When is the Punta Cana Rainy Season?

Before booking your next vacation, you must have at least a basic understanding of the Punta Cana rainy season. You don't want to find yourself in the middle of the rain struggling to get some sunlight when you thought you were going to enjoy long hours of sun every day.

Also is very important to know when storms are more likely to get close to the area so you can adjust your schedule accordingly. What is the best time to travel to the resorts? That is one of the most common questions we ask ourselves when planning a trip to the Caribbean.

To have the vacation as planned, you have to learn the times of the year when there is a higher probability of rain. You also need to be aware of the amount of precipitation that may fall on any given day. But that's not all. Knowing for how long it rains and the times of the day when it happens, will provide you with the necessary data to adjust your schedule and have fun when everybody else is worried about the weather. Finally, the hurricane season is one turn off for most travelers. However, by following a few tips, it won't be a problem.

Is There a Rainy Season in Punta Cana?

Unlike other parts of the world, there isn't a rainy season per se in Punta Cana. Still, that doesn't mean the rainfall is always the same. There are months when it rains more, and there are months when it rains less (forum).

In the last few years, most of the rain has been occurring in May, September, October, June and August. May is the leading month with 196.26 mm (7.72 inches). September is second with an average of 161.03 mm (6.33 inches). October follows with 143.86 mm (5.66 inches) of rain. June and August have 136.99 mm (5.39 inches) and 136.65 mm (5.37 inches) respectively.

It hasn't always been that way though. Before 2009, October used to be the month with the highest rainfall, followed by May and then November. So it is possible that we may see a few changes in the near future.

Pie chart of the precipitation in Punta Cana

Now you know which are the months with the highest amount of rainfall in the Punta Cana weather (data). But what about the ones with the least amount? I'm sure you want to know which are those. March with 57.18 mm (2.25 inches) is the first; February is second with 60.77 mm (2.39 inches) and last is January with 84.9 mm (3.34 inches).

If you look at the numbers closely, you can see that the difference between May and March, the one with the highest and the one with the least precipitation, is over 139 mm (5.47 inches).

Factors to Consider During the Rainy Season

You might be thinking, why would anyone travel to Punta Cana in May when the best time to do it is in March? My friend, some things in life are out of your control. If the only date available to celebrate your Punta Cana wedding is in May, would you rather have it somewhere else or would you go with it anyway? What about a mandatory vacation? What if you are a guest of the wedding? It isn't like you can tell whoever invited you to change the date. Well, you could, but that doesn't mean the person will do it. What can you do?

In the following video, you can see how the weather in Punta Cana looks most of the time:

How much does it rain in a day?

The first thing you have to understand is the amount of rain that may fall in a single day. During May, you may see days with an average of 6.33 mm (0.24 inches). Is that the equivalent of a flood? Not by a long shot. It is just a light shower that may leave a few puddles, but nothing more, and I'm talking about the rainiest month. Most of the time it is going to be less than that.

How long does a shower last?

Of course, no one wants even a drop of water (unless it is from the ocean) while bathing in the sun. The next element you have to consider is the length of the showers. In Punta Cana, the average shower lasts from 20 to 30 minutes. In some cases, it might be up to an hour. I can tell you 30 minutes of drizzling won't ruin your time in paradise. And you can still do many things even if it rains.

When does precipitation tend to occur?

In addition to knowing how much and for how long it is going to rain, you have to learn the preferred time of rainfalls. By keeping an eye on the afternoons (and occasionally the mornings), you can have a pretty good idea when a naughty shower might be showing its head.

What About the Forecast?

In a rainy month like May, you will find that the majority of the weather websites will have a 40% or higher chance of precipitation for several days in a row (reference). Does that mean your vacation is over? Not really. A probability of less than 50% is nothing to worry about. What about 70%? If you see a high number like that, then you have to take a look at the estimated amount. 6 to 7 mm (0.24 to 0.28 in) of rainfall is no big deal.


Also, predicting the weather in the tropics is much harder than in any other area. I have seen how the forecasts fail more often than not. Of course, there are times when they are right, but even then, it doesn't mean it will rain from sunrise to sunset. Furthermore, the estimated amount is rarely anything extraordinary that might warrant rescheduling your trip.

If you see several days of 80% chance and 20 mm (0.79 inches) or over though, then you have to take a closer look at the weather forecast.

Hurricanes and Stormy Weather

The hurricane season is one of those exceptions when you have to pay real close attention to the weather. From June to November, which is the length of the season, there are tropical disturbances that might cause severe rain issues (source).

Although the chance of a hurricane or tropical storm making a landfall in the Dominican Republic is fairly small, there is always the possibility. August, September, and October are the months to watch. Sometimes strong tropical waves can also deliver massive rainfall, so if you see any close to the DR, prepare your umbrella and rain jacket.

Now that you have a better understanding of the Punta Cana rainy season, you should feel confident that unless there is a significant weather event going on, your vacation will go on as planned. The weather is good enough to practice any sport and we recommend you to bring an umbrella with you, just in case it rains a little.

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