Honeymoon advice: Sandals Montego Bay?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Brett_H, Mar 16, 2002.

  1. Brett_H

    Brett_H Second Unit

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    All,
    Seems like you can find all sorts of good advice in here, so what the hell...
    I need help! I'm getting married in late September and we're having a bit of a hard time deciding what to do for our honeymoon. We really like the looks of the Sandals resorts, and we were thinking St. Lucia would be the way to go, but airfare is a bit prohibitive. I'm talking in the $800 - $900 per person range. We're paying for the entire wedding on our own and as such, the honeymoon has to be done on a budget... so now we're looking into Sandals Montego Bay or the other Sandals on Jamaica.
    What I'd like to know is:
    • Has anyone been to the Sandals in Montego Bay?
    • How was it?
    • Would you go again?
    • Possibly the most important: When is the best time to book? We'd like to go from Sept 30 - Oct 7. They're having a 30% off sale for the rooms right now, but I still think I could get a bettter deal on airfare.
    • Any suggestions for a decent travel agency in NE Ohio or online?
    Any other general advice would be welcomed. We're leaning towards Jamaica at this point due to cheaper airfare and accomodations. (The "Couples" resort also caught our eye, opinions on that?)
    For what it's worth, I don't golf so that's not a consideration. We're just looking for an all-inclusive resort where we can lay by the pool or on the beach and eat/drink until we get our fill!
    Thanks!
    -Brett.
     
  2. SteveA

    SteveA Supporting Actor

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    I'm getting married in mid-October and am also researching honeymoon options. From what I've heard, the Sandals resorts in Jamaica are pretty nice. I don't think you can go wrong. One important thing to keep in mind is that you'll be travelling during peak hurricane season - and Jamaica is right smack in the middle of Hurricane alley. Are you willing to risk a possible disruption to your honeymoon plans?

    I'm right now leaning toward a 7-day cruise from Baltimore to Bermuda. I figure Bermuda is far enough north for hurricanes to be less of a threat than in the Carribean.
     
  3. Brett_H

    Brett_H Second Unit

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    Steve,
    We did some research on hurricanes, and according to http://www.aoml.noaa.gov/hrd/tcfaq/tcfaqG.html#G13
    (If that picture doesn't work, go to the above link and click on October.)
    Looks like there have been between 4 and 6 named storms in the Montego Bay area between 1944 and 1999. I think I'm willing to risk it...
    Oh, an as far as cruises go, I think we've ruled them out. It would be a first for both of us and we're a little apprehensive about it.
    Thanks for the reply.
    -Brett.
     
  4. Robert Marc

    Robert Marc Stunt Coordinator

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    brett, my wife and i honeymooned at the couples resort in negril for a week in march,2000. if you like the beach scene,(as my wife and i do) i would suggest that you check out a resort on the negril side of the island. from speaking to people who have stayed in ochos rios and montego, the beaches are nicer in negril. the couples in negril is located in bloody bay and is beautiful.it seemed to be a notch above the sandals in negril.the food was excellant and the liquor is top shelf. remember to bring a nice shirt/pants as alot of the resorts(couples included) have a fine restaurant with a dress code. i was almost embarrassed by the attention we received there. it was decadent. another plus for couples is that, as the name implies, it is for couples only. no singles, no kids. couples also has free scuba diving that you do not have to be certified to do if your interested in that sort of thing(i did, it was one of the coolest things i have done). you can also water ski, sail, glass bottom boat etc. all included!!!we were going to go back in march 2002, but my brother is getting married in cozumel in november and we could not afford to do both. in sum, we had a great time and we will go there again. by the way, we waited two months to go on our honeymoon, i liked it that way, it was alot less stressful. mail me if have any questions. rob p.s. don't worry about hurricanes, your going early enough that it shouldn't be a problem.
     
  5. John_Bonner

    John_Bonner Supporting Actor

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    Brett,

    My wife and I spent our honeymoon at Sandals in Montego Bay. There are two Sandals resorts in Montego Bay. There is Sandals Montego Bay which is right next to the airport. There is also Sandals Royal Jamaican which is about 10 minutes from the airport. This is where we stayed.

    It was awesome. The resort had just opened the year we went (1995) so everything was brand new. We lucked out and had a room that faced the ocean, what a great view. There are plenty of activities but you can also go on day trips to other parts of the island like Dunns River Falls. You have to pay extra for the day trips otherwise everything is included in the package. All of your meals, drinks, activities, shows, etc are paid for. The staff are very friendly and meal-wise they definately cater to Americans. I'm a picky eater and not very adventurous about trying new foods but at the resort all of the restaurants serve the same foods you'd see in any US restaurant.

