TRANSPORTATION - Caribbean: The Lesser Antilles - Insight Guides

Caribbean: The Lesser Antilles - Insight Guides (2016)


Getting There

By Air

As far as accessibility goes, the islands fall fairly neatly into two groups: those that can be reached by direct flights from North America, South America, and Europe, and those that cannot. Islands that can be reached by direct flight are as follows:








St Kitts

St Lucia

St Martin



US Virgin Islands

All other destinations must be reached by inter-island airline from the nearest direct-flight island. All the islands, including those listed, can be reached from various points in the Caribbean via numerous carriers, on a tangled web of routes (see Inter-Island Carriers, click here). If you want to know which islands can be reached from a particular island, see the listing for that island. Note that inter-island schedules and itineraries are liable to change. Once you have decided on all the places you want to visit, talk to a travel agent, your tourist board representative, or airline company to determine the most efficient way to get to your destinations.

A good travel agent will help you plan your trip and find the flights that best suit your pocket and your timetable. Fare prices can vary according to the season and special offers from airlines, so shop around. Many scheduled services are supplemented by charter flights, but even so, flights become heavily booked during high season. Budget fares to Martinique and Guadeloupe are available if you fly with Air France from an international airport in France.

Airline Numbers

Contact details of major airlines serving the Lesser Antilles.

American: 800-433 7300 (US);

Air Canada: 1-888-247 2262 (Canada);

Air France: 36 54 (France);

British Airways: 0844-493 0787 (UK);

Caribbean Airlines: 800-920 4225 (US);

Delta: 800-241 4141 (US, Canada);

Jet Blue: 800-538 2583 (US);

klm: 31(0)20-474 7747 (Netherlands);

Lufthansa: 49(0)1805-805 805 (Germany);

United Airlines: 800-864 8331 (US, Canada);

Virgin Atlantic: 0344-209 7777 (UK);

WestJet: 1-888-937 8538 (Canada);

Cruise Lines

A large proportion of visitors to the Caribbean arrive by cruise ship, the combination of staying in a luxurious floating hotel and making short visits to different exotic locations being increasingly popular. The days on which cruise ships call see thousands of passengers flooding into usually low-key ports, and in many places shopping complexes, such as Heritage Quay in St John’s, Antigua, have sprung up to accommodate them.

The Lesser Antilles are on the itineraries of several cruise lines, though frequency of service to the different islands in the group varies widely - from hundreds of port visits each year to the US Virgin Islands, to no stops at all at certain other smaller islands. Itineraries change constantly. The best way to plan your trip is to decide first where you would like to go, then visit the web, or contact a cruise operator or travel agent to see if there is a current itinerary that covers all or most of your destinations.

The following cruise ship companies have ships that call at islands in the Lesser Antilles:

Azamara Club Cruises, tel: 877-999 9553 (US); tel: 0844-493 4016 (UK);

Carnival Cruise Lines, tel: 800-764 7419 (US);; tel: 0843-374 2272 (UK);

Celebrity Cruises, tel: 800-647 2251 (US); tel: 0844-493 6011 (UK);

Costa Cruises, tel: 800-462 6782 (US);; tel: 0800-389 0622 (UK);

Cunard Line, tel: 0843-374 2224 (UK);

Disney Cruise Line, tel: 0800-951 3532 (US); https://

Holland America Line, tel: 206-286 3900 (US); tel: 0843-374 2300 (UK);

Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines, tel: 44(0)20-7931 8888 (UK);

msc Cruises, tel: 877-665-4655 (US);; tel: 0203-426 3010 (UK);

Norwegian Cruise Line, tel: 0845-201 8900 (UK);

Oceania Cruises, tel: 305-514-2300 (US);; tel: 44 345-505 1920 (UK);

P & O Cruises, tel: 0843-374 0111 (UK);

Princess Cruises, tel: 1-800-PRINCESS (UK);

Regent Seven Seas Cruises, tel: 1-954-776 6123 (US); tel: 02380-682 140 (UK);

Royal Caribbean International, tel: 866-562 7625 (US);; tel: 0844-493 4005 (UK);

Seabourn, tel: 206-626 9179 (US); 0845-070 0500 (UK);

SeaDream Yacht Club, tel: 800-707 4911 (US); tel: 0800-783 1373 (UK);

Silversea Cruises, tel: 800-722 9955 (US); tel: 0844-251 0837 (UK);

Star Clippers, tel: 0845-200 6145 (UK);

Windstar Cruises, tel: 800-258 7245 (US);; tel: 020-399 7669 (UK);

Cargo Ships

For the traveler in search of something out of the ordinary, a cargo ship offers a different type of cruise: comfortable cabins for only a handful of passengers (evening meals are generally taken with the officers) on a working cargo ship. Geest “banana boats,” for example, leave Portsmouth on a round trip lasting approximately 25 days, calling in at some of the following ports: Antigua, Barbados, Dominica, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Martinique, St Kitts, St Lucia, St Vincent, and Trinidad. Note that, although ships depart weekly, not all vessels allow passengers on board. Horn Linie “banana boats,” taking 12 passengers, depart weekly from Dover and sail to Martinique, Guadeloupe, Cartagena in Venezuela, and Costa Rica. Enquiries should be made to the following travel agents:


The Cruise People, tel: 020-7723 2450;


Maris Freighter Cruise and Travel Club, tel: 1-800-99-Maris;

Getting Around

By Car

The islands are well stocked with rental agencies. International car-rental firms have offices at the airport as well as in many hotels. Travel by car allows great freedom and flexibility to explore the nooks and crannies of the islands, but there are a few things the driver should be aware of. Many of the islands are mountainous, and on all of them roads are narrower than most US and European drivers will be familiar with. Driving may thus be a little more harrowing than at home - not for the faint-hearted. Also, in some areas yearly rainfall is quite light and this allows a film of oil to build up on road surfaces. When it does rain on these roads, they become especially slick, requiring extra caution. All in all, drivers should prepare to drive defensively and with caution, perhaps following the advice of one of the islands’ tourist agencies to “sound the horn frequently,” especially when approaching bends. Regulations on driver’s licenses vary from island to island - see under listings for individual islands.

