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confused about the rental cars and airport

Indinapolis, In
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confused about the rental cars and airport

Hello,

First timer looking for a little advice. From what I have been reading if I stay on St. John I will fly into St. Thomas and ferry over correct? Okay so what about the rental car? Do I rent on St. Thomas and ferry over myself and the car or do I rent on St. John? How much should I budget for these things?

Thanks,

Erin

St. Thomas
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1. Re: confused about the rental cars and airport

You will definitely land in STT airport and take a ferry to St John. There are 2 different 'people ferries' one leaves from Charlotte Amalie [town] and the other from Red Hook - the red hook ferry is more frequent and a shorter boat ride.There is also the Car Barge.

Renting a car in STT : many varied opinions about it here - you can use the search option and read some.

Basically - except for Hertz the STT rental cars can be driven across STT to the Red Hook Ferry dock and use the "car Barge" services to take it to STJ - some people prefer that as the luggage is loaded at the airport and also they can stop along the way in STT to food and beverage shop for the villa in STJ -

Many people arrange for a rental car in STJ - so then you taxi to either ferry departure point and get off in STJ and get the car there in Cruz Bay - some people prefer this as any car problems can be addressed on STJ direct with the rental company and some companies provide the much valued cruz bay parking space at their rental location.

I don't know the cost.

St Thomas
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for St. Thomas
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2. Re: confused about the rental cars and airport

There are tons of posts here on the subject (the search engine is really good). Some people prefer to rent their car on St Thomas and take it over to STJ on the car barge, stopping en route to pick up groceries if they're staying in a villa. Others prefer to rent on St John for various reasons. The rental rates are pretty comparable between all the rental agencies but if you do rent on St Thomas, Hertz doesn't allow their cars to be taken to St John. Hope that helps a little.

Pia
St John, VI
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for St. John
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3. Re: confused about the rental cars and airport

Just remember, if you rent of STT (and many people do) keep in mind your departure flight time. You need to be at the airport 2 hours before departure to clear Customs and Immigration so if your flight is before 9am you really will be pressed for time given the departure time of the first car ferry, drive time to the airport and the time it takes to return the car.

The cost of a 4wd (always recommend for driving on STJ) is approx $70 per day, car ferry is approx $50 roundtrip.

Pia

Boston
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4. Re: confused about the rental cars and airport

Also, be aware from what folks have told me here that if you rent on STT, some or all of the companies charge you a huge amount of money if they do have to come over to fix your vehicle, some kind of penalty fee of sorts I think, if I understood the posts correctly.

Its very easy to rent right on St John and all the rental companies are a very short walk off the ferry at Cruz Bay. We usually pay around $60 (for a small 4WD Suzuki) or so, plus gas which is very expensive on the islands- last time we were there it was over $4 a gallon and that was about 3 years ago. Its pretty easy to just take your self and your luggage over on the ferry then rent right on STJ so you don't have to que up to get your car back on the ferry. If you were planning on doing a major food shopping on STT first then its another story.

OCMD
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5. Re: confused about the rental cars and airport

Is the food that much cheaper on St Thomas? We have always rented a car on St john and we are considering renting on St Thomas and was wondering if it is worth it?

Wheaton, Illinois
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for St. Croix
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6. Re: confused about the rental cars and airport

We think it's worth it, but maybe that's just us. We hate the idea of loading luggage into a taxi and paying by the person and extra for the luggage, then unloading everything and schlepping it to the passenger ferry and then paying per person and luggage fees, then unloading it (and making sure we have everything at each unload - lost a nice luggage cart a long time ago and learned a lesson from that - especially when traveling with a group) and then schlepping it to the car rental in Cruz Bay and then loading it in the rental. We like to just rent at the airport (or from Dependable who delivers to the airport) and load the luggage once, then make stops at Cost-U-Less and Plaza Extra on the way to Red Hook, then just back onto the car ferry, get out and go up to the observation deck, pay one set fee that covers all passengers and luggage) get a beer from the little snack stand (we love the Roanoke) and then sit back and relax and listen to great music on our way to STJ, then just pull off and follow our villa greeter to the villa, then unload. For us, that makes sense. I understand the idea of having parking in Cruz Bay if you rent on STJ but, for us, that little perk is just not worth what we see as the bigger hassle. As far as repairs go - if you rent from a major or Dependable on STT and get a newer model with good tires and a decent spare (check) then you should be ok. Some companies will charge you a $50 fee for repairs on STJ, some want you to tow it back via the ferry. Again, whatever it is, we prefer to roll the dice that we will not have a breakdown. We've done it both ways and prefer the STT rental. But, that's just our way - others prefer to rent on STJ.

OCMD
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7. Re: confused about the rental cars and airport

Wow! Sold! Sounds great, thanks.

oklahoma city
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8. Re: confused about the rental cars and airport

I go the same way every year. Just go Dependable rental. Don't tell too many people or they will raise rates and availibility will go down. This is the best way to travel over from St. Thomas any other way is retarded.

Key West, Florida
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9. Re: confused about the rental cars and airport

obviously, we all have our favorite way to do things : ) To me - the car ferry is a big expense and a big hassle. And depending on where you stay in St John you might not even need a vehicle. Some vacation rentals have car with the rental an dif you stay at a resort you might find you dont' even need a car - or you might want a car for just one day of sightseeing.

Rhode Island
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10. Re: confused about the rental cars and airport

Also, if you are staying at the Westin you can always take their ferry the "Westin Breeze" right to the Westin and if you rent at O'Connors, which is also located at the Westin, it makes things a little bit easier. I will note that the Westin Ferry however, is more costly than the public ferries, but convienient.