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Area, Geography, and Climate Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:33 AM

Grenada, volcanic in orgin, is referred to as the “Isle of Spice.” The most southerly of the Windward Islands, it is situated between 12°N and 61°W, 90 miles north of Trinidad and southwest of Barbados. It is roughly oval shaped, 21 miles long, and about 12 miles wide. The three-island nation includes Carriacou, largest island in the Grenadine chain, and neighboring Petit (pronounced “Petty”) Martinique. Grenada comprises 133 square miles of rugged, mountainous terrain, with lush tropical rain forest and little lowland. Its central mountains rise about 2,000 feet above sea level. More spices per square mile are grown here than in any other place in the world. The clear, clean air is sometimes fragrant with their aroma.

Carriacou has an area of 13 square miles and has similar geographical characteristics but lower elevations (nearly 1,000 feet). Petit Martinique, with a population of 700, has no tourist facilities but is famous for boat building.

Grenada’s climate is sunny and tropical, averaging 80°F, with dry and rainy seasons. The dry season, January through May, is more comfortable; with cooling trade winds and occasional showers. The rainy season, June through December, has a more humid climate and moderate-to-heavy rainfall, which varies considerably each year. Temperatures drop in the evening, making it pleasantly cool. Sunrise is at 6:30 am and dusk varies between 6 and 6:30 pm, according to the time of year.

The wet season is characterized by heavy rains, high wind, and hurricanes, but. the last hurricane to actually hit Grenada was Hurricane Janet in 1955.

Mildew can be a problem during the rainy season. To prevent rust, wipe furniture and appliances weekly. Avoid filling closets too full to keep mildew to a minimum and to discourage cockroaches, who like undisturbed, dark places. Other pests are mosquitoes, flies, moths, ants, termites, rats, and mice.

Screens will help protect your home from such pests. Frequent kitchen cleaning discourages roaches and small sugar ants. Wipe up spilled drinks immediately, and seal all garbage bags tightly. Chinese coils, sold in supermarkets, repel mosquitoes, and their scent is not unpleasant. Sandflies are sometimes a nuisance on the beach in the wet season. Keep insect repellant handy. With these few precautions, pests can be controlled.

Population Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:34 AM

When Christopher Columbus discovered Grenada in 1498, it was inhabited by the fierce Carib Indians. After fighting off settlers who arrived from London more than 100 years later, the French eventually eliminated the Caribs in 1691. The last remaining natives hurled themselves off high cliffs rather than surrender to the French at the famous Caribs Leap. A series of bloody wars between Britain and France followed. The British took final control of the island in 1783 under the Treaty of Paris.

The French and British brought Africans to Grenada to work their plantations, so the population is largely of African descent, with some people of mixed blood, a few East Indian families, and a few Caucasians. Current statistics estimate a population of near 100,000, with emigration. in recent years largely offsetting a high birth rate. Most of the population is located in St. George’s and four or five other coastal towns.

The Creole culture of Grenadians derives from their African, French, and English heritage. English is the spoken language. Some customs, such as Carnival, date from the days of French rule. Racial tension is almost nonexistent. Grenadians for the most part are courteous and exhibit good-humored tolerance of foreign visitors and their ways; with a few inevitable exceptions, a smile usually begets a smile.

Public Institutions Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:35 AM

Grenada is governed under the parliamentary system inherited from the British that was suspended in 1979 by the Marxist People’s Revolutionary Government (PRG) and then restored after the October 1983 “Rescue Mission” by the U.S. and Eastern Caribbean countries. The New National Party (NNP), which won 14 out of 15 seats in free and fair elections in 1984, continues in power, but with a reduced majority as the result of the defection of two of its members in 1986 and three more in 1987 (including two cabinet ministers), all of whom formed a new political party, the National Democratic Congress (NDC). The prognosis is for continued political stability within the give-and-take of a lively democratic environment. The constitution requires new elections before March 1990. In 1985, Parliament restored the 1974 Independence Constitution. Political and civil rights are fully guaranteed by the government. The spectrum of political parties ranges from the moderate NNP and the NDC, to the Grenada United Labour Party (GULP) of former Prime Minister Sir Eric Gary and Marxist Maurice Bishop Patriotic Movement (MBPM), and the Grenada Peoples Movement (GPM).

The U.S., U.K., and Venezuela maintain resident diplomatic missions. Grenada is a member of the United Nations, Organization of American States, OECS, and CARICOM.

Since the 1983 fall of the PRG, Grenada has enjoyed a healthy increase in economic growth and decline in inflation. Although much progress has been made, significant problems, including high unemployment, remain. The government continues to follow a policy of providing greater freedom to pursue economic goals by eliminating or reducing controls on wages, prices and foreign exchange, and encouraging private investment.

Social, philanthropic, financial, and commercial organizations include the Red Cross, Rotary, Lions Club, St. John’s Ambulance Brigade, and the GSPCA, which are run in a manner similar to their American counterparts.

Arts, Science, and Education Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:36 AM

Grenada’s education system, as in other former British West Indian colonies, is modeled on the British system. Students take the General Certificate of Education (GCE) (“O” Level) at age 16. Cambridge University, England, prepares and grades both the GCE “O” level and Advanced level (“A” level) syllabuses. “A” levels, normally taken at age 18, are required for entrance into British universities.

In 1972 the Commonwealth Caribbean member states formed the Caribbean Examinations Council (CXC), and gradually a new syllabus has been developed with more accent on regional matters. Some students still take the GCE exam in certain subjects, as Grenada is still changing over to the CXC. The University of the West Indies (UWI), which maintains campuses in several Commonwealth member islands, is responsible for preparing and grading CXC exams.

The Grenada National College at Tanteen offers technical, vocational, and educational training similar to a community college in the U.S.

Most Grenadians interested in higher education enroll in British or a Canadian universities, but some 1 first-year evening classes (Challenge Examinations) and diploma/certificate courses are being conducted at the UWI extramural department, Marryshow House, St. 1 George’s. Following the dramatic decline in UWI’s student body after the 1979 takeover, the university is now working to restore a regular curriculum and more courses will be developed over the next several years. Its reference library is available to students following Challenge I Examinations at the UWI Centre and the tutors for these courses. Its resources are also available to librarians and academics working in Grenada, as well as researchers from outside the state.

Grenada’s lively folk culture, based on its African heritage, is superimposed with French and English elements. Modern dance troupes still perform the old slave dances with names like “bele,” “shamba,” and “pique.” At Carnival time such traditional characters as the “stickman,” “horsehead,” “wild Indian,” and “jab-jab” are recreated. At a newly built small theater adjacent to UWI, concerts, dance shows, and operettas are performed. Children of all ages from all over the country regularly stage their own concerts and Christmas pageants.

Several Grenadian artists, notably Elinus Cato and Canute Caliste, have received overseas recognition for their original paintings in the primitive style. Grenadian sculptor and painter Fitzroy Harack teaches ceramics at the Jamaica School of Art.

Grenada has produced several outstanding writers, including folk poet Paul Keens-Douglas and journalist T. A. Marryshow. An English-born priest, Rev. Raymond P. Devas, O.P., has written a comprehensive history of the island as well as books on birds and wildlife. Wilfred and Eula Redhead have published plays and children’s stories rich in Grenadian folklore. Francis Uriah Peters writes and produces plays on topics of local interest.

Island music also reflects the peoples’ African ancestry. The calypso beat is strong here as in Trinidad, and Grenadians have even made the claim that old-time calypso, or “kaiso,” originated in Grenada and was taken to Trinidad by a large group of Grenadian slaves. The steelband is popular. On a typical Grenadian evening, you can hear the “pan beat” echoing softly against the hills, as “pan men” practice their skills.

Commerce and Industry Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:38 AM

The investment climate has undergone a positive transformation in Grenada since military intervention by U.S. and Caribbean forces in late 1983. Effective U.S. assistance, successful 1984 elections, and Grenadian Government policy supportive of private sector-led growth have resulted in restored confidence and renewed economic growth.

Grenada’s economy has been growing by more than 5% annually since the intervention, attaining a GDP in 1988 of about $130 million. Per capita GDP is about $1,380. Tax reform, a reduction in government controls over the economy, and a favorable investment climate are recognized as keys to sustained growth.

