Why Rent A Car?

WHAT TO EXPECT: Choosing where to stay and what to do is just a part of making your travel plans. Finding out what kind of weather to expect, what kind of government is in place, and whether essential but Go have fun!cumbersome items, such as baby equipment, areavailable is also a part of those plans.

 

Star Read more below!

Rentals
About the U.S. Virgin Islands and the British Virgin Islands

 

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Tips for our Visitors to St. John...

 

SuitcaseKnowing the details ahead of time about how you will make the transitition from the St. Thomas Airport to your St. John car rental agency, how much it will cost and how long it will take is one proven way of ensuring a relaxed trip for a first time St. John visitor. Hopefully some of the other information below will help also... Yes we do have banks and ATMs, we use the American dollar but drive on the left in American vehicles, we are relaxed in our attire but ask you wear swimsuit cover-ups when not on the beach. And we look forward to meeting you. St. Jonians are a friendly group of people, if you need a question ask, you will get an answer and a smile.

 


INDEX OF VISITOR TIPS

St. John Art, Things to do while you're here


Getting Here: Travel Insurance | Arriving From St.Thomas


General Information: Climate, Dress | Time | Water | Geography, Language & Population | Island Manners

 

Government, Taxes & Duty: About the Government | Passport & Visa Requirements | Customs & Duties | Surcharges & Taxes

 

Financial & Legal Services: Money & Banking | Notary Public | Currency & Converter

 

Power & Communications: Electricity | Telephone | Phone & Fax Services | Postal Services | Internet Access | Computer Repair

 

Places of Worship on St. John

 

Books, Newspapers, Magazines & Local TV: Local Newspapers | Directories & Guidebooks Online | Books & Magazines about St. John & the Virgin Islands | Island Book Exchanges | Maps & Images Online | Virgin Islands TV

 

Rentals: Video Rentals | Baby Equipment Rentals | Underwater Camera Rentals

St. John Art, Things to do while you're here

 

Getting Here...

 

Travel Insurance: Global Care coverage | Access America

 

Getting to Cruz Bay, St. John from the St. Thomas Airport, US Virgin Islands
The Cyril King Airport (STT) St. Thomas services St. John. Once you have gathered your luggage go to Taxi Area just outside the baggage room and tell the taxi dispatcher you need to catch the ferry to St. John.

 

Ferry

 

Traveling between
St. John and St. Thomas?

If you are traveling between our islands, you're sure to find some adventure.

 

Ferry Schedules

Click here to view the ferry schedules.

 

Most passengers to St. John take the ferry service from Red Hook. The ride to Red Hook should take about 40 minutes unless the driver is dropping off other passengers enroute, in which case the trip time will increase, you may get a complete tour of St. Thomas. Sit back and enjoy these first views of the Virgin Islands, you are now on Island Time and there are ferries departing Red Hook on the hour throughout the day. [ferry schedule]. This taxi service to Red Hook is $13.00 for one person, $9.00 each if more than one. The ferry ride to St. John takes about 20 minutes and costs $3.00 a person.

 

If you decide to take the downtown Charlotte Amalie ferry to St. John the ride is shorter, about 10 minutes, and the cost is less, currently $6.00 for one person, 5.00 each if more than one, but be sure to check the ferry schedule [schedule] as fewer ferries connect between Charlotte Amalie and Cruz Bay. The $7.00 ferry ride from downtown takes about 45 minutes and features the gorgeous scenery of St. Thomas’ south shore line.

 

If know you will be in a rush and want to be sure to get directly to the ferry docks you can arrange a private taxi service to meet you at the airport. The charges will be more than the regular rates and will require prepayment. Direct Taxi Service ~ (340) 777-7112 or Christopher Taxi Service ~ (340) 775-9257.

