You will be issued a visa for up to 30 days upon arrival, free of charge. If you are leaving via a land border (for example, traveling to Mexico or Guatemala) you will need to pay an exit fee of $20 US or $40 BZE. This exit fee is absorbed into your flight cost if you are leaving via flight.
Belize uses the Belizean Dollar (BZ$) which currently exchanges as 1 GBP – 2.6 pesos or much more simply put, US$1 is BZ$2. It is a fixed currency, fixed with the US dollar, 2:1. US dollars are accepted everywhere in Belize and are often the currency used on price lists at hotels, so be sure to check!
So how best to get your cash? Bringing US dollars is obviously a good option as you can use them everywhere. Alternatively you will find ATM’s everywhere. ATM’s may charge a usage fee and some have a limit of $500 BZE per transaction.
You will be able to use your credit or debit card widely in Belize but be warned that you might be charged a surcharge by the merchant. If you want to limit extra charges while your away, better to use cash.
We would recommend budgeting for between £5-£20 per person per meal, depending on whether you are choosing to eat local or at fine dining restaurants. It’s around £1-2 for a local beer in Belize and you can enjoy a good, mid-range bottle of wine for around £10-15.
Tipping is appreciated but most of the time, not expected. Rounding up your bill in a restaurant with an extra 5-10% is well received and a small tip for baggage porters is appreciated. If you have had a great tour, then tipping your guide is fairly expected and again, around 5% but of course pay what you feel!
You should ensure that you are up to date on routine vaccinations before you travel. Visit your GP in good time before you travel to get up to date information about vaccinations and travel risks. Make sure you take out a comprehensive travel insurance with a good accident policy.
English is the official language of Belize and you will find it widely spoken which makes for travel in Belize very easy. Spanish is also widely spoken and understood, especially in the north, and there are many other languages spoken that you will hear them on your travels.
Belize is 6 hours behind GMT standard time.
We definitely recommend you take out insurance including health cover, theft and loss and be sure to carry photocopies with you on your trip.
If you really want to get off the beaten track in Belize, then driving is useful and it is generally a simple and safe thing to do. You can hire a car from a recommended rental shop or we can organize it for you. You can use your UK driving license whilst driving in Belize.
Telephone, Post and Wifi
Belize’s country telephone code is +501. Airmail takes about 1 week to arrive in Europe. Most areas of Belize have great internet strength and it is normal for hotels, restaurants and cafes to have wifi. The exception is at the jungle Lodges where internet can be patchy or non-existent. We will warn you in advance of any lodges that have a ‘no or limited wifi’ policy.
You will need to purchase and take with you an electrical adapter for Belize and you can then use your devices there with no problem. The standard voltage is 110 V and the frequency if 60 Hz. The charger is the same two-pronged charger you would use in the US.
Belize has a rich and varied cuisine which is heavily influenced by its coastline; you will find delicious seafood dishes made with the freshest of ingredients! Belizean food today reflects it’s wonderful cultural diversity with influences from Mexico, Mayan, Caribbean, European and American.
You will find it relatively easy to eat well if you eat a vegetarian diet and our lodges and hotels that we work with can accomodate for any dietary requirements you may have, just please let us know in advance!