BonaireTalk FAQ

Here you can find answers to questions about how the board works. Use the links or search box below to find your way around.

Airlines to Bonaire

BIA Bonaire International Airport (Flamingo Airport) Website

BIA Flamingo Airport Flight Arrivals

BIA Flamingo Airport Flight Departures


Insel air

Insel Air is changing their luggage allowance and making it "simpler". Appears as though you get one checked bag at 23KG (50lb) on ALL their flights. Still get the 10KG (22 lbs) for Scuba gear and the carryon allowance of 10KG (22 lbs).

Divi Divi




DAE see this URL for information NEW INFO


United Caribbean Airlines...Charter

Cur to Bon and back

submitted by Ruth of KFC fame as of 04/21/2012

Getting from Curacao to Bonaire is not difficult, and costs about $50-$70 one-way. However, keep in mind that CUR can be VERY busy (think KLM 747’s)--and, you need to clear immigration, along with everyone else (maybe all the booths are staffed to speed you along, maybe not...), get your bags at baggage claim & clear customs. There are 2 x-ray machines for all luggage entering CUR, but only one line to enter this area. There are signs indicating “Something to Declare” and “Nothing to Declare” but personally, I have not seen these in use. They usually do x-ray all incoming bags; but just because there are 2 machines, it doesn’t mean that both will be in use.

After this, you must check-in at your next airline’s counter-exit the arrivals hall and walk about 300’ (100m) to the left (unless you’re on Insel’s MIA/CUR/BON flight-they’ll walk you thru transit inside the hall), clear checkpoint #1 (show boarding pass & ID), go up the escalator, pay transfer tax (show boarding passes), clear full security (collect tax stub, laptops out, shoes off, all thru x-ray…), then immigration (boarding pass, ID & exit card, which you will have received on the plane), then get to your gate. Although none of this is very far, there still can be many people ahead of you. Give yourself at least 2 hours, and know the alternate airline's later flights just in case.

CUR/BON connecting flights are available on these airlines (not Tiara-they fly only BON/Aruba, not CUR):

Easy Air

- contact info: EZair email: or call (011) 599-796-3939 or (011) 599-9-515-3939. Their last flight of the day from CUR to BON is at 5:30pm. Easy Air takes only cash. They do not fly on Saturdays; this is the only airline not to fly 7 days/week. *Free baggage allowance is 15 kg (33lbs), $2/kg, about $1/lb after that. Don’t freak out about not being able to pay online, or having more baggage weight than they state. Both Easy & Divi are easy to deal with-you make your reservation by email (or phone), then pay at the counter when you get there (or beforehand with Divi as explained above). Before you travel, follow-up with another e-mail and provide your incoming flight info.

Divi Divi

- contact info: Divi Divi email: Their last CUR/BON flight of the day is at 5pm.

1) *Free baggage allowance is 18 kg (40lbs; 2 Ang/Kg after that-about $0.60/lb), and they take cash, local debit cards, Visa & MC. You can pay at the counter when you arrive, or you can pay with your CC over the phone, or they’ll fax you a CC authorization form & you’ll fax it back to them. At this time, they are unable to take CC payments via the website. I have been told by Divi that some evening flights are planned, but no definite date yet. I will post this info as soon as I hear.

2) All of your luggage may not make it on the same flight, since the smaller planes have limitations. They'll just send it on the next available flight (which may be the next day), and you'll have to go back to the airport to pick it up (no airline will deliver a delayed bag to you--this is a DIY situation).

Both EZair & Divi are easy to deal with-you make your reservation by email (or phone), then pay cash at the counter when you get there. Before you travel, follow-up with another e-mail, providing your incoming flight info. You cannot book via their website, only by phone or by email.

Insel Air

- Inselair Insel has a CUR/BON flight at 5:50pm Mon-Fri, 8:15pm on Saturdays & 7:30pm on Sundays; (check their timetables online). Insel is the only “local” airline with a non-stop from MIA to BON (Saturdays). If you fly Insel the other days to Bonaire via Curacao, MIA/CUR/BON, and it’s the same day travel, they will check your bags all the way to Bonaire, walk you thru the transit area in Curacao where you’ll pay the $2 transit fee & go thru a mini-security (x-ray). *Baggage info here: The same routine goes for the reverse route-BON/CUR/MIA-your bags are checked in Bonaire thru to MIA; Insel will walk you thru the CUR transit area (no need to clear immigration, pick up your own bags, re-check, etc.). Because you are on Insel the entire way, the seemingly short connection time in CUR is ok. I am assuming it is the same for the Charlotte flights, though I have no personal experience with this..