 

Ferry Schedules

 

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Jeep RentalVarlack Ventures

 

Varlack Ventures, Inc. Car Rental Agency is only a short block and a half from the ferry. When you get off the ferry dock in Cruz Bay walk straight up the narrow one way street past the park (the traffic, as little as it is, will be going against you). Turn right when you reach corner facing the First Bank. . Varlack Ventures is just 2 doors down on the right.

 

Reserve your car rental on St. John

 

 

St. John Art, Things to do while you're here

 

General Information About St. John, U.S. Virgin Islands


Climate

November through February are the coolest months to visit. The weather holds to a temperate 75 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit, with constant refreshing sea breezes. September to October will often bring a more intense heat, averaging more in the mid to high 80's but the subtropical breezes remain a constant. Usually there is more rainfall July through January, while spring and early summer can be quite dry. On any given day, however, brief rain showers are not uncommon.

Hurricane season extends from June through November. The park provides ongoing information for visitors including where to go in the event of a serious storm.


Bathing suits are for the
beach, the locals can be
insulted if you do not cover
up on the streets or in their
business establishments.

Dress

Light cotton clothes are recommended. Long lightweight pants will help to protect you against insect bites. Sleeves or a light
wrap may be desirable in the early morning or evening during the cooler season. St. John is a relaxed island and it is rare
that formal attire is requested. One exception is a Caneel Bay Resort restaurant which, during the winter season and after
6 PM, asks that men wear jackets. Otherwise shorts & T-shirts, sun dresses, and sandals are all acceptable.


Geography, Language & Population

Geography: 18.3° N 64.8° W; 19 square-miles (two-thirds US National Park)
Language: English; Population: approx. 4500


Time

St. John works on Atlantic Standard Time zone, GMT+4 except that daylight-saving time is not observed. The days do get shorter in the winter months but only by an hour or two. During the summer months it is light from around 6 AM until 7:30 PM approximately.


Water

With the exception of Cruz Bay and the Resorts water is collected from rain and stored in individual cisterns.Conserve it whenever possible when the cistern runs dry water must be transported over from the water plants on St. Thomas. It is recommended that you drink bottled water.

 

Island Manners

This may seem like a silly subject to approach on a website like this. However, island etiquette is very important on St. John. The locals and residents of St. John appreciate being greeted before business is attended to, and do not appreciate seeing almost naked visitors in the streets on on the look-out areas of the roads.

 

Greet everyone with a " Hello, how are you?",Good Morningor "Good Evening. Do this before you talk business. Pleasantries are important to the locals.

 

Be discreet and cover up your bathing suit when in town. Swimsuits are for the beach.

 

Pull over to let cars pass if you want to enjoy the scenery, they may be late for the ferry. Island time is a good time, it is also a slow time. Relax and enjoy your visit.


 

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Government, Duty & Taxes


VI Government Seal

 

About the Government

St. John is a part of the US Virgin Islands which is an UN-incorporated US Territory with a locally elected governor and senate. The government is made up of three branches - the Executive, the Legislative and the Judicial. Fifteen senators are elected every two years. Government elections are every four years.

 

An elected representative is sent to Congress however the territory residents do not get to vote in the presidential elections. Virgin Islanders do pay federal income taxes but the collected monies stay in their local treasury.

The territory of the Virgin Islands is administrated by the Department of the Interior.

 

Citizenship: AmericanGovernment of the US Virgin Islands: US Virgin Islands Government - Official Site

 


Passport & Visa Requirements

Star US Citizens are highly recommended to bring along their passport when traveling to the US Virgin Islands. Although not officially required to show one on the flight down you will be required on your return trip to provide evidence of citizenship by showing a passport, driver's license, birth certificate or voters registration card along with a picture ID.
Star Non US citizens but permanent residents, need certificate of alien registration or green card on leaving territory. If you are planning to make a day trip to the British Virgin Islands definitely bring your passports. Star Citizens of other countries should carry whatever the US Travel regulations request. Where no visa is necessary have your passport and the green I-94. If a visa is required then bring the white I-94 and your passport.