Inter-Island Carriers

Air Antilles Express,


Air Caraïbes,

Air Sunshine,

American Airlines/American Eagle,

Cape Air,

Caribbean Airlines,

Fly Montserrat,


Seaborne Airlines,

Surinam Airways,

SVG Air,


By Taxi

Perhaps the most common means of transportation for visitors to the islands is the taxi. Taxis are available for hire at the airport, cruise terminals, and other central locations. Not only are taxis convenient, and relatively inexpensive, but taking a taxi also gives you access to the resources of the driver. Where else could you chat with an island expert for the price of a cab ride? Most taxi drivers will gladly help you find things you are looking for, or that you aren’t looking for but may be delighted to find. It is usually possible to find a taxi driver who is willing to give you a tour of his or her island and, in some places, drivers are specially trained to do this.

Another positive feature of taxi travel for island visitors is that rates are generally fixed and published. Often, printed sheets with detailed rates are available from points of entry, drivers, and tourist offices. If you plan to travel much by taxi, one of the first things to do upon arrival is to familiarize yourself with the rates to different destinations and at different times of day. You can often negotiate for longer excursions out of town.

Taxi drivers are usually friendly and extremely helpful. If you receive good service, return the favor with a good tip - say, 15-20 percent.

By Bus

Most of the islands have local bus services that many residents use to get around. Though they are not as flexible as taxis and rental cars, buses are quite inexpensive and have the advantage of allowing travelers to get a small taste of how local residents live. Your hotel, a tourist office, the bus station, or a police station should be able to supply information on schedules, and fellow passengers and drivers are friendly and helpful in making sure that bewildered visitors get off at the right stop. Some countries also have “route taxis,” usually with a local name, which have fixed routes, like a bus, but they travel more frequently, have no fixed stops, and cost a bit more.

Tour buses (both mini and full-sized) are available on all the islands for taking groups sightseeing.

Inter-Island Links

As you might expect in this region of islands cut off from one another by the sea, the options for getting around between islands are legion.

By Air

For the traveler desiring quick transfers (and perhaps the novelty of a ride in a seaplane), there are a number of airline companies operating inter-island routes. LIAT is probably the largest and best-known of these carriers.

For a short list of inter-island air carriers, see Getting There, click here.

By Sea

Inter-island ferries are varied but sea transport is not as common as might be expected and most island-hopping is done by air. Some ferries are the old steel-and-smokestack variety, but there are also catamarans, hydrofoils, schooners, and other types of sailing vessel plying the waters. International ferries come and go; the only longstanding multi-island ferry is Express des Iles (see box). Most other ferries are shuttles between neighboring islands, such as Antigua-Montserrat, Sint Maarten-St-Barths, St-Martin-Anguilla or USVI-BVI. Countries made up of two or more islands also have ferries, eg Antigua-Barbuda, St Kitts-Nevis, St Vincent-the Grenadines, Grenada-Carriacou, Trinidad-Tobago. It is often possible for travelers to bargain with fishermen and other small-boat owners to arrange rides out to the many small islands which lie off the shores of the major islands. Anyone wishing to travel the entire arc of the Lesser Antilles without flying would have to resort to a private yacht for some sections.

International ferry

Express des Iles, tel: 825-35 9000,, is an international ferry with daily services connecting Guadeloupe, Les Saintes, Marie Galante, Dominica, Martinique, and St Lucia, and occasional services to Antigua. Departure taxes must be paid and immigration and customs formalities complied with.

Guadeloupe: Gare Maritime, Bergevin, 97110 Pointe-à-Pitre,

Dominica: H.H.V. Whitchurch & Co Ltd, Roseau, tel: 767-255 1125.

Martinique: Terminal Inter Iles, Quai Ouest, 97200 Fort-de-France,

St Lucia: Cox and Co Ltd, tel: 758-456 5000 and at ferry terminal, tel: 758-456 5022.


Chartering a Yacht

One of the most exciting ways to explore the Caribbean is on a private yacht, either with your own crew to sail the boat for you or bareboat - just the boat - for experienced sailors. Popular destinations are the Grenadines and the Virgin Islands as the islands are close together and easily explored in a week or two. A 3-week trip might take you, for example, from Antigua to the Virgin Islands or Antigua to Grenada, making leisurely calls at the islands along the way. Short charters of just a few days can also be arranged, and for those who prefer to sleep on dry land, most islands have day-sail operators too. Whatever your itinerary, if you are at home on a boat, this is a wonderful way to see the islands.

Yachting Information

For yachtsmen and women who want to stay put for a while, there are community anchorages in Sint Maarten, Bequia (Grenadines), Grenada, and Trinidad. There are marinas with slips of different types and facilities for provisioning and repairs. Several of the larger ones have dry-dock facilities for boat storage.

If you want to rent a crewed yacht, make sure you are happy with your choice - that the yacht is safe, comfortable, and well-equipped and the crew congenial enough to share close quarters. Organize the trip with a reputable agency, which will match you with the right boat and crew. One long-established agency is:

Nicholson Yacht Charters & Services, tel: 268-460 1530 (Antigua);

An exhaustive list of companies offering bareboat Caribbean charters is published in the March issue of Sail magazine, while the August issue covers crewed yachts. Sail is available in many libraries, and back (or current) issues can also be ordered from the magazine’s publisher. Contact: Sail Magazine,


By Car

Cars drive on the left, British-style, but are usually left-hand drive. The speed limit is 30mph (48kph). To purchase a temporary Anguillan driver’s license, which is good for up to 3 months, present a valid driver’s license from your country of origin, with a small fee, to the police station in The Valley. The ports of entry can also perform this service although usually the car-rental agency organizes it. Bicycles are a good way of getting around this small island, available at some hotels and bike-rental agencies.