Agriculture is the single most important sector of the Grenadian economy, accounting for a third of the work force, about a fifth of the GDP, and about 90% of merchandise exports. Principal export crops are cocoa, nutmeg, mace, bananas and other fruits, and vegetables. Tourist spending is estimated to account for nearly half of Grenada’s foreign exchange earnings. Growth in the tourist industry, after slowing a bit in 1987, has resumed its healthy post-1983 pace.

Construction activity, another important part of the growing economy in Grenada, has been growing at an annual rate of about 15% since 1985 — thanks to sustained investment in residential housing, hotels, and factories. Through assistance from the U.S. and other international donors, telephone service, electricity, and roads have improved dramatically. New foreign investment in manufacturing has in creased the relative importance of that sector. Flour, beverages, and textiles make up the bulk of locally produced manufactured goods. Food, manufactured goods, machinery, and transport equipment account for about three-fourths of Grenada’s imports.

The Point Saline International Airport was opened in 1984 at an estimated cost of $90 million, with a surface runway of 9,000 feet. Port facilities were also expanded in 1985 to provide berths for cruise ships, and additional storage area was provided for containing and cargo-handling equipment. The USAID Mission to Grenada has played a major role in Grenada’s development, providing about $110 million in economic assistance since 1983.

Despite the foregoing progress, unemployment is about 25%. Trade unions, most of which came under direct government controls after the New Jewel Movement takeover in 1979, are struggling to rebuild a democratically oriented leadership. About 25% of the workforce — including those in the agricultural, banking, and public sectors — is unionized. Labor management relations are good.

Grenada’s medium of exchange is the East Caribbean dollar, which is pegged to the U.S. dollar and currently is exchanged at the rate of US$1=EC$2.6882.


Automobiles Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:39 AM

Grenada’s major road network has improved greatly since 1984, although rebuilding of some major roads remains incomplete. Secondary roads in Grenada are often in poor condition and not well maintained. Potholes are numerous; moreover, roads are narrow and steep. Traffic moves on the left and no speed limits are posted. Public transportation is inadequate for the needs of Mission personnel. Bring a small, right-hand-drive car. Manual transmissions are more easily and cheaply serviced. Some English and Japanese cars are sold locally but no American makes are available. Prices for Japanese cars are lower, so if you are considering purchasing a new car, wait and buy one in Grenada. Fewer options are available than for the same cars manufactured elsewhere. Specially ordered car air-conditioners cost US$1,000 and more.

Japanese-made land rover-type Jeeps, as well as several popular lines of smaller Japanese jeeps, are sold here. These jeeps, although well-suited to rugged driving conditions, have a small underpadded rear seat that makes traveling in the back uncomfortable. Since they do not have trunks, roofracks are necessary.

No import restrictions apply currently. If you plan to ship a new car, buy a right-hand-drive vehicle, preferably of a make and model sold in Grenada. Local mechanics work better with familiar models, and parts are more readily available. Four-wheel-drive is not essential, but is useful if you plan to explore the island. Most Mission personnel consider air-conditioning indispensable, but you might experience repair delays because of a lack of spare parts.

Before importing a used car, have it thoroughly overhauled, particularly the brakes and the clutch, which wear out more quickly on mountainous terrain. Bring spare parts, including a complete set of fan belts and hoses, two sets of spark plugs and contact points (rotor and condenser if applicable), one set of spark-plug wires, one extra distributor cap, windshield wiper blades and arms, oil filters, air filters, and turn-signal flash units for any U.S. made car. Tires may need to be replaced sooner than expected, so ship an extra set. Tires available on the local market are of an inferior quality to those sold in the U.S.

Auto agents satisfactorily service the cars they sell, as well as imported cars. But they do not carry the same stocks of spare parts as in the U.S., and sometimes delays are encountered in waiting for spare parts ordered from abroad.

Ninety-three octane gasoline currently sells for EC$5.30 per imperial gallon, before diplomatic discount, or EC$3.41(US$1.26) after discount.

Grenadian drivers licenses are required to drive a motor vehicle in Grenada. Drivers licenses can be obtained upon presentation of a valid U.S. drivers license (which is returned) and a completed application form. Arrangements for procurement of a Grenadian drivers license can be made at the Embassy.

Local Transportation Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:40 AM

Private cars and taxis are the main sources of local transportation used by U.S. employees. Some comfortable, newer minibuses travel certain routes around St. George’s and various parishes of the island. Fares are reasonable but vans are often overcrowded, driven at reckless speeds in rhythm to the latest in reggae music. Taxis assemble for hire at designated places along the harbor front, the airport, and major hotels. Fares are higher than U.S. taxi prices for the same distance. Negotiate the fare before setting out; cabs have no meters. Taxis are usually private cars and may not carry signs but can be identified by the letter “H” for “hire” in front of their license number. Buses and minibuses assemble in the center of town, St. George’s, and do not leave at scheduled times but only when they reach full-to-overflowing capacity.

Several car rental firms offer mostly small Japanese models or minimokes (a modified dunebuggy), at similar to U.S. rates. Avis car rental has automatic and manual cars for hire. For a small- or medium-sized car, prices are EC$112 (US$41.66) per day, with a variable discount given. Mileage is unlimited and weekly rates are given with charges for 6 days and the seventh day is free. Obtain collision damage insurance, which is available for a nominal cost. Some individuals rent minibuses by the day, week, or month at negotiable prices.

Grenada has no schoolbus system, so parents might consider neighborhood carpools or hiring a minibus or taxi jointly.

Regional Transportation Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:41 AM

Leeward Islands Air Transport (LIAT) runs daily round-trip flights to Carriacou. From there you can take a boat to Petit Martinique. Carriacou has one or two clean but rustic hotels; a third hotel has recently been taken over by new management and is located out of town. Reservations should be made in advance since all hotels are small and limited occupancy is often the rule rather than the exception in the off-season. Ferry service is available between Grenada and Carriacou and fare is EC$30 (US$11.15) for adults and EC$10 (US$3.71) for children roundtrip.

For flight information, call BWIA (440–3818/19, St. George’s, or 444–4134/35 at the airport), LIAT (440–2796/97, St. George’s, or 4444121/22 at the airport), or a travel service such as M&C (4402375/1475).


Telephones and Telecommunications Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:42 AM

Grenada’s telephone system has recently been refurbished and upgraded. All government-leased quarters have telephones installed. The basic monthly service charge for telephones is EC$38 (US$14.13), including local calls. For each additional extension an EC$5 (US$1.85) charge is imposed. International direct dialing is possible with the new system. Prices for calls to the U.S. are EC$4–$5 (US$1.48$1.85) for each minute. No 3 minute minimum for direct-dial international calls is imposed. Telephone calls to the U.K. are EC$5(US$1.85) per minute. Cable and wireless provide international telex service, Monday through Friday, from 7 am to 7 pm, Saturdays from 7 am to 1 pm, and Sundays and public holidays from 10 am to noon. Telex charges are about EC $7.22 (US$2.68) per minute to New York. Other charges are dependent upon location.

Wireless Service Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:42 AM The Embassy issues walkie-talkie radios to each employee as an essential alternate mode of communication.

Mail and Pouch Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:44 AM

International mail is received and dispatched Tuesday through Saturday by the Grenada General Post Office. Transit time for letters from the U.S. varies from a minimum of 6 days to 3 weeks. Letters from Grenada arrive in the U.S. in 7–14 days. Airmail postage from Grenada to the U.S. is EC75¢(US27¢) per one-half ounce. Surface mail to and from Grenada is erratic and takes at least a month to arrive. No surface mail parcel post rate exists. All rates for packages begin with second-class airmail. A second-class airmail package per pound weight is EC$9.60 (US$3.57). Rates increase proportionately to weight increases.

No APO is available in Grenada: Personal mail may be sent via State Department pouch. Air pouches usually arrive within 1 week, but may take longer due to LIAT Airline’s limited cargo space. U.S. domestic rates apply to pouch mail. U.S. postage stamps are not available for purchase in Grenada. Letter mail only may be sent through the outgoing air pouch; packages and parcels of any kind must be sent through international Grenadian mail channels. Individuals are authorized to receive packages up to 40 pounds in weight, with combined dimensions of 62 inches (length and girth) or 24” length and 40” girth. Properly identified prescription medicines, eyeglasses, hearing aids, and prosthetic or orthopedic devices can be sent by air pouch, regardless of weight. Address letter mail (air pouch) as follows:

Full name Grenada — Department of State Washington, D.C. 20520–3180 (20521-3180 for magazines, packages)

International mail should be addressed to:

Full name U.S. Embassy P.O. Box 54 St. George’s Grenada West Indies

Radio and TV Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:44 AM

Radio Grenada operates an AM station providing music, local and inter-Caribbean island news, as well as a BBC international roundup and some VOA programs. AM broadcasts in English can be heard from Trinidad, Barbados, Montserrat, and the Netherlands Antilles. Spanish-language broadcasting can also be received from Venezuela. VOA and BBC can be heard on shortwave, but quality of reception is often poor. Bring equipment that can be connected to external antennas if you plan to receive shortwave broadcasts regularly.

