Trip Tips from Vacation Vistas
Your satisfaction is my goal! I’ll be more than happy to answer any further questions for you. This sheet is based on over 20 years of greeting guests and is designed to help you facilitate your trip and know what to expect so that there are no surprises…read on…
BEFORE YOUR ARRIVAL
– Make sure that Vacation Vistas’ has your correct flight arrival info -Airline, Flight # and arrival time. At least a month or more before you get here so we can schedule your pickup—also keep us informed of any changes.
– Make sure we also have your car information about what we can book for you or where you have rented and what type of vehicle. This should be arranged as soon as possible after booking the villa as the island does run out of cars available for rent during the busiest times. I strongly recommend only a vehicle WITH 4-wheel drive – we have very steep hills, which can be very slippery when wet and sliding backwards downhill is an experience that can be missed by most! You may arrange your car on your own, please advise with what company
– I can arrange vehicles for you at Cool Breeze car rental- they extend a 10% discount to my clients. Call or email for more info on rates and styles. www.coolbreezecarrental.com
– If you wish provisioning or chef services please call well ahead of time and we can forward recommendations.
– If you wish maid service it can be arranged at extra cost unless you are staying 10 days or more (in which case you could have one maid day free). In either case it must be arranged ahead of time and around our schedule. Rates vary with the number of people and size of the house from $75-$250 per day.
– Most guests arrive via air through the St. Thomas airport. There is a 40-minute taxi from the airport to the ferry at Red Hook (presuming no stops along the way). The ferries run every hour on the hour from 8 am – 12 pm. It is a 20-minute ride across to St. John and into Cruz Bay.
- I HIGHLY recommend pre-arranging a taxi service to help you make that connection as they will guarantee no other stops along the way and every chance for an earlier ferry and friendly staff. Set up two weeks ahead.
- My recommendation is: Bazile offers one way or round trip without pre-payment ($20 per person one way to both Redhook and Downtown) and can be reached at 340-771-5759 – it’s a cell and subject to the hills and busy circuits OR just fax your itinerary, number of people and name to him at 340-714-4060.
– For those arriving by the above method I will expect your call from the St Thomas airport AFTER you have your bags so I can estimate which boat you’ll be on. Please call if you happen to miss the expected boat. If using the taxi service they will make the call for you. I will be waiting at the end of the dock with a large black umbrella that says Vacation Vistas for easy ID- some days I have helpers and they carry the same.
– Some guests choose to rent a car in St. Thomas and arrive by car barge: this is potentially problematic as there is no one responsible here on St. John should you have trouble with the vehicle, the barges are often crowded and not on schedule, and depending on your flight times it may just be too close timing to deal with. Be sure you rent a vehicle large enough for your passengers AND their Baggage. IF you choose this method I will expect a call from you when you leave the rental agency, again once you are on the barge and it is actually moving away from the dock. You should land within 15-40 minutes of departure time- it’s helpful to know which company you are traveling with so I can plan the travel time. I will be waiting for you on the dock as close to the exit as possible—keep an eye out for me as the “lemming effect” can have you off the boat and away from the dock before you even realize it. Cell phones come in very handy for this method, as there is wide room for error. Please note you will be arriving at “THE BARGE DOCK” not the ferry dock. (Make sure the rental agency knows you are going to St John—most do NOT allow it.)
- Some guests arrive from the British Virgin Islands via ferry and you will land at the customs facility. I will need a call from you the day prior to arrival letting me know which ferry you will be on (Island you are departing from and area i.e.: West End or Road Town and the time the ferry departs that island).
Customs clearance can take half an hour or more and I will be waiting as close to the customs facility as possible and be looking for you by the front door.
FINDING YOUR GREETER
– You will be looking for a VACATION VISTAS person to meet you – 340-776-6462 is our number.
– We will be carrying a black umbrella that says VACATION VISTAS on it so you can easily find us.
Then we will guide you to your car rental.
ONCE YOU HAVE YOUR VEHICLE
– You will follow me to the house where we will go over the intricacies of the house and I will also go over the map for shopping, dining and beaches and to answer your questions.
–CHECK IN TIME: Homes are generally available for occupancy between 3 and 4 pm the day of arrival. Circumstances may require cleaning staff to be at the home for a longer period but they should be gone no later than 5 pm. – ARRIVALS BEFORE NOON can sometimes be accommodated but you must arrange a ferry time at least the day before, otherwise no one will be there for you (which is not the goal).
– Rates are based on the number of people occupying the house and the number of bedrooms being used. If there is any adjustment in that usage then the rate will also be adjusted – the rate will be based on the highest number of people occupying the house for a weeks period (e.g. If you have 3 bedrooms for 2 nights, and 2 bedrooms for 5 nights, you’ll be charged at 3 bedroom rate). NO ONE else will occupy the house at the same time as your group.
– All rates are subject to a V. I. Government tax of 12.5% of the total rental.
– During your stay we will have done our best to prepare the house in fully working order. Should you notice something that does not work or is broken please bring it to my attention as soon as possible so that we may repair or replace.
– We do not have trash removal service on island so you will be expected to take trash regularly to the roadside stations- it should never be left even overnight outside the house or you will draw strays and rodents.
– Check out time is 10 am prompt. We usually have people arriving that afternoon and we require that time to prepare. IF we can be flexible we will be. You may inquire a month or so ahead of time and I may know the schedule by then. – If you require a late checkout you are welcome to rent the villa for an extra night.
– If you have a late flight and have used one of the taxi services they are often willing to drop you in St. Thomas for breakfast/lunch or shopping while they hold your baggage- please check with them for availability.
– We will handle all the clean up after you leave but it is helpful if you start a wash load of towels for us if we are cleaning that day (we dread a power outage on a cleaning day!).
- Most rental cars are due back between 10-11 am; check with them before making plans to leave late.
– All cancellations MUST be made in writing. No refunds will be made unless the property is re-rented for the same dates of stay. IF the property is re-rented then a refund LESS the 10% cancellation fee of the full rental will be mailed to you. The refund will be made upon receipt of the new deposit.
– My goal is to have your stay be so pleasant and the house so pleasing that you will want to return again. You have first dibs on the same dates for next year but you must let me know before you depart island if you want the dates held.
I look forward to meeting you and assisting with your stay!