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Aruba recommendations & questions

Chicago, Illinois
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Aruba recommendations & questions

Hi all

We are traveling to Aruba for the first time for a wedding in about 10 days (from the US--no kids). We will be on the island for 8 days. We aren't really into excursions, but are interested in exploring the island a little (shopping, beaches, etc). We are staying at the Marriott Renaissance on the family side. We would like some restaurant recommendations (for all meals), including cheap eats. Some nice/romantic spots for dinner. My husband is allergic to fish & I don't eat it, so those can be excluded. Some other questions include:

- Do we need an outlet adapter for hair dryer, chargers, etc?

- Should we get Aruba currency & if so, convert in the US or in Aruba?

- How would you recommend getting around the island? Is there public transportation? We would like to see Palm & Eagle Beach.

- How is the Renaissance in general? I read a review about roaches & that freaks me out.

- Where can we get small groceries to keep in our hotel room? I am thinking bottled water because that will be cheaper than the hotel.

- I've read tipping is not necessary due to the service charge added at restaurants. Is this true?

- What is the mosquito situation in the summer? We have tons of bug spray packed.

- Are luxury items cheaper in Aruba than the US? I've heard this can be true of other Caribbean islands.

- Any other things to know?

Thank you!!

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11 replies to this topic
Oshkosh, Wisconsin
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1. Re: Aruba recommendations & questions

No adapter

Quincy...
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2. Re: Aruba recommendations & questions

We stayed at the Renaissance Ocean Suites a few weeks ago, as well as on prior trips. Have never had an issue with bugs, no need for an adapter and we didn’t have any issues with mosquitos. We didn’t go over to the private island this trip but you may have mosquitos at certain times of the day there. In 13+ trips neither of us have ever gotten a mosquito bite.

Some restaurants do add a 15% service charge, but not all. We usually put on a few extra dollars if service is good. There are plenty of restaurants within walking distance. Yemanja is especially nice for a steak of stuffed pork tenderloin. It’s in back of the Renaissance Marina side. Right out the door of the Ocean Suites side you have Hung Paradise, Cafe the Plaza, Casa Tua, Dutch Pancake House and Side Bar. We have had good experiences at all of them.

Taxis are available outside the front door of the hotel, however if there are a lot of cruise ships in town we will sometimes take the shuttle over to the Marina side as it’s quicker to get a taxi day

US dollars are accepted everywhere so no need to convert.

As for a grocery store I understand there is one in back of the Renaissance Marina but I am not familiar with it.

Edited: 08 June 2018, 23:19
Oshkosh, Wisconsin
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3. Re: Aruba recommendations & questions

-No adapter needed.

-US dollar is accepted everywhere. So is your favorite credit card. If you use a credit card, apply for a no international fee one.

-Bus will get you to Palm & Eagle beach. Taxi's are easy to get and price is regulated. I personally like renting a car for convenience but not necessary.

- Many choices for grocery stores: Ling & Sons and Super Foods are popular choices.

- Some restaurants have a 15% service charge, some don't. Simply check your bill. I'm a 20% unless they really suck so I always add a little if there's a service charge.

- Mosquitos aren't bad, depending. Some people get bit by no-see-ums (me). I always spray my lower legs before I go out at night and usually don't have a problem then.

Enjoy your trip!

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New York
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4. Re: Aruba recommendations & questions

US dollars are used in Aruba. No need to change money.

Taxi's are cheap and plentiful. There also is a bus that is safe and cheap. Also, car rentals are reasonable. There is no need for bottled water. Aruba water is the best water. Bring some kind of water container from home and refill it. They also sell Aruba type drinking containers there is you don't have one. Every bill needs to be looked at. If a Service Charge of 15% has been added and you want to add a little more, just leave it. If no Service Charge of 15% then you need to leave a tip. We just got back from a three week stay and did not see a mosquito or got bitten. It depends if it rained recently and how strong the breeze is. Check prices of luxury items before you arrive in Aruba to answer that question.

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Dartmouth...
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5. Re: Aruba recommendations & questions

Luxury items such as designer handbags are no cheaper but not taxed. If you’re looking for jewelry be very careful. Do your homework.

NY
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6. Re: Aruba recommendations & questions

-Remember to notify the credit card company that you will be out of the country. You don't want them to close your account for suspicious activity.

-Use plenty of sun screen, the sun is intense and sometimes the trade winds can mask the intensity

-Lings or Super Foods is a short cab ride away for your snacks.

-No need to purchase water, the water in Aruba is probably the best water I have ever had. I drink more water in Aruba than at home. Bring a Bubba cup to keep the water ice cold.

-As mentioned previously, Yemanja Wood Fired Grill is downtown behind the Renaissance. Also, for cheaper eats nearby, West Deck, and Driftwood.

-Other restaurants a cab ride away, Cheaper eats: Local Store, Barneys Moderate: Wacky Wahoo Expensive: Chalet Suisse

Enjoy your trip!

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The West Deck
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Yarmouth Port...
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7. Re: Aruba recommendations & questions

Just past your hotel on the right you'll see Pinchos out on a pier by itself. Good food, not just fish,. You can get a decent steak or pork chop.

And right after Pinchos you'll see Barefoot, a toes on the sand restaurant on the beach.

Both get recommended on this forum alot.

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Pinchos Grill & Bar
Pinchos Grill & Bar
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8. Re: Aruba recommendations & questions

I would recommend the following restaurants

1. Yemanja

2. Pincho’s

Sudbury, Canada
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9. Re: Aruba recommendations & questions

The Renaissance is very clean and well kept. Not to worry about roaches.

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10. Re: Aruba recommendations & questions

You will need to worry more about the wind blowing the sand at you than the actual mosquito.

Most people rent a car or jeep and that give you full freedom to travel the island. It is very safe and you're not limited to sticking with the tours. Driving is very similar to the sates except you can not do U turns.

Pinchos and Bungaloe have great food and good views. Bungaloe has happy hour from 5-7 in which they have music and the waitresses sing. Nice island vibe.

Rent a car you'll have more fun!

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