- DAE currently (as of 4/2012) showing an 8pm CUR/BON, however, their schedule has been changing a lot lately. Note, Bonaire is listed under “Caribbean Netherlands” in their drop-down menu. *DAE’s baggage allowance is 20kg (44lbs). More info here:

ALL of the airlines will accept your baggage, but if you go over their 15kg or 20kg limit, you pay extra--about $0.50/lb or $1/kg. Sometimes they let extra weight go uncharged, but plan on having small bills available to pay the fees (i.e., don't land with only $50's & $100's).


The transfer/transit tax in CUR is $2pp. Present your boarding passes at the window to prove you’re in transit. If you cannot prove you’re in transit you’ll have to pay the local departure tax which is $8 (CUR/BON). When you leave Bonaire, the departure tax is included in your ticket. Your departure tax from CUR to the US or Europe, etc. is included in that ticket.


If your baggage is over the weight limit of the airlines, you will need to pay. Cost is around $1/kg (1 kg = 2.2 lbs), but this varies with the airline. You are allowed more than the limit, you just have to pay by weight, not by piece. On the smaller planes that Easy & Divi use, if there’s not enough room, your bags may be sent on a later flight, even if that means the next morning. Sometimes they let extra weight go uncharged, but plan on having small bills available to pay the fees (i.e., don't land with only $50's & $100's; Divi does accept credit cards and locally issued debit cards). With Easy Air and Divi, if you’re over, you pay at the counter when you’re checking in, same as you’d pay for your ticket--at their counter. If you’re over-weight with DAE or Insel, you need to leave the counter & go to their ticketing windows to pay (about 400’/120m away, on the other side of the arrivals hall—this is also where you’d go if you did not pay for your ticket ahead of time), as they do not handle cash at their counters. Insel & DAE accept Visa/MC credit cards at their window.

Re: Carry-ons—

the airlines MAY weigh them, or not. When you get to the plane, you will hand your bag to the baggage guys standing next to the plane, and they will put it in the cargo space. When you land, they will take the bag out & hand it back to you. Space in the cabins is very limited (a purse or laptop case will fit, but not much more); they will not let you enter the cabin with a carry-on that’s too big, but they will place it in the cargo area.

Baggage handling differs between the airlines. When you fly Easy or Divi, you check your bags & they will put them in the plane. However, when you land, you walk your own bags from the plane. Don’t get off the plane and walk away expecting your bags to appear on the baggage carousel. They do not use baggage handlers when you land-you can request help upon landing, but don’t count on it.

When you fly DAE or Insel, they will send your bags to the baggage carousel when you land. You’ll need to get your own carry-on if they took if from you when you got on the plane. Something like this can matter when traveling back thru Curacao: because you have to wait for your baggage to arrive, it adds extra time to your transit, so plan accordingly.

All incoming baggage is (supposed to be) x-rayed on Bonaire. There is only one x-ray machine. Besides your personal items (clothing, dive gear, cameras, laptops, toiletries-all the “usual suspects”), you are allowed $400 duty free-for example, if you’re bringing in expensive meats, items for your residence here, or purchased liquor or cigarettes or other obvious new items not usually used for normal travel, you may be taxed 8%+ for purchases over the allowance (alcohol has different tax rates but I’m not sure exactly what they are, since they’re based on alcoholic content), so keep your receipts handy in case you’re asked. If they decide to tax you on something, you will have to pay in cash.

It’s also a good idea to have mosquito repellent wipes handy as the buggers can be bad at the airport, and can torture you while you wait in lines.

Re: food—if you arrive hungry in CUR, and have some time after checking into your BON flight, eat downstairs at Wendy’s or Sbarro’s—the choices once you get upstairs to your gate will make the downstairs choices look gourmet.