Radio Antilles in Montserrat broadcasts VOA news and other programs every evening on medium-wave.

Grenada-based Discovery TV operates 7 days a week, transmit: ting one channel in color. Programming is via satellite beginning at 9 am until 11:30 pm. Featured programs include old American series reruns, cartoons, and wildlife/National Geographic programs, as well as daytime/evening American films. Sports programming has recently been supplemented with NBA regular season and playoff games to cheer sports fans on Friday nights and occasionally on weekends. CNN midday news broadcasts are broadcast in the evening. Local Grenadian news and cultural programming is interspersed among American-produced programming. Individuals who live on the south of the island with high performance antennas can sometimes pick up TV from Trinidad.

Newspapers, Magazines, and Technical Journals Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:46 AM

Grenada has a few local weekly publications that are confined to events occurring in Grenada and on other Caribbean islands. International news is often editorialized and takes a backseat to interisland gossip. Weekly newspapers are The Grenadian Voice, The Informer, The Grenadian Guardian (GULP), The Grenada Tribune (NDC), and The Indies Times (MBPM). The Embassy receives the International Herald Tribune from London and an occasional U.S.A. Today out of Miami as well as Barbadian newspapers that are received sporadically and are many days late. The current Latin American editions of Time and Newsweek are sold in bookshops and supermarkets; certain popular U.S. magazines (Good Housekeeping, Cosmopolitan, McCall’s, and New Woman) are also available but are at least 1-month old and stocks of these are unreliable.

Women’s magazines, such as Vogue and Bazaar, are often stolen in international mail so have U.S. subscriptions to magazines and periodicals sent in the pouch. Lag time, however, is often 1 month to 6 weeks.

Three well-stocked bookshops, although small, have a wide range of paperback novels, some reference books, and hardcovers.

An interesting variety of Caribbean history and prose works as well as West Indian folklore and cookery publications are available. School textbooks are sold in two bookshops but supplies and editions are restricted to books following a Caribbean curriculum, and books regarding U.S. history and government are not available except through USIS. Booklists for children should be obtained in the U.S. before arriving in Grenada and books for outside/recommended reading should be brought from the U.S. Textbooks needed for tutorials or remedial schoolwork should also be brought from the U.S. Reading material for intermediate and junior/senior high school students is limited.

The Grenada Public Library on the Carenage in St. George’s has a good selection of books and periodicals. Most of the British classics are available and a separate children’s section is expanding its collection. Reference materials are available but these are restricted to Caribbean history, culture, and politics, and all items must be examined on the library premises. Occasionally the children’s section offers a reading hour and crafts day. Library lending cards are issued upon receipt of a refundable EC$5 (US$1.85) fee and two recommendations from Grenadian residents. Most books available at the library have been donated by the U.S., U.K., and Canadian Governments. A small but well-kept reference library at the UWI, Marryshow House, is open to research scholars. This collection has many hard-to-find historic and cultural works by Caribbean poets, writers, and historians.

USIS is located in the Embassy compound and in the past year has greatly reduced its collection of materials. Currently, few videotapes regarding drug awareness and counseling for students who are exploring educational opportunities in the U.S. and a few American movie classics are available. A few USIA publications such as Topic, Dialogue, Economic Impact, and Problems of Communism are available. A wireless file can be procured from Barbados 4 days late. Many previously available materials can be sent from Barbados upon request. Group presentations and lectures can also be arranged.

A regional newspaper — The E.C. News — is available weekly. The Weekend Review and the Grenada Tribune are circulated biweekly. A locally published magazine — The Griot — appears bimonthly. The Grenada Newsletter and the Bargainer are issued monthly, while The Greeting, aimed at the hospital industry, is published biannually.

Health and Medicine

Medical Facilities Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:47 AM

Grenada has a few well-trained and qualified specialists who were trained in the U.S. or England. Specialists in the areas of pediatrics; surgery; ear, nose, and throat; cardiology; oncology; dermatology; neurology; orthopedics; and more advanced internal medicine are nonexistent in Grenada except for Project Hope physicians who are available for consultations in medical emergencies when necessary. The General Hospital is old and inadequately equipped, with substandard nursing care. Hygiene is a continuing problem at the hospital. The regional medical officer does not recommend use of local hospital services for elective medical conditions. The hospital should only be used for emergency treatment and stabilization of serious and life-threatening conditions until a patient can be transported to more adequate facilities in the U.S.

Local pharmacies carry only basic medical supplies. Bring children’s vitamin drops and tablets, especially those containing flouride. Children’s Tylenol and other brands of children’s aspirin in liquid and tablet form should also be brought, as supplies of these are intermittent. Prescriptions from the U.S. are accepted at local pharmacies. Vitamins are more expensive in Grenada.

Dental care should be up to date before coming to post. Several U.S. dentists are available locally by appointment a month in advance. Dental services are moderately priced and include the entire range of dental treatments. Many employees use the services of a U.S. licensed dentist recently retired from practicing in the U.S. Grenada has no orthodontists; patients needing orthodontics must travel to Trinidad or Barbados.

Trained ophthalmologists from the International Eye Foundation have a clinic at the General Hospital. The clinic is open daily, with surgery scheduled twice weekly. St George’s has an efficient and modern firm of opticians who perform eye examinations. Glaucoma and ether diagnostic tests can be performed at the International Eye Foundation Clinic. Bring sufficient supplies of contact lens solutions and cleaners, as these are not available on the island. St. George’s University School of Medicine has a small, well-equipped dispensary, called the Simon Bolivar Clinic, on its Grand Anse Campus. Appointments can be made at this clinic, open Monday through Friday, at 144–4671.

Community Health Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:47 AM

Community sanitation includes garage collection but is not up to U.S. standards. Sewage treatment is inadequate. Water is treated at the source, but the distribution system and fluctuating water pressure result in unsafe tapwater. All drinking water should be filtered or boiled.

Infectious hepatitis, dengue fever, gastroenteritis, and intestinal parasites are common. Tropical weather and high humidity are conducive to skin and fungal infections that may become a chronic ailment for infants and children. Frozen foods are often suspect because frequent power outages result in food spoilage. Rabies is prevalent in animals on the island.

Preventive Measures Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:48 AM

Although none of the following inoculations are required for entry into Grenada; have them before coming to post: typhoid, polio, tetanus, gamma globulin for infectious hepatitis, and yellow fever. Children should have measles, mumps, rubella, and DPT (diphtheria, pertussis, and tetanus) shots. Children 18 months and older should receive a Hib (Haemophilus influensae b) vaccination before coming to Grenada, as reported outbreaks of meningitis occur on the island and the vaccine is as yet unavailable. Schedules for DPT immunization should be communicated to the regional medical officer, who provides consultations in Grenada quarterly so that vaccines can be sent from Barbados in a timely fashion. Supplies are frequently in short supply so inform the administrative officer well in advance so that polio and DPT vaccinations are made available.

Anyone over age 1 should have pre-exposure rabies immunization. The Simon Bolivar Clinic at St. George’s University School of Medicine can also administer inoculations.

Employment for Spouses and Dependents Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:48 AM

Currently the American Embassy is unable to provide employment opportunities for spouses and dependents except for the occasional ad hoc assignment or temporary fill-in staff assignment. The International School of Grenada frequently is in need of qualified/U. S.-certified teachers for preschool, primary, and intermediate levels. The Grenadian Government employment sector does not seek expatriates to fill positions. An agreement with the Grenadian Government allows State Department dependents to work without a local work permit. Opportunities in the private business sector have as yet remained unexplored. Foreign and commercial enterprises are located in Grenada but job positions are limited to construction and business/managerial areas. Joint ventures in local handicraft production may be a possibility. Small business schemes such as an out-of-the-home bakery might be an area to pursue, as pastries and cakes are not readily available. Certified diving instructors and/or swimming instructors may be able to form a diving school with a variety of aquatic instruction and activities.

