how to get to barbuda
There are usually two flights a day on a small 7 seater plane to Barbuda from Antigua run by SVG Airlines. One in the early morning at around 7.30am (plus return) and one in the late afternoon at around 4.30pm (plus return). Sometimes there may be more flights and some of these charters going to and from Barbuda may have empty seats, so it’s always worth asking about other times or extra flights on the day. At other times the flights can be cancelled without notice. SVG are currently very busy to and from Barbuda so you may have to keep trying to get a seat.
The flight arrives and leaves from the Codrington village airport – a short walk into the village. You would need to call a taxi in advance if you want one to meet you there. The new ‘international’ airport is not even close to finished although they like to make it look like it is.
You can visit the Barbuda office at the airport here when flights are checking in or leaving, and the number to call for Barbuda info is 268 729-3906.
Always double check your reservation a few days before in case there are any time changes or cancellations.The flight cost has recently increased to a prohibitive $396+ec return (even children have to pay over $350ec) and Barbudans pay this on a regular basis just to get essential services to and from Antigua. Check and double check their info – they don’t subscribe to this website so times, contact numbers and prices might be changed and unless we travel often (which is too expensive) we would have no idea.
A very exciting way to see Barbuda from the sky, this is a popular service for visitors to Nobu and Barbuda Ocean Club. Calvin Air have also assisted Barbudans when other options to transport medical emergencies are unavailable.
There are currently four boats operating from Antigua to Barbuda, mostly leaving early in the morning from Antigua and returning to Antigua the same day in the afternoon. They are called Barbuda Express passenger ferry, Typhoon Express and Leeward Express cargo/passenger boats (all three operated by the same company) and the Summer Breeze passenger and small cargo ferry. It’s important that you know the name of the boat you have booked as it can be confusing as they often change their days/schedules and may leave from the same place. The ferries are often preferred by Barbudans because of their greater capacity to carry shopping and luggage back over to Barbuda in one go, and the larger number of seats available. Booking is better but not essential and confirming the exact departure time and place is a good idea. The crossing can be rough but most of the people who complain about the trip may be better off on the much shorter flight, or should have lived in Barbuda when we didn’t have a ferry at all. The ferries do not run in risky conditions so safety is a priority and if the weather is bad it will be cancelled.
All boats arrive in Barbuda at River Wharf, which is a fifteen minute drive into the village (so maybe you will want to book a taxi or a hire car in advance to meet you – there is no public transport on Barbuda and it’s a long, hot walk).
The journey takes about 90 minutes although it passes quickly in good weather and we have sometimes even seen whales on the crossing – but so far we haven’t hit one.
Summer Breeze can be contacted on their Facebook page for info. They also have an office in St John’s open for people who want to come in and make payments or enquire about their schedule – Monday through Friday – 7:00am to 12:30pm, or for reservations call + 268-734-0326 or e-mail [email protected].
Barbuda Express has 56 seats and costs EC$270/$100 USD return. It’s much better to book in advance and you will then be contacted if anything (such as the weather) changes. There are occasional local shopping days when there are two trips per day (and special price offers) so that we can go and come back in one day, without having to stay overnight. Typhoon and Leeward Express are primarily cargo boats with some seating for passengers. They can carry vehicles (but not for day trips) and can off-load large items by crane.They may leave from Crabbes Peninsula and/or from St John’s. For info on all their schedules and to book using what’s app, see the web site at www.barbudaexpress.com and look at their Facebook page for last minute info. For reservations call + 268 764-2291 or e-mail [email protected]. For larger cargo contact Greg himself on +268 764-2689
sending other cargo or freight
All other village supplies including everything we buy in Antigua for our shops and homes comes to Barbuda on small privately owned cargo boats that make the return trip to Antigua, on various days, depending on the weather. Barbudans travel to shop in Antigua, or work with agents who drop off their goods to the boats as they are being loaded at Point Wharf or at Crabbes. We collect it from the boat when it arrives in Barbuda later in the week or our friendly, helpful truck drivers bring it to us: altogether an amazing local service that keeps Barbuda thriving, but at an additional cost that adds considerably to the cost of living here.
Silver Seal is run by Fabian Jones on (268) 772-5028 or go to Point Wharf in Antigua and speak with Captain Baptiste. This freight usually loads on Wednesday morning in Antigua and arrives on Barbuda on Wednesday evening, then goes back to load Thursday and Friday, returning Friday evening or early on Saturday morning.