 

US Immigration and Naturalization Service office: (340) 774-4279

 


Shop in St. John

 

Customs & Duties

US visitors, including children, can take back or have mailed, $1,200 worth of duty free imports every 30 days which is double the 600 limitation placed on Caribbean basin countries and much more than the $400 that US residents are allowed when returning from most foreign countries. When your exemption is exceeded the first additional $1000 is dutiable at flat rate 5%, above that your purchases will be subject to various rates of duty. Family members traveling together may make a joint declaration.

 

US Visitors to St. John may mail undeclared gifts valued at up to $100 to family or friends at the rate of one mailing per day to the same address. Island made items are customs exempt. Obtain a certificate of origin if value exceeds $25. Also original paintings, unset precious gems and various other items.

 

Cruzan RumBe sure to ask or call the Bureau of Customs (340) 774-2510

Shopping on St. John

Exempt are up to: 5 cartons cigarettes, 100 cigars,
and 5 bottles of liquor, (an additional bottle is allowed
provided it is a product of the islands such as a Cruzan Rum)

 

Plants in soil cannot be transported, but some fruits can.
Dept. Agriculture: (340)776-2787.

 

Leaving the islands all baggage subject to inspection by U.S. customs.
The customs agent may require you to show a receipt for your purchases.

 


Surcharges & TaxesDining on St. John

Tipping:
15 to 20% is good here as it is stateside although their are some hotels and restaurants that add a 10 to 15 percent service charge to the bill.
Taxes:
7.5 percent tax added to hotel rooms and a departure tax for the US Virgin Islands is added to airline ticket fares. There is no sales tax on the islands.

 

 

St. John Art, Things to do while you're here

 

Financial & Legal Services


Money & Banking on St. John, US Virgin Islands

Star Currency is the US dollar

First Bank
Center of Cruz Bay
Monday - Friday, 8:30 - 4:00
Closed weekends & holidays
(340)776 6881, ATM available
ATM in Starfish
Market Place, first floor
Available during
market hours
Scotia Bank,
Market Place, first floor
Monday - Friday, 8:30 - 4:00
Closed weekends & holidays
(340)774 0037, ATM available

Western Union Money Orders & Money Wire Transfers: Connections
Notary Public: Connections, Cruz Bay (340) 776-6922, DMV Building, Scandic Offices upper Mongoose Junction

 

Currency Converter

 

St. John Art, Things to do while you're here

 

Power & Communications

 

Electricity
As in the rest of the States the standard 110 volts/60 Hz electrical power is used. Power outages are more common here than stateside but generally do not last long.

Telephone
"340" is the area code for the US Virgin Islands, calls between the islands are considered local. Country code is "1" and the Outgoing International code is "011"
Telephone IDD is available

 

Public Phones & Phone Cards

Public phones ask for 35 cents to make a call, and it is not always easy to get through. Most of the convenience stores and markets sell Phone Cards, be sure to pick one that works in the Islands.

Phone & Fax Services
Connections East in Coral Bay FAX: (340) 779-4994
Connections West in Cruz Bay FAX: (340) 776-6922

 

Cell Phones have become much more popular here in the last couple of years but due to the mountainous nature of the island they can not always be reliable. Check with your provider to see if your service works in the USVI and do not count on being able to use it on the east end of the island.

 

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Postal Services

 

Postal service can surprise you at times and be reliable, if, however, the timing is important be sure to either send it Priority or Express.

 

US Post Office
Monday to Friday: 9:00 - 12:00, 7:30 AM - 4:30 PM

 

The Mail Center
The Marketplace in Cruz Bay
Postage & Mailing Service (340) 714-7250
packing, shipping, copies, faxing, stamps
Connections East in Coral Bay Trunk Bay
Postage & Mailing Services (340) 779-4994
Mon. - Fri.: 9:30 AM - 5:30 AM; Sat: 9:30 - 3:00

 

Connections in Cruz Bay
Postage & Mailing Service (340) 776-6922
Mon. - Fri.: 9:30 AM - 5:30 AM; Sat: 9:30 - 3:00
 

 

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Internet Access & Computer Repair

 

Computer Express at Connections, Cruz Bay, (340) 776-6922
Internet access and other communications services

 

Connections East: Coral Bay, (340) 779-4994
Internet access and other communications services

Cyber Celtic Cafe , Cruz Bay ~ (340) 779-4799
Internet Access & Cafe / Pub

 

Surfa da Web & Culver Consulting ~ (340) 693-9152, Internet access and computer repair. Laptop stations.