American Embassy - St. George’s

Post City Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:49 AM

St. George’s is located at the southwestern end of the island. Its picture-postcard harbor is one of the Caribbean’s most beautiful. It has a distinctly Mediterranean flavor, with its mellowed buildings, some of them 18th century, and steep, narrow streets. Towering behind the small city are lush green mountains, studded with fine residences and simpler homes.

The hub of St. George’s, where many important businesses are situated, is the waterfront, known as the Carenage. Brightly painted wooden inter-island trading vessels and larger freighters dock alongside the harbor for offloading cargoes. Yachters moor in the landlocked inner harbor and motor over in their tenders to shop at waterfront shops. Fishing vessels unload catches of conch and fish, which are sold in the nearby fish market. One pier can berth cruise liners and other large ships.

Fort George, with its steep walls, is in a prominent position at the entrance to the harbor. A curious feature is the narrow Sendall Tunnel. In 1890 it was cut through St. George’s Point to connect the Outer Harbor, also known as the Esplanade, with the Carenage. At the southern edge of town is a botanical garden.

Further south is the residential area of Lance Aux Epines, which has many large residences as well as small, compact bungalows. Southeast of St. George’s is Westerhall Point, a beautiful housing development with attractive homes overlooking the water

The Post and Its Administration Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:50 AM

The American Embassy, USIS, and USAID are located on the former USAID compound known locally as Hotel California near the Point Saline International Airport. The Peace Corps Office is in downtown St. George’s on Tyrrel Street. Embassy work hours are 8 am to 4:30 pm, with a 30-minute lunch break.


Temporary Quarters Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:50 AM

New personnel are assigned to permanent quarters upon arrival. Temporary quarters will be provided should permanent quarters not be immediately available. During the tourist season, mid-December to mid-April, the better hotels may be fully booked. Therefore, inform the Embassy as early as possible of your lodging requirement.

Permanent Housing Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:51 AM

The Embassy leases houses for all of its U.S. employees. Housing is varied, and most personnel currently occupy homes since suitable apartments are scarce.

All government-leased homes are furnished. Newly arrived personnel will normally have been assigned quarters in advance of their arrival by the Housing Board. But should circumstances such preclude such an assignment, personnel will be assigned to temporary quarters. The criteria used in assigning an individual to permanent quarters include representational responsibility, family size and composition, security considerations, and availability of quarters when you arrive at post. Hospitality Kits are available for use prior to arrival of household effects (HHE). These kits include such essentials as bedding, towels, dishes, flatware, kitchen utensils, pots and pans, and a kettle for boiling water. Cribs are not available at this post.

Most houses have three bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a large, open living and dining space. All residences with adequate electricity are air-conditioned. Those with limited electrical capacity are air-conditioned as practical. Window unit air-conditioners are provided for each occupied bedroom. Most homes have large patios and gardens, since outdoor entertaining is popular. The average house has a servants quarters, usually with a private entrance and private bath, as well as a carport. Some homes also have a storage or utility area with stone sink.

Furnishings Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:52 AM

All houses have a washer and dryer. The Embassy provides security alarms and outdoor lighting as well as water-storage tanks where necessary. Grenada is a limited shipment post, allowing for a maximum weight of 7,200 pounds. Kitchen equipment includes the following items in most homes: stove, washer, dryer, cartridge type water purifier, refrigerator, and chest freezer. Living room furniture will include a sofa, chairs, coffee table, end tables, lamps, and rugs if available. Patio furniture is now provided to homes. Draperies will be provided for all quarters. Since draperies are made for specific units, they may not be interchanged with other units. Other furnishings supplied are basic dining room furniture and bedroom furniture, with a queen-size bed and twin-size beds in the guest rooms.

Do not ship furniture or major appliances to this post since no storage facilities are available. Climatic conditions (salt water, air, and high humidity) affect smaller furnishings, so limit your small furniture pieces. Bring paintings, ornaments, pillows, and bed linens. Bring outdoor entertainment items. Include patio lamps, glass-enclosed candles, hurricane lamps, and electric insect “zappers” in your shipment. Bring an insect fogger for spraying patio 1 and yard areas. For decorating trees at Christmas and for parties, bring 220v outdoor tree lights. Bring a barbecue and necessary equipment. Include a few packages of fuel starter sticks, which are available locally but expensive, in your shipment. Local charcoal is adequate for barbecue needs.

Lawn mowers (powered) should be brought to post.

Utilities and Equipment Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:53 AM

Electric current is 220–240v, 50 cycle, AC, so bring only appliances using that voltage. Bring transformers in your HHE as they are more expensive locally than in the U.S. Plugs and outlets vary from house to house. You can buy necessary adapters locally. Grenada suffers from occasional power outages, although provision of electric power is improving rapidly. Therefore, most , houses are equipped with gas stoves, using bottled gas. All houses have electric water heaters. All homes are provided with generators due to these power outages. Electrical current fluctuates with recorded highs of 250v and more frequently with lows of 180v. For expensive electrical items bring an uninterrupted power supply, a surge protector, and a voltage regulator, although in some cases the latter may be cost prohibitive. When purchasing a surge protector, shop around, as quality and prices can vary greatly. Purchase a battery recharger/adapter and several rechargeable batteries for flashlights, toys, and walkman stereo headsets. TV antennas are available locally but better quality ones with antenna hookups should be purchased in the U.S. and shipped in HHE.

If bringing TV, stereo, and other electrical equipment, bring at least two spare fuses for each piece. If you bring a computer, invest in an uninterrupted power supply for a computer. Antenna wire and appropriate connectors for TV’s should also be purchased in the U.S., as available electronic parts are limited in quality and quantity. All equipment should be accompanied by schematic diagrams in case minor repair work or servicing is to be done locally.

All houses are provided with water-storage tanks. Depending on the situation for housing water at each location, the Embassy will provide tanks to store 2,000–4,000 gallons. In some cases the water storage system for a home will run the entire length and width of the home, harboring the water underneath the house. Water tanks depend on electric pressure pumps. Water is received at a gravity flow type system. Low water pressure occurs frequently.

Food Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:56 AM

This post has neither a commissary nor military PX. A consumables allowance of 2,500 pounds is provided.

St. George’s has several well-stocked supermarkets and suburban Grand Anse has one. Small, family-run groceries abound. Supermarkets normally carry a good supply of canned and packaged foods from the U.S., Europe, and other Caribbean countries. Powdered and evaporated milk and baby formula are readily available, as is ultra-high temperature (UHT) milk in sterilized cartons, which does not require refrigeration until opened. Grenada does not have any dairies, so fresh milk as well as other dairy products are not available. Yogurt and sour cream are sometimes obtainable from Trinidad and Barbados. Imported butter, as well as a variety of margarines and cooking oils, is available. Local eggs are fresh and of good quality. Meat sold in supermarkets is of an indifferent quality and taste. Local meats are tough; cuts differ from those in the U.S. Chicken, varieties of pork meat, and beef cuts are also imported. Supermarkets stock turkeys and hams. The wide variety of fresh local fish includes kingfish, dolphin, tuna, ocean gar, red snapper, Spanish mackerel, and flying fish. Seafood includes lobster and a Grenadian specialty, lambie (conch). Shrimp imported from Trinidad is occasionally available in season, but is expensive.

Mission personnel can order frozen meats and other provisions two or three times a year through Visiting U.S. naval vessels.

Bottled baby foods are available but are limited to strained fruits and fruit juices. Most Grenadian mothers use available fresh fruits such as mangoes, paw-paw, citrus, and bananas to produce their own blended fruit compotes. Fresh vegetables such as pumpkin, callaloo (spinach-like leafy vegetable), breadfruit, carrots, potatoes, and sweet potatoes can be used as a base. Bring a food processor with a meat grinding attachment to prepare your own baby foods. The Marketing and National Importing Board operates a small store in downtown St. George’s that stocks large quantities of fruits and vegetables. Many interesting syrups and jellies such as nutmeg and guava make delicious alternatives to the traditional fare available in limited quantities in supermarkets. Supermarkets carry a limited selection of Mexican and Chinese specialty foods. Bring your favorite cake and cookie mixes, as those found on supermarket shelves may be old. All-purpose as well as whole wheat flour are manufactured in Grenada. Both are of good quality.

