What type of travel documents do I need?
As of January 23, 2007, new United States government regulations will require all US citizens, adults and children, to have a valid passport for all international travel by air.
What is the currency in the The Bahamas?
The Bahamian dollar is on par with the US dollar and either currency is accepted in the Bahamas.
Do I need to obtain vaccinations prior to going to The Bahamas?
No you need not get shots to travel to The Bahamas.
What is the appropriate dress code?
Casual wear is widely worn in The Bahamas. Bring a jacket or sweater for cooler evenings from December to February. A few of the more distinguished restaurants required dress clothing, jackets and ties for men.
What is the legal age for drinking and gambling?
18 years of age.
What are the banking hours?
Banks are open Monday through Thursday from 9:30 a.m. through 3:00 or 4:00 p.m. and on Fridays most banks are open from 9:00 a.m. through 4:30 p.m.
Is it possible to work in The Bahamas if I am not a Bahamian citizen?
What taxes will I pay?
Those guests at hotels will pay a government tax of 6% and a resort levy of 6% as well as a maid service charge on the hotel room. Departure tax (children under age 6 are exempt) is $15.00 (one-day excursion passengers pay only $13 by sea) throughout The Bahamas however, in Grand Bahama (Freeport) there is an additional $5.00 airport security fee for a total of $20.00. In 2003 the departure tax itself has been included in the price of airline tickets but the security fee remains payable at time of departure. Small children are exempt of the departure tax. There is a fee of $2.00 for motorized vehicles to cross the Paradise Island Bridge and 25¢ for all others.
How much should I tip?
15% is the acceptable amount to tip wait staff, taxi drivers and others offering personal services. Many restaurants automatically add the gratuities to the guest bill, so be sure and look to for the restaurant policy or upon the bill. If you are uncertain of the policy or if the charge has been added inquire. For bell boys and porters is customary to tip $1.00 per bag.
Is nude or topless sunbathing allowed?
Generally no, it is not legal to be nude in public. However those who wish to do so will find that there are certain unfrequented beaches they may go to and privately sunbathe as they prefer.
What are driving and walking rules?
Driving is on the left, so walking should be on the right for safety. Wearing helmets while riding on a scooter or motorbike is compulsory.
What are the means of transportation if I don't wish to rent a vehicle?
Airports, sea ports, hotels, shopping centres and other busier destinations have taxis standing on Bahama Islands which have a regular tourist trade. They can be called on the less frequented islands. On the larger islands they are metered or fares are published obviously at the location to most destinations. Always ask and agree to a fare before starting your journey. Nearly all islands have a regular bus schedule. Buses are privately owned in the Bahamas and are smaller than the traditional buses such as used in the U.S., Great Britain and other regions. They are compact with seats that fold down into the isles as the buses fill. The tight seated vehicles are commonly referred to as Jitneys. Schedules are posted on the Jitneys, if you are unfamiliar with routes question the driver and ask what letter bus to wait for to reach your destination. They may only run during daylight hours after which you will need to hire cabs.
What are the current taxi fares?
Taxi fares are government regulated and all cabs are required to have meters.
General rates for one or two passengers are $3 for the first quarter mile and each additional quarter mile is forty cents. Each additional passenger is $3 however children under age three are free.
Waiting rates are thirty cents a minute and Baggage charges are free up to two items of hand luggage and small bags/packages carried by the passengers. Additional pieces of luggage are seventy-fives cents, large bags, golf clubs and boxes cost one dollar each.
What are the laws concerning possession of illegal drugs?
It is a serious criminal offense to be in possession of illegal drugs.
Can I camp in The Bahamas?
The Bahamas does not cater to campers and does not offer any formal camp grounds. It is not advisable to camp on the beaches. To camp on privately owned property it is required that you obtain the permission of the land owner.
What is the electrical service?
Electric is 120 volts AC. American appliances will work just fine.
Can I drink the water?
The tap water is fine for drinking. However some people prefer bottled water based on flavour. It is readily available for purchase.
What are the business hours?
For shops in Nassau normal weekday business hours are from 9am to 5pm and on Grand Bahama they tend to vary but mainly operate from 10am to 6pm. Many businesses make choices to open early or stay open later. They are usually open the same hours on Saturdays although some business reduce the open hours. On Sundays nearly all shops are closed but you may find some straw vendors still open. Grocery stores open at 7:30am and close at 9:00pm Monday through Saturday and on Sunday most are only open from 7:30am and close at 10:00am.