Car-rental companies include:

Apex/Avis Car Rental, tel: 264-497 2642;

Island Car Rental, tel: 264-497 2723;

Thrifty Car Rental, tel: 264-497 2656;

By Taxi/Bus

Taxis are available at all points of entry including Clayton J. Lloyd Airport, which is more or less at the center of Anguilla, and at the ferry terminal, west at Blowing Point. Taxis are not metered, but there are fixed charges for taxi rides; confirm the price before you start. There are no buses.

Inter-Island Links

From Clayton J. Lloyd Airport you can fly to Sint Maarten, St Kitts, St Thomas, bvi, Antigua, and Puerto Rico with a number of small charter companies. There are scheduled services to Puerto Rico with Cape Air and to Antigua with LIAT.

Cape Air, tel: 866-227 3247;

LIAT, tel: 264-497 5000;

Marigot in St-Martin is a 25-minute ferry ride away from Anguilla and makes a good day-trip. Ferries leave Blowing Point every half hour, 7.30am-6.15pm. Don’t forget your passport and immigration card. There is a departure tax. Ferries from Marigot to Blowing Point depart every half hour, 8am-7pm.

Ferry services and charters are also available between Blowing Point and Princess Juliana International Airport in Sint Maarten.

Link Ferries, tel: 264-497 2231;

GB Ferries, tel: 264-235 6205;

Funtime Charters, tel: 866-334 0047;

Antigua and Barbuda

By Car

Driving is on the left, British-style. Finding your way around is not easy as there are few road signs. Drivers should present their regular license, along with a small fee at a police station or car-rental office in order to be issued with a local driving permit. Vehicles can be picked up at the airport, or delivered to your hotel. Agencies include:

Dollar Rent-a-Car, tel: 268-462 0362;

Hertz, tel: 268-481 4440;

On Barbuda, jeeps are available from Lynton Thomas, tel: 268-721 2796.

By Taxi/Bus

There are plenty of taxis to meet flights at V.C. Bird International Airport, and jeeps at Barbuda’s Codrington Airport. Taxis also wait at the cruise terminal. Fares are pre-set (a list is posted in Arrivals at the airport, at the cruise terminal, at the tourist office, and in hotels). Confirm the price before you start. Many Antiguan taxi drivers are also qualified tour guides. Buses and minivans run from the bus terminal in St John’s to most of the island, but not north of the capital, nor to the airport, so you have to take a taxi.

Inter-Island Links

Barbuda is just 10 minutes away from Antigua by air, or 90 minutes by ferry from St John’s. For links with Montserrat by boat, plane and helicopter, click here. Antigua has frequent links with most Caribbean islands, mostly with LIAT, tel: 268-480 5601;


By Car

Driving is on the right. To rent a car you must be 21 years of age and in possession of a valid national driving license. Rent a four-wheel-drive vehicle if you want to explore the interior. Bicycles, scooters, and motorbikes are also available for hire. Rental companies include: Ace Car Rental, tel: 297-583 0840,; More 4 Less Jeep & Car Rental, tel: 297-588 7255,

By Taxi/Bus

Taxis are plentiful and have set fares, not meters, but always check before beginning a journey. Buses run from Oranjestad to the resort areas in the north and to San Nicolas in the south and are inexpensive. In addition, taxis called “jitney cars,” following fixed routes, cost slightly more than buses. Buses and jitneys to San Nicolas will drop you at the airport.

Inter-Island Links

Insel Air,; and Tiara Air, run scheduled flights between Aruba, Bonaire, and Curaçao several times a day. Divi Divi Air, flies from Curaçao to Bonaire several times daily and offers charter service to Aruba. There are no ferries.


By Car

Driving is on the left, and by Caribbean standards the roads are good, although driving at night can be difficult on narrow unlit country roads, so leave plenty of time to reach your destination. The maximum speed limit outside urban areas is 50mph (80kph). Bajan rush hour is 7.30-8.30am and 4.30-5.30pm.

Visitors’ drivers’ licenses are available from the airport, many car-rental companies, and most police stations. To obtain one you must present your own license and a small payment.

The following car-rental companies offer a wide choice of cars, including mini-mokes (beach buggy-style vehicles), free pick-up and delivery to and from your accommodations, and free road maps. Courtesy Rent-a-Car, tel: 246-431 4160,; Top Class Car Rentals, tel: 246-228 7368,; Stoutes Car Rental, tel: 246-416 4456,

By Taxi/Bus

Taxis are always in plentiful supply at the international airport, cruise ship terminal, hotels, and in town. Make sure you agree the fare before beginning your journey. Enquire at the airport or hotel reception for the official rates.

Buses radiate out from Bridgetown and are a good and cheap way of getting around the island. The large buses are state owned while the small minibuses and route taxis are private. Buses from the airport go to Bridgetown direct or via the hotel district on the south coast. There is a flat fare for each leg of your journey, so if you have to change buses you pay twice.

Inter-Island Links

There are frequent flights to nearly all the Caribbean islands with LIAT, tel: 246-428 8888. Other regional airlines include Caribbean Airlines, and SVG Air, tel: 246-247 3712, There are no ferries.


