The Skinny on British Virgin Islands Customs Fees

There have been a lot of rumors floating around and I’m sure a lot of you are wondering what is going to happen for next year, so we wanted to let you know what to expect for the 2017-2018 season.
As you all know, there is a fee associated with clearing into and out of the BVI. This is likely the only country/territory in the world that actually taxes people to come in and out, and the BVI is increasing it’s prices for the upcoming year.
That being said, this year we are seeing the highest increase I’ve seen since I moved to the Virgin Islands 11 years ago. 







The British Virgin Islands Increase Breakdown

Increased Cruising Permit Fees: As of August 1st, The BVI Government is increasing the cruising permit fee from $4 per person per day to $16 per person per day.
Read More Here

Environmental Levy: As of September 1st, The BVI Government is imposing a $10 per person Environmental Levy fee as well.
Read More Here

These two increases are just a fraction of what you pay each time you enter and exit the BVI and amount to a total increase of $22 per person.
So, to be blunt it means an increase in customs fees which you, our guests, pay.  For the month of August the fees will increase from $50 per person to $60 per person.

As of September 1st, customs fees are going to have to go up to $70 per person.  Those of you who book multiple days with us won’t have to pay the environmental levy twice, just on your first visit according to this exemption: “Other exemptions include visitors arriving in the Virgin Islands on a second or subsequent occasion in the course of the same visit.”

What You Can Do

Book a US Only Trip: If you want to save on the customs fees, we can do a US Only Trip.  Lots of snorkeling in places that aren’t accessible by car, Pizza Pi For lunch (during high season only,) and depending on the seas, we can stop at one of the beach bars on St. Thomas at the end of the day.
If you stay on St. Thomas, this is a great opportunity to explore a lot of Saint John, eat lunch on the beach in Cruz Bay and still make a stop at Pizza Pi in Christmas Cove for a beverage and an afternoon snack.

Contact Your Representatives & Ours: Email me at and I will happily provide you with a list of emails for Virgin Islands representatives in the hopes that they can help in some way.
The USVI charter boat industry is doing everything we can to try and fight this, and with your help, we might actually be able to make a difference.  (We’ve also heard rumblings that some of the companies, ie. Restaurants like Pirate’s Bight, in the BVI are trying to fight this as well and hopefully they can make some waves that we are unable to, being foreign based.)

We know this is outrageous and we are not happy about passing this cost along to our customers.  We value our new customers and appreciate our repeat guests and hope that you all understand that we are a very small family run business and hope to do everything we can to make this easier on you.