How Much Will it Cost to Vacation on St. Kitts?

Budgeting allows travelers to consider costs before visiting St. Kitts

Photo credit: © Pakhnyushchyy | Dreamstime.com
 

St. Kitts and Nevis provide travelers with an abundance of sceneries and activities. Whether you decide to relax on St. Kitts or be more adventurous on Nevis, considering the costs of your accommodations, dining, and other activities will prevent you from having money trouble while on vacation.

Thinking about money often causes stress and anxiety for would-be vacationers. Doing research in advance, however, can help you determine the approximate cost of your trip and set daily budgets that allow you to include activities, tours, and shopping. Accommodations, dining, and transportation will make up the largest portion of your budget, but other small costs will also add up significantly.

Accommodations

Travelers to the Caribbean often choose where to stay based on the type of trip that they want. Staying in a small inn will be a different experience than staying in a flashy all-inclusive resort. Travelers should be aware that the cost of their accommodations will be affected by the time of year during which they travel, as well as the type of hotel at which they plan to stay and its location.

Maps

Travelers generally visit St. Kitts and Nevis during the busy Caribbean high season, from December through April. Despite the increase in crowds and costs, travelers can still find reasonable accommodation prices if they book in advance for this busy season. Travelers looking to make a splash can find all-inclusive resort hotels for more than $300(USD) per night in areas such as the Frigate Bay area of St. Kitts. Travelers with more modest budgets can find accommodations starting at $75(USD) a night. 

Other costs to keep in mind when booking your hotel are taxes and tips, which may or may not be included in the rate that you are quoted. Be sure to ask for included charges, in U.S. dollars, when you research room rates. Hotels on St. Kitts and Nevis will add a 7 to 8 percent government tax to the room rate, along with a 10 percent service charge. You should also tip bellhops and cleaning service staff, which will add a few dollars a day to your costs.

While paying $300(USD) per night for a room may seem exorbitant to some, it is important to consider what is included in that price. A $75(USD) room at a regular hotel or villa will often include very little in the form of services and amenities. This option appeals to travelers who plan to spend their time exploring large parts of the island or sampling local cuisine at restaurants. A room at an all-inclusive resort, however, will usually include meals, activities, and other amenities - making the higher prices understandable. Patrons at all-inclusives will have access to everything from meals to classes and adventure equipment, all included in the price of their room. Take these factors into consideration when deciding which type of accommodation will best suit your vacation style.

Finally, remember that during the off season, rates for all types of accommodations are sometimes slashed up to 50 percent.

Daily Spending

Dining is another necessary and large expense when visiting St. Kitts and Nevis. Even if you are staying at an all-inclusive resort, you may wish to venture out to local restaurants to sample local and international fare. Diners can expect to spend anywhere from $9(USD) to $27(USD) at moderately priced restaurants for dinner. A popular dining choice, even at nicer restaurants, is to choose the set meal price option. For two people, this fixed price meal often costs from $35(USD) to $65(USD). Those looking to explore local cuisine without the higher prices may wish to eat away from their resorts during lunch, when prices are significantly lower. Restaurants will generally include a 7 to 8 percent government tax and a 10-15 percent service charge. Additional gratuities are greatly appreciated. If the tip is not included in the bill, a 15 - 20 percent tip should be left for your server.

Transportation costs will also drive up the price of your vacation on St. Kitts and Nevis. Travelers looking to rent a car will first need to secure temporary licenses, which cost around $25(USD) on each island. Car hires generally start at $30(USD) to $40(USD) for regular cars, and go upward to $60(USD) to $80(USD) for four-wheel drive vehicles. Remember to include the following costs in your rental budget: insurance at $10(USD) to $15(USD) per day, gasoline, and a 5 percent government tax. Most companies will also ask for safety deposits of around $400(USD) which will be refunded upon the safe return of the vehicle. Scooter rentals also require a license, and start at around $25(USD). Visitors who are not doing extensive touring of the island can use fixed rate taxis. Drivers, who also act as guides, should be tipped 10-15 percent. Ferry transport between the islands is about $8(USD) round trip.

Bikes and all terrain vehicles are popular ways to tour St. Kitts and Nevis. An all terrain vehicle tour on St. Kitts will run about $65(USD). Bike tours with mountain biker Winston Crooke will cost $50(USD) to $55(USD). Tours of other island sites, as well as rentals for activities like snorkeling or windsurfing, should also factor into your total budget. When formulating your budget, try to consider all of the activities and places you wish to explore, as well as how you wish to explore them.

Shopping

Original pieces of artwork, hand crafted baskets, and clothing are all popular with shoppers on St. Kitts and Nevis. Items crafted with coconut are also popular, as are the normal assortment of perfumes, jewelry, and accessories. Duty free shopping is generally found at Port Zane and elsewhere on the island, but shoppers can find reduced prices in many stores.

U.S. citizens arriving back in the States can import up to 200 cigarettes or 100 non-Cuban cigars, and up two liters of alcohol produced in a Caribbean Basin Initiative country. Gifts can be packaged and sent to the United States with contents not to exceed a value of $500(USD).

Taxes

Upon leaving St. Kitts, travelers must pay a departure tax of $22(USD) and $20.50(USD) from Nevis. Some airlines include this cost in the plane ticket, but most do not. Restaurants and hotels charge a government tax of 7-8 percent, and both usually impose a service charge of 10 percent.

There are exciting options for all kinds of budgets when visiting St. Kitts and Nevis, so be sure to research your options to give yourself the highest return for your dollar.

 

Help us improve! We welcome your corrections and suggestions.