By Car

Those wishing to rent a car must be 21 years of age and in possession of a valid national driver’s license. The speed limit is 25mph (40kph) and you should watch out for goats and donkeys on the road. Some companies forbid the use of anything other than a four-wheel-drive on unmade roads and the Washington-Slagbaai National Park. Pick-up trucks are popular rental vehicles as they can carry dive gear. Motorcycles, quad bikes, bicycles, and scooters can be rented. Car-rental companies include:

Budget, tel: 599-717 4700;

Bonaire Motorcycle Shop, tel: 599-717 7790;

By Taxi/Bus

Taxis and water-taxis are available. There is a list of official rates, including touring and waiting time. Taxis wait at the airport but there is no taxi stand in town and you will have to call for one elsewhere. Buses, autobuses, run around town and will take you where you want, but there is no scheduled service. Some hotels have a shuttle service to town and to the airport.

Inter-Island Links

Insel Air,; and Tiara Air, run scheduled flights between Aruba, Bonaire, and Curaçao several times a day. Divi Divi Air, flies from Curaçao to Bonaire several times daily and offers charter service to Aruba. There are no ferries.

British Virgin Islands

By Car

Driving is on the left, but many cars have the steering wheel on the left. The speed limit is 40mph (64kph), or 20mph (32kph) in residential areas. To drive here, a temporary bvi driver’s license is required. It can be obtained through the rental agency on presentation of your valid driver’s license. Advance reservation is recommended in peak season. Car rental firms include: Avis, tel: 284-494 3322; Courtesy Car Rentals, tel: 284-494 6443; International Car Rentals, tel: 284-494 2516; D.W. Jeep Rentals, Anegada, tel: 284-495 9677/8018; Mahogany Car Rentals, Virgin Gorda, tel: 284-495 5469. Bicycles can also be hired.

By Taxi/Bus

Taxis are easy to find on the BVI. They stop if hailed on the road, and can be found waiting at the airports, cruise ship terminal, and ferry docks. On Virgin Gorda small converted lorries with benches run a shuttle service between the main tourist points at a reasonable price. Taxis have fixed prices, but it is always best to establish the fare before you start out on a journey.

There is a private bus service on Tortola, but it has no fixed timetable and goes to few tourist spots. Only taxis go to the Terrance B. Lettsome Airport on Beef Island.

Inter-Island Links

By Air

Small planes fly from Tortola to Virgin Gorda and Anegada. Day-trips are possible with charter companies such as Air Sunshine, tel: 284-495 8900,; Caribbean Wings,; Fly BVI, tel: 284-495 1747, There are good connecting flights from the international airports on St-Martin, Puerto Rico, and the US Virgin Islands as well as other islands in the region with American Airlines/American Eagle, tel: 284-495 2559,; Cape Air, tel: 284-495 2100; LIAT, tel: 284-495 1693; vi Airlink, tel: 284-499 2938,

By Ferry

Timetables are available in hotels, at the tourist board (, and in the Welcome magazine (

There are regular services:

from Road Town, Tortola to Spanish Town, Virgin Gorda and Peter Island.

from West End, Tortola to Jost Van Dyke.

from Beef Island, Tortola to North Sound and Spanish Town, Virgin Gorda (North Sound Express).

from Road Town, Tortola and West End to St Thomas and St John (both USVI).

from Virgin Gorda to St Thomas (USVI).

There is also a free ferry from Beef Island, Tortola to Marina Cay (Pusser’s).


By Car

Those wishing to rent a car must be 21 years of age and in possession of a valid national driver’s license. Cars, vans, four-wheel-drive vehicles, and pick-up trucks are all available, as are bicycles and motorbikes. Car-rental companies include:

Avis, tel: 5999-461 1255,; and Budget, tel: 5999-868-3466,

By Taxi/Bus

There are taxi stands at the airport, at hotels, and in town. Always agree the fare before beginning a taxi journey. There are bus terminals in Punda and Otrobanda with services within town and to either end of the island. Big yellow or blue buses, called konvooi, cover most of the island and are the cheapest. Smaller buses, collective cars or vans, called bus, go more often but have no schedule and they cost a little more. Buses go to the airport but you must allow extra time.

Inter-Island Links

Insel Air,; and Tiara Air, run scheduled flights between Aruba, Bonaire, and Curaçao several times a day. Divi Divi Air, flies from Curaçao to Bonaire several times daily and offers charter service to Aruba. There are no ferries.


By Car

Driving is on the left-hand side, British-style. The speed limit in built-up areas is 20mph (32kph). Elsewhere there is no limit. Roads in Dominica are characteristically twisting and narrow, with steep gradients, but the surface is generally very good.

There are various car-rental companies in and around Roseau. Cars can be picked up at and returned to the airport. You need a national or international driver’s license and a local visitor’s permit. The latter can be obtained from your car-rental company. Hire companies: Courtesy, tel: 767-448 7763; Island Car Rentals, tel: 767-255 6844,

By Taxi/Bus

Dominica’s main airport, Douglas-Charles, is located near Marigot, on the island’s northeast coast. Taxis are available there to take travelers on the long but scenic 36-mile (58km) drive to Roseau, where many hotels and guesthouses are located.

There are numerous taxi services. On fixed routes the fares are set by the government. Otherwise, settle on a price before you start your journey. Taxis do not cruise the streets and are sometimes difficult to find at night. Ask your hotel or restaurant to order one.

Minibuses are the local form of public transportation, from early in the morning to nightfall. They run mainly to and from Roseau. There are no fixed schedules; buses leave when they are full (in Roseau there are various departure points depending on the destination). There are frequent services to villages around Roseau, but making a round trip in one day from Roseau to more remote communities can be a problem. Coming into Roseau in the early morning from towns such as Plymouth or Marigot, and returning at lunch time or in the afternoon is easier. Buses do run on the road past the airport, but infrequently.

