.  I would love to go back to Puerto Rico when there is an awesome flight detail!

 

Traveling doesn't have to break the bank! Check out my trip to Puerto Rico that was much less than $1000!

Thanks for tuning into the 3rd installment of FFF travels.  If you could go travel anywhere in the world, where would you go?

 

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16 comments

  1. Oh l love Puerto Rico. I haven’t been in years. In college, one of my best friends was from there so l visited him 3 times in total. It was just a short flight from Boston and l got to stay with them so for me, it was an awesome deal 🙂 . Your was really thrifty as well. I would also like to visit again.

  2. Hey to free shots! That sounds like one heck of a trip. You’re going to get me to some exotic places with all of this inspiration you’re giving!

  3. Good stuff. It is extra cheap to go there now with this Zika stuff going on. Spending that or less is extremely doable. Glad you enjoyed and got to explore.

  4. I’ve always wanted to visit Puerto Rico. It’s nice to see that you were able to go for so cheap! Definitely on my list of places to visit.

  5. I never knew to look up Google Flights for the best deal. I usually don’t travel by plane that often (I think I traveled by plane once in the past year) but I might change that in the upcoming years so advice on traveling really helps. I’ve also heard that Puerto Rico was a terrific area to visit so it was nice that you got to enjoy everything!

  6. It’s amazing that you were able ot go to Puerto Rico and have a great time so cheaply. I am definitely taking notes.

  7. This is so cool! I’m going to make sure to bookmark this series. I’m trying to travel more often and hacks are something I’m always looking for. I’ve been browsing Ebates too for cash back savings. Haven’t used it for a trip yet, but I’ve seen other people use it for great travel savings.

  8. I love Puerto Rico, I went five years ago on a baby moon. It is time that I get back sans pregnancy and check out the Bacardi tour and some other things.

  9. Nice breakdown. I love saving money on travel. I’ve been seeing a lot of cheap flights to Puerto Rico lately. Definitely need to take advantage.

  10. Puerto Rico sounds like a great vacation spot. I have heard so many great things about it. It makes me want to visit.

  11. Now that’s a budget friendly trip. My husband and I need a tropical vacation but flights are always expensive, and my husband’s job isn’t very flexible when it comes to requesting time off. But hopefully we’ll be on a beach somewhere soon.

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