When is the best time to visit the Bahamas? The short answer is that anytime you can do it is the best time.

The long answer depends on what is most important to you. Are you going to play in the water? Are you averse to risking schedule changes or cancellations? Do you travel to the Bahamas because it’s cheap? Do you want a party atmosphere or peace and quiet? The answers to these questions will determine the best month or season for your Bahamas cruise.

Considering the weather, price and crowds, I consider November to be the best time to go to the Bahamas. Here’s how I came to that conclusion. However, you may decide that the second month is the best time for you to visit the islands.

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Best time depends on the weather

Although some travelers will tell you that January is the best month to visit the Bahamas, I have personally experienced cold weather there in both December and January. Remember, the Bahamas is located in the Atlantic Ocean, not the Caribbean. They are not really tropical islands, and most are at more northern latitudes than Key West. Winter temperatures are not always balmy.

Strong winds and temperatures in the 50s and 60s have canceled two of my stops on private islands. The ship I was on made an optional stop at Freeport, which was still cold, but at least the ship was able to dock. It was a wasted day for those hoping to enjoy water sports or the beach. Shoppers weren’t the only ones dreading the chill in the air.

Don’t get me wrong: January is usually a wonderful time to visit the Bahamas, as long as you’re prepared for the relatively rare cold fronts that blow south.

Related: Best time to go on a cruise

Some travelers will tell you to avoid going to the Bahamas during the peak of Atlantic hurricane season from August to October. Here’s the thing about it: The cruise line won’t hurt you or their ship.

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Can a cruise line cancel your trip or switch your itinerary? sure But if you’re able to go with the flow and don’t have your heart set on visiting a particular port, you can often find lower prices during that time of year.

The best month to go to the Bahamas, weather-wise, depends on your travel style. Are you stressed about the possibility of cancellations due to hurricanes or unexpected cold fronts due to port changes? Skip January, December, August, September and maybe even October.

Are you going on a cruise just for water sports like diving, snorkeling or boating? Then rule out December, January and possibly February.

Do you avoid high heat and humidity like the plague? Then don’t book a cruise to the Bahamas in July, August or September.

The months we have not mentioned are March, April, May, June and November. If weather is your biggest concern, these are the best months for you to take a Bahamas cruise.

RELATED: 6 Ways to Get a Deal on a Cruise

Best time depending on price and crowd

It’s no secret that cruises to the Bahamas can be cheap, but that’s not always the case. Here are the averages we found for price per person, per night, along with what kind of crowds you can expect on board, among mainstream cruise lines. Exceptions to this average are always possible, especially on odd-length cruises like four- and five-night voyages.

to fall

The fall months can be an ideal time to visit the Bahamas if you’re looking for cheap fares and fewer crowds—especially if you don’t mind the increased risk of hurricanes. (Sept. 10 is the official peak of hurricane season.)

October is the lowest-priced month to fly to the Bahamas, with many indoor, outdoor and balcony cabins available for less than $100 per person. Suites are also a good deal. October sailings typically don’t include many kids or college-age partygoers, but low fares attract working people, especially on three-night voyages.

September runs a close second to October, with rents a few dollars higher per night. Expect the same crowd. The shorter the cruise, the louder the party.

November (before the holidays) is probably the ideal time for a cruise. We found that suite rates in early November are less than $200 per person, per night, while other categories run slightly higher than hurricane season rates. You can expect few children on board, except for home-schoolers and preschoolers. With the holidays around the corner, the ships will often be a little emptier than usual, making for a quieter cruise.

Related: From Alaska to the Panama Canal: Here Are 9 of TPG’s Favorite Fall Cruise Itineraries


An early December cruise costs slightly more than a November cruise. If you like holiday decorations (both on board and in a tropical setting) and holiday clothing, you may enjoy a relatively quiet cruise in early December. The later it gets, the more crowded it gets.

The most expensive cruises we found to the Bahamas were during the weeks between Christmas and New Year when you can expect to pay more than double what you would during the fall months. This is the maximum capacity time on board. The best news for those looking for a floating holiday party is that you’ll get to see your folks around during the week.

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January and February cruises to the Bahamas are almost always a bargain, with standard cabins running about the same price as early fall—less than $100 per person, per night. You’ll probably find it possible to pick up a suite for less than $200. These are the months between holiday parties and spring break, so you can usually sit back and enjoy the smaller, quieter crowds.


In March, April, and May, you’ll have to shop around for deals or hope for last-minute specials, but you can find lower prices if you look. March cruises always include spring breakers of all ages, so expect kids on board—not as many as in the summer.

You may even find yourself sharing a ship with a spring break party cruise charter in March. Even if your ship is quiet, the ports you visit may be full of vacationing college kids, so be prepared for lively crowds.

the summer

In June, July and August, you can find a standard cabin — inside, outside or balcony — for $150 per person, per night or less. Suites start at around $250 per person, per night.

Ships will be loaded with families. Expect kids of all ages and a max-out at the onboard kids club. Rents typically start to drop in late August, when schools resume and hurricane season kicks into gear.

Bottom line

Major mainstream cruise lines sail to the Bahamas year-round, so whatever season or month suits your schedule, you’ll find plenty of options departing from multiple ports, including four in Florida; two in New York City; Bayonne, New Jersey; and Galveston, Texas. The even better news is that an abundance of options means an abundance of year-round deals.

The best time to visit the Bahamas can vary by traveler, but rest assured that you can’t go wrong with an island vacation, no matter what month you choose.

Have more questions about Bahamas cruises? TPG has the answers.

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