BVI White Bay, Jost Van Dyke, BVI – Image courtesy of alphayachting.com

How to get to British Virgin Islands

The British Virgin Islands (or BVI) – a British Overseas Territory – are located in the Leeward Islands of the Lesser Antilles to the east of the US Virgin Islands (USVI) and Puerto Rico, and north-west of Anguilla in the Caribbean.

The British Virgin Islands comprise around 60 islands, including the main islands of Tortola, Virgin Gorda, Anegada and Jost Van Dyke, plus numerous, small uninhabited islets – only 16 of the islands are inhabited.

Tortola is situated 6km (3.7mi) northeast of the US Virgin Islands, 97km (60mi) east of Puerto Rico and 150km (93mi) north-west of Anguilla.

Virgin Gorda is situated 19km (11.8mi) east of Tortola and 41km (25mi) east of St Thomas (USVI). Anegada, the most northerly of the Virgins, lies 48km (5mi) east of Tortola.

The capital, Road Town, is located on Tortola, the largest island, which is about 20km (12mi) long and 5km (3mi) wide.

There are no direct flights to the British Virgin Islands from North America or Europe, but BVI is easily accessible by sea and air from the US Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico and Antigua.

The most convenient route to the British Virgin Islands is by air to Terrance B. Lettsome International Airport (EIS), previously known as Beef Island Airport.

The airport sits on Beef Island, a tiny island connected to Tortola by the one-lane Queen Elizabeth Bridge, around 14km (8.6mi) from Road Town – about 14 minutes by taxi.

Virgin Gorda and Anegada have their own smaller airports.

Alternatively, you may fly to Cyril E. King Airport (STT) in Charlotte Amalie on St. Thomas in the US Virgin Islands, and then take a 45-minute ferry ride to Road Town on Tortola.

The larger Cyril E. King Airport (STT) offers more international and US flights than Terrance B. Lettsome International Airport (EIS), and may offer less-expensive air fares.

By cruise ship, Road Town Harbour in Tortola is a major port-of-call for many cruise companies.


Flight times to British Virgin Islands

The following are the most convenient and quickest routes to Terrance B. Lettsome International Airport (EIS), British Virgin Islands.

From United States: American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, United Airlines, Air Sunshine, Spirit Airways, Cape Air, Seaborne Airways, InterCaribbean Airways and Jet Blue Airways offer the most convenient scheduled flights to British Virgin Islands.

Puerto Rico to British Virgin Islands is 40 min, direct flight
US Virgin Islands to British Virgin Islands is 15 min, direct flight

Atlanta to British Virgin Islands is 6 hrs 5 min, connecting flightˆ
Boston to British Virgin Islands is 6 hrs 7 min, connecting flightˆ
Charlotte to British Virgin Islands is 5 hrs 30 min, connecting flight
Chicago to British Virgin Islands is 5 hrs 50 min, connecting flightˆ
Dallas-Fort Worth to British Virgin Islands is 7 hrs 45 min, connecting flightˆ
Houston to British Virgin Islands is 5 hr 50 min, connecting flightˆ
New York to British Virgin Islands is 5 hrs 50 min, connecting flightˆ
Miami to British Virgin Islands is 4 hrs 30 min, connecting flightˆ
Los Angeles to British Virgin Islands is 11 hrs 25 min, connecting flightˆ
San Francisco to British Virgin Islands is 12 hrs 10 min, connecting flightˆ
Seattle to Barbados is 11 hrs 20 min, connecting flightˆ


From Canada: Air Canada, Sunwing Airlines, WestJet, Delta Air Lines, Seaborne Airways and Cape Air offer the most convenient scheduled flights to British Virgin Islands.

Toronto to British Virgin Islands is 6 hrs 7 min, connecting flightˆ
Montreal to British Virgin Islands is 9 hrs 5 min, connecting flightˆ
Vancouver to British Virgin Islands is 12 hrs 45 min, connecting flightˆ


From Australia: Qantas, Air New Zealand, JetBlue Airways, American Airlines, United Airlines and Delta Air Lines offer the most convenient scheduled flights.

Adelaide to British Virgin Islands is 32 hrs 55 min, connecting flightˆ
Brisbane to British Virgin Islands is 29 hrs 25 min, connecting flightˆ
Sydney to British Virgin Islands is 31 hrs 15 min, connecting flightˆ
Melbourne to British Virgin Islands is 30 hrs 35 min, connecting flightˆ
Perth to British Virgin Islands is 34 hrs 30 min, connecting flightˆ


From New Zealand: Air New Zealand and United Airlines offer the most convenient scheduled flights to British Virgin Islands.

