Punta Cana Weddings
Because it is located in the Caribbean, weather in the Dominican Republic is excellent year-round. During the summer, the temperature can range from 90 F (32 C) at mid-day to 70 F (23 C) in the morning. Temperatures hover around 65 F (19 C) in the winter. In the high mountainous areas of Jarabacoa and Constanza, the weather is cooler and has gone as low as 41 F (5 C). Because of climate change, it is no longer possible to deliniate a specific rainy period. It can rain at any time of year, but usually just for short periods in the afternoon and evening. The warmest months are June, July, August and September.
Weather forecast for the main cities [+]
The Dominican Republic has an excellent reputation for its varied and flavorful food. There are luxurious restaurants with gourmet menus as well as more casual ones with Creole food, a very local style. You will also find Oriental, Mexican, Mediterranean, Italian restaurants, as well as those with light or vegetarian food, pizzerias, and fast food.
If you would like a drink or entertainment after dinner, the bars and cafes in most cities are open and serve drinks until 2:00 a.m. on Fridays, Saturdays and holidays.
2012 Holidays (Non Business Days):
– January 1: New Year’s Celebration
– January 6: The Three Kings’ Day (moved to Monday January 09th)
– January 21: Our Lady of Altagracia’s Day
– January 26: Juan Pablo Duarte’s Day (moved to January 30th)
– February 27: Independence Day
– April 6: Good Friday – Religious Celebration
– May 1: Labor Day (Moved to April 30th)
– June 7: Corpus Christi Day
– August 16: Restoration of Independence Day
– September 24: Las Mercedes Day
– November 6: Constitution Day (moved to November 5th)
– December 25: Christmas Day
In the Dominican Republic, electric plugs are 110 volts, like those in the United States and Canada. Because of this, Europeans and visitors from some countries in South America will have to bring a power adapter.
The official language is Spanish.
Money, Cards and Banks
The Dominican currency is the Dominican peso. It comes in denominations of 1, 5, 10 and 25 peso coins and in 20, 50, 100, 200, 500, 1,000 and 2,000 notes. Dollars and euros can be exchanged in banks and authorized exchange offices across the country.
There are restrictions on bringing more than US$10,000 in cash into the country and any amount over this value should be declared on the customs form. It is prohibited to leave the Dominican Republic with more than $10,000 US dollars or the equivalent in cash.
If you need cash, it is more convenient to take it out of a bank. They are normally open from 8:30 AM to 4:00 PM In large business centers, some bank branches are open until 7:00 PM.
Passports, tourist card and visa
Citizens and residents of the United States, Canada and the majority of European countries can enter the country with a 30 day tourist card, which can be bought when you enter the country for US $10. Any person, no matter what their nationality, may come into the Dominican Republic with a tourist card if they have any of the following valid visas in their passport: United States, Canada, United Kingdom or the European Union (Schengen). If you wish to extend your tourist card to 90 days, you will need to pay UD$20 (RD$800) to immigration when you leave the country. The exit tax is US$20.00, but this is usually included in the airline ticket.
Restaurant bills already include a ten percent tip. It is customary to give an additional ten percent for good service. Most people do not tip taxis, however you are welcome to if you feel so inclined.
The same restrictions apply as in the United States. In most restaurants and clubs, smoking is not allowed.
The Dominican people like to dress elegantly, and they love to wear en vogue pieces. Depending on the occasion, they tend to dress either casually or formally. Around hotels and resorts, it is suitable to wear light clothing such as shirts, t-shirts, shorts, swimwear or dresses.
In December and January, when the nights are cooler, you may need a light jacket or coat as the temperature drops at night and into the early hours of the morning.
If you are going to be in the mountains, you should bring coats and be prepared for temperatures as low as 41 F (5 C), especially in Constanza and Jarabacoa.
– In order to travel to the Dominican Republic, you will not need any vaccination outside of those normally required for Europe and North America.
In order to ensure that you make the most of your vacation:
– Even if the day is cloudy, use sun block, as the Caribbean sun is very strong.
– When you eat and drink, do so in moderation.
– Keep yourself hydrated by drinking water or liquids.
– If you feel unwell, visit a doctor. At the tourist centers and in all cities there are health centers with modern medical services and most hotels have medical dispensaries with qualified personnel.
Even though the Dominican Republic is one of the safest countries on the continent, you should still take the same precautions that you would when traveling to any new city:
– Always use the hotel safe to store your passport, money and other items of value
– Keep a photocopy of your passport with you when you travel around the cities
– Only take what is necessary along with you. When possible, take a credit card as well as cash.
– Avoid leaving articles of value or briefcases in full view in vehicles
– Try not to travel in dark and out-of-the-way places at inappropriate times
– If you are planning to go out at night, call a taxi from the hotel where you are staying
The Dominican Republic uses the same call system as the United States. The main area code is 809, though there are also numbers that use a 829 code. You are required to dial ten digits for each call. If you are only given seven digits, it is most likely an 809 telephone number.
Because most people now have cell phones, there aren’t as many public phones. If you need a phone, you can buy a prepaid cell phone in the Dominican Republic with a local number for about US $42. The telephone companies that provide cell phone services are: Claro-Codetel, Orange, Tricom and Viva.
Viva also sells wireless internet for your laptop. You can purchase a phone in less than an hour at any shopping center. You may also change the “sim card” of your telephone for a local one and use it on your own phone. It is not difficult to find a WiFi hotspot to connect to the internet.