Ferry and BVI Customs Fees Increased


Well we hate to be the bearer of bad news, but we have two rate increases to tell you about. Fortunately they’re both relatively small.

We reported back in February that the Public Services Commission (PSC) was looking to increase rates after receiving a recommendation to do so from a technical consultant. Well PSC has moved forward with the increase, but it will only affect tourists or “non-residential adults” as they refer to them. Tourists will now have to pay an additional $1 when traveling by passenger ferry between St. John and St. Thomas. Checked bag rates will also increase by $1.50 per bag.

The increase will officially go into effect within 30 days of it being signed off on by the PSC Commissioner. At that time, tourists will start being charged $7 each way for trips between Red Hook and St. John, $13 for trips between Charlotte Amalie and St. John and $4.00 for checked bags.

The British Virgin Islands has also increased its departure tax for visitors who arrive and depart by ferry and charter boat. That tax was raised from $5 per person to $15 for non-residents. (BVI residents were also hit with this increase. Their departure tax was also raised from $5 per person to $10. The BVI is also looking to increase its air departure tax, however that’s still in the discussion phase.)

BVI Customs Building

12 thoughts on “Ferry and BVI Customs Fees Increased”

    • The bad thing about not tipping the baggage handlers Randy is that you are only hurting people who make little money, appreciate the tips and have nothing to do with the fare increases.

  1. I love St John and will come for as long as I can. But, the fees that the cab drivers and the ferries add are such a scam it puts me in a crabby mood. In June, every bag we had no matter what size was classified as large by the cab driver. He and the hubbo got into such an argument, police came over and stood by.

  2. I’m all for paying my fair share. And I understand that residents need to have commute prices as affordable as possible. But you know what else they need? Toursim dollars. And this much of an increase is not going to bode well for encouraging more tourism. Especially the BVI departure tax. Not sure what the PSC consultant on our side of the pond was keying on but it sure could not have been the fact that the economy in the islands is utterly dependent on tourism.

  3. Mako: I think we agree. We have left plenty of tourist dollars on the VI table and didn’t regret it for a minute. St John is a magical place. But, no one likes feeling like they are being nickeled and dimed which is what stuff like this makes you feel.

  4. I’m considering taking a BVI excursion from Red Hook St Thomas. The excursion company charges a $40 “international fee” claiming that’s what it costs to enter the BVI’s. Sounds fishy. Any comments or additional info?

  5. Norman Island, home of Pirates Bight Bar, Restaurant, and Gift Shop, is perhaps most famous for being the inspiration for Robert Louis Stevenson’s novel, Treasure Island. However, Norman Island also has a rich documented history of acting as a hiding spot for Pirate booty.Documented history for the island dates back to the early 18th century when a Spanish galleon called Nuestra Senora de Guadalupe buried 55 chests of silver coins after the crew mutinied aboard the ship.

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