Join discussions on moving to and living in the USVI, ask questions, share info & tips! (Vacationing? Visit Travel Message Board)


Retiring 2017

GW7569
September 26, 2016 10:24AM

Registered: 2 years ago
Posts: 32

Wife and I are retiring next year to StX --- couple of questions please: Is it realistic to be able to live (and function and get around) without owning a car on StX?
Wife has a cusom golf cart - are they permissible modes of transportaion on StX and any idea what it cost to get one shipped there ?
Many thankx~

Re: Retiring 2017
avatar

CruzanIron
September 26, 2016 10:45AM

Registered: 4 years ago
Posts: 2,383

1) No.

2) No.

3) See 2 above.

Re: Retiring 2017

speee1dy
September 26, 2016 10:46AM

Registered: 9 years ago
Posts: 8,285

not really. if you were younger i would say you could do it but it would get old fast. but retirement age-i would have to say you need a car

you might have to call the bmv here and ask them about the gold cart?

[www.viphonebook.com]

if you have any other questions, please ask. especially about health insurance.

there is a ton of information in these forums.

Re: Retiring 2017
avatar

Bombi
September 26, 2016 10:46AM

Registered: 10 years ago
Posts: 2,094

No, you really need a car to get around STX. Have you been here before?

optimist with low expectations on STX

Re: Retiring 2017

GW7569
September 26, 2016 11:03AM

Registered: 2 years ago
Posts: 32

Thankx all so far for responses - very informative.
* No - have not been to StX before - (but have spent a LOT of time on other Caribbean islands) -- tons of questions -
* While retiring - we are still 'young' and [knocking on wood] in good health ---
* Going to try and do an off-the-cuff retirement - Hoping to "hop" to a different island every 6-8 months - getting by living in fully furnished long-term rentals, living within 'walking' distance of amenities -- Figuring on renting a car as needed for family/friends visits, etc..
*Starting in USVI because of the whole visa thing. Thinking a day trip or two to BVI will get that resolved.
*Looking into health insurance now... no fun what-so-ever...... : (
All advice taken into consideration and truly appreciated.

Re: Retiring 2017

Alana33
September 26, 2016 11:58AM

Registered: 5 years ago
Posts: 11,620

I think you'll find that without a car to get around, your options for fully enjoying our islands and your retirement will be extremely limiting.
This is true for STT, STX and STJ.
Public transportation is not available in all locations and you've got to get to a main road and wait, however long, for either a bus or a safari taxi to come along, then walk where you need to go and back to main road.
Think you'll find same is true in the BVI in terms of getting around without a vehicle.

You can call the Motor Vehicle Dept. to check on your custom golf cart but we don't see them on the roads here, at least not in STT, STJ.
340-774-4268.

No individual healthcare insurance is presently available unless you work for a company that offers it or the VI Government. Beets check with your provider.

Check this recent link on health insurance.
[www.vimovingcenter.com]

Good luck.

Re: Retiring 2017

GW7569
September 26, 2016 12:02PM

Registered: 2 years ago
Posts: 32

Thank you Alana33 - I appreciate the insight happy

Re: Retiring 2017

Alana33
September 26, 2016 12:06PM

Registered: 5 years ago
Posts: 11,620

You're welcome.

Re: Retiring 2017

Gator's Mom
September 26, 2016 12:11PM

Registered: 5 years ago
Posts: 718

That sounds more like an extended vacation than relocation. Will you keep a US address? that would be beneficial for health coverage.

You could live in one of the towns or near Gallows Bay and take taxis when you need to extend your range. Car would be better. VI would not be golf cart friendly.


Quote
GW7569
Thankx all so far for responses - very informative.
* No - have not been to StX before - (but have spent a LOT of time on other Caribbean islands) -- tons of questions -
* While retiring - we are still 'young' and [knocking on wood] in good health ---
* Going to try and do an off-the-cuff retirement - Hoping to "hop" to a different island every 6-8 months - getting by living in fully furnished long-term rentals, living within 'walking' distance of amenities -- Figuring on renting a car as needed for family/friends visits, etc..
*Starting in USVI because of the whole visa thing. Thinking a day trip or two to BVI will get that resolved.
*Looking into health insurance now... no fun what-so-ever...... : (
All advice taken into consideration and truly appreciated.