Inter-Island Links

Connections with Dominica are made with regional airlines, including LIAT, from neighboring Caribbean islands, including Antigua, Guadeloupe, and Martinique. American Airlines/American Eagle flies daily from San Juan, Puerto Rico (with connections to North America). The main airport is Douglas-Charles Airport. LIAT and air taxi services also use the smaller Canefield Airport, close to Roseau.

American Airlines/American Eagle, tel: 767-448 0628.

LIAT, tel: 767-448 3980.

Winair, tel: 767-448 2181

If you prefer to travel by ferry, Express des Iles connects Dominica with Guadeloupe (to the north) and Martinique and St Lucia (to the south). Ferries depart from Roseau almost daily; for more information, click here.


By Car

Driving is on the left. Roads are sometimes in poor condition, especially in the mountains. Drivers must be over 21 although most rental companies now stipulate that you must be over 25, and have a valid license as well as a local permit (available from the central police station). There is a good choice of rental firms, but cars are sometimes difficult to obtain, particularly in high season and during Carnival. Rental companies include: Maitlands, tel: 473-444 4022,; and McIntyre Bros Ltd, tel: 473-444 3944/1550,

In Carriacou

Sunkey’s, tel: 473-443 8382.

Bicycles can be rented from Ride Grenada, tel: 473-444 1157. The island’s mountainous terrain, tropical climate, and sometimes erratic road conditions should be borne in mind if you plan to tour the island on two wheels.

By Taxi/Bus

Taxis are available at the airport, the Carenage, the cruise ship dock, and outside most hotels. They are not metered and there are no fixed charges, so try to establish the fare with the driver before setting off. Taxi drivers can normally be hired by the hour or day for sightseeing tours of the island. Allow a day for a tour of Grenada. Water taxis run from the Carenage and the Esplanade to Grand Anse beach. Grenada has an inexpensive and comprehensive bus network, but buses are normally crowded and have loud music. Buses or minivans leave from the bus station on the Esplanade in St George’s for all parts of the island, Mon-Sat 7am-7pm, although in practice it can be difficult to find one after mid-afternoon. Fares are set according to distance. Only taxis go to the airport.

Inter-Island Links

LIAT and SVG Air connect Grenada with Carriacou. LIAT also has services to all eastern Caribbean destinations.

LIAT, tel: 473-440 2796/5428; SVG Air, tel: 473-457 5124.

The Osprey Ferry ( connects Grenada with Carriacou and Petit Martinique daily (2 hours). Carriacou can also be reached by schooners, most of which depart in the morning from the Carenage, returning the following day. The journey takes about 4 hours, with loud music and refreshments.


By Car

Drive on the right. To rent a car for 20 days or less, your current valid license is all you will need. For longer periods, Guadeloupe requires an international driver’s permit. Visiting drivers need to be over 21 and should have at least one year’s driving experience. The Pointe-à-Pitre/Pôle Caraïbes airport has car-rental agencies. Mopeds, scooters, motorbikes, and bicycles are also available for hire. Traffic is appalling around Pointe-à-Pitre. Rental agencies include Avis, tel: 590-590-836 900,; Budget, tel: 590-590-211 349,; and Europcar, tel: 590-590-915 822,

By Taxi/Bus

At all points of entry - air and sea - taxis are available. All taxis have meters, which are useful for short trips, but for longer excursions, negotiate a tariff. Some drivers speak English, but most speak only French. There are three main bus terminals in Pointe-à-Pitre, covering different areas of the country. Buses run to all towns and villages and are relatively cheap. During the week they run 5.30am-7pm, every 15 minutes or when full, but on Saturday afternoon and on Sunday there are very few buses anywhere. Buses do not run to the Pôle Caraïbes airport; the nearest bus stop is at Millenis, about 1km (0.6 mile) from the airport.

Inter-Island Links

The Pôle Caraïbes airport at Les Abymes has two terminals: the International Terminal and the Regional Terminal. There are also airports on Marie Galante, Terre-de-Haut, La Désirade, at St-François, and Baillif airport on the southern tip of Basse-Terre. LIAT, 590-590-211 140,; Air Caraïbes, tel: 590-590-824 747,; Air Antilles Express, tel: 0890-648 648, fly to neighboring Caribbean islands.

There are a number of ferries linking Guadeloupe with La Désirade (La Somade Le Colibri, tel: 590-690-357 947), with Marie Galante (Brudey Frères, tel: 590-590-900 448; Express des Iles,, and Les Saintes (Brudey Frères; Express des Iles). Express des Iles connects Guadeloupe, Les Saintes, and Marie Galante with Martinique, Dominica, and St Lucia several times a week; for more information, click here.


By Car

To rent a car, your current valid license is all you need. Drivers should have at least one year’s driving experience. Traffic is heavy, so avoid the main roads at rush hour. There are lots of rental agencies at the airport, including Europcar, tel: 596-596-424 242,; Budget, tel: 596-596-511 202,; Euradom, tel: 596-596-601 093,

By Taxi/Bus

There are taxis at the airport and the cruise terminal. All taxis are fitted with meters, which makes it easier for short journeys, but expensive for longer trips. It is advisable to negotiate a fixed rate for excursions. Some, but not all, drivers speak English. There are bus stops along Boulevard Général de Gaulle for both urban and long-distance buses. Alternatively you can try the taxicos, shared taxis that leave from the terminal at Pointe Simon and run from early morning to 6pm all over the island, an inexpensive means of getting about. There are no buses to the airport although buses to Sainte-Anne pass fairly close by.

