ST. MARTIN IN ONE WEEK-HELP!

Old Nov 8th, 2005, 04:10 AM
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ST. MARTIN IN ONE WEEK-HELP!

Heading to St. Martin in a week and I need to know what to expect with customs, in and and out of the island. Flying into PR. Have passports. Thanks

Cissy
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Old Nov 8th, 2005, 04:30 AM
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You will not go thru immigration and customs on your arrival until you get to St. Maarten. Basically it will be an easy passport check with no customs or checking of your baggage.

On the return trip, you will go thru immigration and customs in San Juan upon re-entering the US. You should have no problem there, either, but it will be a little more "formal" than entering St. Maarten.

Have a great trip.
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Old Nov 8th, 2005, 04:41 AM
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Statia - Thanks for the reply - can you tell me if checking baggage leaving St. Martin is a hassle? It's been a while since I was there, but I remember when some officials wanted to hand check everything! Thanks

Cissy
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Old Nov 8th, 2005, 05:00 AM
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Cissy
Are you on AA?
If so here's the drill. Have done this many times.
Going down, as Statia says, no problem. Connection in SJU as any airport. In SXM, Immigration no problem either (may be long lines if lots of planes deplanning at same time). Outside baggage claim and customs are the car dealers, taxis etc.
On the return, check in at SXM early, your bags may be searched by hand prior to checkin (they don't have baggage scanners). After checkin have to go to departure tax window. May not have to pay tax, some airlines (I think AA) have it prepaid as part of your ticket. Still have to get voucher stamped though. At this point you can go thru security and to gates. If you have lots of time you can depart airport, to to Sunset Beach Bar and watch your plane come in then head back to airport. The departure lounge at Princess Juliana Airport is horrible in mid afternoon. Crowded, noisy,etc. If you want (for a fee) you can wait in a plush nice lounge upstairs).

In San Juan, if you are on American Eagle, you will have to deplane and take a bus to terminal. If on a "Jet" you deplane in the terminal. Either way there is a long walk to US Immigration, Baggage Claim, and Customs. Can take 30 min to 1 hr depending on how many other planes in. You then recheck bags (agents and conveyers right there), go back thru security and to your outbound gate.
We like to allow 1.5 hrs for connection on return in San Juan (have missed connections before).
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Old Nov 8th, 2005, 05:16 AM
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Very accurate info from John. As he stated, the check-in baggage process at SXM has gotten more strict in the last couple of years. Many of the airlines hand search all checked baggage before you arrive at the check-in counter. Carry-on baggage is typically not a problem as it goes thru x-ray screening and only a few people are pulled for hand searches at the gate.

As stated, most airlines have the departure tax included in the tickets now (AA, AF, CO, and KLM). But, you still have to show your boarding pass at the tax window and get a tax stub to show at security.

If you don't go thru security and into the departure area right away, be sure to keep an eye on the line starting about an hour before your flight. The line can all of a sudden get very long.

I also recommend Sunset Beach Bar for a fun time while you are waiting. I usually go to Lal's Indian Bar and Restaurant directly across from the taxi area of the airport, however. It's a very close walk and the food and music are great. Juliana's Cafe above the airport jewelry stores is also good and close to the security check point.
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Old Nov 8th, 2005, 05:31 AM
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Thanks so much Statia and John! Great info!

Cissy
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Old Nov 9th, 2005, 08:46 AM
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If you want any additional info on St. Martin, check the following website


http://www.traveltalkonline.com/foru...Board=stmartin
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