Re: long layover in CUR—there is a “lounge” across from Gate 4 that’s open till 8pm (it will stay open later if a lot of flights are delayed and they have a lot of guests). It’s $20, and reasonably comfortable with some light snacks, beer, wine & soft drinks included.

p>If you have to overnight in Curacao, on a budget: It’s a family run complex, and they will also arrange transportation for a nominal amount to/from the airport (taxis in Curacao are expensive!). Do note that this motel is not near any restaurant; it’s in a residential neighborhood—so plan on eating at the airport.

Crime information

Bonaire, like most other places does have petty crime, mostly thefts of opportunity from vehicles and rooms. A few common-sense precautions should minimize the likelihood of you being a victim of petty crime:

o When leaving your vehicle at a dive, snorkeling, wind-surfing or kite-surfing site, leave the doors unlocked and the windows rolled down so windows aren't broken to get into the vehicle.

o Never leave anything of value (even minimal value) in the vehicle that you wouldn't want stolen, because if it is in the vehicle, it might be stolen. (The ONLY exception to leaving things in the vehicle, it is acceptable to leave scuba tanks in an unoccupied vehicle because these need to be filled to re-use somewhere and each is marked with the owner's identification.)

o If your accommodations have a safe, lock all valuables in the safe when not being used. If unable to lock in a safe, do not leave out in plain view when not in use. This applies to cameras, computers, radios, telephones, passports, money, etc.

o Lock the doors when leaving your accommodations and close (and if possible, latch) the windows, even if just for a few minutes and/or "just going to the pool". Remember, not all guests at the accommodation are honest (and if a theft happens, it isn't necessarily an islander).

If something should happen to you, Please report it to the police. If this is not done the police will not know it has happened. The more that is reported the more help will become available.

Bonaire Emergency Numbers

Bonaire Hospital

Hospital San Francisco (Kaya Soeur Bartola #2, Kralendijk). The hospital has 60 beds. You will need to provide your own blankets, pillows, and sleepwear.

Phone: (599) 717-8900

Fax: (599) 717-7990

There is an ambulance plane on call for emergencies.

Directions: Go to town, find Top Supermarket {formerly Cultimara Grocery Store}. Turn there and the hospital is ahead on your right, the recompression chamber is ahead on your left.

Bonaire Recompression Chamber

The hyperbaric recompression chamber is adjacent to the hospital; admittance is through the emergency room. Do not go directly to the Chamber in a dive emergency; go to the hospital emergency room.

DAN (Divers Alert Network)

DAN's (new) emergency number for both diving & non-diving emergencies including Travel Assist is 1 (919) 684-9111, available 24/7. Collect emergency calls are accepted. Member services number (including medical questions, member services, benefits questions and other DAN services) is 1 (800) 446-2671, and is available Monday - Friday, 8:30 AM - 5 PM Eastern Time.

Dr.van der Vaart

717 7140

It's the clinic across from the hospital.

Bonaire Ambulance Emergency Number

The emergency phone number for the ambulance is 114

Bonaire Police Emergency Numbers Call 911 first. This number is manned by one person, so if no one answers, call 717-8000

There are three pharmacies (botikas) on the island of Bonaire:

    Botika Bonaire

    in the center of town on Kaya Grandi 27, 717-8905 Or: 717-8063

    Botika Korona

    on Kaya Korona 180, 717-7552 Or: 717-4855

    Botika Rincon

    in the village of Rincon

STINAPA and Bonaire Marine Park

To report vandalism on the reef, or marine park violations, please call 717-8444 After business hours call 786-8444.

Grocery Store Hours

The hours vary but most are open from 8 am til 7 pm 6 days some are open Sundays from 8 til 2

Ware House and Cash and Carry are open 8 til 6 daily and Sundays til 2...

{thank you Michael Gaynor } when we get more information we will post more specific stores and hours {{thank you Bonnie for the suggestion }}

Ware House

8 AM to 7 PM Monday through Saturday. Closed on Sundays.

Van den Tweel Market

8-8 everyday

Sunshine Market

Mon 8 - 3pm Tues - Sat 8am - 8pm Sun 10am - 8 pm

{thank you Cindi }

Zhung Kong

phone # 717-6688 (across from W.E.B. in Hato) Open daily 8:30am - 8:30pm

same people also run the Progresso Supermarket at Kaya Korona 59

{thank you wwguy}

Top Supermarket (formerly Cultimara)

Monday-Saturday: 7:30am-7:00pm/Sunday 9:00am-2:00pm

More For Less Supermarket

Monday- Saturday 8:30am-12:30pm---3:00pm-7:00pm /Sunday 9:00am-1:00pm

Electric Usage

The default power from an electrical outlet here on Bonaire is 127 Volts AC at 50 Cycles (or Hertz or Hz).

