General Info, Travel Info, & FAQs are provided to assist with your vacation.
ATMs Not all ATMs in the Caribbean operate like those in your home country. Some may only accept a four digit PIN number, so if yours is longer you may want to change it before your trip. Ensure you keep your travel money in your primary chequing account as some ATMs default to this account and will not allow you to choose another. Withdrawal fees are generally much higher outside your home country.
The main banks are the Bank of Montserrat (tel 491-3843) and the RBC Royal Bank of Canada (tel 491-2426). The Royal Bank has the only ATM on the island, located at their branch in Brades. It accepts Visa and MasterCard on the Cirrus/Maestro and Plus networks.
BANKING AND BUSINESS HOURS Banks Mon-Thurs 8am-2pm (on Wed the Bank of Montserrat closes at 1pm) Fri 8am-3pm
Post Office Mon-Fri 8:15am-3:55pm
CHURCHES/RELIGIONS Roman Catholic and Protestant, including Anglican, Baptist, Methodist, Pentecostal, Seventh-day Adventist, Jehovah's Witness, Wesleyan Holiness and Church of God of Prophecy are all represented.
CURRENCY AND CREDIT CARDS The local currency is the Eastern Caribbean dollar (EC$ or XCD), which is divided into 100 cents. Paper money runs in denominations of EC$5, EC$10, EC$20, EC$50 and EC$100 bills, and coins in 1¢, 2¢, 5¢, 10¢, 25¢ and EC$1 pieces. US dollars are widely accepted. Most shops, hotels and restaurants accept major credit cards, traveller's cheques and Canadian dollars.
To ensure hassle-free purchases during your trip, you may want to contact your credit card company and let them know you will be travelling abroad.
EMERGENCY PHONE NUMBERS American Express: lost or stolen card, 336/393-1111 (call collect); lost or stolen cheques or cheque cards, 800/393-1875 Discover Card: 801/902-3100 MasterCard: 800-1561 Visa: 410/902-8022 (call collect) Western Union: Travel World International (Davy Hill), 491-2713
DEPARTURE TAX All visitors must pay a departure and airport security tax when leaving. The cost is EC$35/US$13 for CARICOM nationals and EC$55/US$21 for other nationals.
ENTRY REQUIREMENTS A passport is preferred, however, American, Canadian and British citizens can also use a driver's license or official ID card as proof of citizenship. All visitors must also have an onward or return ticket, and may be required to show proof of accommodation and sufficient funds for the duration of their visit.
Nationals of other countries may require a visa. Consult your nearest British Consulate or call the Immigration Department at 664/491-9122.
Note: As of January 8, 2007, all persons travelling by air to the Caribbean, Mexico and Bermuda will require a valid passport, Air NEXUS card or US Coast Guard Merchant Mariner Document to enter and/or re-enter the United States in accordance with the US Government's Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative. For more information visit the US Government's Bureau of Consular Affairs website at www.travel.state.gov.
Some countries require single/lone parents or other adults travelling alone with children to provide documents showing evidence of parental/custodial and/or access rights, and/or documents authorizing consent from the parents, legal guardian, and/or the court for the children to travel. Parents of adopted children, particularly those of a different nationality, should carry the proper documents.
NEAREST FOREIGN REPRESENTATION British High Commission: 246/430-7800 (Barbados), 491-2688 (emergencies only, Governor's Office) High Commission of Canada: 246/429-3550 (Barbados; also for after-hours emergencies), 800/387-3124 (toll free to Ottawa) US Embassy: 246/436-4950 (Barbados), 246/431-0225 (US Consulate, Barbados), 268/463-6531 (US Consular Agency, Antigua)
As of October 26, 2006
British pound sterling
European Union euro
HEALTH STANDARDS Glendon Hospital (tel 491-2552 or 491-7404), located in St John's, is the only hospital on the island. It is well equipped for general medical and surgical needs, but there is no hyperbaric chamber. There are also a number of district clinics which provide primary health care. Serious cases require helicopter transfer to Antigua or Guadeloupe.
Your home medical program may not provide payment for medical services outside your home country. Obtaining adequate medical/travel insurance, including air ambulance coverage, and consulting a physician or travel medicine specialist six to eight weeks prior to your trip to determine health risks and necessary vaccinations is recommended.
Lee's Pharmacy (tel 491-3444) is located on Brades Main Rd. It is open 9am-7pm.
In the event of volcanic activity an island-wide siren system will sound. Tune in to Radio Montserrat (ZJB) on FM 88.3 or 95.5 for related safety messages.
For all emergencies dial 911 or 999
ILLEGAL ITEMS There are harsh penalties for possession, use or trafficking in illegal drugs, and strict regulations for exporting or temporarily importing firearms, antiquities, medications, certain agricultural products and marine and animal specimens.
For more information call the Customs Department at 664/491-3816 or 491-2456.
POSTAGE The main post office (tel 491-2457), located in Brades, is open Mon-Fri 8:15am-3:55pm. Airmail to North America can take one to two weeks and to the UK, two to three weeks. Courier service is also available.
PUBLIC HOLIDAYS Jan 1 New Year's Day Mar 17 St Patrick's Day Mar/Apr (varies) Good Friday Mar/Apr (varies) Easter Monday May (first Mon) Labour Day June (first Mon) Whit Monday June (second Sat) Queen's Birthday Aug (first Mon) August Monday Dec 25 Christmas Day Dec 26 Boxing Day Dec 31 Festival Day
Note: When a designated holiday falls on a Sun, the public holiday is observed on the Mon.
SHOPPING HOURS Shops are generally open Mon-Sat 8am-5pm, although many close at midday on Wed and Sat. Grocery stores stay open later and also open for a few hours on Sun.
TAXES Hotels add a 10% accommodation tax to bills, and guest houses, B&Bs and villas add 7%.
TELECOMMUNICATIONS The phone system on Montserrat is modern and cellular and Internet services are available.
The country code is 664. Local phone numbers have seven digits. For directory assistance dial 411 and for the operator dial 0. For calls to North America dial 1 + area code + local number. For calls to other countries dial 011 + country code + area code + local number.
Cable & Wireless (tel 800/804-2994) provides telecommunications services. Public phone booths only accept prepaid phone cards, which are available at C&W offices and licensed retailers. Phone booths are located at Brades Centre, Cable & Wireless, Carrs Bay, Cudjoe Head, Davy Hill Housing, Gerald's Airport, Glendon Hospital, Festival Village, Little Bay, Salem Centre, St Peter's, Sweeney's and Vue Pointe Hotel.
Credit card calls can be made through the operator (dial 0). You can also dial 1-800 CALL USA to use US calling cards, major credit cards or to make collect calls.
For more information see the section in FAQs: Can I use my calling card from here?
Cable & Wireless offers cellular roaming services. Check with your service provider to see if they have a roaming agreement with them.
TEMPERATURES The average temperature in summer is 88°F and in winter 76°F. The rainy season is July-Nov.
TIME ZONE The island is on Atlantic Standard Time year round, which is four hours behind Greenwich Mean Time (GMT). During the summer the time is the same as on the east coast of North America and during the winter, the time is one hour ahead. Montserrat does not observe daylight savings time.
Disclaimer: Information is provided as a service to visitors and is updated regularly. All
information should be verified prior to travel.