Bread from local bakeries is good but limited in variety. Pastries, cakes, and other sweets are available. Roti shells and large sandwich buns can be ordered. Ice cream in a tantalizing assortment of spice flavors such as nutmeg and cinnamon, as well as some hard-to-find fruit flavors, are available. Candy is of English, American, or Caribbean manufacture. The usual assortment of candy bars, potato chips, and other snack items is available but expensive. Cookies are imported from Britain and Trinidad and often are not fresh. Children’s cereals are available.

Fruit juices, both imported and locally prepared, are available but sweeter than U.S.-marketed varieties. TV dinners, diet foods, and frozen fruits are not available. Some local fruits such as passion fruit and sorrel can be made into delicious juices and punches, Cottage cheese is available, and other (imported) cheeses are available but are limited in variety and quantity. Packaged processed cheese dips are available. Selection of French and German wines is fair at reasonable prices. Excellent rums from Grenada, Barbados, and Trinidad are marketed at a reasonable price. Wine coolers are manufactured in Grenada in a variety of fruit flavors. Carib, the local lager, is good. Heineken and Red Stripe, made under license in St. Lucia, are also available. The usual array of nonalcoholic soft drinks such as Coke, Pepsi, Fanta, and recently, at a price, individual cans of Diet Coke and Diet Pepsi, are available.

The style of cooking in Grenada is creole, and is similar to that of other nearby islands, with one or two specialties such as lambie found in abundance in Grenadian waters. On Saturday mornings you can buy direct from conch boats at the Carenage. You can curry, fry, grill in cheese sauce, or cream and bread it. It is a bit rubbery but is savory. Rice is a staple and is often served mixed in a chicken pelau. Grenadian cooks have a way with soups, and some notable ones are callaloo, made from a green bush and added seasonings; tannia soup, made from a root vegetable; and mixed vegetable cream soup. Other island delicacies include crab-backs (seasoned land crabmeat served hot in the crab shell), souse (pickled pigs feet), and black pudding, which is excellent served in hot rolls or for breakfast accompanied by fried eggs. Sea eggs (sea urchin) are occasionally available and are delicious if properly prepared; ask a Grenadian friend for instructions. Spiny lobster, more expensive than lambie, is good and can be served in all the usual ways.

Food prices are two to three times those paid for the same item in the U.S.

Clothing Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:57 AM

Grenadians dress to suit the climate, but they are modest and women rarely wear shorts or midriff garments downtown. All garments must be of lightweight material; cotton or cotton-blend is the most comfortable. With frequent laundering because of the heat and high humidity, clothing wears out quickly. Bring enough clothes for the whole family to last until your next home leave.

Bring a folding umbrella to carry in your bag or in the car for the frequent showers during the rainy season. Raincoats and heavy footwear are too hot and therefore impractical. Beachwear and shorts are acceptable for men, women, and children in resort hotels and for relaxation. Bring two to three swimsuits for each family member, and beach wraps and sarongs for lunches on hotel patios.

Grenada has few high-quality clothing stores. Bring all clothes, particularly shoes, as local brands are not of sturdy construction and sizes are different from U.S. sizes. Shoes are wide and generally larger. Durability of available shoes is questionable. School uniforms can be sewn locally using available materials. St. George’s has a few attractive boutiques, but stocks are limited and prices are heavily inflated. Bring your favorite catalogs and order spring and summer fashions. Dressmaking patterns and all notions should be brought from the U.

Men Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:58 AM

Work attire for men is a shirt or “guayabera” and pants, or a jac suit. A jac suit is a short-sleeved, open collar jacket, worn with matching slacks. No shirt or tie is needed. A jac suit is fashionable and practical. Few Grenadians wear a jacket and tie in the office. The jac suit is also favored for informal receptions, but a jacket and tie are equally acceptable. “Palm Beach” type lightweight suits are ideal, as are polo shirts and cotton canvas pants. Avoid clothes that need dry-cleaning. A lightweight tuxedo might be worn for a formal occasion but is not a necessity, except perhaps in the case of the Chief of Mission. Bring evening accessories with you. Jeans, although heavy for the climate, are fashionable in the Tropics for both men and women.

Bring all sport shoes, athletic and tropical weight socks, thongs, and jogging shorts. Sweatbands and an extra supply of 100% cotton T-shirts are useful if you plan to participate in athletic activities, as the climate and perspiration will take its toll while in Grenada. Underwear and sleepwear should be cotton or cotton blend.

Women Last Updated: 5/13/2004 12:59 AM

Working attire for women is usually a modest, short-sleeved dress or blouse with skirt or slacks, and a pair of sandals. Stockings are not normally worn. Bring a good supply of cotton day dresses for shopping, lunches, etc. Include some sleeveless ones for humid months. Sundresses are ideal. Bring your favorite patterns and bright, colorful fabrics and make your own. Hats are not normally worn except occasionally to church, but pretty, locally made straw hats protect you from the sun.

Grenadian women are fashion conscious and like to dress up for cocktails and dinner parties. A great deal of home entertaining is done, and since it is a small society, you meet the same people at many different functions. Bring a large selection of short cotton cocktail dresses and evening pajamas, as well as a few more formal short gowns. Avoid silk dresses, unless washable, or any other clothes that need to be dry-cleaned, since St. George’s one drycleaner does only a rudimentary form of dry-cleaning and steam laundry. Bring several pairs of sandals, both dressy for evening wear and casual for daywear. Espadrilles and huarache type shoes are ideal. Roads in Grenada are rough, so if you are a walker, bring a few pairs of sturdy, well-constructed athletic shoes with a good supply of cotton socks. Stout canvas espadrilles are also good for beachcombing and walking. Nights are occasionally cool so a lightweight cotton sweater or shawl is useful. Women’s summer fashions follow that of the major capitals. Bring all undergarments and several cotton replacements with you as climatic conditions and perspiration take their toll and replacements in Grenada are expensive and hard to find. Bring plenty of Woolite for frequent washing of these garments and for other fine washables. Lightweight leotards come in handy for aerobics, swimming, and when combined with a pair of shorts, can be used for tennis and running wear.

Children Last Updated: 5/13/2004 1:00 PM

Normal U.S. summer wear is suitable, with a lightweight jacket or cardigan for cool evenings and places with air-conditioning. Bring plenty of socks, underwear, shoes, and sandals. Most Grenadian schools require a uniform, which is available locally. The International School of Grenada does not require a uniform; children should be dressed the same as they would for attendance at U.S. schools.

Supplies and Services

Supplies Last Updated: 5/13/2004 1:01 PM

Supermarkets and pharmacies carry a limited range of everyday toiletries such as shampoo, toothpaste, shaving cream, etc., but a restricted supply of women’s cosmetics. Avon and Revlon both have small retail outlets and prices are more expensive than in the U.S. Selections are limited in some areas but overall, basics are available. Finer brand cosmetics and French as well as U.S., perfumes are found in duty-free shops at the airport. Grenadians make short shopping trips to Barbados and Caracas to buy these items in well-stocked, duty-free, and other exclusive shops. Feminine hygiene items, in particular tampons, are available and of varying quality. The U.S.-manufactured Tampax and O.B. type are available but expensive, so bring a 2-year supply. Disposable diapers are available but are at least three times as expensive as the same brand found in the U.S.

A fair range of home medicines, many of British manufacture, are available. Bring your favorite remedies such as Alka Seltzer, cold mixtures, etc. Bring cold remedies and pain relief medications for infants and children as well as ear and eye drops. Baby wipes are not available in Grenada so bring a supply.

Bring lots of small bottles of insect repellant and towelettes to put in pockets and handbags when traveling or for walking in the evenings and sitting on patios. Stock up on waterproof sunscreens with SPF factors of 15 or more for small children, as higher SPF numbers are not available and suntan lotions are expensive. Woolite is available but expensive.

Bring gift wrapping paper, greeting cards, several pairs of rubber thongs, several sets of water flotation arm bands for children, and lifejackets for boating trips. Bring all Christmas decorating supplies and adult and children’s gifts for parties. Photographic equipment and film are limited in range as are all sports and beach equipment. Bring a backup pair of sunglasses, a good supply of basic hardware tools, including a power drill, and a Sears or J.C. Penney catalog.