Re: Retiring 2017

Pammerjo
September 26, 2016 01:08PM

Registered: 2 years ago
Posts: 144

There are so many things to consider when choosing a retirement home - you would definitely benefit from what is called a PMV - pre move visit.

We just bought our retirement home on St. Thomas but that was after about 15 years of visiting the island (as well as the other USVIs and BVIs - my husband is English - we could have done either). We don't plan to retire for about 15 years, and will be using this place as a vacation rental in the meantime. We chose STT for a few factors: so-so-to-decent hospital, easy access to airport, relatively easy distance to PR and US mainland in the event of more serious health issues which are sure to arise as we age, relative accessibility of goods and services, decent social network, good access to activities that we enjoy: golf, diving, snorkeling, boating.

Come on down and jump around the islands a little before you settle on one. St. John is by far the most beautiful, but is way more expensive and difficult to get on and off of.

Re: Retiring 2017

GW7569
September 26, 2016 01:41PM

Registered: 2 years ago
Posts: 32

Thank you Gator's Mom - your advice is very much appreciated. I am considering keeping a mainland address (it is a forwarding station, but mainland address none-the-less) still trying to work through that whole thing - we are selling everything we own except clothes and a hand full of items we will put in storage (pictures, memento's, etc.)
We are technically relocating - just not settling down. We want to see as much of the Caribbean as we can while our health is still good, hence - changing islands every 6-8 months (the amount of time we have found to get the best pricing on long term rentals)

@Pammerjo, thank you as well -- as I just told Gator's Mom - we figure 6-8 months works out about right to get to really explore most islands and is a plus in the rental plan of things. The constant move is why we were hoping to stay away from having to own a car (plus the expense involved with that)
While we will have a decent steady income (from wise investments) and shouldn't have to work - we're not the Gates' either and don't want to have to spend money on things we absolutely won't have to have. Would rather spend it on the fun things while enjoying the islands.

Re: Retiring 2017

Alana33
September 26, 2016 02:05PM

Registered: 5 years ago
Posts: 11,620

Off season is considered May - mid October to beginning of November.
Summer is the best time to find those shorter term rentals.
Many landlords don't like to rent during high season for less than a year's commitment, at lower rates, and then find themselves lacking tenants completely, for months thru the doldrums of off season. Plus it sounds like you'll need fully furnished accommodations which include utilities.

Not saying it can't be done but it will certainly depend on your budget and flexibility. Do pre-move visits as oftentimes the reality doesn't match the expectations. Come for visits before committing, completely, and see what floats your boat.

Re: Retiring 2017
avatar

Exit Zero
September 26, 2016 02:16PM

Registered: 10 years ago
Posts: 2,209

If you are planning to live in any rental on any island for 6-8 months I would not rent any place sight unseen.

Re: Retiring 2017

GW7569
September 26, 2016 02:19PM

Registered: 2 years ago
Posts: 32

Thankx Exit Zero -- been around the block enough times to know better than that~! ;-)

Re: Retiring 2017

mtdoramike
September 26, 2016 02:34PM

Registered: 5 years ago
Posts: 923

I know the laws have changed regarding electric powered vehicles such as golfcarts and I would assume as long as they pass inspection, you should be able to get them registered. But they would have to be street legal with all required equipment. The reason you don't see many of them or any On St. Thomas or St. John is the power it takes to climb the many hills that both Islands have. Now St. Croix is much flatter than the other Islands which might make it suitable for those short drives. Some golfcarts or small electric powered vehicles can get any where from 30-50 miles on a charge. But it would cost nearly the same as having a small compact car shipped with limited travel distances, so why even consider a golfcart. Go with a vehicle.


mike

Re: Retiring 2017

Alana33
September 26, 2016 02:38PM

Registered: 5 years ago
Posts: 11,620

Then there's parts and maintenance to consider, if legal in the VI.
Not to mention the idiot drivers....on all 3 islands.