Inter-Island Links

Airlines connecting Martinique to Antigua, Barbados, Dominica, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Puerto Rico, St Lucia, Sint Maarten, St Vincent, and Trinidad include: Air Caraïbes, tel: 590-590-824 747 (Guadeloupe HQ),; and LIAT, tel: 596-596-421 611, American Airlines/American Eagle operates a nonstop service between San Juan, Puerto Rico and Fort-de-France. Air Antilles, tel: 596-596-421 671,, shuttles between Martinique, Guadeloupe, St-Martin, and St-Barthélemy and also flies to Santo Domingo. Airawak, tel: 596-596-516 688,, flies between Martinique and Canefield airport in Dominica and both airports in St Lucia.

Ferries link Martinique to Dominica, Guadeloupe, and St Lucia: L’Express Des Iles; for more information, click here.


By Car

Drive on the left, British-style. A local driver’s license can be obtained from the police. Island-wide road improvements are ongoing.

The island has car, jeep, bicycle, and scooter rental services.

Gage’s Car Rental, tel: 664-493 5821,

Tip Top Enterprise, tel: 664-496 1842,

By Taxi/Bus

Taxis and buses are available; they both have green license plates beginning with H and can be hailed on the street. There are no official stops and no scheduled times for buses. The Tourist Board can supply visitors with taxi contact details for island tours.

Inter-Island Links

Scheduled and charter flights on nine-seater aircraft are offered between Antigua and Montserrat by Fly Montserrat, tel: 664-491 3434, and SVG Airline/ABM Air, tel: 664-491 4200, SVG Airline can be chartered for flights to neighboring islands and to St Vincent.

Caribbean Helicopters, in Antigua, tel: 268-460 5900,, offer a charter helicopter service to Montserrat.

There is a ferry service 4 days a week from St John’s, Antigua, and Little Bay, tel: 664-496 9912 in Montserrat, and tel: 268-778 9786 in Antigua. An Antiguan-based company, Ondeck, provides a racing yacht crossing on demand for day trips, 4 hours to Montserrat, 5 hours return, tel: 268-562 6696,

Saba and St Eustatius

By Car

All valid foreign drivers’ licenses are accepted. Driving is on the right. Limited car hire is available: Morgan Car Rental, Saba, tel: 599-416 2881. ARC, Statia, tel: 599-318 2595. Watch out for animals on the road in Statia.

By Taxi/Bus

Taxis are available on both islands for pick-ups at airports and ferry ports, and for island tours. Rates are fixed, but agree the price in advance. There are no buses.

Inter-Island Links

Saba: Winair,, flies at least five times a day from Sint Maarten. Saba’s J. E. Irausquin airport has the shortest commercial runway in the world, 1,312ft (400 meters), and suffers from turbulence, with a mountain on one side and the sea on the other (and at the end). Only small planes can fly in and flights are cancelled if it is too windy. On landing, the runway looks so short it appears almost square. On takeoff the pilot puts on the brakes, then pushes the engines to full throttle until the plane vibrates, before releasing the brakes and taking off as quickly as possible. Click here for ferry details.

Sint Eustatius: Winair has five 20-minute flights a day from Sint Maarten. There is no ferry.


By Car

Drive on the right. French laws apply. Car rental should be organized in advance at busy times of the year. Minimum age for car rental is 23 and you must have been licensed for 2 years. Many companies have offices at the airport. Roads are narrow and twisting in the hills and the smaller the car the better. Open-topped cars are popular. There is a chronic lack of parking space.

Budget, tel: 590-590-276 630,; Europcar, tel: 590-590-277 434,; and Hertz, tel: 590-590-277 114,

By Taxi/Bus

Taxis are available at the airport and ferry port, and for tours. They will do island tours or take you to a beach and pick you up later. Rates are fixed, but agree the price in advance. There are no buses.

Inter-Island Links

The main gateway to St-Barths is through Sint Maarten. From Sint Maarten, Winair,; Air Caraïbes,; and St Barth Commuter, make the 10-minute shuttle flights to St-Barths (SBH). From Guadeloupe, Air Caraïbes offers a few direct flights (45 minutes). The airstrip in St-Barths is short, 2,170ft (660 meters), and plagued by turbulence. Pilots have to negotiate a mountain, then drop sharply to land before they hit the sea at the end of the runway. Special training is required to land. For many passengers, the landing, especially on a windy day, is an adventure in itself.

St-Barths is served by catamarans and ferries; click here for details.

St Kitts and Nevis

By Car

Drive on the left, British-style. Visitors who wish to drive while on the islands must present a valid national or international license at the Traffic Department or through the rental company, along with a small fee.

Saloon cars, jeeps, and mini-mokes (like a beach buggy) are available for rental but should be booked well in advance, especially in high season.

For more details contact:

Avis, St Kitts, tel: 869-465 6507; Avis, Nevis, tel: 869-469 5199; Caines, St Kitts, tel: 869-465 2366;

Nevis Car Rental, Newcastle, Nevis, tel: 869-469 9837.

It is possible to split the rental between the two islands for the same price as renting a car on only one island.

By Taxi/Bus

Taxis wait at the airports and at the harbors of both islands. Tariffs are fixed, but be sure to confirm the total price of your journey before starting out. Small minibuses are reliable and cheap. They do not run to Frigate Bay and the southeast peninsula but you can get a bus from Basseterre up the coastal road to Old Road and on to Brimstone Hill Fortress. On Nevis, minibuses run on the road round the island all day. Stand on the side of the road and hail one in whichever direction you are going.

Inter-Island Links

St Kitts is linked by air with many islands including Puerto Rico, Antigua, Barbados, St Maarten, St Thomas, Anguilla, St-Barths, Saba, St Eustatius, BVI, Grenada, and St Lucia.

Nevis is linked with Puerto Rico, Antigua, and St Maarten.

