There are eight international airports and five cruise destinations to travel too. There are also a number of smaller airports for private planes. When choosing which option to travel, just be sure to choose the one which takes you closest to your destination
WHAT DOCUMENTS ARE NEEDED TO TRAVEL TO THE DOMINICAN REPUBLIC
Visitors travelling to the Dominican Republic–including those from the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, the European Union, Mexico, many South American countries, Central America, Japan, Israel only need a passport with a minimum validity of the duration of their stay to enter the country. The cost of the 30-day tourist card previously paid separately, is now included in the airline ticket.
Visas that are issued in The Dominican Republic are tourist, business, work, student, and residency visas. Tourist visas can be issued for one or several entries and can be extended to 60 days. Any person, regardless of their nationality, can visit Dominican Republic if they are a legal resident or, if they have one of the following valid visas in their passport: United States, Canada, United Kingdom or Schengen. Travelers who do not have a passport or visa from countries listed above will need to apply for a visa. To issue a visa the passport needs to have a validity of at least six (6) months.
WHO IS EXEMPT FROM NEEDING A TOURIST CARD OR VISA?
- DR residents and Dominican nationals.
- Foreigners arriving from Argentina, Chile, South Korea, Ecuador, Israel, Japan, Peru, and Uruguay.
- Diplomatic and Consular staff with assigned missions in the country, while they remain on duty.
- Passengers using private, noncommercial aviation as long as the aircraft fulfills the following requirements: the trip must be for sport, leisure, tourism and business purposes, and the aircraft must not weigh more than thirty thousand (30,000) pounds and have a maximum capacity of 12 passengers.
WHAT IS THE TELEPHONE CODE FOR THE DOMINICAN REPUBLIC
The country code is +1. There are three area codes: 809, 829, and 849.
HOW SAFE IS IT?
The Dominican Republic is one of the countries with the lowest crime rates in the region. Common sense rules, however, and it’s best to take precautions just as you would when visiting any new country or large city in the world. Don’t flash your valuables, such as smartphones and cameras–use them discreetly when you are away from tourist areas. Leave the jewellery at home, dress simply, and don’t wander down isolated streets during the day or night.
WHAT IS THE LEGAL DRINKING AGE?
In the Dominican Republic, you can purchase and consume alcoholic beverages from the age of 18. This means that bars will not admit anyone under 18, even when accompanied by parents or an adult.
WHAT IS THE WEATHER LIKE AND WHEN IS THE RAINY SEASON?
The Dominican Republic is surrounded by over 1,600 km (1,000 miles) of coastline on its north, east, and southern borders, and the climate is tropical. Noontime temperatures range from 27°C to 32°C (80°F to 90°F ), and can fall to 18°C and 23°C (64°F to 73°F) during the winter. Because we are in the tropics, it is hard to say if and when there is a rainy season. Rains are usually short lasting.
WHEN IS THE HURRICANE SEASON?
The Atlantic hurricane season begins on June 1 and extends to November 30. In the Dominican Republic, these are the summer and early fall seasons when the weather is sunny and humid, with some cloudiness and occasional rain showers in the late afternoon or at night. Historically, most hurricanes have occurred in the month of September. But chances of one hitting are slim, and if it does occur, resort staff is trained in handling these situations, and resort buildings today are equipped to withstand hurricane force. You should also take note that the Dominican Republic is a large country–this means that while one coast may be affected, another may be completely unscathed by a storm.
CAN I TRAVEL WITH MY PET?
Prior to traveling with your cat or dog, call your carrier for up-to-date information. Know the cost of transporting your animal either on board or in the cargo load. Make your reservation early because some airlines restrict the number of pets that can be carried on a single flight.
A health certificate issued and signed by a licensed veterinarian must accompany each animal. The certificate needs to establish that the pet was examined within 30 days prior to departure and was found to be free of any infectious diseases, has been treated for external and internal parasites, and was vaccinated against rabies. The rabies vaccination certificate should include the date of vaccination, the established period of immunity, the product name, and serial number.
Upon arrival in the DR, ask to speak to the animal control official who will review your veterinary certificate(s), and fill in the official pet entry permission form required.
IS IT SAFE TO DRINK TAP WATER AT THE HOTELS?
No, it is not safe to drink the tap water in the DR, as it is not purified. Always drink bottled water, available in abundance at your resort or in the neighbourhood stores and supermarkets.
IS MY DRIVER’S LICENSE VALID IN THE DOMINICAN REPUBLIC?
Yes it is valid, but only for the duration of your legal stay–i.e. your 30-day tourist card or visa term.
IS IT BEST TO CHANGE MONEY AT THE AIRPORT?
This is fine for convenience only–to pay for your airport taxi and your first transactions. Otherwise, if you must exchange money, head to one of the main banks in the Dominican Republic–they use the Central Bank’s daily rate as the benchmark for exchange transactions, so the difference in the exchange rate between banks is negligible. Banks close at 5pm on weekdays, but most branches inside shopping malls remain open until around 7pm-8pm. ATM machines are available at supermarkets and shopping malls until later hours. For security reasons, it is best to use the exchange services or withdraw from ATMs as you go along.
I HAVE BOOKED MY VACATION IN DOMINICAN REPUBLIC AND I HAVE LIMITED MOBILITY. CAN I RENT A MOBILITY SCOOTER IN THE DR?
WHAT ARE THE TYPICAL FOODS THAT I SHOULD TRY?
Dominican food is very diverse. In the morning, sample mangú (green plantains, boiled and mashed) with eggs, fried cheese, and fried salami–the traditional Dominican breakfast. At midday, la bandera dominicana (Dominican flag) is the typical lunch plate with rice, red kidney beans, a meat stew, and tostones–mashed and double-fried green plantains. Also popular are chicharrón or pork rinds, locrio de pollo or fried rice with chicken, mofongo–plantain mound with deep fried pork or shrimp, and garlic, fish in coconut sauce, stewed crab and conch, roasted or stewed goat with boiled cassava, and sancocho (a seven-meat stew) accompanied by avocado for dinner. And of course, don’t forget to try cassava bread, and queso de hoja–an artisanal cow’s milk cheese.
Dominican desserts are popular as well–sample grated coconut in cream, sweet beans, sour milk desserts, orange sweets, milk sweets, papaya and pineapple desserts, and guava and cashew paste soaked in syrup. Tropical fruit juices abound, often made into fruit milkshakes or batidas: passion fruit, guava, pineapple, orange, strawberry, mango, mandarin, and papaya.
Don’t miss out on tasting fresh sugar cane juice from one of the fields located throughout the country. You should also sample Dominican coconut water from one of the hundreds of coconut groves and forest–you will love the Dominican coconut’s delicious, thick pulp.
ARE THERE CLOSED FISHING SEASONS IN THE DR?
Yes, the Dominican Republic imposes several closed fishing seasons. By law, it is prohibited for anyone to fish, consume, or possess the following marine species during these designated time periods:
Lobster: March 1- June 30
Crab: March 1 – June 30
Conch: July 1- Oct 31
This also means that these species should not be available for sale nor served at food establishments, markets, or other commercial locations during closed fishing months.
Fishing for parrotfish and sharks is strictly prohibited at all times, year round. Violating these laws will result in hefty fines and imprisonment.