Barbados: Local Travel Info
Live life like the Bajan's
Internal Flights and Major International Airports in Barbados
The airport in Barbados is the Grantley Adams International Airport which handles more than two-million passengers per year. Its airport code is BGI and there is one terminal at the Barbados airport managing both passengers from nearby islands and long-haul visitors. Grantley Adams Airport is located 10 miles southeast of Bridgetown city centre and is served by both buses and taxis. There are no railways in Barbados.
Getting to and from the Airport at Barbados
Getting to and from the airport in Barbados is very straightforward. There is a 24 hour taxi service at the airport in which travel to Bridgetown should take no longer than 30 minutes. The fare will be around $30 Barbados Dollar (£10). A bus service also operates to the city which will cost around $1.50. The travel time by bus shouldn’t take longer than 45 minutes.
Renting Cars in Barbados
There are a number of hire car companies in Barbados meaning you can explore Barbados yourself. The hire companies in Barbados offer everything from mini-mokes to rugged cross country jeeps, stylish air-conditioned cars and limousines. Expect to pay around $100 Barbados Dollars a day in peak season and $400 a week. Barbados has a good network of roads which covers the entire island. Traffic drives on the left and there is a speed limit of 60kmph, or 37mph per hour, except where otherwise specified. Be careful on the roads as there are pot holes outside of the main areas and be sure to drive more slowly at night as some of the rural roads are not particularly well lit. In order to drive in Barbados you are required to have a Barbados driving permit which can be obtained from car rental companies, the Ministry of Transport, Police Stations or the airport. There is a registration fee of $10 and you will need to show a valid license from your home country.
To book car rental in Barbados online, view our Car Hire section for Barbados . We offer Ok Alpha users the latest special offers and best rates available for car hire in Barbados . We advise you book your Barbados hire car in advance so you can pick it up and drop it off directly at the airport.
Drivers License Requirements in Barbados
If you are planning on driving in Barbados you will be required to show proof of a valid driver’s license from your own country. You will then be issued a Barbados Driving Permit which you will need to pay $10 Barbados Dollar (£3.50) for. It is possible to get the driving permit from the airport, a car rental company, some of the larger police stations on the island and the Ministry of Transport. In Barbados, as in the UK, drivers drive on the left hand side and it is important to wear seatbelts at all time.
Barbados by Bus
Barbados has a bus service running to the majority of the island. If you have weak nerves or easily get travel sickness I would advise against the buses in Barbados. The bus drivers tend to go quite fast and outside of the main areas the roads can be a little uneven. Buses tend to get very full very quickly as well and if you would rather travel in comfort I would suggest hiring a car or bike. However, if you would like a taste of Barbados from the locals’ point of view you’ll see bags of authentic Barbadian life on the bus. The buses run regularly and are inexpensive. Blue buses are government run whilst the yellow buses are run by a private company but the fares for the buses are the same. Locals will suggest flagging down a bus even when you’re at the stop. The regular bus stops on route mean that it’s a good way to see lots of the cities and towns to a low budget.
Barbados by Taxi
Taxis in Barbados are not metered and therefore are government regulated. Visitors to Barbados should settle on a fare before taking the taxi. Taxi fares are fairly reasonable, for example getting from Bridgetown to the airport would only cost around ten pounds. Be aware of additional surcharges such as access luggage or waiting time. Taxis don’t have child safety devices so if you’re travelling with small children you may want to bring your own.
Cycling and bike hire in Barbados
Bikes and scooters in Barbados are widely available to hire. Scooter drivers will be expected to provide a valid license. If you do not hold an International Drivers License then you can get a visitor’s permit from rental agencies, police stations or the Ministry of Transport. This will only cost a couple of pounds. To hire a bicycle you’ll be expected to pay a deposit of around $100 Barbados Dollares (£35). For a scooter or moped expect to pay double this. From here the daily or weekly cost of renting is relatively inexpensive. Hire companies are often willing to strike up a deal-especially if you want to hire for more than a day. The roads in Barbados can generally be quite busy and it isn’t recommended to cycle or drive a moped/scooter around the island as a visitor. The roads can be confusing but in more rural areas using a bicycle or moped is a great way to view the island.
Walking in Barbados
Walking in Barbados is not recommended as an activity to do alone without guidance. If it’s a stroll down a beach or round the towns then feel free to explore but the most popular, safe and successful way of seeing Barbados on foot is to join ‘Hike Barbados’. Hike Barbados will take you through tropical forests, gullies, cane fields and will show you the incredibly unique geological structure of Barbados. The hikes are free but they do ask for a donation if you so feel. It’s a good idea to look up ‘Hike Barbados’ and get an idea of the different hikes they offer during the different months and for different levels of walkers. Morning hikes will start very early at 6am while the other hikes will start mid to late afternoon in order to avoid the mid-day sun. They also have Moonlight Walks starting at 5.30pm. Don’t forget to take water with you as the temperatures can get very high in Barbados.
Barbados by boat
Unlike the majority of the other Caribbean islands Barbados doesn’t offer ferry services. However, Barbados has some brilliant catamaran and yacht companies who will offer a brilliant and friendly service typical of the people of Barbados. It is possible to rent out the boats with a crew and they will be great guides for your day out. Join other people on scheduled tours or hire out your own as a group. The catamarans are a fantastic way of seeing the coastline of Barbados and a lot offer snorkeling and dive tours where you will be able to explore beneath the crystal waters. It’s definitely worth shopping around the various companies as some have great offers on cocktail catamarans and different diving tours. The sea life is incredible off the coast of Barbados and swimming with turtles is guaranteed to be an unforgettable experience.