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By Keith A. Forbes (see About Us), exclusively for Bermuda Online.
One of the many spectacular Bermuda beaches.
Location: W064 44, N3219. Time zone: Atlantic Standard Time, one hour ahead of the USA and Canada's EST and four hours behind GMT.
Hear Bermuda is Another World.
Bermuda, 900-1100 miles north of the Caribbean, gets no snow in winter. A 21 square mile (56 kilometers) in total land area cluster of mostly-interconnected small islands in the north west Atlantic Ocean. One of the nine smallest places in the world in total land area. Bermuda (Somer's Isles) has 6 main islands and 120 others. With nine parishes (counties), each 2.3055 square miles (3.68 square kilometers. Bermuda has about 68,600 residents and about 500,000 visitors mostly from cruise ships. It is located about 600 miles due east of the nearest mainland, the USA's North Carolina. It is not in the Caribbean but 900 miles north of it. There are no regular airline or shipping services between the Caribbean and Bermuda, only with the USA, Canada and Britain. Bermuda is Britain's oldest British Overseas Territory, self-governing, with its own laws including those on citizenship, commerce, companies, corporations, customs duties, employment, government administration, finance, health, hospitalization, insurance, investments, immigration, marriages, medical, pensions, social security, taxation, trade, welfare, etc. It is not part of the European Community, unlike Britain. Despite its small size, an important offshore business jurisdiction, with a significant number of Bermuda-incorporated but mostly non-Bermuda-based multinational business entities, especially in aviation, insurance and reinsurance, investment holding, mutual funds, shipping and other companies.
2 Par La Ville Road, Hamilton HM 08, Bermuda, P. O. Box HM 1025, Hamilton HM DX, Bermuda. Established in 1828, incorporates The Colonist and Daily News (established in 1866). A subsidiary company of the Bermuda Press (Holdings) Ltd. Telephone (441) 295-5881. Editorial fax (441) 292-2498.. Printed and published daily except Sundays and public holidays. New-stand price $1.50.
According to the World Bank:
The correct word is Bermudian, like Bahamian, Bostonian, Canadian and Floridian. "Bermudan" NO! Despite what otherwise-respected American and British dictionaries say. (You'd never say Bostonan or Canadan or Floridan or Bahaman). Ships have always been named Bermudian - never Bermudan.
Bermuda Government ferry "Bermudian" - not Bermudan - used by many locals, business visitors and tourists.
The average nightly rate for a Bermuda hotel this summer is $378.26, according to Trip Advisor.
Enhanced security and hand baggage restrictions affect all flights between Bermuda, UK, Europe, USA and Canada.
Bermuda is not part of the USA but a foreign country with its own laws different from those in the UK. Bermuda requires valid passports for every visitor or newcomer from all countries including USA, Canada and United Kingdom, plus valid visas when applicable. (Non-citizens of the USA, Britain and Canada must also carry a Green Card or equivalent, showing them to be legal registered aliens there and have a valid US or UK or Canadian re-entry permit and visa if required if entering Bermuda from the USA or UK or Canada and not a citizen of that country).
Bermuda's 36 legislators in our 21 square miles recently approved many substantially increased taxes affecting all Bermudians, residents, companies, tourists and corporate visitors, to help offset huge government debts. The airport departure tax per passenger for visitors and locals increased by $15 from $35 to $50 and by a further $25 per person from August 2015 and then a further increase of $3 per person in early 2016, to a total of $78 per person, highest in the world, to help finance a planned new airport. The tax on fuel, already hugely more than in the Caribbean, Canada, USA, about the same as in the UK, rose by five cents a litre in 2015 and a further 5.5 cents a litre from April 1 2016 even though the price of oil has decreased hugely. Tourists and business visitors now pay one of the highest Departure Taxes in the world plus in other local Bermuda Government taxes relevant to their hotel or related tourism accommodations costs over and above their actual room billing, the highest charges in the world per destination.
Questionnaire forms are distributed by airlines and cruise ships to passengers to present on arrival. All visitors and residents arriving or returning by air or cruise ship or yacht are given a detailed questionnaire form by airlines, cruise ships and yacht clubs and are required by the Bermuda Government to complete them on both sides before they arrive at Bermuda Customs and Immigration.
Very high. Bermuda has the world's highest tourism-visitor accommodation/hotel charges, customs (import duty), departure, motoring and other taxes and costs per square mile.
See under Money.
An American gallon - same as in Bermuda - is 3.785 liters, and local
- fixed and heavily taxed by the Bermuda Government, are about three times
higher than the average USA-wide price and significantly higher than in Canada
or anywhere in the Caribbean 900 miles to the south. Bermuda, isolated and tiny
island of only 21 square miles, with no oil or natural gas resources of its
own and with a total population of about 69,000, has
gasoline prices about the same as London.
All visitors are urged to get medical and travel insurance for their Bermuda stay. British National Health Service (NHS) provisions don't apply. There are no reciprocal health insurance arrangements with Britain, USA or Canada or Europe or any other country. The European Health Insurance Card is not recognized. For senior citizens living in Bermuda, whether Bermudians or other citizens, medical services are more expensive than in USA, with medical services not as extensive. Hotels, guest houses, apartments, efficiency units and tourist-rented private homes will gerally not allow cancellations at no charge in the event of a sudden illness, death or tragedy of a person or couple or family. Airlines, travel agents and tour operators are under no obligation to cancel in the event of such tragedies. Travel and medical insurance can cover these unhappy circumstances, to help ensure a holiday or vacation is not spoilt financially.
Bermuda's official currency is the Bermuda Dollar which is fixed to the US Dollar. Thus the US dollar is accepted everywhere at par and this alone is the money visitors should bring. Visitors will not be able to use British Pounds sterling, Canadian dollars, Euros and other currencies. Major international credit cards (not debit cards) are accepted from visitors. Traveler's checks are no longer accepted anywhere locally.
November 20, 2017.
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