St. John Art, Things to do while you're here


Places of Worship


Bahai's National Spiritual Assembly
(340) 776 6254

 

Bethany Moravian Church
(340) 776 6291

 

Christian Science Society of St. John
(340) 776 6273

 

Cruz Bay Baptist Church
(340) 776 6315

 

Cruz Bay Seventh Day Adventist
(340) 779 4477

 

Emmaus Moravian Church, Coral Bay
(340) 776 6713

 

Jehovah's Witness - Services in English & Spanish

(340) 715-0530

Nazareth Lutheran Church
(340) 776 6731

 

Our Lady of Mount Carmel Catholic Mission
(340) 776 6339

 

St. John Missionary Baptist Church
(340) 693 8884

 

St. Ursula's Anglican Church
(340) 693 8580

 

Unitarian Universalist Fellowship
(340) 776 6922
(ask for Unitarian Information)

 

United Methodist Church
(340) 693 8830

 

St. John Art, Things to do while you're here


Books, Newspapers & Magazines


Local Newspapers


Guidebooks & Directories Online


Books & Magazines about St. John & the Virgin Islands

Where to find selection of books & Magazines relating to St. John, the US Virgin Islands and the Caribbean:

Bookstores: National Park headquarters (on the water across the road from Mongoose) and at the Bookstore on the first floor of the Market Place.

Magazines: Starfish Market, Cruz Bay
The Island Bookshelf: Caribbean Inspired's Guide to Caribbean Books
American Paradise Publishing ... small, "hopelessly local" publishing company dedicated to producing quality books focused solely on the Virgin Islands.

 

 

Island Book Exchanges
Many of the island's restaurants and markets have shelves full of used books. Feel free to take a book or two and if you have a book you have finished reading drop it off at one of the locations.

 

Some Coral Bay locations: Calabash Market, Skinny Legs, Take a Break Deli
Cruz Bay Locations: Larry's Landing

 

St. John Art, Things to do while you're here

 

Travel Tips for the USVI

Maps & Images Online


 
 
 
 
 
Maps Online:
http://www.lib.utexas.edu/maps/americas/virginislands.jpg
http://www.usvi.net/USVI/maps/themap.html
http://www.usvi.net/usvi/maps/topo2.html

Photo Galleries Online:
Virgin Island Images
Cruz Bay Watersports Photogallery

 

 

St. John Art, Things to do while you're here

 

Virgin Islands TV

 

 

TV 2 (Channel 2), Island Showcase (Channel 4)
Public Announcements & Job TV, Virgin Islands (Channel 10)

 

St. John Art, Things to do while you're here


Rentals

 

 

Video Rentals

VIDEO RENTAL ~ Cruz Bay
Kaleidoscope, at The Market Place, Cruz Bay (340) 779 4464
Love City, Cruz Bay (340) 693 8505

 

VIDEO RENTAL ~ Coral Bay
Across the road from Skinnies
cameraCamera Rentals

Underwater Camera Rentals: Steve Simonsen (340) 775-4485 (Also: photo classes)

 

Baby Item Rentals

Baby Equipment: vivavacations

 

 

 

Feel free to contact us!

 

T: 340-776-6412 | F: 340-693-8276

E: info@varlack-ventures.com

 

Open Monday - Friday, 8AM - 5PM
PO Box 1300, Cruz Bay, St. John,
US Virgin Islands, 00831

Varlack Ventures