Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis
Sovereign: Queen Elizabeth II (1952)

Governor-General: Sir Edmund Lawrence (2013)

Prime Minister: Denzil Douglas (1995)

Total area: 101 sq mi (261 sq km). St. Kitts, 65 sq mi (168 sq km); Nevis, 36 sq mi (93 sq km)

Population (2014 est.): 51,538 (growth rate: 0.78%); birth rate: 13.64/1000; infant mortality rate: 8.98/1000; life expectancy: 75.29; density per sq mi: 424

Capital (2011 est.): Basseterre (on St. Kitts), 12,000 Largest town on Nevis: Charlestown, 1,538

1)
The Island of St. Kitts has an area of 65 square miles. The main mountain, Mount Liamuiga, is 3,972 feet high and we have a population of roughly 46,000.The Island of Nevis has an area of 36 square miles. Mount Nevis Peak is 3,232 feet high and the population is about 12,000.

2) Purchaser pays no taxes on the sale prices in Frigate Bay, South East Peninsula and select approved developments on both islands. Other areas may have a 10% Government tax on the sale price. The only extra cost are legal fees, which are calculated as a percentage of the purchase price. Legal fees average about 2%.

3) All beaches are public and have at least one established access.

4) Construction costs averages US $250-$300 per square foot for turn-key construction. A 2,000 square foot house takes about 8 months to build.

5)There is a good Government water supply below the 800' contour. Water costs EC $10 (US $3.70) per 1,000 gallons.

6) Electrical charges for a average family in a 3 bedroom house is roughly EC $1,000 (US $380) per month.

7) Cable TV (60 channels) costs about EC $270 (US $100) per month.

8) Grounds maintenance for 0.5 acre costs approximately EC $800 (US $300) per month.

9) A 3 bedroom house with pool (not on the beach) rents short-term for US $2500 to US $3000 per week in high season, US $1200 - US $1500 per week in low season. Rental commissions vary from 15% to as high as 50% on fully managed properties. Long-term rental (6 months plus) from US $1000 to US $1600 per month and normally attract a 10-15% commission.

10) Property insurance (fire, hurricane, earthquake) costs 1.25% of the sum insured.

11) There is no personal Income Tax, Capital gains tax or Inheritance Tax.

12) Hotels and restaurants collect a 9% Government tax. They also add 10% service charge to bills. Additional tipping is not necessary but is greatly appreciated if service is good.

13) English is the official language, but it is spoken with a distinct accent and West Indian Idioms.

14) Atlantic Standard Time. There is no daylight savings time, so the time never changes. (The island does following "island time," which means that we follow a relaxed lifestyle).

15) To call for emergency assistance, dial 911.

* Hospital: Joseph N. France General Hospital; St. Kitts 465-2551
* Hospital: Alexandra Hospital; Nevis 469-5473
* Fire: 465-2515; Nevis 469-3444

St. Kitts is located in the Eastern Caribbean at 17 20 North, 62 45 West, roughly 1,200 miles from Miami, 1600 miles from New York, 4,000 miles from London and about 45 minutes by plane from Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands.

Time
Atlantic Standard Time throughout the year. 4 hours behind Greenwich Mean Time (-4 GMT). Daylight Saving Time is not observed.

Economy
Agriculture, tourism, light manufacturing.

Banks
* Credit Union
* Bank of Nova Scotia
* First Caribbean International Bank
* Royal Bank of Canada
* St. Kitts Nevis-Anguilla National Bank
* Development Bank of St. Kitts & Nevis
Banks are open Monday-Thursday 8am-2pm; Friday 8am-4pm. Each bank provides 24 hour ATM services where you can get cash advances from your VISA or MasterCard. You can also withdraw from or check the balance of the primary chequing and savings accounts linked to your bankcard, via the PLUS/Electron or Cirrus/Maestro networks.

Travel Documents and Entry/Departure Requirements
Citizens of Canada need only to present proof of citizenship – preferably a passport or birth certificate with the raised seal – in order to enter St. Kitts-Nevis. If the birth certificate is used, it must be accompanied by a government issued photo ID (a drivers licence, for example) showing the same name. Where applicable, documentation of a legal name change (for example, a marriage certificate) must also be presented. Citizens of the United States, however, are required to have passports in order to re-enter that country. As such a valid passport is a required travel document when travelling to the Caribbean.

Additionally, proof of sufficient funds and a return or onward passage might be required. There is a departure tax of $60 XCD (about $22 USD) payable in cash, or by credit card – Visa or MasterCard – at the airport.

Please reconfirm travel document requirements with your carrier prior to the commencement of your trip. Also, kindly click here for information regarding the entry/re-entry requirements, as advanced by the United States Department of State. If you would like to apply for a United States Passport now, or if you need to update yours you may click here.

Phones
Cable & Wireless (Lime) and Digicel are major telephone service providers in St. Kitts & Nevis. Direct Dialing, Leased Circuits, Internet, Class Services, Voice Mail, Caller ID and other features are currently offered. ISDN and DSL services are also available. The area and country code for St. Kitts is 1-869.

Internet Service
Internet services are available at all of the hotels, as well as from an Internet Cafes across the city. Broadband connections (DSL & Cable) are also available, as are Web developing and hosting services.

