Moving to Sint Maarten with Pets: A Guide to Relocating to a Tropical Paradise

Moving to Sint Maarten with Pets: A Guide to Relocating to a Tropical Paradise

Planning to move to Sint Maarten with your furry friends? Discover everything you need to know about relocating with pets to this tropical paradise. From import permits to considerations for a smooth transition, and how BrightPath can assist you in the process.

Understanding the import requirements for bringing pets to Sint Maarten

We know it, pets are part of the family and if you relocate, they will relocate with you. As the most trusted immigration services provider in Sint Maarten, and throughout over ten years of experience and thousands of immigration files, BrightPath Caribbean has successfully assisted clients with their pets’ relocation as well. BrightPath provides hassle-free immigration services for humans and hassle-free relocation for pets.


When moving to Sint Maarten with your pets, it is important to understand the import requirements and process to ensure a smooth transition. Authorities will require a series of documentation from the pet and the owner, such as proof of vaccinations, health certificates, and a travel itinerary to provide an import permit.

  1.  Microchip: To enter Sint Maarten, your pet must be registered with an ISO microchip.
  2. Vaccinations: Your pet should be vaccinated for rabies at least 21 days and no more than 36 months before entry. Dogs must be vaccinated against distemper. hepatitis, parvovirus, leptospirosis, and adenovirus. Cats must be vaccinated against feline leukemia, feline rhinotracheitis, feline calicivirus, feline panleukopenia, feline pneumonitis, and feline immunodeficiency virus.
  3. Internal parasites test: Your pet must be tested for internal parasites, if the test comes out positive, the animal must be treated 21 days prior to departure with a registered medication.
  4. External parasites and cutaneous diseases: Your pet must be free of external parasites, if not, it must be treated with registered parasiticide within 14 days prior to departure. All animals must be free from observable cutaneous diseases.
  5. Rabies Certificate: The rabies vaccination certificate is a formal proof that your dog has been vaccinated against rabies and is required to enter Sint Maarten before arrival and administered between 30 days and one year of travel.
  6. Valid Health Certificate: The animal must be accompanied by a valid International Health Certificate, issued by an accredited veterinarian and endorsed by the official government veterinarian of the exporting country. Take note that Sint Maarten is not part of the European Union; and will not accept European pet passports as a valid international health certificate. The health certificate must be in English, Dutch, or accompanied by an official translation.
  7. Suitable Kennel: The animal must be transported in a suitable kennel according to the IATA regulations
  8. Travel Itinerary and transportation information: Pet owner should present a valid travel to the authorities a valid travel itinerary in a JPEG or a PDF file, and all transportation information must be provided, including vessel type, name, number, origin, and destination addresses.
  9. Animal information: a series of details is required to complete the import request, such as animal species, breed, sex, animal colors, age, microchip digits.
  10.  Additional requirements if necessary: Authorities could require additional details on your pet, their transportation, or any other information they consider necessary to grant entry to Sint Maarten.

All requirements also apply to service and emotional support animals.

Dogs and Cats from Central and South America are prohibited from entry to Sint Maarten.

Preparing your pet for travel and ensuring their well-being

Last-minute planning won’t cut it when it comes to moving pets internationally. It’s essential that you start making arrangements well in advance to avoid any complications or delays. Remember, your pets are counting on you to ensure a safe and hassle-free journey, so don’t leave anything to chance. Get started on your preparations today!

Before traveling to Sint Maarten, it is essential to prepare your pet for the journey and ensure their well-being throughout the process. Start by scheduling a visit to the veterinarian to ensure your pet is in good health and up to date on all vaccinations.

The next step is to contact the Team at BrightPath Caribbean to request more information on how we can assist you with the process for a successful pet import approval.

During the journey, it is important to provide your pet with a comfortable and secure travel crate or carrier in compliance with the IATA regulations. Make sure the crate is well-ventilated and large enough for your pet to stand, turn around, and lie down comfortably. It is also recommended to include familiar bedding and toys to help them feel more at ease. Make sure to contact your airline and ask them for all the details on their pet transport policy, and further details on transportation requirements.

Depending on how far you are traveling, during the travel, it is important to provide your pet with regular breaks for exercise and bathroom breaks. Keep them hydrated and make sure they have access to fresh water throughout the journey. It is also advisable to avoid feeding them a large meal right before travel to prevent any discomfort.

Once you arrive in Sint Maarten, it is important to help your pet adjust to the new environment. Gradually introduce them to their new surroundings and establish a routine. Weather is also a variable you need to consider; Sint Maarten might be warmer compared to what they are used to and some breeds adapt faster to warmer environments than others. Provide them with plenty of love, attention, and familiar items to help them feel secure in their new tropical home, and make sure to discuss it with your veterinarian for advice on the things you need to consider when relocating your pet to the Caribbean.

Tips for finding pet-friendly accommodation in Sint Maarten

When relocating with your pets, finding pet-friendly accommodation in Sint Maarten won’t be an issue, especially when you have the support of a local real estate agent.

