FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Frequently asked questions

Where is Curacao located?


Curacao is an island in the southwestern Caribbean Sea, 40 miles away from the Venezuelan coast. It is located between its sister islands, Bonaire and Aruba. They are collectively known as the “ABC Islands,” but actually plot ACB reading from left to right on a map. For more background information on Curacao, read our blog post Where is Curacao located? Curacao map




How do we get to Curacao?


There are many direct flights to Curacao. United States:

  • American Airlines, daily from Miami, and weekly from (Saturday) Charlotte NC.
  • JetBlue, triweekly (Monday, Wednesday & Saturday) from JFK.
Canada:
  • Air Canada, weekly (Friday) from Toronto, and weekly (Thursday) from Montreal.
  • Westjet, weekly (Sunday) from Toronto.
  • Sunwing, weekly (Sunday) from Toronto.
Europe:
  • KLM, daily from Amsterdam.
  • Arkefly, daily from Amsterdam.
In addition, there are flights from Aruba, Bonaire, Cuba, Venezuela, Guyana, Colombia, Panama, Surinam, Trinidad & Tobago, and St. Maarten.




How does the Embarcation Card Work?


All foreign visitors arriving in Curacao are required to have a completed ED-card for immigration clearance. You can obtain the ED-card on board of the flights arriving in Curacao, or you can complete the card online before even embarking your flight to Curaçao. The online ED-card will be in sync with the Border Management System of the Immigration Department in Curacao. For more information, read our blog post: Skip the Lines at Curacao's Customs and Immigration Clearance Please note that the paper ED-card will be still available for guests who prefer to fill out the form during their flight to Curacao. Curacao embarkation card




How do we check in?


Once you have your rental car at the airport, you call our Property Manager (some car rental companies will give you a local cell phone). She will make sure to be at the house when you arrive and will hand you over the keys, explain all things you need to know about Villa Seashell - Curacao Vacation Rentals and answer any questions you have.




How far is Villa Seashell from the airport and from Willemstad?


Villa Seashell - Curacao Vacation Rentals is about 25 minutes, 12 miles, from Curacao Airport (the only airport on the island), and 35 minutes, 16 miles, from downtown Willemstad. Click here for more information on Curacao Airport




What time is check-out, can a later check-out be arranged?


Check-In is 4:00 p.m. Check-Out is 11:00 a.m. If we don't have a guest scheduled to arrive or depart on the same day, we're happy to arrange an alternate time to suit your travel schedule.




Do we need a car?


We highly recommend you rent a car. It’s about a 25 minutes drive to Villa Seashell - Curacao Vacation Rentals from the airport and that translates into a US$ 60 (plus $20 per person over three people) taxi ride…one way…also, if you wish to visit different beaches and see some of the attractions, you may want to travel about the island or do some sightseeing. We can help you with your car rental. We have excellent contacts with D&D Car Rental a local car rental company with good prices and great service. Click here for Top Tips on Driving in Curacao, and here for downloading a GPS app, which can be used without an expensive mobile data network coverage, for your mobile device.




If we have a question or problem during our stay, is there someone we can contact?


Yes, our Property Manager will be there to assist if you need us, and she is available via phone, text or email. If she is out of town, she'll arrange for someone else to be on-call.




Does Villa Seashell allow pets?


As much as we love animals ourselves, Villa Seashell - Curacao Vacation Rentals is a pet-free space because we've set ourselves up to cater to those guests with pet allergies.




Does Villa Seashell have air conditioning?


All bedrooms have air conditioning and mosquito screens. There is no air conditioning outside of the bedrooms. The house has an open design so that there is a constant breeze that keeps the house cool. There are ceiling fans in both the kitchen and the living rooms.




Is there a washer and dryer?


Yes, there is a washer and a dryer. To save electricity we recommend to only use the dryer in the case of rain, and otherwise just dry the laundry outside. Because of the high temperatures, the laundry even gets dry quicker outside than using the dryer.