This doesn't really match either the power requirements of most European appliances (220V, 50Hz) or American appliances (110V, 60Hz), and while both European standard and U.S. standard outlet connections are visible in just about all Bonairean structures, it's not always clear what voltage the outlet is running at, so it's important to check this with whomever operates the house, hotel, apartment, etc. that you'll be staying in.

Assuming you have a 127V outlet (which looks like a U.S. standard outlet typically), most resorts have transformers available for rent for your more sensitive plug-in appliances, such as battery chargers. Such transformers can also be bought in local stores such as Kooymans, Inpo, and Playa Trading for between $50 and $100.

Some things may be plugged into a 127V socket directly without a transformer, as long as you understand that some U.S. voltage specific devices may run warm, and may burn out if left plugged in for a long time. Note that many notebook computers already have universal power supplies and should work fine plugged into any outlet (check with your manufacturer or your notebook power supply for details) .

However, it is also said that Bonaire is occasionally "generous" with its power, and surges and brownouts are not uncommon. If you plug anything electronically delicate into a wall outlet, it might not be a bad idea to have a small surge protector in between. These are available at most consumer electronics stores, such as Radio Shack.

{thank you Grunt for this information}

Diving information

water temperature and wetsuit thickness

The water temperature in Bonaire ranges from 78-81°F (25-27°C).

Wetsuits are a personal choice. People dive with diveskins to 5mm depending on their tolerance to cold. A diveskin of some sort protects against sunburn,stingy things in the water, and although you should not be touching the reef, Fire coral contact.

Hard soled booties are a must on Bonaire... there is much rubble and iron shore on the beaches and underwater there are urchins just waiting to find a nice soft foot.. there are also very long sharp thorns around some of the bushes.. Please be very careful with these as we wouldn't want your vacation cut short because of medical reasons.

Lionfish Protocol

To report Lionfish sightings you can do one of the following: report it to your dive operation or you may personally call STINPA .

Ask your dive shop about the Lion fish Hunting course

Call STINPA at: 717-8444

It is extremely helpful when reporting your sighting information to include a prominent reference point such as a dive boat mooring. Also include the direction (north or south from that point) and estimated distance (in dive time or in feet/meters) to the lionfish . If shore diving and you do not use the boat mooring as a reference point, please point out a prominent land monument if available. If an unusual underwater feature is near-by (small wreck, etc.) it may be used as a reference to aid locating the marker.

3. Regarding old markers, they are no longer used to mark the location of sighted Lionfish, again talk with your dive shop if you should see one.

Pets & Animals

Info on taking pets to Bonaire

Pet Travel

Animal Clinic

Kaminda Lagun 24A 717-4255 Cellular (Emergency) 790-6001

Activities other than diving

Info on Kayaking whilst visiting Bonaire


Glass Bottomed Boat

(+599) 795-1826

Be fascinated as you look into a window of another world. The 32-foot glass bottom boat, gives guests an incomparable view of the underwater world of the Bonaire National Marine Park. Guests just need to sit back on the comfortable seats and enjoy this narrated eco tour of one of the best preserved and protected reefs of the world. The tour starts directly from the south pier at Divi Flamingo Beach Resort & Casino. Glass bottom Boat

Horseback Riding

Contact Marion at the Riding Academy.. Her # 599-560-7949 or 599-786-2094.. Her e Her website: Riding Academy

Bonaire Windsurfing:

Bonaires' Lac Bay was discovered as an ideal location for windsurfing, has been another of our best kept secrets. Lac Bay boasts shallow waters and constant on-shore breezes, assuring a safe and enjoyable outing for beginners as well as pros! For the stronger and more experienced, try the leeward side of the island where the winds will carry you close-by Klein Bonaire, our uninhabited little neighbour. The Trade Winds blow a steady 12-18 knots September through November and reach 15 to 25 knots the rest of the year.