Basic Services Last Updated: 5/13/2004 1:02 PM

Drycleaning service is available, but is of poor quality. The one shoe repair shop is not up to U.S. standards. Downtown St. George’s has a few good and reasonably priced tailors who can make simple skirts, blouses, and the smart, practical jac suit. Dressmakers vary in skill but are useful for casual sundresses and other wardrobe accessories. Some dressmakers will take a piece of batik fabric and design a one-piece maillot or a bikini. Several beauty shops are available, but the one most used is connected with the Ramada Renaissance, which has one hairstylist and two trained beauty technicians. A wide range of services, including permanents, tints, manicures, and pedicures, are available. Prices are competitive with those in the U.S. Barbershops are adequate and charge reasonable prices.

Some repair work is good, but the standard of most is uneven, particularly if unsupervised. Progress is often slow and further hampered by periodic unavailability of materials and power cuts. Repair work on cars, electronic equipment, and household appliances varies in quality, and lack of expertise and unfamiliarity with certain electronic devices predominates.

Domestic Help Last Updated: 5/13/2004 1:03 PM

Maids and cooks are available at reasonable wages. An experienced cook or maid receives between EC$300 and EC$400 (US$112$149) per month depending on duties and hours worked. An average working day begins at 8 am and ends 2–4 pm. Live-in help is also available and babysitting services can be arranged for a fee of EC$4–EC$10 (US$1.50–$3.70) per hour. Obtain references and offer a clear indication of expected duties before hiring someone. Most people employ a maid who cleans, washes (usually by machine), irons, and prepares meals. Grenadian domestics are usually polite and obliging. Bonuses are often given for food preparation and service at dinner and cocktail parties. Gardeners are also hired weekly during the rainy season and less frequently during the dry season; fees run EC$25 (US$9.30) a day and up depending on size of the yard and expected gardening responsibilities. A few extra dollars will ensure a thorough car wash and a clean carport area.

A driver to and from work (usually less than 10 miles per roundtrip) will charge about EC$300 (US$112) per month and up. Various other taxi rides are expensive and should be negotiated before departing for the destination.

Holiday and leave expectations vary for domestic help. Two weeks’ paid vacation is given after 1 year of service, as is a Christmas bonus of 1 month’s pay. In addition, a maid/cook expects 1–2 days off a week, with arrangements made for full weekends and holiday times fixed by the employer at the time of hiring. National Insurance Scheme (NIS) payments are required for servants and gardeners.

The regional medical officer recommends yearly physicals for domestic help who are employed to work in the home. The medical examination should include a chest Xray, blood serological, and stool examination if possible.

Religious Activities Last Updated: 5/13/2004 1:04 PM

Grenada is predominantly Christian, with the largest congregations being Roman Catholic and Anglican. Presbyterian, Baptist, Methodist, Seventh-day Adventist, Mormon, and Berean faiths also have places of worship. The Missionaries of Charity have a small representation in Grenada. Grenada has no synagogue. One mosque is available for individuals of the Moslem faith.


Dependent Education

At Post Last Updated: 5/13/2004 1:06 PM Schools in Grenada follow the British education system; children enter primary schools at age 5 and take the Eleven-Plus exam at age 11 or 12 (6th grade). Pupils successful in this exam may then enroll in government-run secondary schools. They take the CXC or GCE “O” level exam at age 16. Few students remain at school the extra 2 years to sit their “A” levels (university entrance).

Grenada’s education, from an American viewpoint, is basic. The International School of Grenada (ISOG) is currently completing its fifth year of successful operation. It is a coeducational institution that offers an educational program from preschool through grade 6. Seventh-grade students may apply. A U.S. curriculum is followed based on U.S. texts with added input from the Broward County/Miami Department of Education. Enrollment is about 25. Normally, four full-time and three part-time staff members are available. The school has a 5year (1985–1990) agreement with the St. George’s University School of Medicine to house the school. No permanent facility exists. Currently, the school consists of three classrooms, library, and an administrative office. Play areas, in addition to a large, all-purpose playing field, are available for preschool and upper grades. Instruction is in English. Academic areas include language arts, math, social studies, science, French, art, music, computer, and physical education.

The school is in session from the last week in August until the first week in June. Almost 70% of the school’s income is derived from tuition. The school does not have facilities or personnel to accommodate students with severe physical, behavioral, emotional, or learning disabilities/handicaps. No curricular program for remedial learning is available. Teachers, teaching assistants, specialty instructors, and other resource individuals are recruited locally, generally from the transient expatriate community.

No school clubs or organized competitive sports programs are available. Many parents reinforce social and group activities at school, in their own homes, and in informal gatherings of students to engage in nature activities, Girl Guides, and Boy Scouts. Transportation must be arranged individually to and from school. Many parents form carpools. Textbooks are provided by the school, but prospective student should bring a supply of looseleaf notebook paper, a pencil sharpener and a lunchbox with thermos. B3 U.S. standards, classes are small enabling students to get individual attention. Often, only two to three students in each grade level allow; for maximum interaction with other students. ISOG offers an ideal situation for a student to foster skills in learning on an independent, resource-building direction focusing on his or her own creative element and direction. Another advantage to ISOG’s small size is the individualized attention given schoolwide projects — in which every student participates.

A good private primary school, Westmorland Primary, has an average class size of 24. It has a few trained Montessori teachers and takes children in nursery class; after nursery class they join kindergarten and start basic reading, writing, and math. The school year is divided into three terms, running from early September until mid-July. Vacations are held at Christmas, Easter, and the long summer holiday. Westmorland Primary is part of Westmorland School, which is known to have the island’s highest standard of education, based upon CXC results. The primary department has few vacancies and securing a place may prove difficult. Government-run secondary schools, designed for Grenadians, are not geared to U.S. requirements.

Away From Post Last Updated: 5/13/2004 1:07 PM Parents of older children may, in most cases, have no option but to send them to the U.S. for secondary school. Make air reservations, in particular for the Christmas vacation, as far in advance as possible.

Recreation and Social Life

Sports Last Updated: 5/13/2004 1:11 PM

Cricket and soccer are Grenada’s two most popular spectator sports. A small tennis club with two concrete courts charges reasonable rates and periodically sponsors tournaments and barbecues. Temporary membership is available, and foreign visitors are welcomed. A resident pro is available for lessons at major hotels. Tennis courts at major hotels are made available to the public for a fee of EC$10 to EC$25 (US$3.70–$9.30) per hour. Bring all your equipment and attire with you.

The Grenada Golf Club, Woodlands, is in a beautiful setting overlooking the sea. It is a 15-minute drive from downtown St. George’s and has a nine-hole course that is in a rudimentary state —i t may influence one’s handicap! The club holds tournaments year round, often involving teams from other islands. Exchange visits, as well as an occasional social event, are also organized. Current membership is $48. Membership fees are EC$600 (US$223) per year with an additional one-time entrance fee of EC$150 (US$56). Caddies are available at EC$6.50 (US$2.40) per nine holes. A small bar is located on the premises. Bring a good supply of golf balls and tees.

Grenada’s lush tropical rain forests and vegetation afford splendid hikes for the outdoor enthusiast. The Grand Etang Lake area is a government reserve, and the trails, although not well marked, are easily passable. Avoid hiking in the rain forest during the wet season and hire a guide for your first trip. The natural setting of elfin woodland, dwarfed forests can be traced from a descent through the mountain rain forest, to lowland dry forest, further down to mangrove clusters. Natural waterfall settings amid 450 species of plants and 150 different species of birds portray the diversity in Grenada’s natural resources. The Lake Antoine Natural Landmark exemplifies the formation of a crater lake formed by a volcanic eruption.

Sailing is popular and many large yachts visit Grenada, berthing either in the harbor or at the Spice Island Marina located in a residential section called Lance Aux Epines. The Grenada Yacht Club has 200 members. Several types of memberships are available, but all new members must have previously been nominated by a member and then voted and approved by the Board of Members, a small governing body composed of members. An initial entrance fee of EC$50 (US$18.59), followed by a yearly fee of EC$100 (US$37.19) is required. Family and other special rates are available. The Grenada Yacht Club sponsors various offshore races, including the annual Easter regatta, Round-the-Island Yacht Race, as well as other competitive water activities that oftentimes are designed to entice yachters from other Caribbean territories. The club has a Laser sailing section. It has a snackette and bar, and provides the usual shower, phone, and mail facilities for offshore visitors. It also serves as a social club, holding a happy hour every Friday evening, and various fund-raising dinners and barbecues year round.

