Every now and then, we need to get away. Can you just picture yourself walking down a street lined with colonial-style architecture, while the scents of Caribbean food and the sounds of reggae flow by you?
It could be time to start planning a vacation in Barbados. Of course, if you want to go on such a trip, you’ll need to come up with a budget to make it possible.
How much does it cost to get away to an island paradise? That all depends on what you want to see and when you want to go.
But don’t worry — we’ve scored travel resources to find out just how much you’ll spend for anything from a bare-bones budget trip to a lavish week in paradise. Here’s how it all breaks down.
Average Trip to Barbados Cost in 2023
A week in Barbados costs around $4,000 for two people:
- Average Accommodation Cost: $150 a night
- Average Flight Cost: $500 per person
- Food, Drink & Activities: $100 per person per day
- Transportation: $75 per day
- Total Cost: $4,000
When people think of travel to the Caribbean, they usually assume everything will be expensive. But, Barbados has both high end and budget options.
How much you’ll spend will depend heavily on what you consider a travel must, and what areas you are willing to scrimp. We break down all the categories so you can figure out what your personal Barbados budget should be.
Barbados Trip Cost: Average by Item
When you are pricing out your getaway, it helps to have some idea of what your ideal vacation looks like. For instance, if you are all about the ease of an all-inclusive, you are likely to spend more than a scrappy DIY traveler who delves into every area.
Consider each of the categories below so you can decide where you want to spend the most and where you can save.
How much you’ll spend on your hotel or B&B depends a lot on what kinds of amenities you like when you travel. Be sure to double check whether the place you pick out has air conditioning. Most hotels do at this point, but it’s not universal.
If you are on a tight budget, there are options like the Meridian Inn at St. Lawrence Gap. The hotel is about a 10 minute walk from restaurants, shopping, and nightlife, and about a five minute stroll from Turtle Beach. Rooms are described as clean but basic.
You can choose between a studio with a large double bed or a twin room that has two singles. Rates start around $40 per night.
There are a bunch of all-inclusive resorts in Barbados. These properties typically offer food, drinks, entertainment, and a few activities for a set price. Most seem to be around $300 to $400 per day.
You will also find a bunch of midrange hotels with spacious rooms and easy beach access. These typically run around $100 to $150 a night.
Barbados is just a five-hour flight from New York, which makes it a surprisingly affordable destination. On average, you’ll spend about $450 to $600 per ticket depending on the airline you choose.
Surprisingly, direct flights don’t seem to increase your costs much. So, you are likely to have an easy trip to your tropical paradise no matter what time of year you decide to go.
The time of year also has a surprisingly low impact on the cost of your flight. Our researchers found tickets in December for as little as $250 (unless you want to be there at Christmas, which jacks the rates up to $700 or more).
Food, Drink & Activity Costs
Food prices vary greatly depending on where you want to eat. Many restaurants on the beaches are priced for tourists, so meals on the waterfront tend to be pricey.
As an example, if you want to have dinner at Champers in Christ Church, expect to pay around $35 for their oven-roasted barracuda. If you want to try authentic Bajan food, check out Tim’s Restaurant in Bridgetown. A full meal can be had for under $10.
If you have a bit of extra cash, consider the fish and macaroni pie at Oistins, which will cost around $15. Many travelers cut their costs a bit by shopping at the grocery store and preparing their own meals.
Commenters online seem to agree that Trimart in the south and Jordan’s on the west coast have the best prices. Massy’s is the place to go if you want specialty items, but their prices for everyday foods tend to be higher.
Chances are, your hotel will have easy access to the beach. Beaches are public and free to visit. You are also allowed to bring coolers with you. There are no restrictions on bringing your own alcoholic beverages.
Massy’s offers a case of 24 bottles of locally-brewed Banks beer for under $30 US. If you’re economizing, you may wish to go for rum. A one-liter bottle costs around $15 US.
Barbados native and redditor AffectionateWeb7803 suggests a visit to the Barbados Wildlife Reserve. The reserve feeds around 50 wild monkeys, along with assorted deer, tortoises, and birds. During feeding times, the animals will come very close to visitors.
This close encounter costs around $15 per person. Barbados is a rum-producing country, and famous distilleries like Mount Gay offer tours and tastings.
Mount Gay offers a cocktail class for those wishing to learn a bit more. You can buy tickets for around $40 per person. At the high end, they also offer a premium tasting experience for just over $100 per person.
Catamaran day cruises are a popular attraction. These typically involve around six hours on the water and come with lunch and drinks included.
You’ll be taken to reefs where you can get in the water to swim with local sealife, including sea turtles. Expect to pay around $100 per person. Harrison’s Cave is said to be one of the “seven wonders of Barbados.”
The famous attraction gives you a chance to get out of the tropical heat and into a place where you can see crystal-clear streams and underground waterfalls. You can go by foot or by tram. Admission to the caves is around $60.
Whether you’ll need a car or can rely on buses and cabs to get around depends on where you are staying. The south coast has a lot of attractions clustered in one area, making it easier to get around without a car.
On the west coast, a car may be more helpful, although buses are also readily available. It costs around $75 a day to rent a car in Barbados. You’ll also need to pay for a visitor’s driver’s license, but the cost is only $5.
Barbados has both municipal and privately owned buses. The blue buses are the government-run ones, which cost a little less than $2 a ride. Make sure you have local currency and exact change, as these buses do not accept foreign coins or give change.
Redditors say to check out the privately owned yellow buses as well. The prices can vary, but are typically in line with the prices you’ll pay on the public bus.
Things to Consider
- Think carefully when driving. Barbados uses British driving rules, so you will drive on the left side of the road.
- If you find a taxi driver you like, get their number so you can contact them directly for rides. They’re usually willing to schedule rides in advance and will negotiate multi-hour fares.
- The value of the Barbados dollar is fixed to the US dollar at a rate of $1.98 BDS to $1 US. This rate doesn’t change, which makes planning very convenient.
Frequently Asked Questions
How much money should I take for a week in Barbados?
Bring around $350 per person with you for spending money on a week long trip to Barbados. This will cover meals and drinks out. Expect to spend more money some days and less on others.
Do they accept US dollars in Barbados?
Most businesses and restaurants will happily accept US dollars as well as Bajan dollars (BBD). However, you are likely to get a better price when you use BBD. You should also expect to receive any change in BBD instead of USD.
What is the cheapest time of year to visit Barbados?
The low season in Barbados runs from July to October. At this time of year, you’ll typically find fewer tourists and lower costs at restaurants and hotels.
Is 7 days in Barbados enough?
Seven days should give you enough time to see one or two destinations on the island while leaving enough time for a beach day or two. However, if you have more time available, longer vacations can be even better. Some travel experts say it takes as long as three weeks to truly experience the island nation.
So, What Is the Average Trip Cost for Barbados?
|🛎️ Average Accommodation Cost||$150 per night|
|✈️ Average Flight Cost||$500 per person|
|🍽️ Food, Drink & Activities||$100 per person, per day|
|🚕 Transportation||$75 per day|
|💲 Total Cost||$4,000|
What your average cost will be is a hugely elastic number. If you only look at your hotel room as a place to crash at the end of an adventure-filled day, you can spend a lot less than someone looking for a week of luxury at an all-inclusive resort.
Pick and choose what you want from a vacation to figure out what is the best price for you. On average, you’ll spend around $4,000 for a Barbados escape that includes a bit of upscale dining and an excursion or two.
Barbados is a great place to enjoy a relaxed pace of life and take in some great culture, music, and dining. Figure out what your island paradise fantasy includes and put together the trip elements to make it happen. Happy travels!