Caledonian Airways has weekly flights from Gatwick, which it operates on behalf of British Airways (0345 222111). The lowest official fare is £685 including taxes, requiring 21 days' advance purchase, but through agents such as Transatlantic Wings (0171-602 4021) it should be easy to find a cheaper and less restrictive deal.
There are plenty of connecting services for the 100-miles from San Juan to St Croix (pronounced to rhyme with "boy"), the largest of the US Virgin Islands the fare for this sector is around £50 each way.
Accommodation: The Buccaneer (001 809 773 2100) is represented in the UK by Unique Hotels (01453 835801). A standard double costs $165 (about £104) per day.
Money: the US dollar is the only recognised currency.
Recommended reading: The 1995 Caribbean Islands Handbook (Trade & Travel, £14.95) and the Northeastern Caribbean (Cadogan Island Guides, £9.99) have useful chapters on the US Virgin Islands
Further information: for details of the Hawksbill Research Program, call 001 809 773 1460.
USVI Division of Tourism, 2 Cinnamon Row, Plantation Wharf, York Place, London SW11 3TW (0171-978 5262).