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An Expat Talks about Living in Christiansted, US Virgin Isl.

Apr 08, 2019


Pet Parade in Christiansted, St. Croix

An expat talks about life in Christiansted, St. Croix following Hurricane Maria in September of 2017. The oil refinery closed, tourism was down and jobs were hard to come by. But, the situation is improving since refinery has reopened and there are reconstruction jobs. She wouldn't advise someone to move to St. Croix right now unless they don't need to work.

What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?

Christiansted

How long have you lived there?

6 years

What activities, clubs and organizations would you recommend to newcomers to help them meet others?

Most restaurants have midweek activities (trivia night etc.) Downtown has many parades an regular events called Jump Up. Triathlon Federation is great for athletes, as is the Humane Society for pet lovers.

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In terms of religious, racial, economic and cultural diversity, are the people of this city or town diverse? Are they accepting of differences? Describe.

There are many churches, a mosque, and a synagogue. Economic diversity? If that means are some people quite rich and others barely able to afford to live here, I'd say we have an ample supply of economic diversity. The racial and ethnic mix seems to do pretty well together. Locals may simultaneously roll their eyes and suck their teeth when people come here bringing their racism with them, but life is generally peaceful.

What are the main industries in this city? What types of career opportunities commonly exist? How do most people find new jobs?

During the 1st 8 months here my husband found no work. I did some ebay sales and wiped out my credit cards. At the time the main industry was tourism. Since then the oil refinery has reopened and a hurricane did enormous damage. Now there are jobs in oil and reconstruction. The way my husband eventually got work was by advertising for it. People in the service industry generally visit restaurants and hotels. Some jobs appear on Facebook. There is a newspaper and a state job site online but they seem to have a worse track record than the other methods.

In general, what are peoples' priorities in this city? For example, do lives revolve around work, family, socializing, sports, etc.?

I hate to generalize about people. Most folks are laid back about work and much more involved in family and social lives. Many people have been helping with hurricane relief while others have been seeking better housing since 2017.

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If a friend of yours was thinking of moving to this city or town from far away, what other advice would you give them.

I'd suggest other places unless they had a pretty much unlimited suppuly of cash.

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