Information & Facts
Barbados has a lot to offer visitors in the way of beach life
and sightseeing, making this a superb holiday destination for
anyone. When not lazing on the beach, a visit to Harrison's Cave
could prove rewarding and the Jacobean Mansions are also worth
seeing. The little fishing village of Bathsheba is favoured by
surfers and photographers alike, while Graeme Hall Swamp has even
more to offer in the way of unusual sights. Tropical Barbados
boasts sunny and fair weather, and the friendly locals also make
this an irresistible option for that perfect coastal vacation.
Bridgetown is generally the centre of business in Barbados.
Business protocol is fairly formal, including greetings (use Mr or
Ms) and dress, which is smart. Handshaking between both men and
women is expected and business cards are handed out on
introduction. Punctuality is expected at meetings. Business hours
are generally 8am to 5pm Monday to Friday. Banks and post offices
close at 3pm.
The weather is mostly sunny and fair in tropical Barbados, with
an average of high daytime temperatures of 75 to 85°F (24 to 29°C).
These hot conditions are tempered by the prevailing cool northeast
tradewinds. The dry season occurs from January to June and the
hurricane season extends from June to October. Hurricanes, however,
usually miss Barbados. Instead the island experiences some
spectacular tropical rainstorms. These are usually short and heavy
spells that dry up quickly.
The international access code for Barbados is +1, in common with
the US, Canada and most of the Caribbean, followed by 246. The
outgoing code is 011 followed by the relevant country code (e.g.
01144 for the United Kingdom), no outgoing code is needed to call
the US. Mobile phones operate on a GSM network. Cell phones can be
rented through a number of companies. Internet cafes are widely
It is an offence to dress in camouflage clothing in Barbados as
it is reserved for the military. Topless bathing is frowned upon
and nudism is illegal.
Travellers to Barbados do not have to pay duty on 200 cigarettes
or 227g of other tobacco products; 750ml spirits and 750ml wine;
perfume up to 118ml perfume or 237ml of eau de cologne; and
souvenirs to the value of Bds$100. Prohibited items include rum,
matches, fresh fruit, and articles of clothing or accessories made
from camouflage material.
Electric current in Barbados is110 volts, 50Hz. Most
hotels provide adaptors and transformers for hairdryers and other
There are no mandatory requirements regarding vaccinations for
visitors to Barbados, however a yellow fever vaccination
certificate is required from travellers over one year of age coming
from infected areas, and Hepatitis A vaccinations are recommended
for those aged over two years. There has been an increase in the
outbreaks of dengue fever and mosquito repellent is strongly
recommended. Medical care is good but very expensive and serious
cases are usually transferred overseas (usually to the USA). Health
insurance is therefore strongly recommended.
English is the official language in Barbados.
The Barbados Dollar (BBD) is fixed to the US Dollar at a rate of
Bd$1.98 to US$1 and does not fluctuate. Its rate is relative to
other currencies fluctuations based on the particular currency's
relation to the US Dollar. US Dollars are also widely accepted on
the island, and well-known international credit cards and
travellers cheques (best carried in US dollars to avoid additional
charges) are accepted in most stores and restaurants. Banks and
ATMs are freely available and cash withdrawals can be made.
All tourists require a return or onward ticket, proof of
sufficient funds and documents for onward travel. Passports must be
valid for the period of intended stay.
There are no extremist groups or areas of instability in
Barbados. Some drug-related organized crime exists, but does not
generally affect tourists. There has been a small increase in the
incidence of tourists being robbed, and visitors are warned to be
especially vigilant on the beaches at night. There has been an
increase in attacks and rapes against foreigners and visitors
should be alert at all times. Tropical storms and hurricanes may
occur between June and November.
Local time in Barbados is GMT -5.
Tipping in Barbados is not necessary if a service charge has
already been included in the bill, otherwise it is generally about
10-15%. Tipping is normal in bars.