Make sure to discuss with the real estate agent your requirements, this way property search will move faster. Consider that some properties may have size or breed restrictions, while others may require an additional pet deposit or monthly fee. It is important to clarify these details upfront to avoid any surprises.

Consider the layout, amenities, and location of the accommodation. Look for properties with pet-friendly features such as fenced yards, pet-friendly flooring, and easy access to outdoor areas. These features can contribute to a more comfortable living environment for both you and your furry companion. Keep in mind that If you are looking for yard space, you might not get a centrally located property, or maybe you rather have proximity to a beach and take your pet for daily walks. It all depends on what you and your pet need.

Exploring the pet-friendly activities and amenities in Sint Maarten

Sint Maarten offers a range of pet-friendly activities and amenities you can enjoy with your furry friend. Explore the beautiful beaches of the island and let your pet play with the sand and the waves, go for a walk around areas like the causeway bridge, or take your pet for an outdoor adventure on the many hiking trails all over the island, many of which end in beautiful peaceful beaches. One unique adventure you can have with your pet is the so-called Moses walk, a fun experience you will find right next to the Coralita lookout point.

If you’re looking for socialization opportunities for your pet, consider visiting pet-friendly cafes or restaurants. Some establishments in Sint Maarten have outdoor seating areas where you can enjoy a meal or a coffee while your pet relaxes by your side.

Lastly, don’t forget to check out local pet supply stores and veterinary clinics in Sint Maarten. These establishments can provide essential supplies, grooming services, and healthcare for your pet, ensuring their well-being during your stay on the island.

Quick notes on outdoor Activities:

  • Take your time when introducing your pet to new experiences and allow them to adjust at their own pace.
  • It’s important to keep them hydrated as they may feel the effects of the tropical heat more quickly.
  • Consider protecting their paws by investing in boots, shoes, or paw protectors for long walks. This will help prevent injuries and keep them safe from hot surfaces.
  • As a responsible pet parent, remember to keep your pets on a leash when surrounded by other people and dogs. This will give you more control over your pet and ensure their safety. Additionally, always clean up after your pet to maintain the beauty and cleanliness of the island that we all cherish.
  • Play, have fun, enjoy the island, and make memories.

Settling in: Tips for helping your pet adjust to the tropical environment.

Moving to a tropical environment like Sint Maarten can be an exciting change for both you and your pet. However, it is important to help your pet adjust to the new climate and surroundings.

Start by gradually acclimating your pet to the warmer temperatures. Provide them with access to shaded areas and fresh water to prevent overheating. It is also important to protect them from direct sunlight, especially during the hottest hours of the day.

Keep an eye out for any tropical pests or diseases that may affect your pet. Consult with a local veterinarian to ensure your pet is protected against common tropical parasites such as fleas, ticks, and heartworms.

Lastly, make sure your pet has access to plenty of fresh water to stay hydrated in the tropical heat. Consider providing them with a cooling mat or a small pool of water to help them cool down when needed.

With a little patience and care, your pet will soon adjust to the tropical environment of Sint Maarten and enjoy their new life in paradise.


1. What are the key import requirements for bringing pets to Sint Maarten, and how can BrightPath Caribbean assist in navigating this process?
Importing pets to Sint Maarten requires documentation such as proof of vaccinations, health certificates, and a travel itinerary for an import permit. BrightPath Caribbean offers assistance with understanding and fulfilling these requirements, ensuring a smooth transition for pets relocating to the island.

2. How can pet owners prepare their furry companions for international travel and ensure their well-being during the journey to Sint Maarten?
Pet owners should start preparations well in advance, including scheduling a veterinarian visit for health checks and vaccinations. BrightPath Caribbean can provide guidance on the process for a successful pet import approval. During travel, pets should be provided with a comfortable travel crate, regular breaks for exercise, and access to fresh water.

3. What tips and considerations should pet owners keep in mind when finding pet-friendly accommodation and exploring activities with their pets in Sint Maarten?
Pet owners should discuss their requirements with a local real estate agent to find pet-friendly accommodation, considering factors like size restrictions and proximity to outdoor areas. BrightPath Caribbean can offer assistance in navigating these considerations. Additionally, exploring pet-friendly activities such as beach outings and hiking trails can enhance the experience for both owners and pets in Sint Maarten.


Do you have additional questions?

Contact us today for a free consultation and let us guide you throughout the process!


Disclaimer: Our articles are not intended as (legal) advice and do not take your personal circumstances into consideration. BrightPath does not accept any liability for damages resulting from using the provided information. We highly recommend you to seek personalized advice from us or before you act or fail to act because of the content of our articles. BrightPath is a privately-owned consulting firm that assists clients with filing applications for residence permits and/or business licenses at the relevant government departments. None of our directors, employees or agents hold or have held any position with the government of Sint Maarten and our service does not provide for any preferential treatment with regards to any application. All information provided and statements made only serve to provide you with a general understanding of immigration, residence and business incorporation procedures on Sint Maarten.
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