Jibe City Tel: + (599 717) 5233, Fax + (599 717) 4455

Note: Seasonal multi-day sponsored windsurf clinics

windsurf place Tel: + (599 717) 2288, Fax + (599 717) 5279

Kite Surfing

Bonaire Kitesurfing is mainly done at Atlantis. Wind blow 12-18 knots September through November and reach 15 to 25 knots the rest of the year. For more Info contact Roan & Carla Jaspars

Kiteboarding Bonaire Tel: + (599 701) 5483, or + (599 786) 6138 or

Bonefishing: Charters

Note: It is recommend to make a reservation in advance since the demand for these fishing charters has increased tremendously the last couple of years, this is especially the case during the high season. Catch some fish with one of these deepsea fishing charters

    Big Game Sport Fishing ;Tel: +(599) 717 6500. E-mail:

    Piscatur; Tel: +(599) 717-8774 Cellular: +(599) 780-0833 or +(599) 780-8774 E-mail:


Want to see more of Bonaire than fish and coral reefs? A trip to one of Bonaire's museums is just the ticket to find out more about the local culture and history.

    Museo Mangasina di Rei Kaminda

    Rincon: An old restored plantation house with an indoor museum display of tools, household items and furniture.

    Museo Bonaire:

    Kaya van de Ree#7, Sabana Artifacts, architecture, shells, myths, literature and history as well as works of local artists.

    Museo Fort Oranje:

    Waterfront Promenade, Kralendijk. Historical and archaeological artifacts from Bonaire's past.

    Museo Real Rincon:

    Kaya Rincon, across from Rincon Center, Outdoor museum showing such things as cactus fences and lime ovens.

    Kas Krioyo:

    Kaya Milon 4, Rincon, Restored family home of Tom Molina.

    Museo Washington Park:

    Kaya Gilberto R.E. Herraa (entrance of park) Shows the history and nature of Washington/Slagbaai Park

    Museo Kadimo:

    Kaya Sofaya 13, Rincon. Historical home including artifacts, photos and even videos. To visit call George Thode at 785-0018

    Museo Archivo:

    Extra Newspaper building, Kaya G.F. Betico Croes . Collection of works, lectures, videos, books of Bonaire history and culture. To visit, call Bòi Anton at 717-8482

    Museo di Belua:

    Kaya G.F. Betico Croes 6 . Jenny Reina created a garden of whimsical life sized dolls. There is also a shop for local crafts.

Museum information updated May, 2007, based on a Bonaire Island Government release. It is recommended to call ahead first to be sure the museum you wish to visit will be open.

Butterfly Farm:

Visit the Butterfly Farm


Divi Flamingo Casino at the Divi Flamingo Beach resort J.A. Abraham 40 Phone: 717-8285

The Plaza Resort Casino at the Plaza Resort 80 Julio A. Abraham Boulevard phone:717 2500


Visit the Cinema website for latest info of Films showing at The Empire Outdoor Cinema , located at :- Kaya Katwijk 6, Kralendijk Tel:- +599 777 1122

Bonaire Turtles:

Sea Turtle Conservation Bonaire (STCB) is a non-governmental research and conservation organization that has been protecting sea turtles since 1991. The small Caribbean island of Bonaire is our headquarters and home to three of the world’s six endangered or critically endangered species of marine turtles: the hawksbill, green, and loggerhead turtle.

Sea Turtle Conservation Bonaire (STCB) website


Bonaire has no native species of birds, however, there are a number of subspecies, or geographical races that are found on the islands Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao. Bonaire's most famous is the pink flamingo, which most evenings around sunset, you may be able to see small flocks leaving the southern tip of Bonaire, near the Willemstoren Lighthouse. Contrary to popular belief, they are not all flying off to Venezuela, although some undoubtedly will reach the South American coast. There are a number of environmental factors that have made Bonaire a very interesting site for birders to enjoy, and there is always the chance that an alert birder will record the occurrence of an extra-limital bird. The Island boasts over 190 species including the Lora, which is now protected against capture by international treaty.

