Getting around St Kitts And Nevis
To drive in St Kitts and Nevis, visitors from overseas are required to have a full driving licence from their country of origin. They must also purchase a temporary St Kitts and Nevis licence, which costs from EC$62.50 and is available through car hire companies and the Inland Revenue Department (www.sknird.com).
Motorists must be aged 25 or older to hire a car.
A good road network on both islands makes most areas of St Kitts and Nevis easily accessible. Roads tend to be narrow, winding and not well lit at night, so extra care should be exercised. The maximum legal speed limit is 40 MPH (63 KPH) and 20 MPH (31 KPH) in towns.
A selection of cars, motorcycles and mopeds can be hired from several companies. It is best to book cars well in advance. All drivers must obtain a St. Kitts and Nevis driver’s license from either the rental agency or Inland Revenue Department. The cost is EC$62.50 (US $24) for three months or EC$125.00 (US $45) for one year. Major rental car companies include Avis and Hertz as well as a number of smaller, local vendors.
Taxis serve most destinations across the islands. Local taxi companies include St Kitts Taxi Association (tel: 869 465 4317; www.st-kittstaxi.com), St Kitts Taxi Co-operative (tel: 869 766 5964; www.stkittstaxico-op.com) and Kittitian Taxi (tel: 896 762 8994).
Services on both islands have set rates which apply for parties of 1-4 people. There is a 50% surcharge between 2200-0600. Taxi drivers expect a 10% tip.
Motorcycles, mopeds and bicycles can be hired to get around the islands. Safety equipment such as a helmet is often not included in the price. Local companies include Sunny Blue Scooter Rentals (tel: 869 664 8755; www.sunnybluerental.com) and Ride St Kitts (tel: 869 664 0084; www.ridestkitts.com).
St. Kitts and Nevis are hot and hilly, which presents a challenge for cyclists. Nevis is the more accessible cycling destination and bicycles can be hired from Active Caribbean (www.activecaribbean.com), which also offers on and off-road bike tours.
Colourfully decorated, privately owned vans operate on several bus routes on St. Kitts. Some bus stops are established, but vans can be flagged down at any point along the road. This low-cost transport service is used extensively by locals and less frequently by tourists. Licensed vans are identified by their green license plates starting with H or HA.
Before driving any vehicle in St Kitts and Nevis, including motorcycles, a Temporary Driver's Licence must be obtained. The licence costs from EC$62.50 and is issued by the Inland Revenue Department or through car rental companies. A national driving licence from your country of origin is also required.
Drink driving is illegal in St Kitts and Nevis, and those found guilty can be jailed for 12 months and ordered to pay EC$2,000. Drivers are advised to exercise caution driving at night, because roads are badly lit.
Privately operated coaches provide regular services between the towns and cities of St Kitts and Nevis. By western standards, taxis are affordable and easy to hire. Ferry services run between Basseterre on St Kitts and Charlestown on Nevis.
St. Kitts is circled by 50 km of railway that was formerly used to transport sugar cane; a portion of the route now operates as a scenic line for tourists.