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Best Time to Go to Aruba: When is Hurricane Season?

Aruba beaches are scorching hot at times during the summer.
Aruba beaches are scorching hot at times during the summer. | Source

The best time to go to Aruba is most months of the year except during the peak of the Caribbean hurricane season.

Aruba weather makes this southern Caribbean island one of the most attractive vacation spots in the region.

That's because the island of Aruba lies at the southern edge of the Caribbean hurricane belt. So it avoids most of the storms and hurricanes that roll through the Caribbean from the Atlantic Ocean each year.

As a result, the best time to visit the island is most months of the year. But some months are better than others.

The annual hurricane season officially starts June 1 and runs through November 30, although the months with the most active storms and hurricanes usually are September and October.

Aruba lies 15 miles off the coast of Venezuela. It is one of the ABC islands of Aruba, Bonaire and Curaçao.

These islands of the Netherland Antilles draw relatively more tourists in the fall than most other Caribbean destinations because of weather conditions.

However, they are not entirely immune to bad weather because storms and hurricanes do pass nearby - and sometimes through - these three islands on rare occasions.

Hurricane Season: Matthew Strikes

The arrival of Hurricane Matthew in the south central Caribbean Sea is a rare and surprising event for the ABC islands of Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao.

The ABC islands are usually popular in September -- the worst month of the Caribbean hurricane season -- because they lie on the edge of the hurricane belt. They rarely experience tropical storms or hurricanes.

Not this year. The islands are experiencing high winds and heavy rainfall this week as a result of Hurricane Matthew.

The event shows that the ABC islands have some protection from bad weather, but they are not totally immune. Visit them in September at your own risk.

Aruba Tips on Video

Best Times to Go

Many people will claim any time of the year is a good time to spend a week in Aruba or cruise to Aruba.

I can assure you from multiple visits to the island that any time is not the best time to go.

Aruba's average high temperature during the day reaches the 80s most months of the year and often into the 90s during the summer.

But water temperatures can become a bit cool in the winter months of January and February. (My family found this out during a visit in February when few people went into the water. I found the water too cool for swimming in the mornings and tolerable in the afternoons.)

Go then if you want to get away from northern winters, but know that the water is often uncomfortable for lengthy swims in the water. The odds of good weather are high. But the weather is less than ideal during this time of year.

The rain chart below shows the number of rain days and total rainfall by inches. It reveals that there is slightly more rainfall in October through December. That means the best months to go are March through September.

Average Rainfall by Month

Scott Bateman / World Weather Organization. © Scott Bateman
Scott Bateman / World Weather Organization. © Scott Bateman

The chart above shows the total rain days (the number of days each month it rains) and the total rain inches per month.

The rain days are the blue columns and the rain inches are in red.

Rain is not normally a factor in Aruba because the island is arid and averages only 16 inches a year. Rainfall reaches more than three inches in October through December, but the totals are still low compared to the rest of the region.

For January through September, rain averages only about one inch a month.

Despite only a modest climb in rainfall in September, Aruba has a steep drop off in visits because of the fear of Caribbean hurricanes.

The chart also shows that someone who goes to Aruba in March through May will have a 7 percent chance of seeing rain. Someone who goes in December will have a 37 percent chance.

Aruba Temperatures by Month

© Scott Bateman
© Scott Bateman

Average Air Temperatures

Aruba has one of the warmest climates in the Caribbean with an average monthly high temperature of nearly 89 degrees Fahrenheit, says the Meteorological Service of Netherland Antilles and Aruba.

The average monthly high temperatures rise above 90 degrees in August and September, making those two months less comfortable for shopping or hiking.

Inland temperatures with protection from strong trade winds will be warmer than coastal temperatures, even though the island is small.

The average low temperature is 78 degrees and varies from this average only about two degrees each month.

Poll: Best Months to Visit Aruba

What month do you want to go? If you have been there, when did you go?

See results

Average Water Temperatures

For people who like swimming and sunning, the Aruba water temperatures average 81 degrees and again vary slightly each month.

During the winter, the water is usually warm enough for swimming, but sometimes it is cool enough in the morning to keep swimmers in the water only for short periods of time.

Water temperatures almost always hover between the average daily high temperatures and the average daily lows.

Water temperatures stay comfortable almost year round except sometimes in the early mornings during the winter months.

They average in the high 70s Fahrenheit and sometimes climb into the low 80s, which is balmy.

Palm Beach, Aruba is warm and dry throughout most of the year. Credit: Scott Bateman
Palm Beach, Aruba is warm and dry throughout most of the year. Credit: Scott Bateman

Aruba Hurricane Season

Aruba, Bonaire and Curaçao lie on the southern fringes of the hurricane belt.

On average, only one major tropical cyclone passes over or just south of the islands every 100 years, according to the Meteorological Service of the Netherland Antilles and Aruba.

A tropical cyclone passes within about 100 miles of the islands once every four years. The storms mostly pass to the north without causing serious bad weather. But they bring an increase in rain and cloud cover.

