Banks

Normal banking hours are Monday through Thursday from 8 am until 1 PM, although some banks remain open until 3 PM. On Fridays, most banks re-open from 3 PM until 5 PM. Hours are generally extended during Christmas, Easter, and Carnival, and may be affected by local holidays. It is best to check with your hotel or call ahead.

All banks are authorized to exchange currency.

The American Express representative in St. Vincent is Caribbean International Travel Services on Granby Street in Kingstown.

Currency

The official currency within St. Vincent and the Grenadines is the Eastern Caribbean (EC) dollar, which is used in other regional nations and is linked to the U.S. dollar. Unless otherwise noted, prices quoted here on the SVG Guide Web Site are $EC.

The exchange rate will vary slightly depending on whether cash or traveller’s cheques are involved, and whether you convert them at a bank or business establishment, such as a hotel or restaurant. The normal range is between $2.60 and $2.68 EC to $1 US.

U.S. and Canadian dollars and traveller’s cheques are generally accepted in hotels and most places of business, and credit cards are usually accepted at most hotels, business establishments, and at some car rental companies.

Credit Cards

While many hotels and restaurants accept major credit cards, the practice is not as widespread as it is in other countries. This does not indicate any economic backwardness but, to the contrary, reflects a conscious decision to control costs since those services require an identifiable expense that must be marked up and passed through to the clients. We suggest that you confirm the policy of any entity beforehand.

Hours of Business

While hours of operation vary from store to store, they generally run from 8 am until noon, and 1 pm to 4 pm, Monday through Friday. On Saturday, many stores are open from 8 am until noon.

Government offices are open 8 am until noon and 1 pm until 4:15 pm Monday through Friday. The Bequia Tourist Bureau (458-3286) is open 9 am until noon and 1:30 pm until 4 pm Sunday through Friday, and 9 am until 12:30 pm on Saturday. It is closed on public holidays. The Union Island Tourist Bureau is open daily from 9 am until 4 pm.

Phones

Phone service within St. Vincent and the Grenadines is provided by Cable and Wireless, one of the largest telecommunications services in the world. Because equipment and installation are expensive, most hotels must add surcharges to calls made from your room. Check with your hotel."

Phone cards that offer favorable discount rates for international calls from public phones are widely available. All phone operators in SVG speak English as their primary language and will gladly assist you.

Hours of Business

While hours of operation vary from store to store, they generally run from 8 am until noon, and 1 pm to 4 pm, Monday through Friday. On Saturday, many stores are open from 8 am until noon.

Government offices are open 8 am until noon and 1 pm until 4:15 pm Monday through Friday. The Bequia Tourist Bureau (458-3286) is open 9 am until noon and 1:30 pm until 4 pm Sunday through Friday, and 9 am until 12:30 pm on Saturday. It is closed on public holidays. The Union Island Tourist Bureau is open daily from 9 am until 4 pm.

Casual resort wear is the general rule for both men and women during the day. While most restaurants do not require a jacket or tie for dinner, if there is a question, it’s best to inquire ahead of time. During the cooler months, a light wrap or pullover may be needed.
Out of respect for local customs, swim wear should not be worn on the street, or in shops and restaurants.