|Round-trip from||$172||From Las Vegas to San Juan|
|One-way from||$34||One-way flight from Las Vegas to San Juan|
Puerto Rico welcomes most tourists during the winter and early spring. Booking trips to San Juan during this time might be expensive, but if you plan ahead and book San Juan flights and accommodations in advance you’re likely to get a good deal.
The pre-Lenten Carnival attracts many visitors, with its parades, music, beauty pageants, and parties all over the island. Easter week is another busy time, as is the entire period when colleges have spring breaks.
In addition to the Carnival festivities, there are patron saints’ festivals throughout the year, with week-long celebrations.
Mid-December to mid-April is the busiest — and most expensive — time of the year. Throughout the island, but especially in San Juan, prices are considerably higher during this period.
Summer and fall are quieter and less expensive times to take cheap flights to San Juan. And there are two annual events for music lovers. The Pablo Casals Festival takes place in early June. The Festival of Puerto Rican Music is held in November, with venues in both San Juan and elsewhere on the island.
The flight to Puerto from the US will vary in exact duration depending on the city of departure. However, most flights depart from the East Coast, offering a total travel time of around 3h 45m for nonstop service and typical flight times of 6h 30m to 10h for indirect flights originating from New York or Washington. Flights from Orlando are just under three hours in duration, typically.
Direct flights to Puerto Rico are available from multiple cities throughout the US. The most popular cities offering flights include New York, Orlando, Philadelphia, Atlanta, and Washington, D.C. Flights are serviced by Delta Air Lines, JetBlue Airways, American, Southwest, and United Airlines, with arrivals flying into San Juan, Ponce, and Aguadilla Pueblo. This is a popular route so some Puerto Rico travel deals may even offer direct service for a discounted fare.
The road infrastructure and quality in Puerto Rico includes a modern highway system connecting major cities, making driving a popular choice among those who visit. Car rental services are available at most major airports and rental offices can be found in various cities and towns, as well. If you are driving, keep small bills and change for tolls. Taxis are available on the streets of San Juan, as well as at the airport, hotels, and most major tourist attractions. Although cycling is growing in popularity among the locals, it’s not recommended for travelers due to dangerous driving practices and heavy vehicle traffic. When not walking, renting a car or hiring a driver is the best way to see the island of Puerto Rico.
Puerto Rico is well-known for having some of the finest beaches in the Caribbean, including Crashboat Beach, Luquilo Beach, Escambron, Combate Beach, and Flamenco Beach in Culebra, which Discovery Channel named one of the world’s best beaches. Ponce is home to plenty of cultural attractions and historical landmarks, along with the Museum of Art, which is home to over 400 sculptures and 1,000 paintings from all types of collections and art forms. Travelers can visit Old San Juan and tour the San Jose Church, which is the second-oldest church within the Western Hemisphere. El Yunque rainforest also offers plenty to see and do, and there are three bioluminescent bays with night tours available. San Juan has museums, local cuisine, nightlife, and other attractions and travelers can visit the Castillo Serralles in Ponce, as well.
Since Puerto Rico is an American territory, US residents do not need a US passport or visa for air travel between the two, unless the home state requires passports for air travel. A driver’s license or valid photo ID card can also be used to gain entry to the country. A passport can be used as your preferred form of identification, but it is not required by Puerto Rico for US citizens.
Puerto Rico has a tropical climate with sunny days almost year-round and average temperatures of 79 degrees. It’s humid too, with levels hovering between 74 and 81 per cent. Temperatures along the coast are moderated by the cooling sea breezes; inland, temperatures are in the 72 to 79-degree range. May to October are the rainiest months. The north coast gets double the amount of rain as the south coast, about 61 inches compared to 36 inches. January to April are the driest months. Hurricane season runs from June to November and the island is at greatest risk between August and October.
Travelers to San Juan can get taxis and buses at the airport into town, and some hotels run courtesy vans. Puerto Rico is 100 miles long by 37 miles wide with some of the best scenery in the Caribbean. Although best seen by car, be aware that the locals drive erratically and that speeds are posted in miles and distances in kilometers. To see the island’s interior, and get a few thrills, take La Ruta Panoramica along the mountains. The panorama is dazzling but be prepared for passages with precipitous drops on both sides of the road and sections without dividers.
In a major city or resort you may not need a car. Sightseeing on foot is often fun and you can take a publico. Publicos are minivans that service most towns on the island. They don’t have set schedules, but you can flag one down. Publicos are identified by “P” or “PD” on the license plate.
Taxis are available in San Juan and major tourist areas. Tour buses and ferries are another option for getting around, as is chartering a boat or plane. There are also several airlines that fly to small airports in Puerto Rico and other Caribbean islands.