The beautiful, crystal clear waters of Grenada, with its 40 different species of coral and up to 200 feet of visibility, make it a water-lover’s paradise. Cruising up the Grenadines is especially rewarding. Sailing enthusiasts will find a good selection of large, well-equipped yachts available, sometimes with crew, at reasonable rates for daily and weekly charter. Carriacou holds its annual regatta the first week in August; races are held for workboats of all sizes as well as for yachts. One area of interest to sailing enthusiasts is the eastern coast of Carriacou; the small town of Windward is the site of shipbuilding by traditional methods. Villagers of mixed Scottish descent carry on the tradition of building wooden schoonners, up to 100 feet in length, from local white cedar that grows in curves and crooks. Large skeletons of ships in various stages of assemblage are on display. These workmen use only the most rudimentary of tools (axes, handsaws, braces, and bits), complemented by only a few other hand tools.

A combination of clear aquamarine waters, coral reefs, and gardens and tropical fish make scubadiving, spearfishing, and snorkeling excellent around Grenada. A variety of dive packages, including everything from beautiful coral reef dives, night dives, wreck dives, and underwater photography dives, are available. A certified dive instructor is on the island. Bring all diving equipment, as well as extra “O” rings and essentials for necessary repair work. Bring your own tank, as many of the tanks available for rental are old and are not up-to-date on hydrostatic pressure checks. Grenada has no facility available for this, so tanks must be sent to Barbados to have equipment checked. Snorkeling can run EC$30 (US$11.15) per person, for 3 hours, including equipment, but bring a well-constructed, good-quality set of snorkeling gear: a mask, fins, and snorkel apparatus. A basic scuba dive for 2 hours costs US$40 per person, with equipment. A package of six dives is US$25 each. Watersport facilities are available at many of the major hotels. Water-skiing, catamaran and speed boat trips, wind surfing, sunfish sailing, and jet skis are available. Negotiate prices during the off-season, as prices reported here are based on peak-season tourist rates.

From November to March, Grenada’s waters offer good deepsea fishing. You can charter a deepsea fishing boat for the day, week, or month. Small, open boats take parties out for mornings or entire days, fishing for snapper or grouper. Grenada Yacht Services is headquarters for yacht charters and offshore fishing excursions. If you plan to sail with small children, ensure the availability of lifejackets. Bring lifejackets for small children and infants, as these size requirements cannot be accommodated. The Grenadian 3-day fishing tournament, held the last weekend in January, attracts many large fishing cruisers, mainly from Trinidad. It is a popular sporting event and social get-together for the two neighboring islands.

Grenada has many attractive and secluded white sand beaches; the largest is Grand Anse, just south of St. George’s, dotted with several hotels and guest cottages. It employs no lifeguards (none of the beaches in Grenada does) but is safe for bathing. Grand Anse Bay is popular for wind surfing. The many beautiful, quiet coves are good for picnicking, and many can be explored on foot or by car. Many secondary roads, however, are in a state of disrepair.

Grenada has no public swimming pools or clubs with pool facilities. Some hotels allow individuals to use their pools, especially during the slow season.

Grenada has few official sports clubs. The Hash House Harriers organize small runs around the island every other Saturday, followed by an informal social gathering. These are popular among Grenadians and expatriates alike. Local businesses sponsor occasional 5km and l0km meets as fund-raising activities. Informally organized group activities are the rule. Bring your favorite exercise videos and start your own workout group. One weightlifting/body-building shop has an expert available to design an individual program to meet your workout needs.

Touring and Outdoor Activities Last Updated: 5/13/2004 1:13 PM

Neighboring Trinidad and Barbados afford relief from the quiet, “small island” atmosphere of Grenada, and good shopping facilities. Trinidad, 90 miles south of Grenada (flying time 35 minutes), has a Hilton Hotel and a Holiday Inn, as well as various smaller hotels. Port-of-Spain has several large shopping malls. Trinidad is renowned for its colorful pre-Lenten Carnival. It is popular during Carnival Week, so make hotel and air reservations early.

Barbados, 120 miles away (flying time 45 minutes), is an attractive, bustling island, with good hotels and restaurants and a lively nightlife. In the off-season, shopping is particularly good. Duty-free shops stock a wide range of items that Grenada does not have. Many fashionable boutiques sell colorful sundresses, sarongs, and beachwear suited to the Caribbean climate.

Further north are Martinique and Guadeloupe, with their French ambiance and delicious cuisine. While in Martinique, be sure to stop at the St. Pierre Museum, an eerie monument to the 30,000 who died when Mont Pelee erupted in 1902. In Guadeloupe take a day trip to see the living volcano, La Soufriere.

Caracas, Venezuela’s sophisticated capital, with its eternal spring climate, is another vacation spot for enjoying bright lights. It has all the usual big-city amenities and is inexpensive. Shoes, made of good-quality leather and manufactured under license from major designers, are available at a fraction of their U.S. cost. Clothing is also manufactured under license by some major designers in Venezuela, and many bargains are found here. Dining out can be an inexpensive treat, with restaurants serving delicious cuts of meat and including wine with a meal for the price of a fast-food meal in the U.S. The currency fluctuates daily, so find out the current rate before planning your trip. Airlines often offer shopping specials to Caracas around Christmas. Confirmed hotel reservations in larger establishments, are essential.

The designated R&R point for a 2-year duty tour in Grenada for authorized employees and dependents is Mexico City.

Entertainment Last Updated: 5/13/2004 1:14 PM

St. George’s has limited formal entertainment. Several popular discos are available, but apart from this, nightlife is nonexistent. One poorly ventilated movie theater in St. George’s, which features predominantly Kung-Fu and outdated “B” movies, caters mostly to local tastes. Several video clubs exist.

Many local restaurants feature a local creole cuisine as well as Western fare. Food preparation methods vary in consistency and quality. The Boat Yard holds evening happy hours with snacks and is a place for having a late-night snack and rum punch, while mingling with people from visiting yachts. The Boat Yard also offers weekly disco, jazz, and steelband musical nights. Some hotels have weekly barbecues with accompanying steelband music for dancing.

Recently, Grenada has celebrated its annual Carnival in mid-August. It is a pretty festival, smaller brother of the huge pre-Lenten pageant held in neighboring Trinidad. Steelbands and calypsonians vie for top prizes, and bands in colorful costume parade down the streets of St. George’s, with visitors and Grenadians alike “jumping up” to the calypso beat.

Grenada has an amateur radio club. Amateur radio enthusiasts will enjoy Grenada because of its friendly ham radio community and its terrain, which allows for excellent antenna siting in prescribed areas. HF and 2-meter are both popular here. Permission to operate is granted on presentation of a valid FCC license, and third-party traffic is permitted. If your gear is 110v, bring an adequate transformer.

Grenada is a small island, with limited entertainment facilities and little cultural or educational opportunities. Amateur drama productions are occasionally presented at the Marryshow House. The local Music Society puts on two shows annually and welcomes interested new talent. Grenadians are friendly and hospitable, but the educated professional community is small. Social contact is therefore limited, and for single people, as well as dependent spouses with young children, loneliness could be a problem. Bring plenty of books, games for adults and children, records, sewing patterns and fabric, etc. Bring all necessary materials, equipment, and reference books to learn a new craft.

Social Activities

Among Americans Last Updated: 5/13/2004 1:16 PM Most entertaining, in the form of cocktail parties, small suppers and barbecues, bridge parties, and informal buffet dinners, is done at home. Grenadians enjoy a good fete and Americans are welcome in their homes. Various clubs sponsor fundraising events. The social tempo peaks at Christmas and Carnival time. The regattas and the fishing tournament, with their influx of visitors from nearby islands, also afford an excuse for partying.

The U.S. Mission is small. But compared to other foreign missions in Grenada, the British High Commission, and the Venezuelan Embassy, it is the largest. The international community is small, with activities having a family focus. Welcome and farewell parties are held regularly for U.S. personnel, both by their colleagues and by Grenadian friends. When planning and attending cocktail parties, remember the community’s size and that most people are related by the close ties of friendship, if not by blood or marriage.

