Essential Info for Barbados

Population: About 290,000
Capital city: Bridgetown

Neighbouring countries: Barbados is an island in the West Indies, surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean. As an island, Barbados doesn't share land borders with any other countries. Neighbouring islands include St Lucia, Puerto Rico, Martinique and Trinidad and Tobago.

Geography: Barbados is a small island with a length of 34km (21 miles) and a breadth of 23km (14 miles) at its broadest point. The island's terrain is relatively flat with some small hills.

Political system: Parliamentary constitutional monarchy

Major religions: Christianity
Main languages: English and Bajan (a local English dialect which can nevertheless be difficult for even native English speakers to understand)

Money: The Barbadian dollar (BBD) is divided into 100 cents. Expats can open a bank account on the island with relative ease as long as they have the correct paperwork. ATMs are easily found outside of banks and in shopping centres, although they may be less common outside of cities.

Tipping: 10 percent of the total bill.
Time: GMT-4
Electricity: 110 volts, 50 Hz. 'Type A' two-prong and 'type B' three-prong plugs are used.
Internet domain: .bb
International dialling code: +1 246
Emergency contacts: 511 (Ambulance); 311 (Fire); 211 (Police)
Transport and driving: Cars drive on the left-hand side of the road. The island's compact size makes it easy to get around, and public transport such as mini-vans, buses and taxis are available.

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