Very Useful and Helpful Information
French is the official language, although Guadeloupean Créole (very different from French) is the native language. Everyone speaks French but few people understand English. Most people working in the tourism industry will speak English and sometimes Spanish or German.
There are no vaccinations legally required to travel to Guadeloupe. There is one exception though. You need a yellow fever vaccination if you have travelled to a country (7 days or less before entering Guadeloupe) where that disease is widely prevalent.
It’s a good thing to get your vaccinations in order before travelling to Guadeloupe. The general vaccination against Diphtheria, Tetanus and Polio (DTP) is recommended. Also a hepatitis A vaccination is recommended and vaccination against hepatitis B and typhoid are also sometimes recommended for stays longer than 3 months.
Dengue sometimes occurs as well. There is no vaccination, so buy mosquito repellent (preferably with 50% DEET), and sleep under a net. Also wear long sleeves if possible.
Finally, other possible health issues include diarrhea and other general travellers’ diseases like motion sickness. Watch what you eat and drink and in case you get it, drink plenty of fluids (to prevent dehydration) and bring ORS.
Keeping It Safe
The main tourist areas (city center of Point-à-Pitre, Le Gosier, St. Anne, St. Felix) are pretty safe, especially by day. When it gets dark, you should avoid walking around in Point-à-Pitre alone and stay on the main roads and plazas and be aware of smaller side streets. Always try to keep a low profile as a tourist to avoid attracting unwanted attention.
Have A Drink, Or Two…
The local drink is white rum. Do try the “‘Ti Punch” (Petit Punch/small Punch) with rum, lime, and sugar cane/brown sugar.
Stay Connected To The Internet
There’s wifi available in some places like hotels and restaurants. It might be free, but sometimes there’s a charge.
See also International Telephone Calls
Guadeloupe’s international country code is 590.
Few foreign mobile phone companies offer international roaming to Guadeloupe so double-check before leaving. Your company should provide specific roaming to Guadeloupe since it has different mobile phone companies than in mainland France.
Alternatively, you should be able to get a Pay-as-you-go SIM card from various locations. There are two companies offering wireless services: Bouygues Telecom Caraïbe and Orange Caraïbe.