Re: Retiring 2017

GW7569
September 26, 2016 02:41PM

Registered: 2 years ago
Posts: 32

Very good information Mike - much appreciated~! While her cart is highly modified (and is street legal) you make a valid point about the terrain I had not considered. The whole idea behind bringing the cart, was to avoid having to own/maintain a vehicle but sounds like it would be a wash.
Thankx again,
Bill

Re: Retiring 2017

GW7569
September 26, 2016 02:42PM

Registered: 2 years ago
Posts: 32

Another very good valid point Alana33.......Thankx,
Bill

Re: Retiring 2017

Scubadoo
September 26, 2016 05:47PM

Registered: 3 years ago
Posts: 1,794

I've not seen golf carts being driven around STX and wouldn't think that would be a safe option due to lot's of factors. or one, given the low top speed there would be aggravated people passing and possibly forcing you off the road on which many have zero shoulders. They may be fine for driving up/down the street in a gated community like Judith's Fancy but not to go to town.

I have seen some crazy looking ATV type things on the road though. A Ranger RZR was parked outside my condo one night. Don't know if that saves any over a compact car. Shipping a car to foreign islands every 6-8 months may get expensive if not challenging.

Re: Retiring 2017

Alana33
September 26, 2016 06:34PM

Registered: 5 years ago
Posts: 11,620

Also, depending on where it's manufactured and any part thereof, especially if not U.S., you should check on Customs Duty involved.
You can call Customs and inquire about the VIN. (Vehicle Identification Number)

Before jumping thru all the hoops, find out if allowed to begin with.

Re: Retiring 2017

East Ender
September 26, 2016 07:54PM

Registered: 12 years ago
Posts: 4,862

If you are US citizens, it's no problem spending time on St Croix, St Thomas, St John and Water Island. However! If you are looking at other Caribbean island nations, you will have to see what their laws are about long term stays. For sure you will need to prove you can afford to live there without working and that you won't be a drain on the government.

Re: Retiring 2017

GW7569
September 27, 2016 06:58AM

Registered: 2 years ago
Posts: 32

Thank you East Ender -- I have looked into the piece about islands other than USVI - which is why we are starting there -- 'home turf' so to speak, and close enough for a day trip to other non US islands to go and ask questions.
Thankx all for the input - very, very helpful~!
Bill

Re: Retiring 2017

East Ender
September 27, 2016 07:38AM

Registered: 12 years ago
Posts: 4,862

From St Thomas and St John you can day trip to the BVI. But most other places take a bit of planning, time, and expense. Good luck with your dream!happy

Re: Retiring 2017
avatar

CruzanIron
September 27, 2016 07:39AM

Registered: 4 years ago
Posts: 2,383

Quote
Alana33

You can call Customs and inquire about the VIN. (Vehicle Identification Number)

Golf carts do not have VIN numbers. They use a simple serial number which cannot identify the country of manufacture.

Re: Retiring 2017

Alana33
September 27, 2016 07:48AM

Registered: 5 years ago
Posts: 11,620

Thanks, I wasn't aware that they didn't.

Join the discussion. Click the button below to Login or Register now!

Click here to login

  • Blue Ocean Transport

Moving to the U.S. Virgin Islands?

Settlers Handbook
Only $17.95

The Settlers Handbook for the U.S. Virgin Islands is your guide to moving to St. Croix, St. Thomas, St. John and Water Island.

The current 18th Edition, released in January 2016, will help you explore your dream of island living. A solid reference book, it was first published in 1975. That's 40 years of helping people move to the islands. A must read. Order today.

Order Today

Advertise

Join VIMovingCenter.com Today!

Tell prospective and current residents about your business.

Learn More →

Sister Sites

VITraders

USVI Books & Souvenirs

VInow

USVI Vacation Guide

Living in de V.I.

USVI Relocation DVD

Proud Supporter

VI Olympic Team

For over 45 years, the Virgin Islands has celebrated the Olympic tradition by sending our athletes to compete.

Learn More →