Well, we are back after 7 days in Beautiful St. Thomas. Our family of 6 stayed in one of the Ritz club residencies and it was awesome. I felt well prepared after studying the boards and really everything went well with the exception of LEAVING!!! Ha!
I did a search, got bill's list, etc. but we were unprepared with the leaving part. No one gave hints about getting a porter at the airport! Luckily, a kind person put a bug in our ears at the airport and saved us a HUGE hassel.
When they tell you to get to the airport 3 hours ahead on a Saturday, believe them. It was very "wild'. Our plane departed @ 4pm and we got there promply @ 1pm-the line for customs wrapped around the building! Yikes! After checking in @ Delta (the line there was 1 hr.) we started dragging all of our luggage to get at the end of the line for customs. Outside in the sun and heat. We honestly did not know about the "porter" deal but was told to us in a whisper by the Delta person.
Here is the deal in case someone out there is as clueless as we were!
Pay a porter $$$ (I don't think there is a set amount but just how desperate you are) Because we had a 17 mo. old, we were pretty desperate NOT to stand in the sun for 2 hours.
The porter then takes your luggage on a cart and you follow him/her to another line inside out of the sun. You then wait in this line to go in a room where customs check you out.
We were put ahead of all of the other poor souls that had waited outside for hours. I really felt bad. We got alot of nasty stares!!!
Then, when you get to the security line, our porter asked for more $$$! We ended up giving him $75.00 but at this point, what do you say??? Some people we talked to on the plane said that they waited in the outside line for 3 hours. I really think that some people did not make the flight even though we took off almost an hour late.
I think if we had been a little more prepared, it would have been a little more tolerable.
Was this an unusual day???