Eastern Caribbean hurricanes are of typically of a stronger velocity than those that reach farther inland, as they’re closer to the storm’s genesis in the Atlantic, but that doesn’t mean it’s not safe to travel to this part of the world during hurricane season. Pay attention to the Caribbean hurricane forecast, and it’s still possible to enjoy a safe vacation in one of these islands.
Peak hurricane season in eastern Caribbean islands is a bit earlier than the peak in the western Caribbean, lasting roughly from August through mid-September. The eastern islands include Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, and the chain of Caribbean nations that runs north to south, from Anguilla to Grenada; these include Antigua, Guadeloupe, Martinique, St Lucia, and Barbados, among others.
During the height of hurricane season in eastern Caribbean islands, there is up to a 25 percent chance of experiencing a storm during your vacation. If you’re planning to book well in advance or are taking a nonrefundable vacation, it’s best to travel in the late fall, winter, spring, or early summer—between late October and June. If you do want to take a vacation here in September, for instance, cruises are a great option, as the ships can often steer away from storms, and last minute vacations can be the perfect choice. Simply choose an island, check the Caribbean hurricane map or forecast, and book your stay; although these storms are violent, they don’t come without warning.
The western Caribbean’s later peak season and slightly lower chance of storms (20 percent) are appealing to some travelers, and those who want to avoid the issue entirely should look into visiting the southern Caribbean (Aruba, Curacao, Bonaire, or Trinidad and Tobago), as these islands have about a 2 percent chance of a hurricane during the peak season. However, if you have your heart set on one of the eastern islands, it’s still possible to have your dream vacation, even during hurricane season, as long as you keep an eye on the forecast and be flexible if necessary.