General Info

by Female Abroad

Heading to the USVI I was wondering what I could expect upon arriving and what is the culture like? I found this information very helpful and hope that you do as well.


  1. English is the main language
  2. Time zone is Atlantic Time and daylight-savings is not observed
    1. they do run on Caribbean time so things are a bit slower, more relaxed
  3. Drink bottled water
  4. Country Code is 1
  5. Electricity is the same as the US (110 volts)
  6. Cell phone reception is not reliable nor island wide


  1. June to November is hurricane season, peaking in September & October
  2. November to February are the coldest months with Sept to Oct being the hottest
  3. July to January are the rainy months


  1. Be pleasant before asking questions or buying things (ex. Morning! How are you?)
  2. Wear swimwear only at the beach or the pool
  3. T-shirt, dresses, shorts, and sandals are preferred away from these locations
  4. Tips of 15 - 20% are expected but some restaurants will add a service charge to the bill so check first
  5. Festivals:
    1. January: New Years Day, Three Kings Day, Martin Luther Kind's Birthday
    2. February: President's Day
    3. March: Transfer Day
    4. April: Virgin Islands Carnival, Holy Thursday, Good Friday, Easter, Easter Monday
    5. May: Children's Parade, Adult Parade, Memorial day
    6. June - July: St. John's month long celebration of the island
    7. June: Organic Act Day
    8. July: VI Emancipation Day, Independence Day, Hurricane Supplication Day September: Labor Day
    9. October: Columbus Day, Puerto Rico Friendship day, Hurricane Thanksgiving Day
    10. November: Liberty Day, Veterans Day, Thanksgiving Day
    11. December: Christmas Day, Boxing Day / Christmas Second Day


  1. US visitors are allowed $1,200 of duty free items within a 30 day period
  2. if you are mailing things out of the country the gift cannot be worth more than $100/day to the same address
  3. you are allowed 5 cartons of cigarettes, 100 cigars, and 5L of liquor
  4. In Canada, you can follow the same duty allowances as if you were traveling home from the US which is a lot less than what the US are allowed to bring back. With the new NAFTA agreement coming into place Dec. 1 I am not going to list those levels here as they will change but check out the Canadian Government's website here for up to date information.