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Ferry ride between the islands

basefilm
February 29, 2012 12:54PM

Registered: 2 years ago
Posts: 11

Hi everyone,

More Pre-PMV kinds of questions here...

I am very susceptible to getting seasickness. How long is the ferry ride between St. Croix and St. Thomas? (I read somewhere it is about 70 minutes.) And, how bumpy is the ride? I haven't been able to find out how smooth or choppy the waters usually are between the two islands. I'm eager to hear from anyone about this, but especially from someone else without sea legs!

I've tried dramamine, which has been ineffective. Chap-stick has more medicinal value to me than dramamine. I haven't tried scopolamine patches--just haven't had the chance to get a prescription and see how they do, but I will before my PMV.

Thanks!
Ted

Re: Ferry ride between the islands
avatar

rotorhead
February 29, 2012 01:00PM

Registered: 9 years ago
Posts: 1,898

The ferry is known locally as "The Vomit Comet".
Take a plane, either Cape Air or Seaborne.

Re: Ferry ride between the islands

STXBob
February 29, 2012 01:01PM

Registered: 8 years ago
Posts: 1,880

There is currently no regular ferry service between St. Croix and St. Thomas. When it runs, it's referred to as the Vomit Comet or the Barf Barge. Most people opt for the seaplane.

Re: Ferry ride between the islands

stxem
February 29, 2012 01:01PM

Registered: 7 years ago
Posts: 775

There is no ST Croix--St Thomas ferry running currently. It crashed into an offshor island last year...they say it will be operational soon, but I highly doubt it. Regardless, it is a very bumpy ride. The water is more often than not, very rough. They used to hand out sick bags before the crossing began...

The Seaplane is a much better option, runs several times a day and is fun.

Do by any chance suffer from allergies or congestion? A lot of seasickness derives from having congesting in your ears and head, which upsets your balance. I work on boats, and can get sick if it is rough and if I'm congested.

Re: Ferry ride between the islands

basefilm
February 29, 2012 01:06PM

Registered: 2 years ago
Posts: 11

Wow. Didn't know about the barge crash. How much does the seaplane cost, and how long is the flight? As it happens, I easily become nauseated on small planes too so it looks like a win-win for me!

I don't suffer from allergies or congestion...

Re: Ferry ride between the islands

STXBob
February 29, 2012 02:34PM

Registered: 8 years ago
Posts: 1,880

Flights on [www.seaborneairlines.com] are about 20 minutes and start at about $88 each way.

Re: Ferry ride between the islands

IslandHops
February 29, 2012 02:34PM

Registered: 5 years ago
Posts: 673

Instead of Dramamine, next time you are on the water try Bonine. Most people I know do much better with that stuff and it won't make you drowsy.

Re: Ferry ride between the islands

Iris Tramm
February 29, 2012 03:05PM

Registered: 4 years ago
Posts: 693

Quote
IslandHops
Instead of Dramamine, next time you are on the water try Bonine. Most people I know do much better with that stuff and it won't make you drowsy.

Or, if you don't want to go by the brand-name, any version of meclizine hydrochloride will serve as a less drowsy version of dimenhydrinate.

My favorite are the Zentrip medicated strips that melt on your tongue. See: [www.zentripsato.com] You can keep 'em in your wallet or purse and don't need water to take them.

Re: Ferry ride between the islands

East Ender
February 29, 2012 03:37PM

Registered: 9 years ago
Posts: 4,095

base: Not many people commute between the two. Well, except for our esteemed legislators... Lots of St Thomians never see St Croix other than as a spot on the horizon.

Re: Ferry ride between the islands

NugBlazer
February 29, 2012 04:22PM

Registered: 7 years ago
Posts: 267

Honestly, I think people are being a little harsh on the ferry. Ten years ago, everyone used to take the ferry all the time. The bumpiness, IMHO, is being VASTLY overstated by the above commenters. Sure, it could be a bit bumpy, but most of the time it was just fine. Even when it was bumpy it wasn't like people were vomiting all over the place. In fact, I don't ever recall myself or anyone I knew ever getting sick on the thing.

I for one wish the ferry was still operational. It's MUCH cheaper than the seaplace -- for example, 8-9 years ago, the ferry was $60 roundtrip vs. $140 roundtrip for the seaplane. That's PER PERSON, which adds up quite quickly.

Also, the ferry had lots of different sections to sit in (interior and exterior seating) and had a food court and whatnot. I found it quite easy to while away the two hour ride by reading, chatting or just looking out the window.

Sometimes I still prefer the Seaplane. But, the savings offered by the ferry can't be ignored. Saying the Seaplane is "much better" isn't really a fair viewpoint when you factor in cost, IMHO.

