Transportation Options for St. Croix

You'll arrive by air or by sea, and then determine how to get from place to place on land

Photo credit: © David Campbell
 

St. Croix is the largest island in the U.S. Virgin Islands chain, yet has a quieter overall appeal than the more popularly visited island of St. Thomas. Getting to this island is not a difficult feat, and once you arrive you'll have numerous transportation options to choose from.

Getting There

Traveling to St. Croix is relatively easy when compared with some of the other islands in the region thanks to an airport that is located on the southwest side of the island, but it isn't the only method of arrival that tourists have. Sailing a chartered yacht or stopping by on a cruise are also real possibilities.

Getting Around

Because St. Croix is the largest island in the chain, you'll likely have to spend a bit more time considering how you'll get from place to place. The options are rental cars, taxis, and buses. After you learn a bit more about them, you may find that you're drawn to one, or that you'd like to use each for a different purpose.

Air Travel

As more and more national airlines increase travel from major air transport hubs in the United States, travel to St. Croix is becoming easier than ever. The airport on the island is the Henry E Rohlsen Airport (HERA), which is located just six miles outside of the town of Christiansted. Its features include a 181 thousand square foot terminal and a 10,004 foot asphalt runway which can accommodate jets as large as Boeing 747s. Although the airport mostly serves regional airlines, there are several that fly in from the United States.

Monday throuhgh Friday, Seaborne Airlines offers thirteen roundtrip flights between St. Croix and St. Thomas. Flights start as early as 6:00 am from St. Croix to St. Thomas and then go as lats as 6:00 pm from St. Thomas to St. Croix. All flights are operated on 14-seat DHC-6-300 Twin Otter seaplanes with two pilots and two engines. 

Click here to see more information on the airlines and routes that service St. Croix.

Sailing

Sailing to St. Croix is very popular, especially considering the fact that ferries do not run to the island. Instead, maritime travelers rely on private charters, or their own boat. If you were hoping to island hop to St. Croix, do not worry, there are plenty of boat captains chartering their services throughout the US Virgin Islands.

For more information, including information on the various marinas, docking areas, and individual charterers and companies, click here.

Cruises

As cruising the Caribbean has grown into one of the largest sources of revenue for the Caribbean over the last decade, St. Croix has taken note. Frederiksted, where the cruise port is located, has invested millions in improving the landscape surrounding the waterfront as well as making the dock more accessible. Now, at least 10 ships travel to St. Croix each month. Upon arrival, tourists can take advantage of dining and shopping within walking distance, rent a car for the day so they can take in as many sites as possible in the short amount of time they are on the island, or take a cab to the one or two attractions they don't want to miss out on. If your plan is to visit St. Croix as part of your cruise tour of the Caribbean, be on the lookout for trips aboard such liners as RCI, Holland America, Celebrity, Silver Seas, and World Cruises. These cruise lines are known for planning stops in Frederiksted.

Rental Cars

There are a lot of perks that come with renting a car on St. Croix. First of all, options are plentiful at all of the main ports of entry, including the airport, the cruise ship terminal, and popular harbors and marinas; secondly, tourists have the opportunity to choose between big name rental agencies that they are probably already familiar with and local agencies that have earned their good reputation over time. Regardless of which agency you choose to rent with, you will likely find that they offer transportation to and from the airport if they do not have a branch already there, as well as vehicle pick up and drop off if you want your rental brought right to you at your accommodations. With employees ready to go above and beyond, the already low prices of between $30 and $150(USD) a day seem like even more of a bargain.

Along with further details regarding what it takes to rent a vehicle on St. Croix, you'll also learn about the driving conditions and get vehicle recommendations when you click here.

Taxis

When you hire a cab on St. Croix, you'll find the experience to be different than in the U.S. and most of Europe. Here, the taxis are actually vans or modified trucks that hold between six and 24 people at a time, they are unmetered, and they all look different. Even so, you won't have too much trouble recognizing them thanks to the letters “TX” that must appear on the license plate and the dome light that typically rests on the roof.

Be prepared to make new friends, since these taxis are not private, but do expect to enjoy the ride, since drivers are always pleasant and trained tour guides. Click here to find out more about whether or not taking a taxi on St. Croix is the right choice for you.

Buses

St. Croix is serviced by the Vitran Public Bus System, which is a series of air-conditioned buses that travel between Christiansted and Frederiksted approximately every two hours, beginning at 5:30 a.m. and halting services at 9:00 p.m. While the regular route travels from Tide Village, through Christiansted, along Route 70 (stopping at the Golden Rock Shopping Center), along Route 70 (making stops at Sunny Isle Shopping Center, Ville La Reine, and Saint George Village Botanical Gardens) and finally into Frederiksted before returning along the same path. The trip is $1(USD) per person and does not operate on Sundays.

As great as this seems, the bus service is not very reliable, and it may take more than two hours for you to get another bus if you've missed the first one. If you've got somewhere to be at a specific time, you'd do best to avoid the bus. However, if you're trying to save money, don't mind waiting, or are having a vacation that is more “go with the flow” than tightly scheduled, this is a perfect transportation option.

Now that you are aware of all of your options, there are a lot of decisions to be made. How will you get to St. Croix, and then how will you get around once you arrive? There is no wrong answer; you can never go wrong when you plan on using the method that feels right to you.

 

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