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Do You Need a Passport for St Thomas?

By Molly Weinfurter


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If you’re planning a trip to the U.S. Virgin Islands, you might be wondering, ‘do you need a passport for St Thomas?’ Planning ahead before any vacation is essential, so let’s look at what travel documents you’ll need for an upcoming St Thomas trip. 

do you need a passport for st thomas

Where is St Thomas?

St Thomas is known as “the chief island of the U.S. Virgin Islands.” It’s in the eastern Caribbean Sea, approximately 40 miles east of Puerto Rico. It’s over 1,000 miles away from the southern end of Florida. 

How Do You Get to St Thomas?

There is no way to travel to St Thomas by car, but you can take a plane to get there. If you want a car during your trip, there are some car rentals on the island. You must have a valid U.S. driver’s license to rent and drive a car on any of the Virgin Islands.

The most convenient U.S. flight to St Thomas is from Miami, which is about two and a half hours away. To get between different U.S. Virgin Islands, you can take advantage of the ferry schedule.

How Many U.S. Virgin Islands are There?

There are about 50 islands among the U.S. Virgin Islands. However, the three largest islands are the most significant ones, especially for tourists. Those islands are St Thomas, St John, and St Croix. Some of the smaller islands are currently uninhabited. 

Do You Need a Passport for St Thomas?

If you are a U.S. citizen, you don’t need a passport for St Thomas. However, you might be asked to show proof of citizenship, such as a driver’s license or birth certificate, when coming and going. Many U.S. citizens still use passports as proof of citizenship though, so it can’t hurt to have it along.

“Although U.S. citizens are not required to present a passport upon departure from the U.S. territories, travelers are encouraged to travel with a passport or other proof of citizenship, as they will be asked questions about citizenship and any goods they will be bringing to the U.S. mainland upon their departure from U.S. territories,” U.S. Customs and Border Patrol states.

Do You Need a Passport for St Thomas for International Travel?

For travelers from outside of the United States, visiting the U.S. Virgin Islands is the same as visiting any of the mainland states. You will need a passport and a visa. To ensure that your passport is ready by the time you plan to travel, you should apply for it well ahead of time. Check your country’s passport application process and rules to ensure that you’ll be ready to travel to St Thomas on time. 

Do You Need a Passport for the Other U.S. Virgin Islands?

All the U.S. Virgin Islands have the same rules when it comes to passports. U.S. citizens do not need a passport to travel there, but it’s still recommended. Visitors from other countries must have a valid passport and visa to go to any of the U.S. Virgin Islands. Make sure you plan accordingly based on these requirements. 

Popular Attractions in St Thomas

Once you’ve figured out all the travel requirements, it’s time to focus on the fun part of trip planning: the attractions! St Thomas is a small island, but it still has plenty of fun things to do on it. A lot of these popular attractions involve going on outdoor adventures with your family.

Here are some of the best attractions in St Thomas:

  • Magens Bay Beach
  • Pirates Treasure Museum
  • Coral World Ocean Park
  • Mountain Top
  • Drake’s Seat
  • Main Street
  • The 99 Steps

In addition to those many unique attractions, some tourists also choose to take a day trip to one of the other U.S. Virgin Islands during their vacation. It could provide a little more variety and new beautiful scenery. Plus, St John and St Croix have just as many fun things to do, if not more. 

What is St Thomas Weather Like?

St Thomas is a tropical location with warm weather year-round. Even in the winter, the temperature is usually between upper 70s and mid-80s in Fahrenheit. Nearly all summer days are in the 80s, making it an excellent beach destination. The chance of rainfall is more common in the fall, but most of the year, you can expect warm, sunny temperatures. 

What to Pack for St Thomas

Since the weather is so warm, you can pack light. Once you make sure you have your necessary travel documents, you can ensure that you also have plenty of clothes and other supplies that cater to the warm weather.

Here are some items you might want to pack:

  • Summer clothes, such as shorts, t-shirts, sundresses, and tank tops.
  • Swimsuits
  • Sandals and tennis shoes 
  • Sunglasses
  • Towels
  • Sunscreen
  • Umbrella

What you pack greatly depends on what your plans are. If you want to hang out at the beach all day, then swimsuits, flip flops, and a cover up are the way to go. If you plan to hike a lot, don’t forget tennis shoes. At some point, you might also want to have a nice dinner with your family, so you may want to pack something a little nicer for that. 

It can’t hurt to bring a sweater or sweatshirt along just in case, but judging by the regular temperatures, it’s unlikely that you’ll need it. St Thomas and all of the U.S. Virgin Islands are perfect for travelers looking to relax on the beach or explore the nature around them.

Always Plan Ahead!

Before you travel to any destination, you need to make sure you pack all the necessary supplies and travel documents. If your destination is outside of the country you live in, you will need to plan further ahead to ensure you have all the necessary forms and identifications.

St Thomas and the rest of the Virgin Islands might seem far away from the mainland United States, but you do not need a passport for them if you’re a U.S. citizen. However, if can’t hurt to have a passport when you travel just in case. After all, it’s another form of identification.

About Molly Weinfurter

Molly Weinfurter is a freelance writer and editor that specializes in family, travel, and animal-related topics.

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