Do you have fishing gear available for us?


Yes, we have several fishing poles and tackles for you at Villa Seashell. See our blog How to Catch Fish Like a Local, for more information.




Is there direct ocean access from Villa Seashell's back yard?


There is no direct access to the ocean from our property. Our home is built on a cliff. We used to have direct access with a ladder from the deck above the ocean, but the ladder disappeared during a storm a couple of years ago. Since we could hardly ever use the ladder because of the high waves, and because easy ocean access is very close by (at the beach, approx. 200 yards from the house), we decided not to replace the ladder. Some houses at Coral Estate advertise with direct ocean access (with a ladder). Be aware, though, that it is questionable whether the ocean is accessible at all. The trade winds are quite heavy throughout the year, which make the waves slam against the cliff most of the time. This makes it nearly impossible to get in or out of the water.




We like to work out, is there a gym nearby?


The Great Outdoors act as our gym here! Coral Estate resort is great for walking and running, and you can also enjoy endless miles and miles of multi-use trails for hiking and mountain biking. Of course, the pool and ocean are good for swimming. 8 The Experience, the spa & beauty center at Coral Estate Center, is hosting yoga classes every Tuesday evening and Thursday morning at the pool:

  • Sunset yoga : Tuesday 5:30 pm
  • Sunrise yoga: Thursday 7:30 am
Classes are ANG 15 per participant




Are water and electricity included in the nightly rate?


A maximum allowance of 15 kWh/pers/day for electricity and 5 m3/week for water is included in the rental rate. The water and electricity allowance should not be a problem at normal use, i.e. use the AC when you are in the room with shutters and doors closed. The house has been built as such that the trade winds cool it down. Therefore it is not necessary to use ACs. We only have once charged extra for electricity and that was when there was someone that used all ACs in the bedrooms with the doors open. The reason we have set a max is because we want to prevent situations like that. The electricity cost in Curacao is about 10x higher than in the US, and we don't like to get a big surprise at the end of the month.




What kind of electrical outlets are there?


Villa Seashell is equipped with both European (220V/ 50Hz) and American outlets (127V/50Hz). On the 2nd floor and in the gazebo you will find European outlets only, on the 1st floor you will find both. You can get along with just a plug converter for many of today's small electrical devices designed to run on dual voltages. Devices like this include most laptops, most recently produced battery chargers, and many small, electrical gadgets, especially those designed for world travel. You can check the back of the device or the "power brick" for the electrical input specifications. Electricity Curacao




Is it safe to drink the tap water?


In Curacao, you do not have to worry if you can drink the tap water. The water coming from the taps is of excellent quality and is safe to drink! It is better than the drinking water you get in the US, Canada or European countries and complies with the world’s highest drinking water standards. Curacao is a dry country; there is simply not enough rain to produce drinking water. Fortunately, the country is surrounded by the Caribbean sea. Aqualectra, the utility company on Curacao, uses seawater to produce quality drinking water.​ The drinking water in Curacao is produced through reversed osmosis. Afterward, the water is enhanced with minerals for health and nutrition purposes.




Do we need to bring our own towels/sheets or pillows?


Nope, not unless you have a favorite pillow. All linens are provided, including:

  • Kitchen towels and dish cloths
  • Bath mat
  • Bed sheets, pillows and pillow cases (and extra pillows, too)
  • Beach towels, bath towels, hand towels, and washcloths, one of each per person.




What extra services can you provide?


We provide the following services at additional cost:

  • Extra cleaning including change of bed sheets and towels (end cleaning is included nightly rate).
  • A private chef, see as well our blog post Private Chef at Curacao Vacation Rentals.
  • Massage.
  • Are you interested in any of the above, or is there anything else you would like? Just let us know.




Where can we buy groceries?


