Thinking of relocating
I'm thinking of moving my family down to the Virgin Islands. I would bring myself, my wife, and my 7 year old daughter and pets (cats and dog) down. I work with the federal government, and my wife is a nurse. I know my wife should be able to find something, and I've been checking into openings in the federal government, but I haven't seen much lately. My first question is: what is the job scene like in these two areas? Also, with our occupations listed, which island might be best for both of us? My daughter is very active in our current lifestyle, to include gymnastics, swimming, Daisys, and other school related activities. Would there be enough of these activities to keep her happy? I have tons more questions, but I'll leave it to that for now. Any help would be greatly appreciated. (especially from someone who may have done this in similar circumstances) Thanks in advance!
Which island are you interested in, and why do you want to come here?
I would like to move to St. John, while my wife is leaning towards St. Croix. Since I work in the federal government currently, I'd probably go where the best job offer (if any) was. As far as why we want to make the change and come there, we want to simplify our lives, and we loved the islands when we visited. We will do a more extended stay down there to get more of a feel for which island we want to live before we move permanantly.
It's really a misconception that moving here simplifies life.
In any event, there's a ton of information in the drop-down menus top of this page. I doubt either of you would find any job opportunities on STJ. There is a hospital on STT and one on STT, not on STJ and federal jobs would be more likely to be found on STT and on STX.
There are many threads here on schooling in the islands if you utilize the search engine and change the date search to "all". Good luck!
Thank you for the information. I have been through all of the drop down menus thoroughly and was just trying to get a little first hand knowledge. And, to me, simplifying life would be getting rid of the long commute, downsizing our home and "stuff", and just enjoying nature instead of all of the things tied to big city living in Wisconsin. (not to mention leaving the cold up here!)
What kind of 'Federal' work?
Spy, janitor or what?
What kind of 'Federal' work?
Spy, janitor or what?
I can see where I work 8 minutes into my commute yet it takes another 8 minutes to get there. I had less of a commute in the states. Fwiw
I currently work for the Small Business Administration helping small businesses get into government contracting, I formerly worked as a contracting officer with the VA, I worked non-VA care at the VA hospital, and I was a musician in the USMC. So you can say I'm pretty well rounded. If possible I'd like to stay working in some capacity for the federal government.
Teachers are always needed.
I don't know about Fed. Government work but there's probably a website.
Maybe try TSA.
None of those things your daughter like to do are available here except perhaps for swimming on any of the 3 islands, as far as I know.
If you're bringing animals, the size (and breed) of dog will dictate when you can travel. If dog is small enough to be allowed to travel in cabin you're good to go.
If not, you won't be able to fly during the summer months (May - October) depending on temperature on Tarmac. Check airline rules and regs.
There are breed restrictions on dogs.
All 3 islands are different and all offer different things.
St. John only has 2 schools, one public grade school and one private school that goes thru 12th grade. Gift Hill School. For schooling above 8th grade, in the public school, they must come to STT.
For medical care, most people living on STJ come to STT as there's only the Myrah Keatting (sp?) clinic. Ditto for medical emergencies. Speaking of which, unless your jobs provide healthcare, there is no individual health care insurance available in STT.
Your options for both private and public schools are better on STT.
Can't say about STX.
It's easier to fly in and out of STT and access to other islands like STJ and the BVI is available by ferry and car barge to STJ. Rents and cost of groceries, gas are higher on STJ, less on STT and less so on STX for rent and gas. Grocery prices are about the same on STT/STX. Many people come over from STJ to shop for groceries or other items that either aren't available or much higher priced.
I think there's more to do on STT.
STX can chime in.
STT is busier due to our cruise ship port but there are many areas to live that are very nice and quiet but our island's neighborhoods are not like those stateside. Where you work and kid's school will probably dictate where you'll choose to live as you're not going to enjoy driving from one end of the island to the other for school and work.
It's a lot to consider bringing kids to live here especially, IMO, high school age.
If you're serious about moving, don't do so without a pmv (pre-move visit).
Cost of living will be higher, especially electricity and you'll get less for your money.
Someone who works for the feds recently moved to St Thomas for a fed job. She hasn't posted lately, though, and I don't remember the screen name.
There's a Small Biz Dev agency here that's under the University of the Virgin Islands. There seems to be new people working there quite frequently so there must be openings from time to time.
Lots of activities for school kids. Not sure if there's a gymnastics program, though. Never seen anything advertised. Lots of swimming, of course.
Thanks for the scoop Alana33!
Nurses are definitely needed at http://www.rlshospital.org/Home.aspx. There are some jobs at the clinic on St John, but not many. Come on down!
Federal agencies listed in the phone book include: Agriculture, District Court, EPA, Drug Enforcement, FAA, FBI,Federal Public Defender, FBI,, Food and Drug, GSA, Homeland Security, Justice, National Park service,Postal Service, TSA, Veteran's Affairs. IRS and SSA are listed, but I am not sure about those.
http://www.vimsia.org/ is a wonderful school.
This is all for St Thomas. Let St Croix recruit their own nurses. LOL
Thanks ms411 and East Ender for more great information!
There's a nice big federal building on STX.
Here is the link to the Small Business Development Center --- it is connected to the University of the Virgin Island and has locations on STT and STX.
Although island life is great, it is difficult on most children who do not have as many options as stateside. However, your daughter might find new activities such as sailing classes and competitions for young gals, etc.
Life in the islands is not simpler, but it is entirely different than stateside living.
and USAJOBS.com for Federal jobs. You can make a search for a location and have them email you daily of any new postings.
Good luck! and depending on the agency, there is a COLA here 😎
Thank you for all of the great information everyone!
Nurses are always needed as are teachers.
You might want to check this link on schools for your daughter.
The best schools, IMO, here on STT are Antilles and Montessori.
Being private, they're costly but they do have programs to defray tuition fees if you qualify. They also have lots activities and sports.
Someone who works for the feds recently moved to St Thomas for a fed job. She hasn't posted lately, though, and I don't remember the screen name"
That'd be me, screen name Idlewood4. I've been off island for the last 6 weeks and just returned. I moved into my apartment and am still totally in love with STT. My staff was afraid I wouldn't return....
I was lucky, because my agency had trouble filling my job, they posted it with relocation expenses paid. So I had a huge advantage, in that I didn't have to pay to ship my stuff. People say rents are high, but I lived in Massachusetts which has a pretty high cost of living. My rent here is cheaper than it was there, and I won't have an oil bill come winter.
I'm very cognizant of water and electricity use. It's a learning curve to conserve. I still haven't adapted to the trash situation either. I come from recycling everything, and composting my garbage. I feel like a slacker when I fling that bag in the overfilled dumpster on the way to work in the morning.
If your daughter is a Daisy, she must be entering first grade. I know there is Boy Scouting on STT and STX, as I've already gotten involved. Check this link from St. Thomas Source. http://stthomassource.com/content/community/organizations/2009/08/29/st-thomas-clubs-and-organizations-directory
Before I moved here, I scoured these boards, read the St Thomas Source, and the Daily News. I also got the book from the USVI relocation site. There's lots of great information out there, take advantage.
Good luck, do your research, and be willing to be flexible in what you can and will accept/tolerate. I miss my daily Dunkin's run, but coffee on my porch with my breathtaking view more than makes up for it.