Connecting the Grenadines
Other Ways to cross between Union and Carriacou

Water "Taxis"

Both islands have water “taxi” services.  These could be anything from a very small boat with a single outboard, to a large comfortable craft with a pair of powerful engines.  The cost (for the boat - not per person) could be anything from EC$150 to EC$500 or more, depending on the time of year, the type of boat and the owner’s desire for the business.  It really is entirely negotiable, so don't let anyone tell you there is a "standard" fee. But in addition, the boat clearance fees could add another hundred or more dollars, so it is very unlikely that you will get any change from EC$300.  Make sure that you know in advance how much the whole trip will cost including the clearance.  Also arrange your timing around the opening hours of immigration and customs - generally, weekdays 9am to 4pm with a break for lunch between noon and 1pm.  Saturday mornings are OK, but forget about Sundays as Carriacou Customs is closed. You should note that while Union Island Airport Customs service stays open until 6pm to service incoming flights, they still charge overtime fees after 4pm for clearing boats.

The trip by speedboat is usually very fast and very bumpy (seat cushions are not necessarily part of the equipment). It is always a little wet and sometimes very wet depending on the weather.  It is also an exhilarating and interesting experience (if you are into that kind of thing).  But if any passengers cannot swim, make sure you check that the boat captain has life jackets on board.  And check that someone on board has a working mobile phone, just in case there should be engine problems en route.

You can go directly from Hillsborough to Clifton or vice versa.  You can also go from Windward on Carriacou which is a shorter trip but you must clear out or in with the boat captain in Hillsborough. 

To find a water taxi, get a recommendation from the tourist office or your hotel.  Meet the boat captain to make sure the boat is one you’ll be happy to travel in, and arrange a price.  The critical thing is to make absolutely sure that the boat captain will clear you out of one country and in to the other.  Do not leave Union or Carriacou without an exit stamp in your passport, and do not enter without clearing in.  Make sure you go with someone who is used to the process.  There is a burden of paperwork on the boat captain and it is understandable that he might wish to avoid it, but failure to clear in or out will subject you, at best, to a serious dressing down by the authorities, and, at worst, to being fined and/or flung unceremoniously out of the country. 

Lady JJ Private Charter 
Except Mondays and Thursdays, Lady JJ is often also available for a private crossing.  Contact Troy for a quote.  His prices include the full cost of clearing immigration and customs.  Lady JJ is also available privately for trips to the Tobago Cays and other nearby islands.

By Air
Although it does not say so on their website, SVG Air will often have its Grenada - Union flight stop in Carriacou if there is enough passenger demand.  Make a direct inquiry through their website: www.svgair.com 


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