Photo by Aaron Cranford
By Aaron Cranford
Hell’s Gate, Saba — There are a few different means of transportation around and across the island of Saint Martin (Sint Maarten).
However, the cheapest option may also be the easiest to master.
Selma Neel and I visited the famous Caribbean island for two nights and three days, and we found the simple and cost-efficient minibus system quite enjoyable.
First of all, minibuses are easily recognizable, due to wooden placards with a name of a city visible on the dashboard. For example, when we first arrived to the island in Philipsburg, the capital of the Dutch side, we spotted a minibus with a “French Quarter” sign sitting on the dashboard.
A 10-to-15-minute bus ride from Philipsburg to the French Quarter costs $2 (€2) per person. Once there, you can disembark and locate a bus heading in the direction of Marigot, the capital of the French side.
We were staying in a neighborhood called Cul-De-Sac, so we asked the driver to stop once we were near the entrance. We only paid $1 for that specific ride — from the French Quarter to Cul-De-Sac — and as a rule of thumb, if you are riding the bus for more than or equal to 10 minutes, then you will pay $2. If you use the bus for only a short distance, then you can simply pay the driver $1.
Dollars and Euros are both accepted, and the buses use a 1-to-1 currency ratio.
Have you traveled to Saint Martin? What do you think of the island’s buses?
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