The Daily STJ to STT Commute?
We moved here about a month ago and are in the process of looking for a long term house. Have a vacation rental right now. Moved here because a great job opened for my wife on St Thomas and our love for St. John. I have met some people who do the daily commute from St. John over and they say it's no problem. Others say can't do it. I didn't know that people did it on a regular basis for work. Does anyone have experience with this or currently do it? Her schedule is mostly 8am to 8pm with a half day or two. Total 5 days a week and has to be there on time, unfortunately not a show up when you want to job. Options would have to be safe and no walking/safaris taxis.
Thanks again for help. We have found this forum very useful for our move. Scott
I can't speak from experience but know several people who've done it over the years and for whom it's got very old very fast. Not sure how, "no walking/safaris taxis" would work on either end. The people I've known have lived on STT and worked on STJ so drive to the ferry and then walk/taxi to their job site on STJ. If your wife's job is on STT then it would be far more logical to live on STT. STJ is so close you can easily pop over there on days off. Also you may not be familiar enough with STT to know that there's a whole 'nother quiet world on it outside the hubbub of town but where access to the more active areas is quick and easy. Good luck with your planning!
Yes, people live on St. John and commute to STT for work (and some do the opposite). Some do it because they have no choice, others do it voluntarily. As is the case with "commuting" just about anywhere some people will tell you they don't mind it, others will tell you they hate it. How it will affect you or your wife is something you have to figure out for yourselves.
In addition to the ferry travel time (about 20 minutes between Red Hook & Cruz Bay and 40 minutes between Charlotte Amalie and Cruz Bay) you have to factor in "waiting time" at the ferry dock and travel time between your home and the ferry dock and from the ferry dock to your place of business. Also, you have to consider the logistics of getting to/from the ferry dock and your home/place of business.
Now, if your wife has to be at work by 8AM and won't leave her job until 8PM that means she's pretty much locked into taking the ferry between Red Hook and Cruz Bay and will have no choice but to leave Cruz Bay on the 7AM ferry and catch the 9PM ferry for her return. Adding in travel time to/from the ferry dock and you'll see she's in for a VERY LONG day. She may find that acceptable but then again she may say "No Way".
Most people making the move to the Caribbean cite a desire for a "simpler lifestyle" as one of their main reasons for relocating. If that's you, then you should serious consider the impact commuting between islands will have on you achieving that goal.
I don't know where you live and what type of commute you or your wife has now but I can tell you from experience that you'll be much happier opting for the shortest and easier commute possible. For 20 years I used to live in the suburbs of a major city and had a minimum 90 minute commute (sometimes stretching to 2 hours) each way. It got "old" very, very fast and i grew to hate it. I then changed jobs and relocated to a different city where I had a 12 minute commute (and that was when I got stopped by one traffic light otherwise it was 10 minutes). I became a different person and quickly realized there was not enough money in the world to make me to want to ever again revert to a longer commute.
Don't let palm trees, sandy beaches and turquoise waters cloud your judgement. Take off the rose colored glasses, get all the facts then make an informed decision.
Between you wife's work and commuting schedule, she's looking at 15 - 16 hour days. Ferries often have delays, especially in winter/high season when they're also running cruise ship passengers back and forth for tour trips.
I've done it in reverse, STT to STJ and back. I had my own transport on both ends and it was a 2 hr. min. travel time - without any delays.
I was happy to leave it behind as well as the cost of commuter tickets.
Live on STT, closer to work, shopping, etc.
You'll be happier and your wife will have more time to enjoy living in the VI.
Visit STJ on weekends or off time.
It'll be less expensive in terms of time, money and your quality of lifestyle.
You might also bear in mind that unless your wife's job is directly on the safari taxi route, there's going to be some walking involved and they stop running at dark so she'll have to arrange another way back to the ferry terminal at night. Taxis (if available) are expensive, used on a daily basis. Public transportation isn't very dependable. If you have a vehicle on STT, parking is extremely limited in Red Hook and getting ready to be more so when they begin construction of the new parking facility at the terminal. Paid parking is the best bet for keeping your vehicle safe and intact but that adds to the expense of the long, tedious, daily commute.
Scott: Are you currently staying on St Thomas? If so,I would suggest you look for a place here and see how you both feel about increasing the level of difficulty in six months. If you are on St John, I guess she'll figure it out pretty quickly! 😉 Either way, good luck and welcome to the fun house.
I live on STX, however, NO WAY would I deal with that unless I absolutely had no choice.
After a long day at work you just want to get home. Even without the costs, delays, pain in the --- factor. The time and logistics would not be fun after awhile. I wouldn't try convincing my wife to endure it. That's for sure.
Will you be working?
There are great places to live on STT. If your wife will work on STT and will have 10-12 hour work schedule the commute will run her down very fast. I commute 10-15 minutes on STT and it gets annoying considering that my 10 days average speed here is 16.8 miles per hour and I have a heavy foot and little patience.
You should look into Hull Bay Area on STT. Same feel as STJ with great "locals"beach and seems very safe. Even Dorothea is lovely but too many roosters with broken alarm clocks:@)