Grenada does not have an American Women’s Club, but the International Women’s Club of Grenada meets the first Tuesday of each month. The organization sponsors many fund-raising activities and hosts’ the annual Christmas bazaar with crafts and a variety of pastries and confectionary delights. Demand for voluntary workers in Grenada is high, and interested spouses should contact any of the following organizations to offer their special talents: the Red Cross, St. Vincent De Paul Society, Missionaries of Charity, St. John’s Ambulance Brigade, the Salvation Army, GSPCA, School for Special Education, School for the Deaf, Kennedy Home for Handicapped Children, Blind Workshop/Blind Welfare Association, Queen Elizabeth’s Home for Children (orphanage), the Sapodilla Home for Abused Children, Cadrona Home for the Aged and the General Hospital. Activities for children are limited; however, organizations such as Boy Scouts, Girl Guides, and Cub and Brownie troops are established in Grenada. Some parents have found piano teachers and dance instructors who are happy to accept new students. Teenagers will find few organized activities available.

The Venezuelan Institute for Culture and Cooperation offers many interesting programs free to the public. Spanish lessons are given to adults at all levels of conversational and grammatical expertise. Art exhibits, workshops, craft displays, and lectures on various topics are also offered. Children’s language lessons accommodate interested students after school.

Official Functions

Nature of Functions Last Updated: 5/13/2004 1:16 PM

The Chief of Mission and officers entertain and are entertained by officials of the Grenadian Government, officers of the other diplomatic missions, and leading members of the political; professional, and business communities. Cocktail parties, buffet dinners, and other forms of home entertainment are popular. Large receptions on national days and other auspicious occasions by other diplomatic missions and the host government are held. Semiofficial functions are more numerous and embrace a wider contingent of people.

Social events here are informal. Suits and long dresses are worn on only the most formal occasions. Jac suits or “guayaberas” and slacks for men, and short cocktail dresses or dressy pantsuits for women, are appropriate attire for most events.

Standards of Social Conduct Last Updated: 5/13/2004 1:17 PM

Printed invitations are used for official and semiofficial functions. Informals are also used for invitations to teas and coffees and other informal occasions. Acceptances and regrets are by telephone. Embassy officers should bring 100–200 calling cards as well as a good supply of informals or other notepaper since local printing is not up to U.S. standards.

Notes For Travelers

Getting to the Post Last Updated: 5/13/2004 1:18 PM

Currently, official travelers to Grenada may use the direct Miami-Grenada BWIA flight rather than go through Barbados, which usually requires overnight accommodations. Connecting inter-island flights to Grenada run out of several Caribbean islands daily. Check seasonal timetables and flight information for more accurate guidelines, as tourist season precipitates route variations. At certain times of the year air reservations may be tight, so secure yours as early as possible. This also applies to temporary quarters and hotel reservations as well. Arrival airport is Point Saline.

The Embassy has Welcome Kits that include bedding, pillows, towels, dishes, flatware, and kitchen utensils that may be used until your HHE arrive. Include towels, baby items, toys, toiletries, and other small household items in your airfreight. Airfreight from the U.S. usually takes from 2 to 4 weeks. Surface shipments from the U.S. normally take from 1 to 2 months. No restrictions are made on the size of cartons, crates, or liftvans entering the port, but they should fit inside a 20’ container. Wooden cases are preferable to metal containers; both should be waterproof, and wooden cases should be steel banded. The amount of pilferage and breakage is small.

Bring a supply of passport-size photos for a Grenadian drivers license and for other needs that may arise, as the quality of locally produced photos is poor.

Customs, Duties, and Passage

Customs and Duties Last Updated: 5/13/2004 1:18 PM

Free-entry privileges have been granted on original entry to all American personnel assigned to the Embassy, Peace Corps, and USAID. No difficulties are expected for follow-on shipments.

Passage Last Updated: 5/13/2004 1:18 PM

Official personnel — permanent duty or temporary duty — are admitted to Grenada with a valid passport; no visa is required.

Pets Last Updated: 5/13/2004 1:20 PM

The Government of Grenada will permit entry of pets with proper documentation, including a health certificate and proof of recent inoculation against rabies. The health certificate should state that the animal is free from infectious diseases and rabies. It must be issued by a licensed U.S. veterinarian, then stamped by a USDA office, verifying the veterinarian’s license. Since the health certificate is valid only for a short time, you must obtain the USDA stamp quickly. If the pet is in the Washington, D.C. area, obtain the health certificate from a Maryland veterinarian, then obtain the USDA stamp at the Hyattsville USDA office. A health certificate issued by a Virginia veterinarian must be validated by the USDA, Richmond. In all cases, contact the Embassy GSO for all necessary information involved in importing a pet.

Both Trinidad and Barbados have strict laws governing pets other than those from Great Britain and Ireland. Pets being shipped to Grenada may transit overnight in Trinidad, which has a clean, well-run quarantine station and appropriate airport facilities. If possible, transport pets as accompanying baggage rather than airfreight, since customs clearances are easier. The pet must arrive in an escape-proof cage. Dogs must be accompanied by a collar and leash. Coordinate arrival plans with the U.S. Embassy, Port-of-Spain, since a Trinidadian Government veterinarian and quarantine guard must be present before the animal can deplane.

You can also transit animals through Barbados. Arrangements should be made with the U.S. Embassy in Bridgetown to obtain transit permits. The island has no quarantine station, so should your get arrive in Barbados too late for a connecting flight to Grenada, it would run the risk of being destroyed.

Firearms and Ammunition Last Updated: 5/13/2004 1:20 PM

Advise the post and request guidance if you want to import firearms. Specify type, caliber, and model and serial numbers in your cab

Currency, Banking, and Weights and Measures Last Updated: 5/13/2004 1:22 PM

Local currency is the East Caribbean dollar, often referred to as the EC dollar. Rate of exchange is EC$2.68=US$1. The bills are printed in a series of colors. They are $1, $5, $10, $20, and $100. Coins are minted in several denominations: 1, 2, 5, 10, 25, 50, and also $1. All currency bears the portrait of Queen Elizabeth II.

A local currency account, in addition to your U.S. checking account, is useful since most businesses accept personal EC dollar checks. As a special service to Embassy personnel, with proper identification, Barclays Bank, St. George’s, will exchange U.S. dollar checks drawn on U.S. banks for EC dollars. The Embassy cashier will exchange personal checks once a week only, usually on Wednesday.

Do not depend on U.S. credit cards since not all hotels and few shops accept them.

Some effort is being made to introduce the metric system, but Grenadians still think in terms of pounds and miles rather than kilograms and kilometers.

Taxes, Exchange, and Sale of Property Last Updated: 5/13/2004 1:22 PM

Tax- and duty-free status is accorded U.S. personnel assigned to Grenada, with the exception of the valued-added tax paid on foods.

Recommended Reading Last Updated: 5/13/2004 1:25 PM

These titles are provided as a general indication of the material published on this country. The Department of State does not endorse unofficial publications.

History and General Brizan, George. Grenada, Isle of Conflict: From Amerindians to People’s Revolution 1498–1974. ZED Books: London, 1984.

Devas, Rev. Raymond P., O.P. A History of the Island of Grenada, 1498–1796, With Notes and Comments on Carriacou and Events of Later Years. Rev. ed. Careenage Press: St. George’s, 1974.

Key, Frances. This is Carriacou & This is Grenada. Caribbean Printers: 1967.

Sandiford, Gregory. The New Jewel Movement. FSI: 1985.

Sinclair, Norma. Grenada, Isle of Spice. Macmillan Books: 1987.

Zellers, Margaret. Fieldings Carribbean 1988. William Morrow and Company, Inc.: New York, 1988.

Fiction Steele, Beverly and Bruce St. John. Tim Tim Tales From Grenada. UWI Grenada Publications No.

Local Holidays Last Updated: 5/13/2004 1:27 PM

The following local holidays are observed:

New Year’s Day Jan. 1 Independence Day Feb.7 Good Friday Friday preceding Easter Sunday Easter Monday Monday following Easter Sunday

Labor Day May 1 Whit Monday 50 days after Easter Corpus Christi Thursday after Trinity Sunday, which is Sunday after Whit Monday Emancipation Day First Monday in August Day after Emancipation Day Tuesday in August. Thanksgiving Day Oct. 25 Christmas Day Dec. 25 Boxing Day Dec. 26

Adapted from material published by the U.S. Department of State. While some of the information is specific to U.S. missions abroad, the post report provides a good overview of general living conditions in the host country for diplomats from all nations.
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