U.S. Territory vs. U.S. Mainland – What’s the difference?

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We often receive questions from prospective buyers considering a move from the United States mainland about how life is different on St. Croix, a U.S. territory.  Here are some notable differences between living here versus a state:

Taxes

Several perks St. Croix residents enjoy are no sales tax and exemption from inheritance / estate taxes.  While we pay a mirrored amount of income tax, that money stays right here in the territory versus going to the federal level.

There are major professional and personal tax incentives for qualifying business owners.  Please see the Economic Development Commission (EDC) website for details.

Birth in the U.S. Virgin Islands

For children born on St. Croix, they have several perks to look forward to including:

– Increased eligibility for college scholarships

– Increased eligibility for Olympics on exclusive USVI team

Even for children born in the U.S. Virgin Islands and living on the mainland later in life, they are eligible to join the USVI Olympic team.  This was the case for recent Winter Olympian Jasmine Campbell, an alpine skier born on St. John and currently residing in Idaho.  

Mail

The United States Postal Service (USPS) treats St. Croix as any other domestic destination, so postal rates are the same.  Service is slightly delayed for services like 2-3 day Priority Mail due to the increased delivery distance over the ocean, but not dramatically.  UPS, FedEx and other major carriers consider the USVI international destinations.

Representation

We cannot vote for U.S.  President.  However, we have one non-voting delegate to congress to represent the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Daylight Savings Time

The U.S. Virgin Islands do not recognize daylight savings time, so no need to mess with falling back and springing forward.  We keep it simple.

Ready to enjoy the perks of island life?  Download our free guide, the 10 Best Reasons for Living on St. Croix.

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