Radio and Television
St. Kitts-Nevis is served by ten (10) radio stations, namely -

ZIZ - 96.0 FM
BIG WAVE- 96.7 FM
GOODWILL RADIO - 104.5 FM
WINN FM - 98.9 FM
CHOICE FM - 105 FM
SUGAR CITY ROCK - 90.1 FM
RADIO ONE - 94.1 FM
KYSS FM 102.5
VON Radio 895 AM
Choice FM 105.3
The Cable system provides at least 53 Cable TV Channels, including the local broadcasters ZIZ, CNN, ESPN and BBC.

Educated Workforce
St. Kitts has a labour force of about 22, 000. Unemployment in St. Kitts- Nevis is among the lowest in the Caribbean. According to a survey of the labour force, conducted jointly by the Organization of American States (OAS) and the Government, the rate was confirmed at 4.3%. The country also enjoys a literacy rate of over 98%.

Religion
There are a number of different churches on St.Kitts. The predominant religion is the Christian faith. However, there are small Rastafarian, Orthodox and other communities.

Government
Constitutional monarchy.

Legal System
The legal system is based on English Common Law served by a high court of justice, a Court of Appeal and her Majesty's Privy Council in London. St. Kitts has agreed to be included in the Caribbean Court of Appeals Circuit.

Geography
St. Kitts, the larger of the two islands, is roughly oval in shape except for a long, narrow peninsula to the southeast. Its highest point is Mount Liamuiga (3,792 ft [1,156 m]). The Narrows, a 2-mile- (3-km-) wide channel, separates the two islands. The circularly shaped Nevis is surrounded by coral reefs and the island is almost entirely a single mountain, Nevis Peak (3,232 ft [985 m]). A volcanic mountain chain dominates the center of both islands.

History
When Christopher Columbus explored the islands in 1493, they were inhabited by the Carib people. Today, most of the inhabitants are the descendants of African slaves. The British settled on St. Kitts—formerly St. Christopher—in 1623, and on Nevis in 1628. The French settled on St. Kitts in 1627, and an Anglo-French rivalry lasted for more than 100 years. After a decisive British victory over the French at Brimstone Hill in 1782, the islands came under permanent British control. The islands, along with nearby Anguilla, were united in 1882. They joined the West Indies Federation in 1958 and remained in that association until its dissolution in 1962. St. Kitts–Nevis-Anguilla became an associated state of the United Kingdom in 1967. Anguilla seceded in 1980, and St. Kitts and Nevis gained independence on Sept. 19, 1983.

A drop in world sugar prices hurt the nation's economy through the mid-1980s, and the government sought to reduce the islands' dependence on sugar production and to diversify the economy, promoting tourism and financial services. In 1990, the prime minister of Nevis announced that he intended to seek an end to the federation with St. Kitts by 1992, but a local election in June 1992 postponed the idea. In Aug. 1998, 62% of the population voted for Nevis to secede, but the vote fell short of the two-thirds majority required.

The country had been blacklisted by various international financial agencies for improprieties in its off-shore financial-services industry, but by 2002, it had been removed from all such lists.

On January 1, 2013, Sir Cuthbert Sebastian retired from his post of governor-general, a post he had held since 1996. Sebastian was replaced by Sir Edmund Lawrence, the managing director of the St. Kitts-Nevis Anguilla National Bank. Later that month, the Concerned Citizens Movement beat the ruling Nevis Reformation Party in the election. Vance Amory, founder of the Concerned Citizens Movement party, was sworn in as prime minister on January 23, 2013. Amory previously served as prime minister from 1992 to 2006.

 


CLIMATE

The island experiences a warm tropical climate with an average temperature of about 80 degrees Fahrenheit. Humidity is low with November to May being the driest months of the year. With average rainfall of about 55 inches, St. Kitts has one of the most desirable climates.

 

IMMIGRATION

Visitors to the islands are required to bring either a passport or birth certificate. No visa is required for visitors to enter the islands. A cash departure tax of US$22 for adults and US$5.00 for children under 12 is required on leaving the country.

 

CURRENCY & BANKING

St. Kitts uses East Caribbean (EC) dollars with a stable exchange rate of EC$2.70 for US$1.00. The US dollar is widely accepted.

Banking hours are generally 8am to 2pm Monday through Thursday, and 8am to 4pm on Fridays.

Business Hours:
Most business open from Monday to Friday 8 am to 4 pm; Saturdays 8 am to 1 pm.

Banks
Bank of Nova Scotia, Royal Bank of Canada, First Caribbean International Bank, St. Kitts-Nevis-Anguilla National Bank, St. Kitts Credit Union.
All major cards are usually accepted throughout the island.

 

SHOPPING

St. Kitts has much to offer for the inquisitive and adventurous visitor and provides many local art and craft items for every taste. Essential items can be found in drugstores and supermarkets around the island. In Port Zante there are many new shops offering fine selections of jewellery, electronic equipment, perfumes, clothing and other accessories.

Dress Code:
The dress is generally casual. With our desirable climate, light cotton summer clothing is recommended.

 

TRANSPORTATION

Driving is on the left hand side. Rental cars are available on the island from several rental agencies. A visitor's driver's license cost US$23 and is available from any police station or from the car rental agency. Drive slowly and defensively - people often stop along the roads without warning to chat; also it is common to see animals, such as goat, sheep, cows, and donkeys on the roads. Often young children walk to school on the roads.

Jeeps and cars can be rented starting at approximately US $40 per day. Local taxis are available as well as local mini-buses that go around the island very inexpensively.