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Day Trip to St Barths

Fishkill, NY
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Day Trip to St Barths

Will be vistiting St Martin i June for 5 days. Definately taking a day trip to Anguilla but would love to visit St Barths too. How long is the ferry ride to St Barths and once we are there, what is a good beach to visit and where should we have lunch?

Peoria, Illinois
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1. Re: Day Trip to St Barths

We just took a day trip to Anguilla and St Barths while in St. Maarten. The ferry ride from Oyster to St. Barths is 45 minutes. BUT BE BEWARE, if it is windy, the seas will be very rough. On our boat, 6 people got very sick, one little boy was so weak after the ferry ride, he couldn't walk. The ferry is very nice, but the ride over can be ROUGH! The ride back isn't as bad, the prevailing winds are at your back.

We are glad we took our day trips, but both Anguilla and St. Barths are on our "been there, done that, don't need to go back" list. We wish we would have spent both days in St. Maarten. Don't change your plans based on our experience, but I did want to offer feedback.

Berkshire, United...
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2. Re: Day Trip to St Barths

"been there, done that, don't need to go back" - don't think I agree, although with only 5 days, I would stay put.

ST. Barths is better by air - 15 minutes flight and the price is almost the same as the ferry, and you won't get sick.

If you are really interested in St. Barths, post on that forum for suggestions on beaches and lunch

Midwest USA
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3. Re: Day Trip to St Barths

I am confused on why in the forums I have heard repeatedly, "Fly to St. Barts, it isn't much more expensive than the ferry." The cheapest airfare I found was 65 euros each way, so a round trip flight is 130 euros. Taking the Voyager ferry is 67 euros round trip. So flying is almost double the price of the ferry unless I am missing something. Perhaps for some travelers, especially solo travelers, this is not a big difference. But for those who need to be more careful about budget and/or in a bigger group, this can make quite a difference.

Edited: 21 January 2013, 13:21
Detroit, Michigan
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4. Re: Day Trip to St Barths

^^^^^^^^ I was going to post the same. You didn't add taxes/fees. The cheapest flight I could find for 2 people round trip from the Grand Case airport was $344 USD round trip (after fees/taxes).

It is not in the same budget realm of the ferry.

Berkshire, United...
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5. Re: Day Trip to St Barths

You didn't add taxes/fees - one way from Grand Case to St. Barths per person is 65 euros including taxes and fees (whatever they are) - St. Barths commuter prices in Euro not USD.

The flight is much more convenient and pleasant than the ferry, plus if you are staying in Grand Case, the airport is just round the corner.

St. Barths, unfortunately, is not for the budget traveller.

Detroit, Michigan
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6. Re: Day Trip to St Barths

You are correct, I did the exchange wrong in my head, yes the 65 euro did include fees ($345USD roundtrip for two people).

In any event, I have read in a dozen posts that that the price is roughly the same and they really aren't comparable.

London, United...
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7. Re: Day Trip to St Barths

When we were in grand case we walked to the airport to get 65 euro flights which for us was better/faster/cheaper than getting a taxi to the ferry and then a taxi back. Also for st jean beach one can walk to it from the airport in 5 mins whereas its a taxi from gustavia where ferry docks. So 130 euros return vs ferry and 4 taxis was cheaper for us.

Flying is great, quick, saves 2 hours on a day trip and for those wanting to vist the lovely st jean beach for a day then flying from grand case is to us a no brainier. We did not look at costs to be honest it was the thought of an hour on the vomit comet that put us off!

western new england
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8. Re: Day Trip to St Barths

I've done both and believe me, flying is better. If your goal is to get to St Barts as quickly as possible, take the flight. Rent a car once you're there and get to the beach of your choice as well as anywhere else on the island.

The ferry is fine, but it is slower. There is a slight bump or two as you get close to St Barts, but it will pass.

NY
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9. Re: Day Trip to St Barths

There are several ways to use your time on a day trip to saint barth. All have different costs:

1- "look but don't touch": take the ferry to gustavia, walk through town and window shop, have a burger at le select (15 euros), walk to the local beach at shell beach. This will cost you the ferry (65 euros) plus lunch, so 80 euros per person for the day.

2- "get a small taste". find your way to saint jean beach, lunch at a local eatery that is not on the beach (andy's le piment, kiki e mo) for ~20 euros, and hang on the beach. This is where the costs are essentially the same. Flying will be 130 euros per person, but you can walk to saint jean beach, so 150 euros each total. Ferry will be 65 euros, but you will have to add a taxi (~60+ euros round trip) so it will come to the same. If you fly, you won't see gustavia though.

3- "get more of a taste". Get to saint barth, rent a car, drive around the island. This gives you the freedom to see everything, including many very nice and secluded beaches, spectacular vistas, beautiful villas, quaint villages, etc. Costs is car rental (~60 euros), food (20 euros pp+ depending on where you eat), and transport. So 145 euros if you ferry, 210 euros if you fly.

4- "Live it up like the regulars". You get to saint barth, rent a car (~60 euros), drive around, get to saint jean beach, have a boozy lunch at eden rock (~100+ euros per person), rent chairs on the beach (30-50 euros per person depending on time of the year), shop in gustavia (spend 50+++ euros pp). So you can easily spend 250 euros pp plus transport. So total is ~300 euros if you take the boat, ~350 euros if you fly. (maths are much looser here as you can spend A LOT if you eat a lot, drink a lot or shop a lot).

People (including me) typically refer to option 2 or 4 in stating that "it costs the same to fly as to take the boat. i.e. either you will spend a lot and won't notice the difference, or you will avoid the cost of an expensive taxi by flying staight to St Jean.

I would however recommend option 3 (car rental) as the best way to see saint barth, especially for a group. Then the fly / ferry decision will depend on whether you want to spend 2.5 more hours on the island (and price of course).

Oh yes, also take into account the costs of taxis in SXM. As a previous poster said, if staying in or near grande case, you may save the taxi if you decide to fly.

Trumbull...
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10. Re: Day Trip to St Barths

We took the ferry to st barts the other day from St Martin. Went out of Oyster Pond - the fastest trip. Buy the seasickness bands - 10 euros each at the check in for the ferry. I am prone to seasickness - both my wife and I were fine. Well worth it - they really do work. You can reuse them. Trip back is shorter and calmer.

Look at ferry vs flying costs for a one day round trip. The ferry was half the price. Not the same if you are staying a few days. Of course, if you can afford to stay in st barts for a few days, the flight cost shouldn't be an issue. :-). If you do fly- book early for best times.