    My brother and his wife went to the same resort (based on our recommendation) for their honeymoon in May of 2000. They were also very happy and would go back again.

    I think Sandals Royal Jamaican may cost a bit more than Sandals Montego Bay, but definately check out the Royal Jamaican resort.

    Hope this helps.
     
  6. DaveBB

    DaveBB Supporting Actor

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    Wow, talk about timing; I just got back from Sandals Negril last night. I'm not sure how much more expensive Negril is than Montego Bay but I can defenitely recommend Sandals Negril.

    Talking to many people over the week it seems like Negril and Royal Jamaican are the two top picks. One gal we talked to at the bar is a vacation junkie and has been to every Sandals resort in Jamaica and easily puts Negril at the top.

    Sandals Negril was very good; beautiful beach, calm water, good food and drinks. The only downside is the almost two hour bus ride on bad roads.

    Sandals Montego Bay is right next to the Sangster International Airport so it looks like it could be noisy. Then again you're not wasting time traveling to the resort by land.

    We looked at the two St. Lucia Sandals properties and also couldn't do it because of money. Both are supposed to be very good. I'd like to maybe give one of those a try next time.

    Book now and see if your travel agent sells travel cancelation/price protection insurance. It cost us about $60; if the price goes down after you book then you get the better price. That didn't happen with me but I have no problem having that peace of mind.
     
  7. Jason Boucher

    Jason Boucher Stunt Coordinator

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    What type of prices are we talking for Sandals? Per couple, per night.
     
  8. Jeffrey_Jones

    Jeffrey_Jones Second Unit

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    Hello,
    My fiancé and I will be going to Couples Negril (http://www.couples.com/two.htm) in June for our honeymoon. I have spoken with a ton of people about vacations in Jamaica and the consensus was to stay with Couples. They are an all-inclusive for couples only and they avoid being cheesy which is very important to us. I have read many negative reviews about Sandals resorts but I have no direct experience. I can only assume that they provide a great vacation...and the bad reviews are the exception. The fact that I did not find any negative reviews about Couples...and their wonderful website, sealed the deal for us.
    Have fun...no matter where you go; if you have the right attitude, you will have the time of your life.
    Thanks,
    Jeff
     
  9. Brett_H

    Brett_H Second Unit

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    All,
    Thanks for the replies so far!
    Dave:
    To be honest, I'd never heard of the price protection, but I'll look into it for sure. Do you recall if it was only for the room or airfare as well?
    Jason:
    Check out their web site, I believe they have prices listed there for all of their resorts and the different room levels. www.sandals.com
    Jeff:
    Thanks for the heads-up on Couples Negril. We'd looked at that one, and it really did look nice. We'll have to run some numbers and see how they come out. (We really are concerned about the cheese factor as well...)
    Robert:
    Thanks for the info, don't be surprised to see an email from me sometime!
    Thanks and keep 'em coming! Does anyone know of a good "opinion" or general travel website aside from the usual expedia or travelocity?
    -Brett.
     
  10. Tim Markley

    Tim Markley Screenwriter

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    My wife and I spent our honeymoon in Sandals Montego Bay in 1997. The resort was nice but nothing spectacular. Our room was very small and didn't have any kind of a view. The food was OK but there wasn't a lot of variety. Lots of jerk chicken. [​IMG] The people that worked at the resort were all very nice and we were treated very well.
    The one thing that I really didn't like was the fact that you're basically stuck at the resort. They have activities that you can go on but you can't just wander around on your own. They even warn you not to leave the resort without a large group. My wife and I and another couple ventured out of the resort one day looking for gifts to take home. We didn't get very far before we were surrounded by about 10 people who were trying to coerce us into buying stuff from them. One of them even put some drugs into my hand and then demanded money from me. We ended up buying some bracelets from them just to get out of there. It was a little scary. Wherever we went in Jamaica, we were constantly harassed to buy stuff. My wife was even accused by one lady of not liking Jamaicans because she wouldn't buy something from her.
    Personally, I wouldn't recommend Jamaica. I'm glad that I went but I won't go back. I'd rather go to Cancun or Hawaii. Just my opinion. [​IMG]
     
  11. Brett_H

    Brett_H Second Unit

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    All,

    I just wanted to give a little update on the situation. My fiancée and I just got back from what we originally thought would just be a trip to check out a few travel agents. Well, one thing led to another and we ended up booking our honeymoon!

    We settled on the Sandals Royal Caribbean. We originally thought we could only afford one of the lower end rooms, but someone somewhere must have made a typo (or else there was a killer promo running) and we ended up getting a SMOKING deal on the "top of the line" Beachfront Royal Suite room. Needless to say, we're very excited, and we can't wait for Sept 30th!

    Thanks for all the opinions!

    -Brett.
     

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