We do our grocery shopping at Centrum Supermarket, which is a 13 mile, half an hour drive. It is just a small detour from the airport, so you may stop there before check-in. The nearest grocery is Quality Market in Tera Kora, which is a 15 minutes drive away.
We also have a Toko, a kind of mom-and-pop place, which sells wine and beer and some food. Click here for more information on the Toko. Centrum Supermarket is open between 8:00 AM and 8:00 PM, except on Sunday, when it closes 5:00 PM. Most stores in Willemstad are open between 10:00 AM and 6:00 PM. There is no shopping in Willemstad on Sunday's or public holidays, except when there is a cruise ship in town.




What is the weather like in Curacao?


Curacao is one of the few places that have great weather year round: sunny, dry, with refreshing trade winds. Curacao has ideal vacation temperatures whole year round. The coldest month is January with an average daylight temperature of 85°F (29°C) and the warmest month is September with an average daylight temperature of 91°F (33°C). The year's average daylight temperature is 88°F (31°C) and average night temperature is 78°F (26°C). Curacao is located in the very south of the Caribbean and is not affected by any cold fronts as they have in Florida, the Bahamas, Cuba, Cancun, and even the Turks and Caicos islands. The ocean temperatures in those areas can get rather cold in the winter. Ocean temperatures around Curacao never get below 80°F (27°C). Click here for the weather forecast.




What is the time in Curacao?


The Curacao standard time is 4 hours behind Greenwich Mean Time (GMT-4).
Curacao is located in the Atlantic Standard Time (AST) zone.
Curacao does not operate Daylight-Saving Time.




What kind of money do they use in Curacao, are there ATMs, are credit cards accepted?


The local currency is called Antillean Guilder (ANG). The Antillean Guilder is tied to the US Dollar at a fixed rate of 1 USD = 1.75 ANG, or in other terms US$20 equals ANG 35. Since the US Dollar is widely accepted on the island, it is best to have some cash US Dollars. The ATMs will dispense your choice of Antillean Guilders or US Dollars. The one we use most is a Bankomatico just outside the entrance to the Centrum Supermarket. It is operated by MCB (a local bank), who adds on a $4 transaction fee, so make one big withdrawal vs. several smaller ones. Your bank back home may also charge an additional transaction fee. There is also an ATM in the airport by luggage pickup. Better yet, do as most other visitors have done and get a MasterCard or Visa credit card that has no foreign transaction fees, and earns you loyalty miles or cash back, and provides rental car protection. Credit cards are accepted almost everywhere...but not at gas stations. For more information on Curacao currency, check our blog post Curacao Currency - Let's Talk Money!




What language do they speak in Curacao?


The official language of Curacao is Dutch, but the island has been infused with so many different international cultures that many languages can be heard on the island. The majority of the people speak Papiamentu, which is a Creolelanguage influenced by Portuguese, English, Spanish, and Dutch. Visitors from English, Spanish, and Dutch speaking countries should be able to communicate in Curacao quite easily, as most locals speak English, Spanish, or Dutch.




Are there mosquitoes?


Like all Caribbean islands, Curacao also has some mosquitoes. Curacao is much drier than the northern Caribbean islands (see graphs on rainfall here). As a result, there are fewer mosquitoes than on other islands. Mosquitoes like to breed in warm and wet areas. In areas with lush gardens, where the plants need a lot of water, you'll also find a lot more mosquitoes. This is the main reason why we didn't plant that much at Villa Seashell - Curacao Vacation Rentals. Our plants don't need extra water, and therefore there are fewer mosquitoes. In addition, Villa Seashell - Curacao Vacation Rentals is located oceanfront, there is always a trade wind, and mosquitoes don't like the wind, they simply blow away. To prevent any mosquitoes from coming into your bedroom, all our bedrooms have mosquito screens. The living areas outside of the bedrooms have shutters and large sliding doors that can all be kept open to let the trade winds into the house. In case it does rain, or when you are going out for dinner, we do recommend using an insect repellent like OFF. Insect repellent can be bought at all supermarkets and drug stores (called botica). For information about the Zika virus, see our blog post.





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