What is the best time of year to visit Jamaica?
This may seem simple to answer as most people want perfect weather with no rain and limited clouds, not too many people, and just the right temperatures but there are pros and cons to each season in Jamaica so keep reading if you want to find out the best time to of year to swim, sun bath and explore everything that Jamaica has to offer.
There really is no bad time of year to go so if you’re already booked, keep reading to find out what you can expect.
Consider the cost
First, if you are on a tight budget then travel from summer to early fall to maximize your budget.
Prices per night are much higher from November-April as this is the High Season in Jamaica and Couples does not offer many specials during this time.
Rates are the lowest in August and September and typically come with great sales.
Read out Blog Post on how to get the best deal.
Consider the Heat and Water Temperature
If you don’t mind the heat and want to spend long days in the water swimming and floating then consider going in the summer months.
This time of year is very, very hot but the ocean is a wonderful, warm temperature perfect for spending most of the day in and around the ocean.
If you plan on diving and snorkeling, this is also a great time of year to go.
However, do know that by 1:00 in the afternoon in summer it is very, very hot and you will be seeking shade.
April-May and September-October have more mild temperatures, but are also part of the rainy season.
By November, the water temperature is approaching the cold side. Add a strong wind and some clouds and you have days where you need a towel to stay warm and excursions like Dunn’s River or the Blue Hole may be too cold to swim in comfortably.
April, May, September and October are considered the “rainy season” in Jamaica.
However, we have been during these months and only once have we had a day where it rained all day.
April and May have very consistent afternoon showers, but never a total wash out.
September and October are part of the Hurricane season and in our experience, the weather during these months is either picture perfect, with great temperatures and little rain – or – mimics May with afternoon showers.
If you are traveling during this time, you will want to get up early to maximize your sunlight hours as the clouds and rain usually arrive in the afternoon. In Negril, you can set your watch to the afternoon rain!
But rain should not ruin your vacation – read our Blog Post on the rain in Jamaica.
Hurricane season lasts from June-November in the Caribbean. If you are traveling during this time you should purchase travel insurance and watch the NOAA weather report before your trip.
Jamaica rarely gets affected by hurricanes and tropical storms so this should not alter your plans – just something to be on the look out for prior to departing.
Read our Blog Post on Hurricanes in Jamaica.
Toward the end of November, the temperature and humidity drops a bit, the rain tapers off and the winds start to pick up.
This will last until about mid February.
During this time you can expect days where water sports activities are trimmed back and there are days when Tower Island will close completely.
The ocean may also be a bit on the cold side so swimming at night or early morning may not be very comfortable.
If tower island closes, Couples will normally allow Au Natural guests to trade places to Couples Sans Souci.
However, this time of year has little rain, fewer bugs and is wonderful for staying outside all day – especially the evenings, and you won’t mind getting dressed up for dinner. You also won’t sweat through your shirt on the way to the beach!
Consider the Crowd
Hoping to have the place to yourselves? The off-season starts in August and lasts through October. During this time the resorts are at 50% capacity so it can feel as if you are completely alone at times.
During this time the resort may scale back their nighttime entertainment/activities a bit but everything else – including buffet nights, water sports and facilities will still be fully available.