ARUBA

Information about travelling to Aruba

Aruba is located in Caribbean, island in the Caribbean Sea, north of Venezuela

Facts about Aruba
Population101,541 note: estim
CapitalOranjestad
Time zoneUTC-4 (1 hour ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
Location Caribbean, island in the Caribbean Sea, north of Venezuela

General info about Aruba
Discovered and claimed for Spain in 1499, Aruba was acquired by the Dutch in 1636. The island's economy has been dominated by three main industries. A 19th century gold rush was followed by prosperity brought on by the opening in 1924 of an oil refinery. The last decades of the 20th century saw a boom in the tourism industry. Aruba seceded from the Netherlands Antilles in 1986 and became a separate, autonomous member of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. Movement toward full independence was halted at Aruba's request in 1990.
Languages spoken
Papiamento (a Spanish-Portuguese-Dutch-English dialect) 66.3%, Spanish 12.6%, English (widely spoken) 7.7%, Dutch (official) 5.8%, other 2.2%, unspecified or unknown 5.3% (2000 census)
What about drugs?
transit point for US- and Europe-bound narcotics with some accompanying money-laundering activity; relatively high percentage of population consumes cocaine
Ethnic division
mixed white/Caribbean Amerindian 80%, other 20%
HIV/AIDS prevalence rate
NA
Climate
tropical marine; little seasonal temperature variation
Resources
NEGL; white sandy beaches
Economy
Tourism is the mainstay of the small, open Aruban economy, with offshore banking and oil refining and storage also important. The rapid growth of the tourism sector over the last decade has resulted in a substantial expansion of other activities. Over 1.5 million tourists per year visit Aruba, with 75% of those from the US. Construction continues to boom, with hotel capacity five times the 1985 level. In addition, the country's oil refinery reopened in 1993, providing a major source of employment, foreign exchange earnings, and growth. Tourist arrivals have rebounded strongly following a dip after the 11 September 2001 attacks. The island experiences only a brief low season, and hotel occupancy in 2004 averaged 80%, compared to 68% throughout the rest of the Caribbean. The government has made cutting the budget and trade deficits a high priority.
Environment
NA

Cities in Aruba

oranjestad    

National airlines
Air Arubaairline website



Beer in Aruba (0.33l)
Oranjestad~ 1.3 EUR
Oranjestad~ 1.3 EUR

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