The odds of being in Aruba at the same time as a nearby cyclone are extremely small. Although visiting the island in September or October during the height of the Caribbean hurricane season increases the risk of experiencing bad weather, the chances of decent weather are still fairly high.

Weather Impact on Visitors by Month

The above chart shows visitors to Aruba by month. Note the low point in September and the high points in March and December. © Scott Bateman
The above chart shows visitors to Aruba by month. Note the low point in September and the high points in March and December. © Scott Bateman | Source

Caribbean tourism has definite peaks and valleys that depend heavily on the weather and on family schedules based on when children are on vacation from school.

Aruba is no different from most destinations in that the fall months usually have the lowest number of visitors because of concerns about storms and hurricanes.

The chart above clearly shows that visits to Aruba reach a low point in September because of the risk of more rain.

But smart travelers also know that it's often a time of deeper discounts in hotels and resorts, and they will look for last-minute vacation deals while keeping an eye on the weather forecast at the same time.

A few other months are worth considering because they have fewer tourists and decent weather, such as May and especially June, which has one of the lowest levels of vacationers out of the entire year.

Aruba's skies stay mostly blue with few clouds. Copyright Scott Bateman
Aruba's skies stay mostly blue with few clouds. Copyright Scott Bateman

Aruba Weather in ...

January

Aruba weather in January is warm enough and dry enough to make this month the most popular time of the year to visit the island. Visitors may find the sea water cool at times despite average high air temperatures of 86 degrees Fahrenheit or 30 Celsius. Rainfall averages only one inch.

February

The next month is slightly warmer and just as dry. One February visitor found that the sea was cool enough to keep most people out of it. Some currents were comfortable and others were chilly.

March

Spring break from schools increases tourism to the second highest level of the year. But Aruba weather in March is nearly the same as February except for average rainfall that drops close to zero. It is a bone-dry month.

April

Temperatures rise again in April while total visitors decline. It’s the best month to visit so far during the year because of warming weather, warming seawater and fewer crowds on the beaches.

May

The month of May is another good time to visit Aruba because it has more of the same as April. Temperatures are warmer and crowds are even lighter than the previous month.

June

Heat starts to become a factor for Aruba. Temperatures in June average more than 90 degrees Fahrenheit or 32 Celsius for the first time of the year. The arid interior is becoming hot and uncomfortable during the afternoons, which makes land activities less enjoyable. Land lovers may want to avoid this month and the next two. June also has the second lowest number of visitors during the year.

July

July is the third most popular month to visit Aruba. It has weather nearly the same as June with hot temperatures and little rainfall. Heat once again is a factor for land activities, especially in the arid and treeless Arikok National Park where most of the land excursions take place.

August

Average temperatures stay above 90 degrees Fahrenheit in August. Tourism declines versus July. Beach sand is scorching at times, but the seawater feels like a warm bath.

September

The least popular month of the year to visit Aruba has weather much like the previous three with hot temperatures and an average of only one inch of rain. September is the worst month of the Caribbean hurricane season, so visitors avoid most of the region. It also is the hottest month of the year.

October

If Aruba has a rainy season, it begins in October and brings an average of only three inches of rain. The total is similar to many other islands during their dry season. Some visitors avoid the island because October is the second most active month of the region’s hurricane season.

November

The second month of the rainy season usually delivers another three inches of rain. The number of days that it rains during the month jumps to 11.

December

Aruba weather in December continues the same trend as the previous two months. Rainfall is higher than normal at three inches. The average high temperature is 87 Fahrenheit or 31 Celsius and warm enough for pleasant days on the beach. But the month has the highest number of days that it usually rains at an average of nearly 12 out of 31 total.

My Own Experiences

Multiple visits to Aruba have made me a believer in Aruba's reputation for great weather. I can tell you that the island's interior is hot during the day, so it's best to plan shopping or land-based excursions in the morning when temperatures are cooler. Beaches also get hot in the afternoon, but they have the added advantage of cooling trade winds.

Final Thoughts

Vacation planners who want to improve their chances of good weather should look at March through August because of comfortable temperatures and lower chances of rain, storms or hurricanes.

August and September will be more uncomfortable because of warmer temperatures. October, November and December have higher chances of rain and the rare chance of either a tropical storm or hurricane.

Visitors can rely on warm temperatures throughout the year. But they can't always count on avoiding storms and hurricanes, especially in the fall.

It is highly unlikely that a hurricane or storm will pass over Aruba. It is slightly more likely that one will pass nearby and even more likely that the island will have fewer dry days than usual during the fall months.

© 2011 Scott Bateman

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Comments 23 comments

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promisem 11 days ago Author

Hello, Heidi. Aruba is a great choice for your daughter because of the weather, beaches and things to do. Although rainfall is light throughout most of the year, I suggest she try to avoid October through December because it rains more than usual during those months.


Heidi 11 days ago

My daughter is considering Aruba for their honeymoon. They are getting married in May but would like to honeymoon later in the year (2017). Any suggestions or tips you can give before they plan? Thank you!


