CAR RENTAL: WILL I NEED TO RENT A CAR?
Eleuthera is very rural and the island is 110 miles long. Taxis, which are fairly expensive, are the only mode of public transportation. If you want to explore, go sightseeing, visit other beaches, restaurants, etc., I would recommend renting a car. They cost about $70/day ($60/day if you rent by the week). Jeeps are $10/day more and minivans are $20/day more. There are no taxes or insurance charges. There are no big rental agencies on the island, and the rental cars are older and well used. Contact us for an introduction to car renters who have proven reliable.
CASH: HOW MUCH CASH DO I NEED TO BRING?
There are two ATM’s in Governors Harbour, so it’s easy to get cash. The resorts and high-end restaurants take credit cards, but the vast majority of local businesses take CASH ONLY. This includes retailers but also boat excursions, fishing guides, cooks, many car renters, etc.
CELL PHONES: WILL MY CELL PHONE WORK?
U.S. and Canadian cell phones work on the island. Reception is quite good. You cell phone carrier will probably charge you expensive international roaming charges, so check with your carrier.
CURRENCY: IS U.S. CURRENCY ACCEPTED?
ELECTRICAL OUTLETS: ARE THE ELECTRICAL OUTLETS THE SAME AS IN THE U.S. AND CANADA?
ELECTRICITY: ARE POWER OUTAGES A PROBLEM?
It’s not unusual for the power to go out once or twice during a week-long stay, but these outages are almost always brief—from 5 minutes to an hour—so don’t be alarmed if this happens. Power will almost always come back on quickly, and there is nothing you need to do about it.
GROCERIES: WHERE CAN I GET GROCERIES AND HOW MUCH DO THEY COST?
There is a grocery store in Governors Harbour that stocks all the basics. There is also an organic farm in Palmetto Point. There is a large supermarket in Rock Sound called the Rock Sound Market that delivers (and even has on-line ordering) and another in Bluff, North Eleuthera, called Birchies. Everything costs 50% more than it does in the U.S. Some regular visitors bring frozen meat and other expensive food items to the island to save money, which is legal (except for fresh fruits and vegetables). Liquor and wine is abundant and not expensive. Beer is abundant but expensive.
WATER: IS THE WATER SAFE TO DRINK?
The municipally treated water is safe to drink, but most visitors to the island drink bottled water to be safe. Also, many houses are not on the municipal water system, and may not have drinkable water.
MEDICAL CARE: ARE THERE MEDICAL FACILITIES ON THE ISLAND?
There is a good medical clinic in the town of Governors Harbour. For serious injuries/illnesses, patients are brought to Florida by medevac airplane.
SAFETY: IS ELEUTHERA SAFE?
Eleuthera has a population of just 8000, and everyone knows everyone. The island is famous for being safe. Petty theft occurs, so be sensible about locking up valuables. However, locals and tourists alike routinely pick up hitch-hikers and leave their keys in their cars.
TRIP INSURANCE: DO YOU RECOMMEND TRIP INSURANCE?
If you are concerned that you may need to cancel due to illness or family emergency, or a blizzard or other bad weather conditions at your departing airport, you should look into trip insurance. Here's a website where you can compare and buy trip insurance policies: http://www.insuremytrip.com/.
WAVES: WILL THERE BE BIG WAVES?
In the Governors Harbour area, and for miles to the south and north, there is a large barrier reef that minimizes the surf on the Atlantic side of the island. North of James Cistern, the reef ends, and the northern half of Eleuthera has some world-famous surfing beaches with big waves.
WEATHER: HOW IS THE WEATHER, AND WILL THE OCEAN BE WARM?
Here’s a link to a web page with detailed weather water temperature info for Eleuthera by month: http://www.discover-eleuthera-bahamas.com/bahamas-climate.html
ACTIVITIES FOR CHILDREN: WILL MY KIDS HAVE ENOUGH TO DO?
Yes, there is plenty for them to do and see on this island! A short list includes swimming, snorkeling, fishing, surfing, kayaking, tennis, renting sailboats, horseback riding on the beach, exploring the caves, the cliffs, the ocean hole, the glass window bridge, dunebuggy ride to lighthouse beach, Here's a link to an article about what to do with your children on Eleuthera: http://www.adventuretravelmom.com/exploring-eleuthera-with-kids/.
DO I HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT MOSQUITOES AND OTHER INSECTS?
During the day, mosquitoes and noseeums are typically not a problem. If they are present at all, they will come out at dusk and in the evening. Noseeums are a more frequent complaint on the island than mosquitoes. The best preventative is a pair of long pants and socks, because they go after legs and ankles. The evenings are usually comfortable, so you can wear long pants outside if necessary. The bite of a noseeum is not very bothersome, but don't make the mistake of ignoring them. If they are out, as soon as you feel the first little bite, put on your long pants and socks. Otherwise, if you are allergic to their bites, you will wake up the next day with many itchy bumps on your legs.
IS THERE A PLACE WHERE I CAN SEE ALL YOUR PROPERTIES ON A MAP?
Here’s a link to a helpful website which shows all the rental properties on the island on a satellite map: http://www.eleutheraparadise.com/accommodations.html