Useful information about holidays in Saint Lucia
Here’s some general information about holidaying in St Lucia which we hope you find useful. If you have any specific questions please don’t hesitate to give us a call on 01373 814214 and ask away. For anything that’s not immediately at our fingertips, we’ll do a bit of research and give you a call back once we’ve found the answer.
Business opening hours
As a general guide you can expect the following:
- Banks: 8am – 2pm, Monday to Thursday, and 8am – 4pm on Friday. 8:30am – 11am on Saturday.
- Shops: 8.00am – 4:30pm, Monday to Friday, and 8.30am – 1pm on Saturday. Almost all are closed on Sundays, except some shopping malls, supermarkets and mini-marts which would remain open until 12:00pm
- Shopping Malls in Rodney Bay are open much longer hours
Light summer clothing may be worn all year. Dress is informal, even at elegant hotels and plantation inns. Nudity is not permitted at any beach. Swimwear or scant clothing should never be worn in towns or villages. Shorts and stout trainers or hiking boots are recommended for trekking in the rainforest.
You should also be aware that it is an offence for anyone, including children, to dress in camouflage clothing. Nude bathing is illegal.
Credit cards and currency
The Eastern Caribbean (EC) dollar is used on St Lucia and can be obtained at any bank. Most places accept US dollars, but change will be given in EC dollars. Most hotels, restaurants and larger stores accept credit cards, but local stores seldom do. Bank ATM machines will give EC dollars.
ATM machines are widely available.
We suggest you take US$ and exchange them for local currency. Travelling with a credit card is also recommended.
There are a number of different churches on St Lucia and visitors are welcome at services.
We can arrange car or jeep hire for you when you book your holiday or our agents will be pleased to arrange car or jeep hire for you locally. They will arrange all necessary permits as well as insurance and your vehicle will normally be delivered to and collected from your accommodation. There is a good network of paved roads and while most of the main roads are in good condition, there are many potholes in country areas so opting for a 4×4 as your vehicle rental is a good idea. Please note that driving is on the LEFT. You will need to take your UK driving licence with you.
St Lucia runs on 240V with a frequency of 50Hz. Most plugs and sockets at hotels are UK 3-pin style
How to get to St Lucia
We can offer flights to St Lucia as part of a package holiday with the following airlines:
British Airways from London Gatwick (Scheduled flight)
Daily direct flights (year round)
Virgin Atlantic from London Heathrow (Scheduled flight)
Monday and Friday – direct flights (between 17th November – 1st December 2023)
Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday – direct flights (between 4th December 2023 – 12th May 2024)
All hotels will offer necessary assistance. Pharmacies are very well stocked with all usual medications however we advise you to take sufficient supplies of any medication that you normally take.
There are three hospitals in St Lucia which can cope with many types of treatment, but serious cases may mean emergency evacuation.
Medical treatment in St Lucia can be expensive. Make sure you have adequate travel health insurance and accessible funds to cover the cost of any medical treatment and repatriation.
Before choosing to be treated at a private facility, check their policies on pre-payment. Some private clinics may not accept medical travel insurance as payment for treatment. The Tapion Hospital does not accept travel or foreign medical insurance for payment.
Mosquitoes and other pests
While St Lucia has very few creepy crawlies and the like, tropical places do produce tropical insects, and mosquitoes can be a nuisance. We suggest you take precautions by using repellent creams and sprays both day and night and also use nets at night if provided.
Safety and security
St Lucia is a very friendly and relatively safe place, but it makes sense to take reasonable precautions against crime wherever you travel. Be particularly careful on isolated beaches and when visiting the island’s fun “jump-up” street parties. Crime of any sort against tourists is rare, but we still advise visitors to use taxis after dark whenever possible. Restaurants will offer help with taxis to and from their premises. For more information, see: https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/st-lucia.
Most UK mobile phones will work in St Lucia however it is advisable to check with your service provider before travelling to confirm roaming facilities and texting options. Most of the larger hotels have in-room phones for local calls. The best option however is to switch off data roaming on your mobile phone prior to landing in St Lucia and connect to wi-fi services wherever possible. Calls and messages to the UK can then be made using apps such as WhatsApp or Messenger.
Tax and tipping
There is 10% VAT on meals at hotels and restaurants. Most also add a 10% service charge, but some do not, so check your bill before you settle. Additional gratuities are at your own discretion.
Lock up as you would at home. Most hotels have safety deposit boxes and we advise you to use them. It is sensible to only carry a minimum amount of cash with you when you are out and we would suggest that you do not take valuables to the beach or leave possessions on view in your hire car. The police emergency number is 911 in St Lucia.
The water is of good quality and suitable for drinking. It is collected from direct precipitation, mountain springs and wells and is chemically treated for purification. Locally bottled water is also available.