Moving to St. Croix: What to Pack / Ship

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When you move to St. Croix, it may seem like an undertaking to move all your belongings to a Caribbean island.  But less is more when you’re moving to a simplified life.  Here are some general recommendations on what to take along and what you can leave behind:

Vehicles

In deciding whether or not to ship your vehicle, there are a few things to keep in mind. From the mainland, shipping out of Miami is the least expensive option.

The ideal vehicle to have with you on St. Croix is one that’s capable of off-road driving. Some St. Croix roads are in rough condition and are handled best with four-wheel-drive. Most island residents prefer to have an SUV to avoid bottoming out on potholes. Jeep Wranglers are especially popular.

Keep in mind the vehicle you bring will be exposed to high salt content in the air, so rust is a common problem. Also, few St. Croix residences have garages or carports, so most people must park outside. So sun exposure will affect exterior car paint and interior upholstery.

If you prefer to buy a vehicle when you arrive, expect to pay a decent mark-up as a dealership or private seller has covered the shipping cost and import tax (if applicable) in the past. There are a few major dealerships (Ford / GMC / Toyota) and generally plenty of private sellers with vehicles available for sale. Best case scenario, if you can catch someone leaving island, there are great deals to be had.

Furniture

Whether you’re looking to buy or rent when you initially arrive on St. Croix, most residences come furnished. So if you’re not particular about furniture, it’s certainly more economical to accept what may come with the home or condo you choose.

As with vehicles, several furniture stores exist on St. Croix. There are also plenty of secondhand opportunities to buy furniture through newspaper classifieds, Craig’s List, Facebook, and VI Moving Center.

Clothing

Obviously pack your swimsuits, shorts and sandals! Luckily the wardrobe for the tropics is lightweight and compact, easy to fly with or ship.

It is advisable to hang onto enough cold weather clothing to take a stateside trip in winter. A coat, pair of boots and a few sweaters should be sufficient. Whatever will get you through a week long holiday visit.

Most islanders have a limited wardrobe of cotton-based clothing. The island is very casual and even in many office environments, shorts and sandals are acceptable.

In terms of packing your designer duds, rest assured that the vast majority of people on St. Croix will not know what brands you are wearing nor will they care. So feel free to sell them along with your designer bags to help fund your move!

Ready to start packing for your island life? Download our free guide the 10 Best Reasons for Living on St. Croix.

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