tell me about surviving the tourists
We lived in the Pocono Mountains for six years (top of the mountain) and learned little things like - go to the grocery during the week, not the weekend because the prices went up. Same with skiing.
So tell me honestly what is it like living through the tourist season and what tips do you have?
Be careful driving since they tend to step out in front of you expecting the traffic to be coming from the other direction. Be prepared to be asked while you're working, if you live here.
Aside from all the normal stuff, LOVE US for we spend a lot of money on the island.
You get used to it real fast on STT. You just check the paper for the ship schedule. You will notice how things work on ship days versus non-ship days. As far as resorts go, you don't notice those tourists as much unless you go to a restaurant on the resort.
Are you coming here as a tourist or a relocator? If you're relocating then to which island?
I can only begin to answer where STT is concerned and In an effort to answer just your basic questions about the Poconos vs VI rates. Well of course hotel rates fluctuate accordingly between high and low season. In low season a lot of the tourist-related industries as in dive operators, etc. offer a local discount.
To the best of my knowledge, nobody in a local business here actually "ups" their prices during high season.
I beleive the only people to up their prices are the hotels and the people with rentals 🙂 On STX tourist season is not alll that different fromt off season or at least hasnt been for several years. Main thing for me is to watch out for people who forget which side of the road to drive on, especially on these blind curvy roads and the people who actually go the speed limit which is about 20mph. So you need to have your brake foot ready either way 😉
All the hotels and rental have different prices for the winter season (just after Christmas until mid-April) Summer season (mid April until the 3rd week of December) and Christmas - the two weeks around Christmas.
Thanks for the advice.
We'd be relocating to St Thomas doing a rental the first year then possibly building. (My husband is a subcontractor and very handy.)
And in case I've offended someone I never said I disliked tourists. (I'm a travel agent and I've been a tourist on St Thomas so obviously I appreciate all that tourists do and are.) However I also don't want to spend two hours doing something that would take 30 min or pay double simply because I don't know the best way to do things on the island.
What!!! There is something on island that only takes 30 minutes??? How did i miss that? 🙂
Debra P, I was you two and a half years ago. Trying to prepare for island living is....is... I don't know - impossible, yet so important. I wouldn't worry too much about tourists, unless of course you want to make a living with it. The best advice I got before moving to island was to just to take the time to go to the beach or get out on the water or have a nice dinner out. You will get caught up in trying to get settled in and temporarily forget to enjoy yourself. Take time to explore St. John. My favorite beaches are on St. John. Have fun and good luck.
But that is EXACTLY what you are buying into on island!... spending two hours (or more) doing something that SHOULD only take 15 mins...
It took over 4 "island" hours to get postage on 8 boxes at the main postoffice.... long story posted elsewhere... real time was less than 20 minutes affixing postage.
Tourists will be the least of your concerns.
BTW, I hear honeymoon lodges have those heart shaped tubs in the poconos? Is that true??
I agree that the tourists aren't a big concern - I just check the ship schedule before heading downtown - if there are 8 boats in, I postpone my errands to a day when there are only 1...preferably 0. Prices won't fluctuate based on tourists.
"However I also don't want to spend two hours doing something that would take 30 min or pay double simply because I don't know the best way to do things on the island."
Oh what an "ouch" I went through reading that and also a major chuckle! Now don't take umbrage but if you research this forum you''ll maybe understand my reaction! You should probably invest in a serious PMV. Cheers!
STX doesn't seem to have as much of a problem, thank goodness. Nothing personal and I'm not trying to start a fight, but I hated the shopping area of STT. We went over for a whole day, and came back early. With the crack down on the store vendors. it might be better.
Terry, if you're speaking of downtown Charlotte Amalie, I never go down there. Probably haven't shopped there in over 3 years. It's not necessary for me.
Most of what we see on St John are considered "island guests" and very few are called "tourists." Our guests keep our island green, and since most of us rely on tourism to pay our rent and feed us, I try to help them with directions and taking their pictures when I can. Cruise ship passengers are sometimes borderline, but I figure they don't have time to sit down and chat - they are only here for a couple of hours and want to take in as much as possible.
A nice percentage our part time or high season villa owners/residents enjoy the Galas and Events that happen during season that greatly benefit our Not-for-Profits on island: The Virgin Islands National Park The Animal Care Center, The Primary School, The Safety Zone, etc. just to name a few.
Driving on the left sometimes becomes a brain tease for them and sometimes store shelves are a bit bare, but the alternative would be many folks with no work in Sept/Oct/Nov while there are no visitors boosting jobs.
debra p, come on down! And bring your husband . . . we are planning for major renovation starting Fall of this year and need good subcontractors.
Tourists and residents on STT tend to stay away from each other. Avoid downtown! The lines are long and the traffic is outrageous. You will learn the major traffic patterns in less than a week, 'cause you only need to get caught in the snarls once before you will find a way to not be in them.
Not sure yet if we'll make it there by fall or not. First my husband has to sell his subcontracting business. It's on the market, we just need a buyer. Plus we need to sell our house. I know we won't be there before Sept. because I am escorting a group to Scotland for nine days in August. As many have said here, moving is a process. And yes, we would definately take a long pre move vacation there before we settle in.
Ed, they do have those heart shaped tubs in the Poconos. 🙂
I don't see myself working as a travel agent once I move to the islands. My guess is, except for flights to the states you all probably don't travel much. Or you do our own, online.
As far as things taking longer, I hear what you're saying. We spent ten days in the French Polynesian islands of Tahiti, Moorea & Bora Bora last year for our anniv. and I understand the concept of island time. Everyone is much more laid back. Very beautiful there and the people have a peacefulness that comes from not rushing.
Since I am also an author I tend to go for stretches where I just want quiet and to write. (Part of my motivation for wanting to avoid busy groups of tourists.) I also have stretches where I must be social and be with people. I'm thinking that St Thomas would accommodate both and perhaps everyone would be laid back enough not to finnd me too eccentric.
If you weren't a bit eccentric, you wouldn't fit in. 🙂 It's pretty rough for a travel agent to make a living in most places, isn't it? Lots of locals seem to take cruises, though but the way they almost give cruises away, I can't see making a bundle of money.
Don't travel much?? I suggest you continue your research regarding life on the islands. Of course we travel.