Wednesday, March 19, 2008


This afternoon I went in to the Simpson Bay Lagoon Authority office to pay up our harbor fees and I asked for a copy of the document with the fees and regulations. I just checked their web site (March 19, 2008) and they still have not updated it with the 2008 fees so I thought I'd type out a bit of the 5-page document for you...

I just called them to ask if the fees apply to Philipsburg and was told no, just Simpson Bay and the Lagoon. Mmmmmmm, might check that out as we just paid $247.42 :)

Dutch bridge from inside of Simpson Bay Lagoon.

The Fees Collection Office of the Simpson Bay Lagoon Authority is located at the Police Station in Simpson Bay near the bridge and can be accessed through the gate at their dinghy dock. Their telephone/ fax number is (00 599) 545 3183. Open every day, including holidays from 8am to 6pm. (We have seen them close early, such as for a funeral, but there will be a note posted on the door.)

Think of bridge fees as round trip... You are charged one fee for one in & out... Not each time under the bridge, if you catch my drift... In our case it would be a $10 bridge fee if we want to take our boat inside to go to Bobby's Boatyard in the Lagoon. We would go in AND out for the $10. Not $10 in and then another $10 out.

BRIDGE FEES (in US Dollars) during regular opening hours entering the Lagoon:
  • 9-12 meters: $10
  • 12-15 meters: $30
  • 15-18 meters: $60
  • 18-22 meters: $120
  • 22-28 meters: $200
  • 28-36 meters: $300
  • over 36 meters: $500

SPECIAL BRIDGE OPENINGS per vessel and per opening may be requested 24 hours in advance for openings between 6:00am and 6:00pm at a fee of $1000 regardless the length of the vessel and must be paid in advance.

HARBOR FEES (in US Dollars) per week or portion of a week:
  • 8-13 meters $20
  • 13-18 meters: $40
  • 18-23 meters: $60
  • 23-28 meters: $90
  • 28-33 meters: $120
  • 33-38 meters: $150
  • 38-43 meters: $180
  • 43-50 meters: $210
  • 50-75 meters: $250
  • over 75 meters: $290

CUSTOM CLEARANCE Fees (in US Dollars):
  • 1-99 gross tons: $2.00
  • 100-499 gross tons: $5.00
  • over 500 gross tons: $9.00

HARBOR CLEARANCE Fees (in US Dollars):
  • 1-99 gross tons: $5.00
  • 100-499 gross tons: $10.00
  • over 500 gross tons: $20.00

  • Opening hours for John Sainsborough Lejuez Bridge (Dutch bridge, Simpson Bay)
December through April (every day, Sunday-Saturday & holidays)
  • 9:00am - Outbound
  • 9:30am - Inbound
  • 11:00am - Outbound
  • 11:30am - Inbound
  • 4:30pm - Outbound
  • 5:30pm - Inbound

May through November (every day, Sunday-Saturday & holidays)
Outbound traffic first, then inbound traffic. Wait for green light.
  • 9:30am - Outbound then inbound
  • 11:30am - Outbound then inbound
  • 5:30pm - Outbound then inbound


Your vessel can only proceed to transgress the bridge channel when the bridge traffic light is green. The outbound traffic coming out of the Lagoon always precedes inbound traffic. All vessels should queue up in line and transit the bridge in the shortest time possible. The bridge attendant will instruct you to speed up if necessary. Monitor VHF Channel 12 so you can follow the instructions and notifications of the bridge attendant.

If there is any emergency on the road, please pay careful attention. You will hear the sirens and the bridge attendant will instruct you to halt your transit so the bridge can close for the passage of emergency vehicles. Afterwards, the bridge will re-open.

The bridge will not operate on days that the 10-minute average wind speed limit as published daily by the Meterological Service of the Netherlands Antilles exceeds 35 km/hour (19.7 MPH). You can requst information via VHF channel 12 or phone 545-3183.


In the bridge channel, fare ways and in the Lagoon, a 5MPH speed limit is in force for all vessels. Anchorage zones and marinas fall under "no wake zones". The buoyage system used is the "red right returning" (American) system.


The bridge opening spans 17 meters (56 feet). The bridge channel has a depth of 5 meters (17 feet). Wide beamed vessels must request piloting. Entering from the sea, the closed bridge has a 2.6 meter (8.6 ft) high clearance in the port channel and a 2.4 meter (8 ft) high clearance in the starboard channel.


The Simpson Bay Lagoon Authority trusts that all visitors and vessels shall comply with all local rules and regulations as legally stipulated and that you will help us keep our waters and facilities safe and clean, free from any contamination, pollution or crime. All fire arms, ammunition and explosives, chemicals and cash money (US$11,000 or more) must be declared with Customs when clearing in. Failure to do so will result in your vessel being impounded and your person being fined andor sentenced to imprisonment. Drugs possession is illegal and will lead to the same punishment as mentioned before. Fire arms possession is only legal if declared and the owner has a legal permit of his country of origin and the arms are safely secured. In all other cases the fire arms will be confiscated.

There's other stuff mentioned, but it's too much to type :)

Their web site is

Hope this helps!