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Can't Decide: Taxi's or Rental Car? Please Help

State College...
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Can't Decide: Taxi's or Rental Car? Please Help

We will be staying on St. Thomas ( minus maybe a day on St. John's ) for 5 and half days. We have a rental care for the time but it will be near 300-350. We are staying near Frenchman's Bay. We will have to get there from the airport and will likely do dinner's near Red Hook or other suggested areas ( please suggest! ). We don't know if we should just take taxi's. We are a little nervous to drive at night for dinners anyway. Any help or advice would be greatly appreciated!

Boston...
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for St. Thomas, East End
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1. Re: Can't Decide: Taxi's or Rental Car? Please Help

I think you will find that most of us will recommend that you rent a car. The taxis charge per person not per trip and they get very expensive.

Having a car allows you to explore the island and visit many different beaches and attractions.

The only exception might be if you just plan to stay where you are all day and then just go out to dinner, but you will miss a lot of the island if you do that.

Edited: 26 June 2012, 16:32
North Pole, New York
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2. Re: Can't Decide: Taxi's or Rental Car? Please Help

We taxied on our first visits to STT and recently rented and the rental option does allow so much more flexibility. We found St Thomas to be one of the easier islands to drive, you won't find too many of the extremely steep roads and 180° switchbacks like on Tortola. Having said that taking a taxi is a nice way to travel with less stress for some folks, expecially at night.

So you may want to taxi a couple days and then rent a car the last 2 days to get more comfortable with it and see a bit more of the island.

For dinner we liked Island Time overooking Red Hook Marina for their pizza and other pub fare, and Latitude 18 was very good across the bay but others will have to tell you if the new mgt is still doing a good job. Iggie's at Bolongo Bay is a fun spot for happy hours and their Wed nite Carnival nite (good nite to taxi). And Paradise Point in Havensight is a great spot for lunch or dinner. Gladys' and Cuzzins and Coconuts are also good in CA.

St Thomas
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3. Re: Can't Decide: Taxi's or Rental Car? Please Help

Here's a link to the taxi rates:

vinow.com/stthomas/…

A cab from Frenchman's Bay to Red Hook will cost you $9-10 per person each way plus tip so you can see how those fares add up. In the Frenchman's Bay area you're right off a main road to get both into Havensight/town and Red Hook very easily and I wouldn't worry at all about driving at night as the maximum speed is 35MPH and the normal driving speed is 25-30. As long as you don't rent from Hertz you can take your rental vehicle over to St John on the car barge for a day of exploring and, as Bill noted, you really will be short changing yourself if you don't rent a car! As far as restaurants go there are so many choices in so many price ranges but if you give the forum an idea of what you like I'm sure you'll receive plenty of suggestions. Enjoy your planning!

Ontario, Canada
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4. Re: Can't Decide: Taxi's or Rental Car? Please Help

Also keep in mind that a taxi for two from the Airport to Hotel is about $45/each way...so right away you are $90 towards the cost of a rental.

St Thomas
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5. Re: Can't Decide: Taxi's or Rental Car? Please Help

$45 each way? Good gracious no! Fare from the airport to Frenchman's Bay is $9 per person. Even adding any baggage charge ($2 per) and tip that's about $25 total each way.

Rochester, New York
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6. Re: Can't Decide: Taxi's or Rental Car? Please Help

I also recommend that you rent a car; we did for two weeks, and it really paid off. Once you get used to driving on the left side of the road, it really is a nice place to drive. You will get used to the VERY steep hills, which in places make the driving more challenging. However, the rental car allows you to really explore the whole island, which is much more fun.

CAUTION:

This is something that we learned the hard way. If you are traveling on the auto ferry to St. John from St. Thomas, make sure you BUY THE ROUND TRIP TICKET up front, not two one-way tickets. They will board your car last if you don't have the round-trip ticket, and you can literally wait for more than one day to get back to your hotel on St. Thomas. It happened to us!

St Thomas
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7. Re: Can't Decide: Taxi's or Rental Car? Please Help

Interesting your comment about buying the round trip ticket as we always advise visitors to buy a one way ticket, because the barge operators don't honor each other's tickets. That way when you get back to the dock you can get on the first barge going out and not have to sit and wait for "your" barge to make an appearance. I've never heard of them boarding your car last if you don't have a round trip ticket and was this maybe because you were taking the last barge back?

Ontario, Canada
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8. Re: Can't Decide: Taxi's or Rental Car? Please Help

STTResident...check out the latest trip report for the Marriott and you will see what a recent tourist was charged for taxi to and from airport. They had to negotiate down from $65!!

St Thomas
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9. Re: Can't Decide: Taxi's or Rental Car? Please Help

The taxi rates are set. Maybe that poster opted for a private taxi. If you go to the rate schedule I posted and scroll down you'll see that private taxis are available at a higher rate. As you'll see, the private rate from the airport to Marriott Frenchman's Reef is set at $65 for 1-5 passengers.

Ontario, Canada
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10. Re: Can't Decide: Taxi's or Rental Car? Please Help

Here is the info from the review;

Taxis are ridiculously expensive. Be careful and ask for a price before you get in. We had been told cab fare would be anywhere from $25 to $30 from the airport. It was $45. Taxi driver back to the airport tried charging us $65. We told him $45 or nothing. He protested gamely , but there were no other customers there and he took it. Take lots of $ for cabs.