Tourists who don't thrill at the idea of being responsible for a rental car or driving themselves around in an unknown place like St. Maarten might find using the bus system on this dual-nation island to be just the transportation option there are looking for. Not only are these buses affordable, but they are reliable as long as you stick to travel between big cities.
Buses in St. Maarten are a fun way to experience local culture. Here, they are called “jitneys” and make your transport a party by blasting loud zouk music through the streets as they make their way around. Additionally, the experience is a slightly intimate one, as these jitneys typically carry only 12 to 14 passengers at one time.
Buses run daily beginning at 7:00 a.m. and complete their last route at midnight, serving such large cities and Philipsburg and Simpson Bay. Because border laws are so lax, these buses travel back and forth between the French and Dutch sides of the island with ease, making stops in such towns as Grand Case and Marigot Bay. Each bus should have its destination posted on the vehicle, and it is not uncommon for them to stop for someone who is flagging them down on the side of the road.
Bus fares range from $1.50 to $3(USD), making it one of the most affordable ways to get around the island. Although reliable when you compare these buses to some of the other bus systems in the Caribbean, buses should not be relied upon to get you where you want to go on time. These jitneys are a great way for tourists to get around if they don't have a rigid schedule, however, those who do may want to consider another option.
Add a little fun and even adventure to your vacation in St. Maarten by taking a jitney at least once.
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