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promisem 8 weeks ago Author

Glenn, I hope you do have a chance to go. It's our favorite destination in the Caribbean and attracts more repeat visitors than any other island. Thanks for your comments.


Glenn Stok profile image

Glenn Stok 8 weeks ago from Long Island, NY

What a wonderful article! Very well organized and complete with tons of useful information.

I never went to Aruba yet, but it is on my bucket list. Thanks to your review, I now know that I should consider going in late Spring or Summer. I would never have thought that way before reading your hub.


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promisem 2 months ago Author

Didi, Caribbean rainfall is usually brief unless it's a hurricane or tropical storm. You will probably be OK.


Didi 2 months ago

I will be flying on 10/13/16 for a week, but it looks like it will be raining every day:(((. Does it rain there all day?


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promisem 2 months ago Author

A hurricane doesn't seem likely right now. A tropical storm with a lot of rain is the main concern for Aruba. Unfortunately, the rainfall potention looks high for the next five or six days.


Ash 2 months ago

Hey!

Heard about a prediction of hurricane in the island(Aruba) in couple days. Any idea how bad it could be and what precautions to take?


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promisem 3 months ago Author

Hi, Maria. Your odds are pretty good. September is usually a good month for Aruba and the worst month of the year for the rest of the Caribbean.

If you experience disappointing weather, it's more likely to show up in the form of more clouds than rain.


Maria 3 months ago

Hi, we're planning to go last week of September thru Oct3rd of this year. Hope it won't rain that much.


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promisem 8 months ago Author

Hi, Nicole. September is the worst time to visit the Caribbean because of the annual hurricane season.

But if you want to visit anywhere in the Caribbean during September, Aruba is your best choice because it has the lowest average rainfall during the month of any major island.

I can't predict what kind of weather you will face during the first week of September. I can tell you that on average the island experiences about two inches of rain during the month. The odds of low rainfall during that first week are good.


Nicolemarie22 8 months ago

Hello. I am booking a trip for a week, weather will be ok first week September? I don't mind the heat!!


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promisem 16 months ago Author

I envy you being able to go two full weeks! Yes, it should be quite relaxing. You may get a spot of rain now and then, but otherwise the weather there should be better than most of the Caribbean during that time of year. Good luck and have an enjoyable trip.


3catscreate@gmail.com 16 months ago

My husband and i are going to Aruba september 5th thru the 19th ,2015. With what i have read hopefully we will have an uneventful and relaxing trip weatherwise.


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promisem 16 months ago Author

Ivana, Aruba is very dry, but it actually does have a rainy season from October through December, even though it's light compared to other Caribbean destinations.

There are not guarantees, but you should have better odds in August. Good luck!


Ivana Macchio 16 months ago

The first time we went to Aruba was in October. It was warm but not unbearable. The little breeze is always welcomed. We did have a very rainy day the day we left to come home. It rained cats and dogs and the street were all flooded. I guess they do not have drainage for such storms. That rain fell on our last day as we were headed to the airport so it did matter or ruin our wonderful vacation. We are going back early August and hopefully we won't see rain. Can't wait.


Vicisti 17 months ago

Thank you for the info!


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promisem 2 years ago Author

Thanks, Kate. My wife convinced many of her relatives to go, and they loved it too. If you do convince your fiancé to go, try to stay either at Palm Beach (great hotels, beach, shopping and dining) or at either Renaissance hotels in Oranjestad, which have access to their own private island.


Kate Mcguire profile image

Kate Mcguire 2 years ago from London, United Kingdom

Extremely useful hub :) I really have to convince my fiancé that we must visit Aruba. It would be nice to exchange our London weather for a few days on those sandy beaches.


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promisem 2 years ago Author

Hi, Gareth. If you are limited to those dates, Aruba is one of your safest bets in the Caribbean.

Yes, the odds of rain go up in September and October, but it helps to keep in perspective that three inches of rain in Aruba in a single month is actually quite low compared to everywhere else in the region.

We have now been there four times and had great success with the weather. The odds are in your favor.


Gareth 2 years ago

I would love to visit Aruba but my holiday dates are end of September and first 2 weeks of October, Would you avoid at this time due to hurricane season or am i just being too safe???


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promisem 4 years ago Author

We've been there twice and experienced the same thing. It's our favorite place in the Caribbean. But it's not just the weather. It's also the beaches, shopping and dining.


Kelly Habbas profile image

Kelly Habbas 4 years ago from Dallas

We visited Aruba in May 2011... The weather was perfect, not a drop of rain and very hot that with just enough breeze to keep you cool.... the water was as calm as a swimming pool, it was mesmerizing.... So incredibly tranquil and clear, and the water was lukewarm, with the exception of an umbrella, it is by far the most beautiful island we have ever seen....

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    Scott Bateman (promisem)130 Followers
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    Scott Bateman is a professional journalist and online publisher. He writes often about travel, health and personal finance.



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