Aruba on a Budget

Every time we mention our next adventure is in Aruba, I can sense the silent laser beam of a question pointed straight at us.  

It isn't "Will you have fun?"

No, that's a given when traveling to a place whose motto is "one happy island".


No, the question is:

How much does THAT cost?  

I mean that's THE question, right?

You might think that living this life of adventure is courageous, even admirable. BUT if a family could live this lifestyle on a BUDGET that would make them AMAZEBALLS!!! Why?

Because that family would make the "impossible" seem do-able. And that's what we all love, right?  A story that says, if they can do can I. 

So, here are the facts and figures, you're wondering about.  

Want to know our budget for one month in Aruba? 



1) Airfare

$350 a ticket x 4

Total: $1400

2) Accommodations

We used to find a small 1-bedroom apartment, 5 min from the beach. Other perks include: fast wifi, air condition and washing machine, and the owner will pick up/drop off guests at the airport.

Originally listed for $1700, we were able to negotiate a better rate with the owner.

That's one of the benefits of booking for a month--deals!

Side note, people always ask us if we are comfortable staying at an Airbnb.  We are and here's why.

  1. We make it a habit of only staying at a place with numerous reviews. With reviews, we can be sure that other people have been there and vouched for its cleanliness, comfort, how well it matches the pictures on the website, and that the host(s) are not psychotic.
  2.  We always stay in a private home, not a shared space. Some hosts rent out a room in their house, so you basically share a home, like you would when visiting family. Although it is cheaper to rent a private room in someone's home, we opt out of that type of rental when traveling as a family.

Total: $1300 for the month

3) Car rental

We had originally decided to skip getting a car in Aruba, just to save some money. We planned to get an apartment that was walking distance to food, shops, and most importantly--the beach! 

We figured we rent a car a few times that month just to take in the sights, maybe a weekend or two here and there. 

Then, we realized we had a TON of points on our credit cards (I'll have to tell you more about that in another blog post!!) and were able to get $350 in Budget Rent-A-Car vouchers.

Credit card rewards are bonuses we plan to take more advantage of in the future.

We researched lots of different ways, but discovered if we rented from Budget in Aruba, we could get a car for a little over $450 for the month!

After figuring out that's about what we'd spend if we rented a car for a few days throughout the month, we decided to book the car. 

Total:  $450

Our total Aruba trip will cost: $3150, not including meals and other costs that we'd have whether or not we were traveling like car, gas, insurance, etc.

But remember, we've spent some time with family these past 2 months (July & August), so accommodations costs were lower and we were able to save a bit. 

Our motto is: trading our mortgage for memories. 

So, if we were to split this amount between July, August, and September (the month we'll be in Aruba), then our mortgage plus all the utilities would be: $1050 per month.

What do you think? Does Aruba sound do-able to you?


Samantha NelsonComment