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Moving to Cable Beach

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Juls18
2/28/2017 14:24 EST

Hi there, my husband and I are looking to move to Cable Beach as it's very close to his new workplace. He'll be going down in the next two weeks and work will put him up until we find somewhere to live. I'll be following from Canada as soon as everything here is sorted out - it's been a very quick turn of events!

I've done some research regarding moving to Nassau but I wanted to double check some things - for an Annual Permit, the ones spouses get to live there while their partners work, about how long will it take to process? Am I allowed to travel as a visitor and apply for the permit while I'm there?

Also, while he's working, is it safe enough for a female to travel within Cable Beach alone for the purposes of groceries and shopping? I've heard a lot of conflicting things around the web. Is public transit safe? Are there certain taxis I should be looking for and/or avoiding?

Thanks in advance!!

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rahmank
2/28/2017 16:41 EST

Hi Juls18
Lots of questions! Dont panic, everything will be all right.

Not sure about the annual permit, but I work for the Government and my wife has the right to come and go as she pleases, as do my children, although she doesnt stay here. Maybe rules for private firms are different, someone here should be able to enlighten. But generally Bahamas is pretty good about Immigration if you dont plan to work (this is not the USA you know!)

Cable Beach. I love this place. Very very safe. Most places here are gated so even safer, but really there is little risk in Cable Beach area. In fact, most crime in Bahamas is domestic or gang related. You will be fine if you dont start trying to sell drugs or get involved in family disputes (or politics here, that causes problems around election time, which is now)

Cable Beach is great for grocery shopping, two City Markets here and reasonable quality/choice.

Public transport is somewhat limited - jitneys are $1.50 no 10 goes to/from Cable Beach. A bit cramped but safe to my experience. Times are sporadic and they stop by 6pm. Taxis are very expensive. You're better off making friends and asking for lifts from them.
Bahamas relies heavily on tourism and they are careful to protect tourists or those that look like they are.

Food choice is limited although if you like Grouper, Lobsters, Conch and Snapper, you will be fine. Fresh and great quality. Restaurants are quite expensive but hey ho. Canada is only a short flight away if you are desperate for the wide variety of food choices you have there! (I love Toronto)
UK is lot more expensive and lot further so more difficult to get to!

Keep in touch if you need further help/ reassurance.

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breija
3/2/2017 11:49 EST

Hi Juls,

Welcome! Sounds like you are in for an exciting change! The Cable Beach area is safer than many areas, but of course, you still need to remain vigilant. Lots of people are out and about walking along the BahaMar area, and there are options for groceries and other amenities within a short drive, if in fact you will be driving. If not, as Rahmank has said, the #10 buses travel up and down West Bay Street frequently. We have used the jitneys here whenever we need to take the boat downtown and still get home out west! It is safe, and each bus has it's only flavour and character. :-) They only travel during daylight hours.

Taxis - they are not easy to come by. However, if you are living along Cable Beach, get the phone number of the nearest hotel's taxi stand, and when you need one, call them until you find someone you trust.

If you are not purchasing a car, it might be an idea to get yourself a scooter to toot up and down West Bay. Of course, if you are not working while here, you will want to have access to social activities. What are you interested in?

As a spouse of someone on work permit, you can get one quite easily when you come down. Will your husband's employer be helping with this process, or will you need to do it yourself? I suggest that both you and your husband get your police reports and medical letters from Canada before you come down. I suspect that your husband has already had to provide these, but get yours to bring down if his employer has not already requested them. I actually encourage you to ask your husband to ask his employer to assist, as they can apply for your spousal permit when they apply for his work permit.

Unfortunately, I cannot tell you how long it will take, but once the application is made, you simply use your application receipt to travel back and forth without issue. If his employer is taking care of this, be sure to request at least a copy of the receipt.

Coming in, you are definitely best to simply come in as a visitor, as you will not have any "status" initially. When asked how long, you can tell the truth about your immigration status and just say that your spousal permit is in the works.

Please feel free to PM me with any more specific questions. We came from Canada for 3 years 11 years ago, so I have lots of ideas to offer. :-)

Cheers!

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breija
3/2/2017 11:52 EST

Hi again Juls,

I meant to expand on your question about safety. Be perhaps a bit more vigilant than you would back home, but there is no need to be anxious about safety. You will find that Bahamian men are very forward and will make what you likely would consider to be inappropriate and unwelcome comments and gestures that would NOT be ok back home. Just ignore them. It is a different culture here. Walk with purpose and be aware of your surroundings. Crime in the Cable Beach area is more frequently muggings and purse snatchings from those not paying attention.

