A paradise for beachgoers and water sports enthusiasts, Turks and Caicos is an idyllic destination for a tropical vacation. And while it’s a beautiful place to visit, it also has a reputation for being expensive. For this reason, many people are curious about how much it costs to visit the islands and if it’s possible to travel here cheaply.
Is Turks and Caicos Expensive?
Turks and Caicos is an exceptionally expensive place to visit, especially compared to other islands in the Caribbean. Accommodation, food, and excursions can be pricey, so it is essential that you plan ahead if you’re trying to stick to a budget.
If you need help calculating your travel costs, then this is the guide for you. I’ll explain how much hotels, food, and activities cost and the different ways that you can save money during your visit!
In the next section, I’ll cover the approximate costs for hotels, activities, and dining in more detail to help you with planning.
How Much Does it Cost to Visit Turks and Caicos?
A trip to Turks and Caicos can vary in cost. Accommodation ranges from $500+ per night for boutique hotels and upscale resorts. Dining costs $25-$35 per person. Excursions range from $60-$1,500. Transportation includes taxis at $30, rental cars from $40, and flights from $135 roundtrip.
The cost of your trip will depend on many different factors, like when you visit, where you stay, and what activities you have planned.
But to help you get an idea of costs, here are the prices for different hypothetical trips (not including airfare):
- Budget trip for 2 people for 4 days with rental car: $2,000
- Budget trip for a family (4 people) for 1 week with rental car, vacation rental, and some dining out: $7,000
- Mid-range trip for 2 people for 1 week with rental car, excursions, and dining out: $9,000
- Luxury trip for 2 people for 1 week at an all-inclusive resort: $10,000
- Luxury trip for a family (4 people) for 1 week at an all-inclusive resort: $14,000
Keep in mind that these are just estimates, and prices will vary depending on your exact itinerary.
Average Costs in Turks and Caicos
Accommodation is likely to be your biggest expense when traveling to Turks and Caicos.
Prices here tend to be higher than in other destinations in the Caribbean, especially if you’re hoping to find a place on the beach.
The islands cater to luxury travelers, and there are many boutique hotels and upscale resorts to choose from. These types of hotels can cost $500 or more per night, with some properties (like those located on private islands) charging upwards of $1,000 a night.
There are also a handful of all-inclusive resorts in Turks and Caicos. As most of these resorts are located on the beach, they can also be quite expensive (over $400 a night), although they do usually come with unlimited food, drink, and activities.
Budget hotels are few and far between, although it’s still possible to find some on Providenciales and Grand Turk (when I say “budget,” remember that it’s relative to the prices of other accommodation options in the area). With that in mind, you can expect to pay around $100 to $200 a night for a budget hotel.
To save money, consider booking a hotel or apartment further inland. Beachfront properties come with a hefty price tag, and you might be able to find better deals if you don’t mind being away from the water.
From beachfront grills to fine dining establishments, you’ll be spoiled for choice when it comes to mealtime in Turks and Caicos. Dining here is top-notch, as there are many international, Caribbean, and seafood restaurants to choose from.
But because most ingredients have to be imported (except for seafood), food can be really expensive. In addition, most restaurants cater to an affluent clientele, which means you’ll also be paying for the upscale service and atmosphere.
When dining in and around Grace Bay, you will likely pay anywhere from $25 to $35 per person for a main course. Add on top of that an appetizer, dessert, and cocktail, and you’ll see how things can add up quickly.
If you want to save money, I would strongly suggest eating at a local restaurant. Although they might not have the glitz and glamour of other dining establishments, eating locally does allow you to gain a deeper appreciation for the history and culture of the islands.
Personally, I prefer to eat at local restaurants whenever I travel, as it supports the community and gives you the chance to try new dishes. And as a bonus, these types of restaurants also tend to be cheaper – so it’s a win-win!
Although buying groceries is a bigger concern for residents or long-term visitors, knowing the cost of food products can help paint a picture of how much things cost in Turks and Caicos.
Besides seafood, there is relatively little that is produced on the islands. For this reason, almost everything has to be imported (mostly from Florida or other parts of the US), which means that food prices and groceries are very high.
For products that are imported (fruits and veggies, packaged goods, meat), you can expect to pay at least twice as much as you would in the US.
The only exception is seafood, as fishing and seafood farming are big industries in Turks and Caicos. Fish, lobster, and conch are sold in groceries stores, although you can also buy them at the local seafood market or directly from the fishermen if you want to save some money.
Excursions and Activities
With so many great beaches, it’s no surprise that the best activities in Turks and Caicos revolve around the water. The islands are great for all types of water sports, like snorkeling, scuba diving, kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, and boating. But if you prefer to stay dry, you can also come here for cycling, hiking, ATV-riding, birdwatching, and golfing.
Here are the typical prices for different activities around the islands:
- Snorkel tour: $120 – $140 per person
- Parasailing tour: $60 – $80 per person
- ATV tour: $110 – $130 per person
- Private boat charter: $1500 per day
- Entrance to Conch Bar Caves: $30 per person
However, not everything is over-the-top expensive. If you’re trying to stick to a budget, then you can spend your day lounging in paradise, as national parks and beaches are free to visit!
Getting around the Turks and Caicos islands can be challenging, especially considering that there is no public transportation available. If you want to get around from one place to another, you’ll need to hire a taxi or rent a car.
Taxi prices in Turks and Caicos can be expensive. For example, you’ll pay around $30 USD for the short 15 to 20-minute drive from the Providenciales airport to your hotel in Grace Bay.
This is doable if you aren’t planning to leave the hotel for your stay, although it can be more cost-friendly to rent a car if you want to explore the island. Rental car prices in Providenciales are okay, with economy cars starting at around $40 to $50 a day.
If you plan on island hopping, there are passenger ferries to shuffle you back and forth.
Ferry prices can high ($65 to $120 roundtrip), although they are usually cheaper than taking a domestic flight, which starts at $135 roundtrip.
I understand that a Turks and Caicos vacation may not be for everyone. Accommodation prices and food costs are high, so it’s definitely a luxury destination in the Caribbean.
But if you are planning a trip here, then it’s important that you understand exactly how much you might end up spending.
And if the islands are on your bucket list, then you can still find ways to travel here for cheap (well, cheaper than usual).
Look for budget accommodation, free activities, and local, family-run restaurants. And remember that the best prices can be found in the off-season (June to November). Enjoy your trip!
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