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St. John Packing List: Toilet paper, canned meat and . . .

St. John Packing List: Toilet paper, canned meat and . . .

Old Aug 9th, 2004, 07:39 AM
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Join Date: May 2003
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St. John Packing List: Toilet paper, canned meat and . . .

Ok. I've booked the condo and have the airfare all straightened out. We are on a budget and plan to cook a lot of meals. I hear milk is $8 a gallon on St. John, so I'm planning to pack more groceries; less clothes. Toilet paper, canned chicken, and what else would you recommend?
nancyrusinak is offline  
Old Aug 9th, 2004, 07:46 AM
Join Date: Mar 2004
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Nancy - Milk is not $8 in STJ, although I saw the thread that cited that at Christmas it was that price. We were there in May and although the groceries can be pricy, $8 is not accurate. Shop at Dolphin Market in Cruz Bay instead of Starfish Market. Starfish is more expensive. Bring a sampling of the spices you use most when cooking along with you to avoid having to buy them there. Bring a small bottle of olive oil, bring any dry ingredients like pancake mix, pasta & rice etc. that travel well. Just buy the necessities there...produce & meats, dairy, perishibles. You are on vacation, and you're saving money by just going to STJ in the low season...don't go crazy. Canned meat doesn't sound too yummy. I wouldn't go that far.

Where did you get accomodations?
tpatricco is offline  
Old Aug 9th, 2004, 07:59 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 107
Tpatricco is absolutely correct. While groceries are more expensive on St John there is no need to go to the lengths you are talking about. Why on earth would you bring toilet paper? TP is supplied no matter where you're staying, even the Cinnamon Bay campground and it's easily available and affordable at the stores if you really feel the need to buy some.
If you really want to bring food, use one of those coolers on wheels and pack if full of frozen meats and whatever your favorites are from home.
I never bring any food with me at all. We stay in a villa and eat most breakfasts there and pack lunches. We buy supplies for this on island and it's not all that much more expensive than home, maybe 20%-25% more. We eat dinner out and it doesn't have to break the bank. Fish Trap, Uncle Joe's, Skinny Legs, Lime Inn and Cafe Roma among others are all inexpensive to reasonable and have great food.
Mermaid is offline  
Old Aug 9th, 2004, 08:06 AM
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We are staying at Caribeana Villa. We got a great deal on it because it is the off season and the time when the owner usually goes. This year, the owner can't go so they gave us a deep discount on the weekly rental rate.

Airfare for me and hubby was free. Frequent flier miles. Got a great deal on airfare for the kids.

By canned meat, I meant tuna and chicken for making tuna salad and chicken salad sandwiches. We do this when we camp; its easy, portable and tasty.

I'm glad to hear that groceries won't break the bank. It seems like everything else down there will though! $400 for a rental car for one week! Wow.

It's been a while since I've gone to the Caribbean. Maybe I've just forgotten how expensive it really is!
nancyrusinak is offline  
Old Aug 9th, 2004, 08:16 AM
Join Date: Mar 2004
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Hi Nancy -

The villa sounds nice & is a good location as well! It sounds like you've found some real bargains between the accomodations & airfares, so don't worry too much about the rest. Car rentals are a commodity on STJ as you've practically got to have one to get around, and if it's any consolation they're even more in peak season! It's definitely an economical option to eat breakfast at home and pack lunches & snacks to bring along, but remember to relax & enjoy too!

Worry more about where to snorkle & hike and hang on the beach than the rest...it'll all be fine! ENJOY!
tpatricco is offline  
Old Aug 9th, 2004, 06:56 PM
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 30
When we rent a condo, we check a small ice chest on the plane - we fill it with essentials (including PB&J for the kids if it's their vacation) & items others have mentioned - just dry goods, nothing perishable. The ice chest comes in handy when you take off for the day - to have cold bottled water, sandwiches, etc. in the car or on the beach.
sanbar51 is offline  
Old Aug 9th, 2004, 07:10 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 149
Just some input. You say you are renting a car - consider renting on St. Thomas and taking the car ferry/barge over. It's very easy and allows you to do some shopping on St Thomas where things are much cheaper.

We went to K-Mart and a grocery store there and loaded up before getting on the ferry. Prices were a little higher than at home, but not terribly so.

MIG is offline  
Old Aug 11th, 2004, 10:16 AM
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bring your own snorkel gear if you plan to do it.
sfbayarea is offline  
Old Aug 11th, 2004, 03:51 PM
Join Date: Apr 2003
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Wow, this reminds me of vacations in Russia - food shortage of my youth.
FainaAgain is offline  
Old Aug 12th, 2004, 11:31 AM
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We are bringing our own snorkel gear and a few groceries. I like the idea of bringing your own spices - small, portable and expensive to purchase. I'm not trying to save every penny, but if I have a full jar of garlic powder (that costs $2.00 at home) why buy an entirely new jar for $6.00 in St. John? I'm looking for ways to save that are easy, reduce waste, and enhance what I can do on my vacation, not limit it.
nancyrusinak is offline  
Old Aug 16th, 2004, 03:06 AM
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When we travel to anyplace (even in US) to anyplace where we will be cooking and want to save some money, the most cost-efficient thing we have found to pack is small quantities of items that we would have to buy an entire unit of at destination. For instance, if we will use 7 teabags, we pack those rather than buy a pack of 40 when we get there. Same for things like a half cup of sugar, few spices, etc. Saving $4 on a container of pepper is far more cost efficient than saving 30 cents on a can of tuna.

gail is offline  
Old Aug 26th, 2004, 10:12 AM
Join Date: Aug 2004
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To the author concerning renting a car on St. Thomas. Our rental agent sent us a summary saying that there is a law on the books making it illegal to take a rental car from St. Thomas to St. John and that the penalty is $1,000. Anyone know anything about this?
momof4 is offline  
Old Aug 26th, 2004, 10:34 AM
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We sometimes bring lunch stuff for villa vacations - a few cans of tuna fish, mayo, peanut butter, etc....and buy bread, fresh produce and meat/fish there.
liza is offline  
Old Aug 26th, 2004, 04:13 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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We have stayed in alot of timeshares, campers and condos, the one thing in my suitcase is a teflon frypan - the rental units have too many people using the pots & pans - so I bring my own (with a spatula), then small amts. of spices and cooking oil (we never need the 24oz.) size in the groc. usually about 8 oz.

Don't forget some ziplok bags.
maryann is offline  
Old Aug 26th, 2004, 05:12 PM
Join Date: Mar 2004
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momof4, in regard to the rent in STT bring car to STJ question, I believe that you are required to inform your rental company that you plan to bring your car to STJ. The primary reason for this is that the roads on STJ and the terrain there require cars or jeeps with more clearance and in many cases 4WD capability. If you were to take an average compact car to STJ, and get stuck somewhere, it would be a real problem to get your rental company to come and get you and or bring you a new vehicle.
tpatricco is offline  
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