VacationWiser Guide to Puerto Rico

VacationWiser.com Guide to Puerto Rico

(Informationcourtesy of www.discoverpuertorico.com)

Puerto Rico Basics

Before diving into everything that’s great about Puerto Rico, let’s cover some basics:

·        Getting there:

The largest and most accessible airport is the Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport, commonly known as the San Juan Airport (SJU). Located in Isla Verde – in the Carolina district – this airport is just minutes away from San Juan. More than 20 commercial airlines fly in and out of the city every day.

  • Puerto Rico has 80 daily nonstop flights to major cities throughout the United States.

  • There are nonstop flights available to Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Tampa, Jacksonville, West Palm Beach, Orlando, Charlotte, Philadelphia, Hartford, Washington D.C., Baltimore, Newark, New York (JFK), Boston, Chicago (ORD), Houston, Dallas, Atlanta, Detroit, Minneapolis, ​​​​Cincinnati, Raleigh-Durham, and Pittsburgh.


  • The other airport with international flights is the Rafael Hernández Airport in Aguadilla, in the northwest region of Puerto Rico. Comparably smaller than the SJU, this hangar receives commercial flights from major airlines such as Jet Blue, National Airlines, Spirit Airlines, United Airlines, and private charters.


·        GETTING AROUND: Island is 100 miles long by 35 miles wide.  Options forgetting around San Juan include taxi, Uber, buses, and Tren Urbano (lightrail).  There are also a variety of private shuttle rentals and local tour company options for groups who require customized travel arrangements. If you plan on leaving the metro area,choosing to rent a car, van, or bus (depending on group size) will greatly simplify your travel.

  • Most major car rental companies have a presence in Puerto Rico. Hertz, Avis/Budget, Enterprise, Alamo, Thrifty, National, and others are conveniently located at Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport in San Juan.


  • Rental cars are already equipped with Auto Expreso stickers, which is a prepaid service for paying tolls that is more convenient than stopping to pay each toll with cash. The car rental company will add a surcharge to the renter for tolls after the car is returned.


·        What to Wear: (courtesy of https://getaway.10best.com/13399987/what-to-wear-in-puerto-rico)

Overall, Puerto Rico has a mild tropical climate suited for shorts and short-sleeved tops any day of the year. Light colors and quick-drying breathable fabrics provide comfort in a climate that can reach into the 90's. Combined with humidity of 65 to 79 percent, temperatures might feel as hot as 112 degrees F or hotter according to the heat index. In San Juan, you can count on the temperature never dipping below 65 degrees with about 56 inches of rain annually.


If you're planning to hike in the El Yunque Caribbean National Forest, you might want to bring pants with zip-off legs, a fleece hoodie and breathable rain gear with taped seams. Pico del Este in the forest gets more than 174 inches of rain per year, and temperatures dip into the 50's from January through March.


Puerto Rico's rich nightlife includes nightclubs and upscale restaurants, so pack a nice cocktail dress or two and a set of versatile high heels. Tuck in some sassy flats that will fit in your purse to change into when your feet get tired. Men should wear slacks with a collared shirt such as a tropical print shirt, camp shirt or traditional guayabera. Top off your outfit with a pava hat or Panama fedora for some extra panache.


·        TIME ZONE: Located in Atlantic Standard Time Zone (GMT-4).  1 hour ahead of the East Coast.  Puerto Rico does not change clocks for Daylight Savings Time.


·        Location: Puerto Rico is the smallest island of the Greater Antilles in the Caribbean, located east of the Dominican Republic.


·        Entry Requirements: Since Puerto Rico is a territory of the United States, locals are American citizens and American travelers can enter the island without having to carry a passport.


·        Climate: The climate in Puerto Rico is warm and tropical (i.e. expect an afternoon shower during the summer months). The temperature varies between 70 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit throughout the year. In the central mountainous area,it can go down to about 60 degrees during the months of December and January.


·        Banking and Currency: The currency used in Puerto Rico is the U.S. dollar.


·        Language: Puerto Rico is an unincorporated territory of the United States where the official languages are Spanish and English. You may come across people who speak a mixture of both, or “Spanglish,” given the influence of the U.S. on the island.


·        COMMUNICATIONS: American travelers do not need to opt for international plans to make calls since their phones will work perfectly on the island. In Puerto Rico, there is 4G LTE network. In remote areas of the island, cellular service and data coverage can be spotty, so always plan ahead if you're going into the mountains, for example


·        ELECTRICITY: Same as US


·        DRINKING WATER: Puerto Rico is part of the United States and has to meet the same water quality standards as the rest of the country. The water is safe to drink, even tap water.


·        TIPPING: Generally, same as US.  Bars- $1 per drink, Luggage - $1 to $2 per bag, Restaurants – 15% of bill, taxis -15% of fare. Same restaurants may automatically add a service charge to the bill.



·        Distance from Puerto Rico Airport:



   Drive Time

Distance in Miles

Old San Juan

13.3 km

18 minutes

El Yunque Rainforest

38.8 km

33 minutes

Pinones, Loiza

11.9 km

19 minutes

La Parguera, Lajas

175 km

2 hour 3 minutes

Vieques and Culebra

87.7 km (including boat ride)

2 hr 22 min


The island is composed of 78 municipalities that belong to six different regions, each with a unique identity that manifests itself through the local cuisine, distinct cultural activities, tourist attractionsadventure tours, and other unique attributes. Experiencing more of the island during your visit will allow you to discover interesting food,beautiful off-the-beaten-path beaches, exciting festivals, and more. In this section you'll find lots of reasons to explore beyond San Juan and discover Puerto Rico. 

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