PASSPORTS: A passport is required to enter Belize along with proof of return. No visas are required for U.S. or Canadian citizens, nationals of Caricom countries and of the European Community member nations. Visas are probably required if you live elsewhere. Visitors are allowed a one-month visit without requesting an extension.
HOW TO GET HERE: Look the Philip Goldson Internation Airport website for a list of airline that fly in and out of this airport. The airport code for Belize International Airport is BZE. The following airlines provide hourly flights to the Placencia Airstrip: Maya Island Air and Tropic Air. Let us make your reservations for you and we can make changes easily if needed. It won't cost you anymore if we book it for you, or if you book it yourself.
If you decide to rent a car in Belize City and drive down, the drive will take you approximately three and a half hours. Here is a list of rental cars available at the airport. We recommend you drive during daylight hours, with sunset being between 5:30 and 6:30. There are also car rentals available in Placencia.
CURRENCY: US cash is accepted everywhere. The Belize dollar has a fixed rate of $2 BZD = $1 USD. Bring as much cash as you feel comfortable carrying. It's best to bring small bills with you because you may have a hard time getting change for US $50's and $100's. Travelers checks and credit cards (Visa and Mastercard) are accepted at most places, although travelers checks don't seem to be used much anymore. Leave your American Express card at home. You can also get an ATM cash advance on your credit card at the Atlantic Bank, Belize Bank, and Scotia Bank in Placencia. You should call your credit company before arriving in Belize to ensure they don't decline your charges, and to find out what exchange rate they will charge you. Tours and accommodations are quoted in US dollars, whereas meals, groceries and gift shops quote in Belize dollars.
DEPARTURE TAX: Airport Departure Fees are generally included in the airline ticket. Where it is not included in the ticket price, passengers must pay upon departing Departure Fees of US $35.50, payable in US dollars by Non Belizean Residents.
TIME ZONE: The time zone is Central Standard. Daylight savings is not observed.
CLIMATE: The overall climate of Belize can be described as sub-tropical. The temperatures can drop as low as the 60's °F in the winter, and up to the 90's °F in the summer. The dry season is typically January thru May, and the rainy season is from June thru December.
Bring light cotton clothing, shorts, t-shirts, bathing suits, comfortable walking shoes and sandals. Leave your formal clothes at home. For jungle trips, long cotton pants, long-sleeved shirt, and sneakers or Tevas are recommended. For boat trips you might want to bring a lightweight waterproof jacket. Bring a sweater or jacket for unexpected cool days during the winter. Bring a long-sleeved shirt and pants for protection against bugs during the rainy season.
ITEMS TO BRING: You should bring sunscreen, aloe vera gel or some kind of after burn, insect repellent, and a hat. Don't forget your flashlight and extra batteries! It get's dark around here by 6:00 pm so you'll be glad to have one with you. It's a good idea to bring your own snorkeling gear if you have it. If you're diving you can bring your BC, regulator, fins and mask.
GROCERIES: We have a nice grocery store within walking distance where you can find almost anything you might need. Additional fruits and veggies can be found in Placencia.
WATER: We enjoy filtered rainwater exclusively, which is perfectly safe to drink and tastes good. For this reason, we will probably ask you to be conservative with your water usage during the dry months.
ELECTRICITY: Electricity is 110 volts A.C. Same as U.S.
IMMUNIZATIONS: No immunizations are needed for your stay here at Barnacle Bill's. Please consult your doctor for the best advice. Malaria medication may be advised for extended stays in the jungle.
SAND FLIES: Sand flies may be a problem during certain times of the day, usually around sunrise and sunset. If you tend to be one of those people whom react to insect bites, you might want to bring anti-histamines and an anti-itch cream (hydrocortizone) to help reduce any reaction. We provide vape mats and rubbing alcohol to reduce the bugs and the itch.
MEDICAL: There is doctor available in Placencia and a hospital in Dangriga. Should there be a serious medical problem, Belize Emergency Response Team is available for air evacuation. Please remember to bring your medications. There is a pharmacy in Placencia were you may be able to buy needed items.
PHONES/INTERNET: Wireless internet is available here at Barnacle Bill's if you decide to bring your laptop or iphone. We can also send an email for you, or you can access the internet at Mangos and the Maya Beach Hotel. Please feel free to leave our phone number and e-mail address in case you need to be reached in an emergency. If you need to make an emergency call we will let you use our cell phone.You might want to check with your cell phone company, as some phones will work in Belize, but local calls will be expensive.