Auckland to British Virgin Islands is 27 hrs 57 min, connecting flightˆ


From Singapore: KLM, Singapore Airlines and United Airlines offer the most convenient scheduled flights to British Virgin Islands.

Singapore to British Virgin Islands is 28 hrs 20 min, connecting flightˆ


From United Arab Emirates: Etihad, Emirates, Condor Flugdienst, Eurowings and Virgin Atlantic offer the most convenient flights to British Virgin Islands.

Abu Dhabi to British Virgin Islands is 21 hrs, connecting flightˆ
Dubai to British Virgin Islands is 21 hrs 10 min, connecting flightˆ


From United Kingdom: British Airways and InterCaribbean Airways offer the most convenient scheduled flights to British Virgin Islands.

London to British Virgin Islands is 12 hrs 55 min, connecting flightˆ
Manchester to British Virgin Islands is 11 hrs 10 min, connecting flightˆ


From Ireland: Ryanair, Aer Lingus, British Airways and Virgin Atlantic offer the most convenient flights to British Virgin Islands.

Dublin to British Virgin Islands is 13 hrs 25 min, with connecting flightˆ


From France: Air Caraïbes and Air Sunshine offer the most convenient scheduled flights to British Virgin Islands from Paris Orly Airport (ORY).

Paris to British Virgin Islands is 11 hrs 50 min, connecting flightˆ


From Germany: KLM, Condor Flugdienst, Air Sunshine, Cape Air, InterCaribbean Airways and Winair offer the most convenient flights to British Virgin Islands.

Berlin to British Virgin Islands is 14 hrs 10 min, connecting flightˆ
Dusseldorf to British Virgin Islands is 15 hrs, connecting flightˆ
Frankfurt to British Virgin Islands is 10 hrs, connecting flightˆ
Hamburg to British Virgin Islands is 12 hrs 10 min, connecting flightˆ
Munich to British Virgin Islands is 13 hrs 50 min, connecting flightˆ

(ˆincludes transfer & layover time.)


Flying in

Terrance B. Lettsome International Airport (EIS), previously known as Beef Island Airport, sits on Beef Island, a tiny island connected to Tortola by the one-lane Queen Elizabeth Bridge, around 14km (8.6mi) from Road Town.


Public transport

Taxi: Taxis are available at the airport. The Beef Island Taxi Association (+1 284 495 1982) operates mini-buses, luxury cars and open-air safari vehicles. The fare is about US$27 to Road Town.

Shuttle: Hotels can arrange courtesy shuttles to and from the airport by prior arrangement.

Ferry: The North Sound Express (tel: +1 284 495 2138) connects the airport, at nearby Trellis Bay dock, to Virgin Gorda. It's best to book in advance.

Full details and schedules for inter-island ferries are available on the British Virgin Islands tourism website: www.bvitourism.com/inter-island-ferries

Air: Numerous companies operate air charter flights around the islands through the British Virgin Islands Tourist Board, including Air America (tel: +1 787 276 5669; www.airamericacaribbean.com) and Air Sunshine (tel: +1 954 434 8900; www.airsunshine.com).


Car rental

Car hire companies at Terrance B. Lettsome International Airport, include Avis, Alamo, National and Hertz. Pre-arranged pick-up services are also available.


Terminal facilities

Money: There is an ATM within the terminal building, which is open from 0530 to 2230.

Food: An ice cream parlour and a restaurant serving local and international food is located in the terminal building.

Shopping: Some small shops are located at the international airport.

Wi-Fi: Telephones and Wi-Fi internet access are available at the airport in the departure lounge.


Disabled facilities

Facilities for disabled travellers are basic. Any passengers who may require additional assistance at the airport are advised to contact their airline prior to travel.


Entry requirements

All visitors must hold return/onward tickets, plus proof of sufficient funds, and all visitors must hold passports which are valid at least six months after entry. No visa is required for a stay of up to 30 days.


Getting around

The best way to get around BVI is by car, taxi and boat.

Ferries are a popular way to get around the islands with frequent daily links between Tortola and Virgin Gorda, Jost Van Dyke and Peter Island.

There are also daily ferries between Tortola and St Thomas and St John in the US Virgin Islands. Ferry journeys between Tortola and St Thomas take about 50 minutes.

You can also get around by chartering a boat.

The British Virgin Islands has a good road network, although roads are often steep, narrow, and poorly maintained.


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More about BVI…


Latest update: How to get to British Virgin Islands: 25 March, 2020


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