Wellness & Fitness:

Bon Bida Spa & Gym

Bon Bida Massage Tel: 717 7760

WSP Massage Hut Tel: 717 2288

Yoga Bonaire

Info about more events and activities:



Boating and Sailing

Sailing and Boating:

Bonaire has a long tradition with the sea. Her sailors were known throughout the Caribbean for their skill in navigation and sailing abilities. During the past World Wars, the island men were part of the merchant marine and many gave their lives in the struggle. A monument, placed by Eleanor Roosevelt and dedicated to these 34 brave men, can be found in town opposite Wilhelmina Park.

Bonaire was, and to some extent still is, known as a boat building center. Local craftsman produced some of the finest vessels that were so well built that many are still afloat and in use today. You will see them heading out and returning each afternoon bearing the catch of the day. As a visitor to the island, you should not miss the chance of spending some time sailing our calm water.

Granted, the ships that take you out are more modern, but the feeling of being at sea is the same. There are a number of charters that can take day sailors to snorkel, swim and picnic or just enjoy the beautiful views.

Samur Sailing Charters:

Tel: +(599) 717-5592 or +(599) 786-5592 E-mail:

Woodwind Cruises :

Tel: (599) 786-7055 E-mail:

Duty Free Shopping

Duty Free info for U.S. citizens ;

U.S. citizens, regardless of age, who have been out of the country for a minimum of 48 hours and who have not used their respective duty-free allowance within 30 days are entitled to a $600 duty-free tax exemption. Families traveling together can pool their exemptions, meaning couples can bring hone $2,400 worth of articles duty-free. Liquor: The duty-free allowance for U.S. citizens age 21 and over is one quart, the value of which must be included within the $600 exemption.

Duty Free info for Canadian citizens :

Canadian citizens who have been outside Canada for a minimum of seven days are permitted a duty-free exemption of $750 (Canadian Dollars). Citizens are also permitted a duty-free exemption of $200 (Canadian Dollars) each time they are out of the country for more than 48 hours. Please note that this $200 exemption may not be claimed during the same period as the $750 exemption, nor can your exemptions be pooled with your spouse and/or children. Liquor: The duty-free allowance for Canadian citizens (who meet the legal age of the province they re-enter) is 40 ounces of wine or liquor or two dozens 12-ounce cans of beer, the value of which must be included within the yearly or quarterly exemption.

Please check with your government for recent updates on Duty free shopping

Currency used

As Of January 1,2011, the US Dollar is legal tender on Bonaire.

Mosquitos and Gnats and Bugs, OH MY

There are mosquitos everywhere. No question. Some places are heavier than others, e.g., dark areas like under tables and where plants are watered regularly.

Use effective forms of mosquito repellent and reapply frequently, particularly around dusk and early hours of the evening. Most on this board recommend DEET. Women have said it melts their fingernail polish.

If you forget to spray before going out to dinner most places have some sort of spray available if you just ask.

Driving Tips

•Speed limit in built-up area is 40 km/h (= 25 Mph). Outside of town 60 km/h (= 37 Mph), except where otherwise posted.

•On T-junctions traffic on the dead-end road must give right of way to all traffic from left and right.

•Reduce your speed in rainy weather. Wet roads can be extremely slippery.

*there are now 3 roundabouts on Bonaire. The vehicle in the roundabout has the right of way, all other entering must yield to them.

For more local information on Driving and the signs you will see,please go to this website:Traffic information

Cruise Ship Info

Please click on the link below for the latest info on when & what cruise ships are visiting Bonaire

Cruise Ship info


Bon Recycling for the last year has been recycling on Bonaire.

UPDATE AS OF 3/23/13 from Tish.. The Bon Recycling folks and Selibon have set up containers outside the Selibon facility on Kaya Industria, next to Warehouse. Please deposit there in the appropriate container your old paper, cardboard, glass (brown, white, green), PET plastic and bottles, metal, engine and household oil, electronic waste (like cell phones and computers), batteries (for cars and electronics), televisions, some appliances, and fans

If you have questions, you can reach these wonderful people at 526-6814 or 511-6358.

They are shipping all these items (including, for now, the glass) off the island (to Curacao, Colombia, etc.). The operation is self-supporting.

If you pass their truck, give 'em a thumbs up, please. And of course, recycle!

Thank You Tish for this information

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