Re: Ferry ride between the islands

Iris Tramm
February 29, 2012 05:34PM

Registered: 4 years ago
Posts: 693

Quote
NugBlazer
I for one wish the ferry was still operational. It's MUCH cheaper than the seaplace -- for example, 8-9 years ago, the ferry was $60 roundtrip vs. $140 roundtrip for the seaplane. That's PER PERSON, which adds up quite quickly.

I don't know what they'd price it at now, but it'd certainly be cheaper than Seaborne, and I'd absolutely take a fast ferry for the cost savings. Being able to get to STT/STJ or the BVIs on the cheap would be a nice benefit of living here. On busy weekends, you can't get a seat anyway, even if you're willing to pay the cost of airfare. The higher capacity of a ferry would be attractive. I've no idea why they couldn't make it work, but I agree that'd it'd be nice to have back.

Re: Ferry ride between the islands

divinggirl
February 29, 2012 05:54PM

Registered: 6 years ago
Posts: 875

Quote
NugBlazer
Honestly, I think people are being a little harsh on the ferry. Ten years ago, everyone used to take the ferry all the time. The bumpiness, IMHO, is being VASTLY overstated by the above commenters. Sure, it could be a bit bumpy, but most of the time it was just fine. Even when it was bumpy it wasn't like people were vomiting all over the place. In fact, I don't ever recall myself or anyone I knew ever getting sick on the thing.

I for one wish the ferry was still operational. It's MUCH cheaper than the seaplace -- for example, 8-9 years ago, the ferry was $60 roundtrip vs. $140 roundtrip for the seaplane. That's PER PERSON, which adds up quite quickly.

Also, the ferry had lots of different sections to sit in (interior and exterior seating) and had a food court and whatnot. I found it quite easy to while away the two hour ride by reading, chatting or just looking out the window.

Sometimes I still prefer the Seaplane. But, the savings offered by the ferry can't be ignored. Saying the Seaplane is "much better" isn't really a fair viewpoint when you factor in cost, IMHO.

That was true with the fast ferry that came down for the season, however, the ferry that was recently running (until the crash) was awful. The day we took it even the crew were vometing. It was not a nice comfortable ride like the old ferry.

Re: Ferry ride between the islands

OldTart
February 29, 2012 06:52PM

Registered: 2 years ago
Posts: 3,118

Quote
NugBlazer
Honestly, I think people are being a little harsh on the ferry. Ten years ago, everyone used to take the ferry all the time. The bumpiness, IMHO, is being VASTLY overstated by the above commenters. Sure, it could be a bit bumpy, but most of the time it was just fine. Even when it was bumpy it wasn't like people were vomiting all over the place. In fact, I don't ever recall myself or anyone I knew ever getting sick on the thing..

I disagree that "people used to take the ferry all the time" and, with all due respect, your remembrance of it being a pretty smooth ride must have been based on just one of the many operators who've come and gone over the years. The "Vomit Comet" and "Barf Barge" appellations didn't spring up overnight. 40 nautical miles in calm seas is an easy passage but that stretch of deep water between STT and STX is unpredictable at best where swells are concerned and the crossing has never been predictably calm.

Re: Ferry ride between the islands

JulieKay
March 01, 2012 07:57PM

Registered: 2 years ago
Posts: 1,338

I get horribly seasick, and don't do well with medications. The last time I was on a boat I wore one of those pressure point wrist bands - it WORKED. If I took the thing off I would get seasick within 5 minutes. Put it back on - I was fine.

Re: Ferry ride between the islands

sallyf
March 01, 2012 08:45PM

Registered: 3 years ago
Posts: 140

I remember one memorable crossing with a boat-load of teenagers - sympathetic vomiting is the term, I believe!!!!! EEEEEEEEEEEEEWWW!

The wristbands are a life saver - I wear them all the time - nothing else have ever worked for me!

Re: Ferry ride between the islands

NugBlazer
March 01, 2012 10:02PM

Registered: 7 years ago
Posts: 267

Quote
OldTart
I disagree that "people used to take the ferry all the time" and, with all due respect, your remembrance of it being a pretty smooth ride must have been based on just one of the many operators who've come and gone over the years. The "Vomit Comet" and "Barf Barge" appellations didn't spring up overnight. 40 nautical miles in calm seas is an easy passage but that stretch of deep water between STT and STX is unpredictable at best where swells are concerned and the crossing has never been predictably calm.

All I know is the ferry was a pretty big boat, easily 75-100 feet long. A boat of that size does not even come CLOSE to the bumpiness of a smaller boat. I've sailed over to STT, STJ and the BVI's numerous times on a 32 foot boat and never gotten seasick. If you can't handle a 100 foot boat, then I think you're just predisposed to seasickness and really have no business complaining about any boat ride, since just about ANY boat will make you sick. YMMV of course.

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