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STT Airport to ferry: Rent vehicle on St. Thomas or St. John

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Lee's Summit, MO
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STT Airport to ferry: Rent vehicle on St. Thomas or St. John

Happy New Year everyone!

Our family of 4 is extremely excited to make our first ever trip to the USVI in March 2011. Trying to work out the logistics for a stress-free experience, and reading the posts about car rentals makes me wonder if taking a taxi (?) shuttle (?) to the Red Hook ferry location is a better plan than renting a car on St. Thomas. We could then rent from a St. John company (we are planning to stay on St. John). Our flight is scheduled to arrive at 4:35 pm. If there is significant traffic from STT to Red Hook, then this might be a bad moment to initiate left-side driving techniques . . . If anyone has personal experience and preferences, please share - I would truly appreciate it!

Ohio
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for Cruz Bay
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1. Re: STT Airport to ferry: Rent vehicle on St. Thomas or St. John

SInce this is your first trip ever, I recommend you rent a vechile on St John. Driving on STT is hairy enough, but especially if you have never driven on the left.

Also, if you rent on STT and have a problem with the jeep on STJ, you have to get it back to STT. They won't come fix it on STJ.

Reserve your car NOW!!! I suggest a Jeep Liberty (or like size) for a family of four. St John Car Rental is located in easy walking distance to the Cruz Bay ferry dock and you can park in their lot when you are in town for meals or shopping.

Ohio
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for Cruz Bay
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2. Re: STT Airport to ferry: Rent vehicle on St. Thomas or St. John

I should have added; due to your arrival time you will need to make arrangements with your villa rental company to get the keys for you. The car rental office close at 5:00. You will then have to go back the next day and fill out paperwork.

Where are you staying?

Lee's Summit, MO
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3. Re: STT Airport to ferry: Rent vehicle on St. Thomas or St. John

Thanks for all these tips, Bluewater.

We are doing this so last minute (I am ashamed to say) that we haven't secured a villa rental yet, but will be getting that underway ASAP. We have narrowed down a list of options based upon availability and 2BR/2BA types with a pool. Not knowing St. John, we have no specific requirement on where the villa is located.

Does the St. John car rental agency allow online reservations?

Ohio
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for Cruz Bay
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4. Re: STT Airport to ferry: Rent vehicle on St. Thomas or St. John

Yes, www.stjohncarrental.com

If they have nothing available go to www.stjohnusvi.com and click on rental cars. There is a long list of rental car companies as well as lots of other info.

Are your dates fixed yet? You will get lots of help here with your villa search if you give us your dates and budget.

Chicago
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for Seven Mile Beach, East End
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5. Re: STT Airport to ferry: Rent vehicle on St. Thomas or St. John

Rent the car 1st and then rent the villa as there are more villas than cars. :)

Also, what we normally do is fly in the Friday before and stay in a hotel on STT. Then we can take our time Saturday morning and still get our grocery shopping done and get to the villa with plenty of light left. I do not like getting to a strange house at night.

B.

Lee's Summit, MO
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6. Re: STT Airport to ferry: Rent vehicle on St. Thomas or St. John

We arrive on March 9th at 4:35 pm and depart on March 17th at approximately the same time (flight departure) of day. So - we need 8 nights and have 2 teens - so a 2 BR/2BA would be best. Also the girls want a pool and A/C would probably be a good item . . . although March may be cool enough at night to forego A/C. We are trying to keep the weekly rental (+ one night) to a maximum of $4300. If we can at this late date. Would love to have a nice ocean view (relatively close), may be a walking path to a nearby beach for the girls and I when my husband goes scuba diving.

Also: Have you any recommendation (pro/con) for Conrad Sutton car rental agency?

Ohio
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for Cruz Bay
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7. Re: STT Airport to ferry: Rent vehicle on St. Thomas or St. John

Conrad Sutton gets good & bad reviews. Bad reviews are mostly due to what some people consider a surly attitude. We have used them a few times and didn't have any problems.

Do you want a house where all BR's are under one roof or are you OK with bedrooms being in pods? If you are OK with one BR in the main house and other in a pod, then look at Second Wind in Reef Bay. www.caribbeanvilla.com Click on last minute specails. It is open for your dates and in your price range.

This house is very convenient to Cruz Bay (10 minutes) but also to the Westin. I am a diver too and use Cruz Bay Watersports based (boats) at the Westin.

Lee's Summit, MO
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8. Re: STT Airport to ferry: Rent vehicle on St. Thomas or St. John

Thanks for the villa tip - I will check it out. AND for the scuba tip - I will let my husband know.

Gorham, Maine
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9. Re: STT Airport to ferry: Rent vehicle on St. Thomas or St. John

WW - also know that if you rent your car on STJ (a good idea) you can catch a ferry to STJ from Charlotte Amalie (close to the airport) thus avoiding having to taxi all the way to Red Hook.

Although the last ferry leaves at 5:30pm so not sure if you'd be able to make that one. The Red Hook ones leave as late as midnight so you might wind up having to do that anyway depending if your flight lands on time and how quickly you can get out of the airport.

And listen to the folks - reserve your car NOW and then your villa. You will have an awesome time.

-Dragon

Franklin
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10. Re: STT Airport to ferry: Rent vehicle on St. Thomas or St. John

We just returned from our first trip to USVI. We rented a car at the airport from Budget. (Be prepared for a long wait. The counter is definitely on "island time").

This was my first experience driving on the left. It wasn't that bad. The roads are crowded, windie, and not well marked. It would not be fun driving there for the first time if it is dark.

We actually stayed at Sapphire Beach on St. Thomas which is a mile or so from the ferry in Red Hook. We took the ferry to St. John for a day and did an island tour with "Tony's Taxi" which I HIGHLY recommend. Especially take a tour and see the sugar plantation at Annaberg. (We did not take the car to St. John).

If I were you, I'd take a cab from the airport to the ferry and maybe even a cab on St. John depending on where you are staying (some places pick you up at the ferry dock). There are PLENTY of taxi's at the ferry dock and they are "governed" by a taxi association and I felt good with any of them with my family of 4. There really isn't a lot to do on St. John and there is not a lot of parking at most beach spots.

I would say there is a good possibility you will get a ding or dent on a rental car because of roads and parking. Our initial weekly rate for a mid size was $259.00. Taxes (22%) and fuel ($3.70 a gallon), and coverage for loss of service (they charge you if you do anything to the car that takes it out of service for any period of time), (our US auto insurance covered collision) made our rental car total $459.00 for the week.

I'll admit I didn't think about / budget for the taxes, fuel and such when I rented the car. We used the car quiet a bit but I'm not sure I would do it again. I hope this helps you with your decision.