Airlines serving the routes to and from St Kitts and Nevis include:

Winair, tel: 869-469 5302 and LIAT, tel: 869-465 5491/469 5238.

An air taxi and a ferry run daily between Basseterre, St Kitts and Charlestown, Nevis. Journey time is 30-45 minutes. Tickets can be purchased at the ferry terminal.

St Lucia

By Car

Drive on the left. Visiting drivers must obtain a temporary driving permit, valid for 3 months, available from Castries police station or all car-rental companies. Cars and four-wheel-drive vehicles are available to rent at the port; a four-wheel-drive is best for places off the beaten track. Contact: Alexo Car/Avis, tel: 758-452 2700,; Cool Breeze Jeep-Car Rental, tel: 758-459 7729,; Hertz, tel: 758-452 0679,; West Coast Jeeps and Taxi Service, tel: 758-459 5457,

By Taxi/Bus

Taxis are available at Hewanorra international airport in the south, the George F.L. Charles airport, near Castries, and at the cruise ship terminals. Most larger hotels lie in the northwest of the island; so if you land at Hewanorra, you are likely to have a long and expensive, albeit picturesque, journey to your destination. The prices are fixed for set routes, but check the current rates at the tourist office. Always agree the fare before starting your journey.

Public buses in St Lucia operate from early morning until early evening. The frequency tends to tail off after the end of the working day. Castries and Vieux Fort have the best services, while the more remote rural areas aren’t always as well served. If you go to Soufrière by bus, it is usually quicker and easier to return via Vieux Fort, where there are better connections.

Inter-Island Links

Air Caraïbes, LIAT, Winair and SVG Air fly from neighbouring islands while American Airlines/American Eagle flies from Puerto Rico for connections with us cities. Local flights usually go from George F.L. Charles airport, just outside the centre of Castries. Express des Iles has a high-speed catamaran car ferry service linking St Lucia with Dominica and the French islands of Martinique, Guadeloupe, Les Saintes, and Marie Galante.

St-Martin/Sint Maarten

By Car

Driving is on the right. Foreign licenses are accepted. Rental companies operating on the island include:

Dutch side: Paradise Car Rental, Airport Boulevard 38, Simpson Bay, tel: 599-545 3737,

French side: Alizés Car Rental, Baie Nettlé, tel: 590-590-872 059,

By Taxi/Bus

Taxis are available at the island’s ports of entry and in the centers of both towns. Wait either at the pier or where the tenders drop off. There are no meters, but there are fixed charges, so check the price before you start. A taxi tour is a good way of seeing the island.

Buses regularly travel between Marigot and Philipsburg, 6am-midnight, passing the airport, as well as on other principal routes. Ask at the tourist office about island tours by minibus.

Inter-Island Links

Juliana airport is one of the busiest in the region and, in addition to a large number of long-haul flights, there are good connections with all the other Caribbean islands from the Dominican Republic down the chain to Trinidad and Tobago. Inter-island airlines include: Winair, tel: 599-545 4273, and LIAT, tel: 599-545 2403, There is a small airport on the French side too, L’Espérance, at Grand Case. Small aircraft use this airport and there are flights to the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, St-Barthélemy, Martinique, and Guadeloupe.

There are frequent ferries linking the island with its immediate neighbors: Anguilla, St-Barthélemy, and Saba. Ferries from Blowing Point, Anguilla, cross to Marigot or Juliana airport. Voyager I & II cross regularly to Gustavia, St-Barths, from either Marigot waterfront or Captain Oliver’s Marina, Oyster Pond. Day trips are organized to Saba with lunch and tour if required. Contact Voyager, 9 rue Félix Eboué, Lot 5, Marigot; tel: 590-590-871 068, The Edge is another ferry crossing to St-Barths and Saba, also offering day trips and tours, from Pelican Marina, Sint Maarten, 5 days a week, journey time 45 minutes, tel: 599-544 2640. Great Bay Express additionally has two to three crossings a day from Bobby’s Marina, Philipsburg, to Gustavia, tel: 590-690 718 301, The Saba ferry, MV Dawn II crosses three times a week, leaving Fort Bay in the morning and returning from Dock Maarten in the evening, journey time 2 hours, tel: 599-416 2299,

St Vincent and The Grenadines

By Car

Driving is on the left, British-style. You will need your national license and a local license, which can be arranged at the police station in Bay Street, Kingstown, or the Licensing Authority in Halifax Street. Car hire is available on St Vincent and Bequia. Cars have limited access to some areas; a jeep is the best bet. Car-rental companies on St Vincent include Avis, tel: 784-456 6861; Ben’s Auto Rentals, tel: 784-456 2907, On Bequia: D&N (Noel’s) Car Rental, tel: 784-458 3064,; jeeps, bicycles, and scooters from Handy Andy Rentals, tel: 784-458 3722,

By Taxi/Bus

There are plenty of taxis at the airport to take you to your destination. Taxis and minibuses are also available on Bequia and Union Island. There are fixed tariffs for journeys, but check the price before you start.

Local buses on St Vincent and the Grenadines tend to be both busy and noisy, but they are also inexpensive and run reasonably frequently, Monday to Saturday, stopping on demand rather than at bus stops. Routes radiate out from the Little Tokyo Fish Market in Kingstown to all parts of St Vincent. There is a frequent service along the south coast to Villa, passing the airport. Buses may be a minibus or a pick-up truck with seats in the back.

Inter-Island Links

St Vincent is linked by air with other Caribbean islands including Barbados, Trinidad, St Lucia, Martinique, and Grenada. Bequia, Canouan, Mustique, and Union Island have airports capable of taking small planes - expect to be weighed along with your luggage. Airlines operating local flights: LIAT, tel: 784-457 1821; Mustique Airways, tel: 784-458 4380; SVG Air, tel: 784-457 5124.

