Information & Facts
Due to its popularity as an offshore banking location, business
dress in St Lucia requires a level of formality. Handshakes for
both men and women are the common form of greeting at the beginning
and end of meetings, and business cards are usually exchanged.
Business hours are generally 8am to 4.30pm throughout the week and
8.30am to 12.30pm on Saturdays.
Like all Caribbean islands, St Lucia enjoys a hot, tropical
climate throughout the year. The average daily temperatures of 80°F
(27°C) tend to be tempered by trade winds. The driest time on the
island is between January and March but showers can occur
throughout the year, however they are usually over quickly.
Hurricane season is generally from June to November.
The international access code for St Lucia is +1 758. The
outgoing code is 011 followed by the relevant country code (e.g.
01144 for the United Kingdom); the outgoing code is not needed for
calls to Canada and the US. City/area codes are not in use. Pay
phones accept coins and pre-paid cards, available at shops
throughout the island. AT&T calling cards can be used for
cheaper international calls. Mobile phone operators provide good
GSM 850, 900, 1800 and 1900 network coverage of the island. Email
and Internet access is available at Internet cafes throughout the
It is an offence for anyone to dress in camouflage clothing.
Homosexuality is illegal.
Travellers to St Lucia may bring in 200 cigarettes or 250g
tobacco, and 1 litre wine or spirits without paying customs
240 volts, 50Hz. Three square-pin plugs are
There are few health risks associated with travel to St Lucia,
although the mosquito-carried dengue fever is a risk throughout the
island. HIV/AIDS is prevalent and precautions are always advised.
Bilharzia is endemic. No vaccinations are required, however a
yellow fever certificate is necessary for travellers arriving from
infected areas. Health care costs are high on the island and health
insurance is recommended, which should cover medical evacuation.
EHIC card holders are entitled to emergency medical treatment in
the case of evacuation to Martinique, on the same terms as
Martinique nationals, of which 70 percent of the costs can be
English is the official language, but St Lucian Creole is
The unit of currency in Saint Lucia is the East Caribbean Dollar
(XCD), which is tied to the US Dollar. The EC$ is divided into 100
cents. US dollars are also accepted at most tourist establishments
and ensure a better exchange rate. ATMs are available in Castries,
Rodney Bay, Soufriere and Vieux Fort. Banks are open Monday to
Friday from 8am to 2pm, some are open till 5pm. Major credit cards
are accepted at all large hotels, shops and restaurants. Most
hotels will exchange foreign currency, and there are change bureaux
Visitors must hold documents for the next destination, return or
onward tickets and sufficient funds. As part of the Western
Hemisphere Travel Initiative (WHTI), all travellers travelling
between the United States and Canada, Mexico, Bermuda, and the
Caribbean region are required to present a passport or other valid
travel document to enter or re-enter the United States. The wearing
of camouflage clothing, or to be in possession of camouflage bags
is illegal in St. Lucia for anyone not in the military services.
Travellers with such items will be asked to change or remove the
camouflage articles, which will then be confiscated. It is highly
recommended that passports have at least six months validity
remaining after your intended date of departure from your travel
destination. Immigration officials often apply different rules to
those stated by travel agents and official sources.
Most visits to St Lucia are trouble-free, but visitors should
take common-sense precautions against robbery and theft. Isolated
areas, such as beaches, should be avoided after dark. Hurricane
season is generally from June to November.
Local time is GMT -4.
A service charge is not automatically added to bills and about
10% of the bill is expected. Taxi drivers, porters and chambermaids
also expect small tips.