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Looking to move to St. Thomas


Active Member
Joined: 7 years ago
Posts: 8
January 17, 2016 4:10 pm  

'm looking to move to St. Thomas at the end of may for 6 months or longer. I am an American from Little Rock, Arkansas. I have looking for apartments to rent for the past few days. I would like to know the best locations to move to with reasonable rent. I have a french bulldog who will be moving with me as well. I will also be looking for work while there. I have two degrees in Marketing and MIS (building websites). I don't really care to work a job in this field. I would rather just bartend or work on a boat or resort. Something that isn't too crazy because I am tired and just looking for a change. Could anyone please point me in the wrong direction. I will be moving there no matter no later than the end of May. I would be willing to move earlier if good info. Thank you for all the help.

Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 6523
January 17, 2016 4:26 pm  

Consider your move very carefully and be aware of the pitfalls. Finding a place to rent with a dog is not going to be easy. Finding a place to rent with a dog close to public transportation is going to be more difficult. I'm guessing you're not going to be buying a car here or bringing one with you for such a short stay and that makes getting around extremely difficult - very expensive if you plan on relying on taxis and public transportation isn't reliable.

April/May through to end of November is the worst time to find a job in the service/tourist industry as it's the start of slow season when jobs are much fewer. Unless you have mileage and a lot of experience in the field the competition is going to be very tough.

If you're determined to come here, best advice at this time is to leave your dog with friends or family. I fully understand that's a tough decision to make but while you're trying to make a go of it here for just a few months your dog is going to be confined wherever you can find a place to stay. There are very few places with fenced yards ; nor are there many beaches (and no parks) where you can take your dog to get exercise.

If you haven't already done so, read all the information in the drop-down menus top of this page. Good luck!

Exit Zero
Trusted Member
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 2455
January 17, 2016 4:34 pm  

If you are really looking at a 6 mo. timeframe coming here in May is the start of the slowing down seasonal work opportunities and it only gets slower until mid Nov.
It will also be very tough to come out of this move reaching a break even financial situation too - no matter what kind of work you find. That may be something you want to consider.

You will need a good bankroll to start for rent and relocation expenses.
There is plenty of info on the drop down and search features on this board and it is well worth your time to do some research on those.

many members here are more than willing to answer questions of a more specific nature and can be very helpful at times with those.
It certainly can be a nice adventure moving here but many people move here and leave within a few months at great personal loss for various reasons.

Joined: 13 years ago
Posts: 3554
January 17, 2016 5:42 pm  

What have you done already in terms of looking for job and place to stay?

Active Member
Joined: 7 years ago
Posts: 8
January 17, 2016 6:16 pm  

I've been on this for the past few months. I am just trying to get some insight on what route to go. Like I said I have two degrees and am currently in alcohol sales for the past two years. I am over living in the states right now and up for anything, legal, that will help make me money and live on the island. any suggestions will help for work and living. I've wanted to move there for the past few years and have always been too afraid. Now, I am going no matter what. I just need to stockpile a little money and just get out there. Any help will help. I also am an ex professional athlete, soccer player, and crossfit coach so very fit and know fitness. Like I said I am willing to do whatever to just get away and live like I want to instead of living like someone thinks I should. Thanks for the help and look forward to your response.

Advanced Member
Joined: 9 years ago
Posts: 91
January 17, 2016 6:32 pm  

"Coming to the island to escape" is a common theme heard here. It is also one of the top reasons people become disappointed living in the USVI and return stateside. It is very rarely the lifestyle that people think it will be in such situations.

I will caution you as others have done that this may turn into a very expensive and frustrating endeavor for you. It is quite possible you will spend more during your 6 months on island than you can potentially earn. My caution is only so you are openly aware of what you are getting into. And if you are frustrated with not being able to live as you choose stateside, you will quite possibly be equally as frustrated on island.

I have found that in life, when a man is running from a situation, ultimately he is running from himself.

Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 12366
January 17, 2016 8:24 pm  

You can start by looking at ads for rentals and jobs on Craig's List and our local weekly advertising newspaper, the Island Trader. There's a daily newspaper, the Virgin Islands Daily News to check jobs and rentals as well. You'll probably have to subscribe to DN to be able to see those listings however but it may be worth your while.

As others have said, your arrival coincides with the end of season so opportunities may be limited.

As for your dog, airlines stop flying pets in cargo when the temps rise which is right around the time you wish to come/May. They also may have restrictions on brachycephalic dogs such as your boxer. You may wish to check on the airline's regulations for flying with a boxer before committing to bringing him.

There are extremely limited rentals with fenced yards as OT mentioned. Our neighbourhoods aren't similar to those in the states.
I wouldn't let your animal roam. Very dangerous.

Not having a car will be a hindrance for getting to and from work and doing anything else like shopping, going to beach, etc. Taxis don't want to take you anywhere with a dog should you need to get to a vet. Public transportation is limited pretty much east to west.
No public transportation on North and south sides of island.
$2 Safari taxi vans don't run after dark, don't have any particular schedule and who knows what the bus schedule is!

Maybe you should do a pre move visit without pup and get an idea of things and be better prepared to make your move.
Good luck, whatever you decide.

Trusted Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 521
January 17, 2016 9:07 pm  

You mentioned "... right now and up for anything, legal, that will help make me money and live on the island..."

One other thing you should be aware of is what I refer to as the CATCH-22 of Island life - namely, living expenses are probably going to be significantly higher than where young live and wages for comparable jobs will be lower.

Do heed what others here have told you - the contributors have given you some good advice.

Trusted Member
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 955
January 17, 2016 9:40 pm  

If you are coming alone, I would also recommend leaving your dog home until you have decided the Island life is for you, which may take 6 months to a year. It sounds like you are serious and really want to come to the Islands, so you have the motivation to do it. But you must realize that EVERYONE welllll maybe not everyone, but most people come down looking for bartender.waiter or service jobs. So even though those jobs are a dime a dozen, so are the people wanting them and also those boating jobs.

If you are handy with tools, handymen are always in dire need here. Places to live would be Northside hands down for safety reasons and the folks there are mostly great. I would look for an apartment whose landlord is the owner and preferably a local and not a realtor because some of them may have apartments that have been sitting for up to 6 months at a time and may be willing to negotiate on the rent. They also usually do not require a lease or ask for your unborn child or kidney to move in. But you will need to be on Island to do this they don't rent long distance.

Cost can be high or as cheap as you make it. If you can live off of rice and dried beans, you could get away very cheaply for awhile. But remember to always save that airfare back just in case. Lastly, unless you live around town or on the East end, you will need are car and those can get expensive as well. I might also add here, don't venture in certain areas alone such as back street after dark or even during some days.

Good luck and enjoy your adventure in paradise.


Trusted Member
Joined: 9 years ago
Posts: 596
January 18, 2016 3:27 pm  

Could anyone please point me in the wrong direction.

You've used this phrase a couple of times already, so I wonder if this is your original intent, rather than a typo.

The wrong direction would be to tell you that all you need to be happy in life is to be a bartender on STT. This is an adulthood equivalent of the boyhood notion of nirvana as being a firefighter in Montana.

Do yourself a huge favor: come to USVI for a short exploratory visit (known as a pre-move visit) to see if it is a good fit for you. Maybe it would be a long lasting love from first sight. In that case, your concerns about the place to live would resolve themselves naturally. Or maybe you'll find that living on STT is not what you thought it would be. In that case, you'd be glad that you didn't rush into making a bad choice.

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