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Juls18
3/2/2017 17:43 EST

Thanks so much for the replies!! Would it be recommended then as a female shopping alone to take the bus rather than walking? I have done a good amount of travel so I am relatively aware of my surroundings and don't dress particularly flashy.

This information helps a lot, I very much appreciate it!

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rahmank
3/2/2017 22:25 EST

You would do modt grocery shopping in cable beach and would be within walking distance of the supermarket. Taking the jitney is probably more hassle than its worth. No problem for a female by herself during the day, really. You probably not have much other shopping to do in Nassau. Its a small country with not very much choice. Buses/ public transport aint great but safe enough.

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breija
3/4/2017 08:46 EST

Hi Juls,

It really depends upon where you live. Some places are an easy walk to Quality Supermarkets (old City Market) or Super Value, and you might decide to walk to and take the jitney back once you have all your groceries. If you are aware of your surroundings, you will likely be ok. That said, a scooter may be helpful!

What you have access to will depend upon what you need/want. If you are not working, you may really want to be able to get out and about and meet people.

If you like, send me a PM with regards to what you might be looking to do as a part of your life here, and I can give you more specific ideas.

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VATlady
3/8/2017 08:13 EST

Hi Juls18 - I too am Canadian and moved to Nassau in 2014 with a work permit. I'm working for a private firm and my husband retired in Canada before joining me here. My work permit was issued quite quickly. However, my husband's took almost a full year to process and by the time he received it, we had to go through the renewal process again. He never received his permit "card' for the first year. The second year, it took about 3 months for the permits to be approved and the cards were not received until about 3 months before they expired. This year the permits were approved in about 2 months and the cards were received about 2 months later.

The challenge with not having the permit cards is that you will need to carry a copy of the letter from the employer showing the permit application or approval and a copy of the receipt for the fees paid whenever you travel in and out of the country. My husband was only granted 90 day visas the first year when he entered the country (which he had to do some heavy persuasion with immigration to get) and he was travelling back home to Canada often enough that this worked. Having the permit card is much easier. Note the annual permit is $1,000 so if it isn't covered by your husband's work, you may want to consider just coming as a tourist if you travel back home enough. It seems a bit of a cash grab given how long it takes to process and that you often never get the card until it is nearly expired.

We live in Cable Beach and my husband uses public transportation to go downtown quite often - has no trouble with it. Generally it only runs in daylight hours (last bus is about 6:30 I believe.

Hope your move goes well.

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attsweeting
3/22/2017 04:24 EST

Hi there

You are allowed to live here while your husband is here on a work permit. Only a formal working arrangement will require you to have similar documentation.

Cable beach is nearly free of any serious concerns crime-wise, pedestrian tourist walk this road without issue daily and public transportation runs throughout the island and along this street as well.

I would suggest avoiding informal taxi operators locally called hackers that aren't licensed to transport people for compensation and there would be no recourse in the event of theft or more serious crime, from transportation authorities.

I'm born and raised Bahamian lived and work in Cable Beach area as a real estate agent if there is anything I can do to help your family in there transition I would be delighted to assist. I wish you both all the best in this new journey. mattsweeting@me.com

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ChristelleVuk
4/9/2017 18:22 EST

Hi JulS18!

My name is Christelle.
I am originally from Mauritius and i have recently move to Cable Beach 2 weeks ago with my Canadian husband as well.

We are looking forward to meet new couples here , going for coffee etc.

You can email me on Christelle.labonne@hotmail.com

Best regards,
Christelle

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ChristelleVuk
4/9/2017 18:26 EST

Hi JulS18!

My name is Christelle.
I am originally from Mauritius and i have recently move to Cable Beach 2 weeks ago with my Canadian husband as well.

We are looking forward to meet new couples here , going for coffee etc.

You can email me on Christelle.labonne@hotmail.com

Best regards,
Christelle

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debib
7/6/2017 10:15 EST

Hi - I am a single professional woman living alone in Cable Beach. A safe, gated community is my recommendation and you can feel comfortable pretty much anywhere in the western part of Nassau. Crime is mostly among locals. In terms of the work permit, I think if YOU wish to work you have to apply for a spousal permit. You cannot work here without one. Travel back and forth is not an issue if you are married to an expat. Thankfully Miami is only a 30 minute flight for shopping, etc.

Debi

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debib
7/6/2017 10:15 EST

Hi - I am a single professional woman living alone in Cable Beach. A safe, gated community is my recommendation and you can feel comfortable pretty much anywhere in the western part of Nassau. Crime is mostly among locals. In terms of the work permit, I think if YOU wish to work you have to apply for a spousal permit. You cannot work here without one. Travel back and forth is not an issue if you are married to an expat. Thankfully Miami is only a 30 minute flight for shopping, etc.

Debi

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