What Makes the Caribbean the “Fifth C” in Buying Diamonds

They sparkle, glisten, and always capture attention. Yes, the waters of the Caribbean are enough of a reason to visit but the islands that make up some of the world’s top tourist destinations are also a great place to shop for a diamond as stunning as the azure Caribbean Sea. Plentiful and usually overflowing with options from classic to custom and everything in between, the diamond and jewelry shops in paradise boast attractive pricing, friendly service and other perks like airport pick-ups and more. Read on for some tips on making your diamond shopping experience a great one.

Cut, Color, Clarity and Carat

Contrary to what many shoppers think, a diamond’s cut is not about its shape (such as oval, pear or emerald) but instead about the artistry and workmanship that gives a gem its sparkle and brilliance. Poorly cut stones will look dull and dark, or see-through like glass, so the cut is probably the most important detail to examine. Cuts are rated from excellent to poor and shoppers should get the highest rated stone they can afford. 

Color rating is also a bit of a misnomer as, in a diamond, this refers to the level of colorlessness, specifically measuring the presence of a yellow hue. 

Clarity refers to inclusions (flaws) that occur inside the gemstone. Most of these, however, are only visible through a powerful microscope and therefore, not the most important detail.

The term “carat” can also be misunderstood, as it refers to a diamond’s weight and not its size. A diamond’s weight is not related to how much it might sparkle, either, so bigger is not always better.

While important to keep these details in mind, there are other factors that can also help you find the perfect bauble and the ideal souvenir from your trip.

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This is an excerpt from the latest issue of Porthole Cruise and Travel Magazine. To continue reading, click above for a digital or print subscription.

Elizabeth Martinez is a former music and nightlife journalist whose love of writing is second only to her love for traveling and going on adventures. She finally found the courage to leave her upwardly mobile corporate job in order to follow her dream of returning to writing, visiting new places, and perfecting her photography skills.