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Bring food from home

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Bring food from home

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Posts: 5
Active Member
Topic starter

Has anyone had good/bad experience with bringing food with them?
Our plan is to bring frozen meats such as steaks, chicken, sausage with us, packed in a cooler as we have heard things are expensive in paradise.
Arriving late to St T., we'll pick up the rental car, (add ice to the cooler), sleep the night, buy fresh produce (add ice to the cooler), before taking the car ferry over to St. John for a week long stay in an out of the way villa.
Any advise where to get produce between airport and the car ferry?

Posted : January 31, 2013 7:22 pm
Posts: 295
Reputable Member

aitlines don't want ice in the cooler. Freeze your meats in ziplock bags. wrap tightly in paper and plastic grocery bages. afix orignal label to newly wrapped package. If checking, freeze shampoos and lotions ziplock and wrap. Pack tightly in cooler. If carry-on make sure cooler complies with the demisions for over head bin. Write your address on the cooler in sharpie

Posted : February 1, 2013 1:43 am
Posts: 3316
Famed Member

No need to add ice to the cooler when you land. As long as your foodstuffs are frozen solid and packed tightly they'll stay frozen overnight with no problem. It was very common practice years ago for people to bring frozen foods with them but this lessened over the years now that we have full fledged supermarkets. Food prices average 30% higher than stateside and many visitors bring only specialty cuts. It's a good idea to pack small ziplock bags with your favorite spices to save buying large containers here and wasting them; breakfast cereals, cookies, crackers and coffee have a high mark-up here so are worth bringing. Fruit Bowl in the Wheatley Center (at the bottom of Rte 38) has excellent produce, while CostULess further up on Route 38 in Market Square East also has a very good produce department. Rte 38 will take you all the way through into Red Hook.

Enjoy your visit!

Posted : February 1, 2013 7:06 am
Posts: 792
Prominent Member

If shopping on a Sat., Sun. Or Mon., our fresh produce choices will be slim as most groceries seem to get their fresh produce in on Tuesday.
By Sat. and Sunday things are looking not so fresh anymore and many items just are not available.

I shop for meats when I visit family in FL and bring back home as prices are so much less there in comparison to what they cost here.
STT resident gives good advice about bringing coffee and spices, ect. you may need in ziplocks as well.
I just ziplocked or wrapped things very well in plastic wrap (no foil) packed it tight and did not use any ice in the cooler.
They will send it thru the X-ray and ask you what the heck it is!

Posted : February 1, 2013 9:39 am
Posts: 295
Reputable Member

That's right no foil. When in flight (especially if checked) the amibiant temp won't encourge too much de-frost. However, if the cooler is left on the tarmack between flights (SJU) or you experience a significant delay, you may have more defrost. Also, most of the defrost will occur after landing in STT and before arriving at your destinatin in STJ. I think it may be smart to add ice while in STT as you'll need to spend at least three hours (driving to barge, waiting for barge, barge crossing, meeting agent, getting to house, etc) in the hot hot air. But, adding, not assing ice is your choice. Prices more in the VI, selection is limited and quality is ifffy. Bringing some froozen chicken, meat, etc is good idea. Just make sure to seal the zip locks. And you'll have a cooler to bring to the beach and extra bag (cooler)to pack any stinky closes for your trip home!!

Posted : February 1, 2013 9:18 pm
Posts: 5
Active Member

I bring food all the time. This issue is frequently discussed on another website I read as well. I will PM you the site as I am not sure if I should post it here. 🙂 There is a ton of info there as well.

I bring a polar bear cooler, who's claim to fame is keeping food frozen for LONG periods of time in high temps. I fill with meat, bacon ( $11 pound my last trip to STJ) etc for the week. I also pack snack type foods that tend to be pricey for the beach. Crackers, pringles, etc..

Also, you can get an idea of food /prices by looking at the Starfish Market web page. They have a sale flier every couple of weeks that you can look at to get an idea of prices.

Have a great trip! 😉

Posted : February 3, 2013 4:52 pm
Posts: 5
Active Member
Topic starter

Blu4u, frozen shampoo and lotion! That is such a great idea! I always brought snacks and spices and coffee never did I think of freezing meets or toiletries. So if toiletries are frozen, one can carry on? Stinky clothes cooler! u r full of great ideas. THANKS.

STT RESIDENT, thanks for the store recommendations as well. It's just the info I was looking for.

Alana33, good to know when to look for fresh produce. Thanks. We'll be arriving late Fri. night so limited to shopping Sat. Morn.

PaminMaine BACON in paradise! Yesss! Hadn't thought of bacon. And will get a Polar bear cooler! Will lookup the store website too.

Will be a wonderful trip.
Thank you all for taking the time and offering such helpful advise.

Posted : February 4, 2013 9:09 pm

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