10 Things you should pack for your Jamacia Vacation
10 things you must bring to Jamaica
Since I have been traveling to Jamaica quite often now, and experienced all kind circumstances. I highly recommend to bring Aloe Vera for a possible sunburn. Aloe Vera is very experience in Jamaica, especially in the resorts $15, in the states you can purchase Aloe Vera in a Dollar Store for $1.00 a tube, even the after sun Aloe Vera lotion. Jamaica, is sometimes windy, and you will not notice until later that night have a sunburn. I tan very easily but I got a sunburn in 2009 in Jamaica, was not prepared with any sunburn lotion / medication.
Mosquito protection,is a must have, depends time of the year you in Jamaica, during rainy season, it will rain daily between 1230 - 2pm from 5 minutes up to 20 minutes. And it comes Sutton. But it is a warm rain, be prepared so, after the rain, the mosquitoesare out. Off Spray is very experience in Jamaica. Small bottle spray $2.75 at Walmart, or what I found in a dollar store the rubber mosquitoes bracelets, for a $1, you can also find them on eBay very reasonable. I found it is the easiest way, they work even in the water. Since if you hang around the pool, huh there are the mosquitoes after the rain.
Spf Lotionfor your body and mouth / lips. I experienced a sunburn due to the wind in 2009, so I highly recommend a nice SPF Blistex protection. I have seen people, with very bad sunburns.
Watershoes,bring your own, at some resorts the ocean is rocky, corrals can hurt you badly. Be carefully just jumping in dive. I stayed a few times in Lucea, at the Grand Palladium Lady Hamilton, beautiful resort I highly recommend this resort, but most of their beaches since this resort have 5 are rocky, one the cove beach is good, no rocks in the ocean. You need water shoes also, if you take the trip to the waterfalls Dunn's River Falls in Ocho Rios. You can rent them there for $5.00 pp. But I recommend bring your own for many reason. If you take the horse back riding tour which I highly recommend in Mobay ( Montego Bay), after the country ride, you change horses to swim with them which you need to wear water shoes, barefoot could hurt your feet. Water Shoes are reasonable in the states I have seem them for $5 or less at Big Lot's Store's or try also Ebay.
Jamaica has a lot of Humidity, so your hair will curl up, even if you have straight hair Yahman ( means - yes ), I recommend to bring Shampoo, Conditioner or a Hair gel for the Humidity very reasonable at Big Lot's $1.50 up! This products are very experience in Jamaica. Because it has to be imported to the island.
If you stay for a long time in Jamaica, and not in a 4* or 5* Star Resort, or stay with a local family, because most do not have a water heater, and you need that hot water for a shower daily, I recommend to purchase a Solar Shower at Walmart used here for camping, a good source for hot water in Jamaica, to purchase on line ( on line purchase only at walmart) or on EBay to be purchased, a Solar Shower 5 gallon - 20 liter $9.97 at walmart online, which gives you hot water. Jamaicans, locals do not have hot water, some must take a bath / showers in a close by river near their home. So if you rent a house there or even spent your vacation in a small resort / guesthouse, there is a possibility for lukewarm water only. Happen to me, stayed at a resort in Negril last year June 2 1/2 * nice at the cliffs, plain but quited reasonable but for days we had no hot water, I learned to take showers with cold water. When the water came back early in the morning hot water was only available. That condition is normal for Jamaica. I read a lot of reviews and complains all the time about resorts, it 's how it is over there! 4* & 5* Star Resorts should not have the hot water problem as much, even I have read some complains too.
Phone calls, I highly recommend to bring a GSM unlocked phone to Jamaica, it is the cheapest way, you can purchase a sim card in Jamaica ( Sim card cost $JMD 500 close to $5.00 USD ), and put credit on your phone by going online Digicel Jamaica, from $4.35 - $15.22 ) $15.22 gives you 1000 international minutes! Any local can help with this. But it is very easy. If you book through Expedia they offer phones for $39 plus little credit. Most people can use their phones in Jamaica, but it is very experience like Verizon for example charges roaming... GSM Phone's are very reasonable to purchase on Ebay, from $5 USD bids...
Light clothes for most of your trip, if you travel in December - March, I recommend a very light jacket or long sleeve for the evenings, it is a little chilly, plus your skin was expos all day in the sun, so you will be a little cold at night walking through Jamaica or the resort! I recommend this more for the ladies. A nice shawl for around the shoulder work fine!
If you are out and about in Jamaica, I recommend a small umbrella or light rain jacket , for that unexpected rain.
Dress code for the gentleman's, since this is not written anywhere, when you book a 4* or 5* Star resort, it is required for dinner to wear long slacks and shirt. ( the shirt short sleeve -casual is fine so no worry, no tie required ;-) you on vacation yahman) and no tank tops or shorts are allowed for evening dinner.
Tips gratitude's suppose be included, when booking all inclusive, but the the worker's do not receive any gratitude's in their paycheck or paid out, $1 tip is a lot of money for a Jamaican, ( a maid makes .67 cent an hour, Security Officers in the resort which is a good job for Jamaica, makes $300 a month), also take a lot of small bills for purchasing souvenirs, most places will not have change for big bills $5, $10 or $20's.
I hope this helps, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me, I will answer your questions in best of my knowledge. In my next hub, I will write more about Jamaica living conditions, cost's and how locals live.