Inter-island ferries are cost-effective. Contact Admiralty Transport, Port Elizabeth, Bequia, tel: 784-458 3348, or Bequia Express, tel: 784-457 3539, The M/V Jaden Sun, tel: 784-451 2192,, is a high-speed ferry linking Kingstown, Bequia, Canouan, and Union Island with stops in Mayreau on request. M/V Gem Star, tel: 784-526 1158, links St Vincent with Canouan, Mayreau, and Union Island. M/V Canouan Bay sails between St Vincent and Canouan. The M/V Endeavour services Mustique. The M/V Barracuda, the mail boat, mainly cargo, runs twice a week from St Vincent down the chain of Grenadines.

Trinidad and Tobago

By Car

Driving is on the left. Visitors wishing to rent a car must be at least 21 years old and have a valid driver’s license.

Southern Sales Group of Companies on Trinidad, San Fernando, tel: 868-657 8541,; Kalloo’s, Port of Spain, tel: 868-622 9073,; on Tobago, Hertz, tel: 868-631 8650; Island Automotive and Transport, tel: 868-291 5353,

By Taxi/Bus

Any form of public transport is referred to as a taxi. Taxis are available at the airports, ports, and town centers. Fares are fixed. Route taxis (minibuses) run along set routes and have fixed fares. Maxi taxis (shared taxis) travel greater distances than route taxis. All taxis are privately owned; buses are run by the state, PTSC, tel: 868-623 7872 (Trinidad), tel: 868-639 2293 (Tobago), The main bus station on Trinidad is City Gate, South Quay, Port of Spain, and is the hub for transport all over the island. On Tobago the bus station is at Sangster’s Hill, Scarborough. There are no buses from Piarco airport; you have to take a taxi or walk to the end of the approach road to the terminal, catch a route taxi to Arouca, then another from the junction into Port of Spain. On Tobago you can walk from the airport terminal to several hotels in the Store Bay area or get a taxi further afield.

Inter-Island Links

Trinidad has good connections with the rest of the Caribbean and its South American neighbors, Venezuela, Guyana, and Suriname. Flights to Antigua, Barbados, Curaçao, Dominica, Grenada, Jamaica, St Lucia, St Vincent, and Sint Maarten are with LIAT, tel: 868-669 2982; Caribbean Airlines, tel: 868-625 7200 and Surinam Airways, tel: 868-627 0102. LIAT also flies from Tobago to Grenada and Barbados.

The Port Authority of Trinidad and Tobago (patt),, has two high-speed ferries, T&T Express and T&T Spirit, running a daily service between Port of Spain and Scarborough (2.5 hours), and a conventional ferry, Warrior Spirit (6 hours). Caribbean Airlines runs the air bridge between the two islands with about 12 daily flights from 6am (20 minutes). Flights get booked up on public holidays.

US Virgin Islands

By Car

Cars drive on the left, British-style, in the US Virgin Islands, despite the fact that most steering wheels are on the left, American-style.

A us driver’s license is valid in the USVI. If your license is from another country and you wish to drive here, contact the USVI Division of Tourism in your home country before you go, to see what arrangements need to be made. Vehicles available to rent range from a standard saloon to an open jeep.

In St Thomas and St Croix, rental cars may be picked up at the airport. In St John rental vehicles are available in the main town of Cruz Bay. There are a variety of rental companies to choose from, which include:

St Thomas: Budget, tel: 340-776 5774, 800-626 4516; Dependable Car Rental, tel: 340-774 2253, toll-free: 800-522 3076,

St Croix: Avis, tel: 340-778 9365; Olympic Rent-a-Car, tel: 340-718 3000,; St John: St John Car Rental, tel: 340-776 6103,

By Taxi/Bus

Whether you arrive by plane, cruise ship, or ferry, you will find taxis waiting at your point of entry to take you to your hotel or wherever else you want to go. Taxi fares are published by the Virgin Islands Taxi Association, but you should verify rates before getting in.

If taking a day trip to St John, an open-air taxi tour of the island is recommended. Taxi companies include:

St Croix: St Croix Taxi Association, tel: 868-778 1088, St Thomas: vi Taxi Association, tel: 868-774 4550,

There are regular bus services on St Thomas, St John, and St Croix; look for the Vitran bus stop signs. On St Croix buses run every half hour between Christiansted and Frederiksted.

Inter-Island Links

There are airports on St Thomas and St Croix. You can fly between the US Virgin Islands on Cape Air, tel: 1-800 352 0714;; or Seaborne Airlines, tel: 340-773 6442; Local airlines link the USVI with nearby islands: Puerto Rico, the BVI, Anguilla, and Sint Maarten. They include: Seaborne Airlines, Cape Air, LIAT,, and American Airlines/American Eagle,

For the ferry from St Thomas (Charlotte Amalie) to St Croix, contact Smith’s Ferry, tel: 340-775 7292, From St Thomas (Red Hook or Charlotte Amalie) to St John (Cruz Bay) Transportation Services and Varlack Ventures, tel: 340-776 6282, For the Water Island ferry from Crown Bay, St Thomas, tel: 340-690 4159. For the ferry from Charlotte Amalie to Frenchman’s Reef Resort, tel: 340-774 2992.

There are regular ferry services from St Thomas and St John to Tortola, and Virgin Gorda in the BVI with Road Town Fast Ferry, tel: 340-777 2800,; Smith’s Ferry, tel: 340-775 7292; Native Son Ferry, tel: 340-774 8685,; Speedy’s Ferry Services, tel: 284-495 5235, A two-hour ferry service runs from St Thomas to Fajardo, Puerto Rico; contact Transportation Services STT, tel: 340-776 6282.