Belize is easy to get to – there are many direct flights from the US and now Canada, and European travellers can fly via the US or via Cancun and catch the ‘puddle jumper’ down to Belize City.
US gateways include Los Angeles (Delta & American), Dallas (American), Miami (American), Fort Lauderdale (Southwest), Charlotte (US Airways), Newark (United), Houston (United & Southwest), Denver (Southwest), Chicago (Delta) and Toronto (Westjet).
Central American gateways include San Salvador (Avianca), Panama (Copa) and Tropic Air serves Guatemala City, Flores, Roatan, San Pedro Sula and of course Cancun.
If you are spending time travelling in Belize before or after sailing, domestic ‘puddle jumpers’ connect the mainland to the cayes and tourist destinations in the north and south of the country. The two carriers are Maya Island Air and Tropic Air. Be sure to have your camera handy as the views of the reef and cayes are breath taking.
Please refer to the Belize Tourism Board’s website for the most current list of airline carriers providing services to Belize, or contact us to find out the easiest route to take.
A valid passport and return ticket are required to enter Belize. No visas are required for citizens of the U.S., British Commonwealth nations, or European Union countries. Please refer to Belize Tourism Board’s website for specific information.
English is the official language and is widely spoken, as is Spanish.
U.S. residents are permitted a $400 per person (or $1,100 per family) duty-free tax exemption upon returning to the U.S., and can also bring back one quart of alcohol and 200 cigarettes duty-free.
The currency of Belize is Belizean Dollars which is pegged against the US Dollar at 2:1, so 2 Belize dollars = 1 US dollar. US dollars are accepted everywhere. Be sure to check whether prices are in US or Belize dollars! ATM machines are available in all towns.
Belizeans are wonderfully relaxed, kind and friendly. Always reply to friendly gestures such as a ‘good morning’ or a ‘what’s up’. A common expression in Belize is ‘take your time’ and patience goes a long way.
Belize’s climate is classed as sub-tropical, with a cool continuous air stream flowing over from the Caribbean Sea. Dry season is December to May, although December can still receive a few downpours that are quick to pass. March can get a little windy with the trade winds, which is great for those into kite or wind surfing and April to June are the ultimate months for sun and calm seas, perfect for scuba diving and fishing. The rainy season runs from June through November and while the early months can still be spectacular times to visit, some mainland attractions such as caves and jungle treks can close due to the risk of flooding. In the height of the summer months the coast can get quite hot and humid, which is why being at sea with ocean breezes is the best place to be! September and October are the prime time for tropical storms, but hurricanes are rare.
No vaccinations are required for entry into Belize, although a number are recommended including chicken pox, hepatitis A and B, measles, tetanus, diphtheria and typhoid. If traveling to jungle destinations, consult your doctor on whether they recommend malaria tablets. Pharmacies are prevalent in tourist destinations and generally well equipped.
Belize has a tropical climate and a relaxed vibe. The Belizean dress code is No Shoes, No Shirt, No Problem! so bring casual, light clothes. There is an onshore breeze most of the time, which helps to cool things down at night and make for a beautiful climate. You may want to bring something for your shoulders for winter evenings, when the winds can be cooler. If you are spending any time in the jungle, bring lightweight trekking shoes and lightweight outdoor trekking clothes. In terms of bugs, sometimes they’re here, sometimes they’re not, it depends on the time of year and the weather conditions. Wear repellent, especially at dawn and dusk and bring long sleeves and pants if you are particularly sensitive.
The following items are recommended to make your trip more comfortable while in the tropics.
- Soft duffle bag (no hard cases)
*Tip: roll clothes rather than fold to increase space and prevent wrinkles.
- 3-4 pairs of shorts
- 5-6 short sleeve shirts (light material)
- 2 swim suits
- 2 pairs of cotton pants
- Hat/ sunglasses/ sun screen */ lip protection/ bug spray (i.e. Off)
- 1 long sleeve shirt
- 1 sweat shirt
- 1 light weight rain jacket
- 1 pair of light trekking shoes (if planning on hiking)
- 1 pair of water shoes
- 1 pair of sandals / flip flops
- Favorite books that you have not had time to finish
- Favorite music and or DVD’s
- We have snorkeling gear aboard, however if you have that special mask that fits, then feel free to bring it along
*As BSV believes in doing our part to protect the beautiful Belizean barrier reef, we recommend the use of reef and health safe sunscreens. Most common sunscreens include the chemicals oxybenzone and octinoxate which do not only interfere with the human hormone system but are also harmful for coral and underwater life and can lead to coral bleaching. We therefore recommend mineral based sunscreens that only include zinc oxide and titanium dioxide as active ingredients.
Thank you for helping us to protect the fragile coral reef system and underwater life of Belize!
Here is a list of approved reef safe sunscreen brands that can be purchased online.
Thinksport Straight Goop On Sunscreen SPF50
Loving Naturals Clear Body All-natural Sunscreen SPF30+
Avasol Responsible Suncare SPF 30/50
All Good Sport Sunscreen SPF30
Babo Botanicals Clear Zinc Lotion SPF30
Raw Elements Certified Natural Sunscreen SPF30