No matter where in the world you’re traveling, Montego Bay is no exception. It is important to know where you are going and the requirements, how to stay safe, keep your property safe at all times. Here are some tips to make your Jamaican vacation safe and fun.
-Give friends and family your contact information and itineraries in case of
-Register with your country’s embassy or consulate before you travel in case of
-Keep luggage, handbags or backpacks in view at all times.
-Don’t take around large amounts of cash. This can attract undue attention.
-Avoid wearing expensive jewelry on road trips, each or excursions.
Requirements For Travel to Jamaica
Jamaica has a tropical climate, characterized by high temperatures and humid conditions all-year-round. Average temperature ranges from 66 degrees Fahrenheit (19 degrees Celsius) to 99 degrees Fahrenheit (32 degrees Celsius).
The island has two rainy seasons from May to June and September to November. The hurricanes season is from June to September. Rainfalls are usually short, most of the time in the afternoon.
Banks / Currency
Licensed cambio centers and commercial banks are accessible in all resort areas. The official currency exchange rates vary daily, so it’s advisable to shop around for the best rate before converting your cash. Most of our ATMs accept international bank cards, with Visa, MasterCard, Cirrus and Plus logos. Banks also give credit card advances, change traveler’s checks and other financial services.
In Jamaica, the use, sale and possession of drugs such as marijuana (know as ganja in Jamaica is now somewhat decriminalized), cocaine, crack, ecstasy, heroin and any other controlled substance is illegal. Violators are subject to severe punishments – specifically arrest, fine and imprisonment. Please don’t ruin your vacation.
The electrical supply in Jamaica is 110 volts/50 cycles standard (Some larger hotels also may have 220 volts/50 cycle AC available), and electrical appliances use plugs that are two-pronged and flat (such as those used in the United States and Canada). Bring along any adaptors of convertors you might need if this doesn’t suit some of your appliances and chargers. Most hotels will provide you with hair dryers, alarm clocks, radio and a clothes iron, but make sure you find out first.
Jamaica has hundreds of natural springs and rivers, both above and underground. Over the years, we have developed extensive water treatment and supply systems island-wide, so all drinking water in Jamaica is purified and filtered by modern methods. Our water is safe for you to drink, clean your teeth, bath and wash clothing in. If you choose not to drink the water, rest assured - there are many brands of Jamaican spring water that meet or exceed the highest international standards, available at most shops and restaurants.
Jamaica is well connected to the rest of the world. Direct international telephone service operates in all areas, 24 hours a day, and telephone operators will gladly facilitate collect, third-party or credit card calls. Internet access is available as well in hotels and parish libraries, but also at local Internet cafes. Three daily newspapers and five weekend newspapers will keep you in the know, while some hotels and gift shops receive the international additions.
In Jamaica, we drive on the left side of the road. The speed limit is 50 kmph (30 mph) in built-up areas, and 80 kmph (50 mph) on highways, and all drivers are required to carry a valid license. Jamaica recognizes valid International Driver’s Licenses, but visitors from North America may use their country's license for up to three months per visit. Car rental is available in most major towns, cities and airports. You have to be 25 years old to rent a car in Jamaica.
We love animals here on the island, but we do ask you to make sure your pets are healthy if they are coming along with you on your trip. In keeping with international standards, the importation of all live animals into Jamaica requires an import permit from the Veterinary Services Division of the Ministry of Agriculture, prior to arrival in Jamaica. All animals must be rabies-free, and must never have been rabies vaccinated. Dogs and cats (with permits) are allowed into Jamaica only from Great Britain, Northern Ireland and Eire. For more information, contact the Veterinary Services Division: tel. 876-977-2489 or 876-977-2492. To secure a permit, fax a letter of request to 876-977-0885.
Lightweight, breathable fabrics are the way to go here on the island. Shorts, swimwear and flip flops keep you chilled on our beaches. A thin sweater will keep you cozy in the evenings. And semi-casual wear for women, and a jacket for men, will get you into all of our fine dining restaurants. Whatever you do, don’t pack too much, as you’ll want to take some of our special clothing back home with you.
Jamaica falls within the Eastern Time Zone (UTC/GMT -5 Hours) and does not observe Daylight Savings Time. At approximately 18 degrees north of the equator, the island falls within the tropics, and as such does not experience drastic seasonal changes in sunrise and sunset times. Year-round, the island averages between 11.5 and 12.5 hours of sunlight per day.
Officially, we speak English but we like to mix it up with our own island version of patois. It takes a little getting used to, but you’re sure to have lots of fun trying out a few of our expressions.
Airports in Jamaica
Sangster International Airport
Located in Montego Bay, most tourists land here. It's the better port of entrance if you're headed to Montego Bay, Ocho Rios or Negril. In addition to international terminals, this airport has a domestic terminal with local flights that depart regularly to Kingston, Negril, Port Antonio and Ocho Rios. Taxis, hotel shuttles and car rental companies are available to help you get to your final destination. For more information, just visit http://mbjairport.com
Norman Manley International Airport
Located in Kingston, use this airport if you’re visiting the capital city, Port Antonio or heading to the beautiful Blue Mountains. Efficient transport can be arranged to take you to the domestic airport in Kingston, Tinson Pen, where flights are available to other parts of the island. Car rentals, taxi services and tour operators are located in the Arrivals Ground Transportation Hall to help you get to your destination, safely and happily. For more information, just visit http://www.nmia.aero/
Ian Fleming International Airport
Our newest international airport, the Ian Fleming International Airport, is located in the Ocho Rios resort area. It is a convenient entry point to Jamaica's north coast for small aircraft. Many of Jamaica's renowned villas and resorts are only minutes away. For your convenience, car rentals, taxi services and shuttles are easily arranged.
Some information is from the Jamaica Tourist Board
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