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Old 03-19-2008, 09:10 PM
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Hi everyone. I was just wondering if I should book a shopping excursion in St. Maarten or if I should just go at it ourselves. It's just that the excursion only allows two hours for shopping and I know that we'll need more time than that. What do you suggest?
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Old 03-20-2008, 03:31 AM
 
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There are shops where the ships dock but it you wanted to go to Marigot I suppose a taxi would be the best bet. It would give you more time to shop but the cost might be prohibitive. There are shuttle vans that operate on the island (at a lower cost than an independent taxi) but I couldn't tell you where to catch one near the ship.

From a web site I found (Wikitravel)
"Taxi cabs are usually vans, which are geared towards servicing the cruise ship traffic. To go completely around the island will cost about $25 USD with a taxi.

Saint Martin has a bus system using small minivans. If you are not in a hurry you can get most anywhere on the island for just a few dollars."

The minivans are slower than a taxi since they stop almost anywhere for passengers.
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Old 03-20-2008, 06:15 AM
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As RichC stated, there are shops right where you dock. I guess it depends on what you're shopping for. We've been able to find what we wanted right at the dock, but I'm not an avid shopper. Plus, taking a cab to Marigot would give you a little taste of the island. I think the cab fare to Orient was about $20. I don't remember, but it wasn't too bad. St. Lucia was expensive, but I don't remember thinking that St. Maarten was. Of course, that was before gas was over $5/liter.
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Old 03-20-2008, 09:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by mell:
Hi everyone. I was just wondering if I should book a shopping excursion in St. Maarten or if I should just go at it ourselves. It's just that the excursion only allows two hours for shopping and I know that we'll need more time than that. What do you suggest?
Ok is that the one where you travel on a boat on the bay after shopping??
Is that the one I took it on the AOS,
is a good one since the island is divided in two jurisdictions.

You can shop in one part of the island on that tour, and take a taxi to shop in the other.
So you know there are a few duty free shops near the ship I bought a nice neckless for my wife there on Diamond international and RCCL even certify it if you buy from them.
For me two hour, on that part of the island, was more than what I needed.
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Old 03-20-2008, 11:05 AM
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Mmmmm....shopping in St Maarten....just the thought warms me up for spring ! I LOVE the shops in St Maarten !! One still sends me Christmas cards for 15 years ! The ships right at the dock are wonderful, if you want to go to the other side, the ship tour sounds ok. I have never shopped on the other side, just went to the beach, shopped at the beach stores. But if major shopping is your choice, just walk off the dock and ENJOY !!
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Old 03-20-2008, 02:05 PM
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Hi
we went there a couple of years ago and loved the shopping on the island its our second favourite after St.Thomas we just got in one of the mini vans and did loads of shopping it was not expensive a lot cheaper than the tour so meant more money and more time for my fav pastime shopping so unless there is something you particular want to see thats the way I would go really jealous wish i was going oh well have a great time whatever you decide I know you will love the place

Julie
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Old 03-21-2008, 05:56 AM
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Mell, when are you going to ST Maarten? We are going 4/26 on RCI, Liberty of the Seas.
Quote:
Originally posted by mell:
Hi everyone. I was just wondering if I should book a shopping excursion in St. Maarten or if I should just go at it ourselves. It's just that the excursion only allows two hours for shopping and I know that we'll need more time than that. What do you suggest?
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Old 03-21-2008, 09:35 AM
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We stopped there in Jan 2007 and went to the French side by taxi, I think it cost about $20.00. The traffic was so bad it took forever both ways. If you have never been there, I think it is worth the time just to get some lunch if nothing else. We like the shopping right by the docks better, we think its better then ST. Thomas. Great shopping, great beach and who can complain about $.99 beers. Take the water taxi from the dock into town.
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Old 03-21-2008, 10:24 AM
 
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The last time we were in Marigot the traffic was so bad I gave up & we went for a ride along the shore. Time was to short to fight the crowds on this beautiful island.
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Old 03-23-2008, 07:06 PM
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If shooping is your thing, just go ashore and wander to your hearts content. We were in St. Maarten last Wednesday. More than enough shops to keep my wife busy. We did do an Island Tour (private) and the traffic was absolutely horrible. Travel time from French to Dutch side had to be at least an hour.

Found a lot of shops with signs that said "1 Euro = 1 Dollar." Try as I did, I never found one that would give me 1 euro for 1 dollar. At least I tried!!
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