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Any public trans. from Sanibel Gateway to Sanibel Island?

Bloomsburg
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Any public trans. from Sanibel Gateway to Sanibel Island?

Hello. A late airfare sale allowed me to obtain tickets for a flight to FL in mid January. We are flying into MCO (because it was so inexpensive), then making our way via rental car to the Sanibel area. Since this is last minute planning for a place as popular as Sanibel Island, I have a (cancelable) reservation @ the LaQuinta on the Sanible Gateway for 7 nights. Just wanted to inquire if there is ANY public transportation from here (or somewhere nearby) to the island. With parking being limited on Sanibel Island and $2.00 per hour (with potential daily cost of $16-$18 per day inclusive of the $6.00 toll to Sanibel) I was just wondering if public transit is an option ......? Thank you in advance for your advice.

The Bakery
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1. Re: Any public trans. from Sanibel Gateway to Sanibel Island?

There are park and ride trolley options for Ft Myers Beach and Lover's Key State Park, but not Sanibel. The trolley's that go on and off Sanibel are shuttles for off-island attractions or resorts, so unless LaQuinta offers such a thing, or partners with someone, then no true 'public' transportation.

Check the prices on taxi service, though that will include the toll regardless. Maybe 1 or 2 days do Lover's Key and avoid the toll, but be warned, it's a long ride. Then maybe 1 or two days drive onto Sanibel, do the shops and visit the furthest beaches, like Bowman's and Blind Pass. Get there real early for parking. That does add bike rental cost, which might be a LOT more than parking.

If you folks are strong bicyclists, you could rent bikes in Ft Myers, and cross the bridge for free, but I'd say that was for VERY experienced folks only. Alternately, you could rent bikes in FM for the week along with a rack for the car and drive to Sanibel, park at a shopping center out of the way, and then ride the island. No charge for bikes at beach parking.

Maybe Bean will know more.

Captiva Island...
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2. Re: Any public trans. from Sanibel Gateway to Sanibel Island?

Tours right, there is no public transportation that I am aware of. She's covered all of the options.

There are still a few deals to be had mid January on the Island. You might be able to get into something around the $1,000 mark for the week. Nothing fancy of course, but clean. Duggar Cottages are one option. If you want to share your exact dates and budget, I can take a quick look for you.

If you plan to make daily trips to Sanibel, you might want to see if you can get something on the Island. I think the cost of the LaQuinta along with the hourly parking and the causeway toll might be roughly the same .

Orlando
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3. Re: Any public trans. from Sanibel Gateway to Sanibel Island?

If you have the rental car anyway for the 3.5 hour drive, I would keep it.

I would also stay on the beach. If you can't find something on Sanibel or Captiva, Ft Myers Beach is the next island down.

Calgary, Canada
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4. Re: Any public trans. from Sanibel Gateway to Sanibel Island?

Is it possible to get a cab on Sanibel Island? We plan to hang out at the resort but thought we would take a taxi to occasional restaurants

thanks

Captiva Island...
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5. Re: Any public trans. from Sanibel Gateway to Sanibel Island?

Yes, however, you need to call them in advance and make arrangements prior to going out. Meaning, you can't just hail a taxi on the Island.

Sanibel Taxi

http://www.sanibeltaxi.com/

Sanibel Double D

http://www.sanibeldoubled.com/

Bloomsburg
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6. Re: Any public trans. from Sanibel Gateway to Sanibel Island?

Thank you one and all for your replies. Yes, we will keep our rental car for the entire 8 days we are in FL; it was a good deal, so no reason not too. And, I'm going to purchase the portable/temporary SunPass for use in the car. We will just bite the bullet as far as parking & the $6 per day toll to the island; the "big issue" would be spending the day on the island, going back to the LaQuinta (which @ $69/night discounted rate, breakfast, and big heated pool, etc. is a steal!) - then if we decided to go BACK over to Sanibel Island at night for dinner - another $6.00 toll! Of course, we would not do this every night! Bean3, I am not familiar with Dugger Cottages, but our dates are arrival January 14th and departure January 21st.

If we are dining at a restaurant on Sanibel Island, is the parking comped/free if we show we have a receipt?

As an asides to the above, is the sand dredging / beach restoration currently underway anticipated to be done by mid-January?

TY!!

Captiva Island...
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7. Re: Any public trans. from Sanibel Gateway to Sanibel Island?

Most cottages and condos on the Island rent from Saturday to Saturday only in season. Of course, you can get a hotel, but no where near the $69. per night rate you got. I've stayed at the LaQuinta for a night before checking onto our Captiva rental, it's a nice clean property. Staying there will also give you easy access to Fort Myers Beach, Naples and Lovers Key. If you have the chance, you should definitely check out Lover's Key. I was there in October and it was well worth the short drive!

The Dugger Cottages rent Sat to Sat only and are roughly $115 per night BEFORE taxes.

Parking is free for all shops and restaurants all over Sanibel Island.

Make sure you purchase the SUN PASS yourself. The rental car transponder is a rip-off. They charge a daily fee, plus the toll fee, plus administrative costs. There is a MINI SunPass that sells in grocery stores, drug stores and online. It cost $5 and would need to be pre-loaded with enough cash to cover your tolls prior to use.

The beach restoration project is expected to go into January, but should not affect your stay on Sanibel. All beaches and beach parking will remain open during the project on the Sanibel Side. Turner Beach Parking lot on the Captiva side of Blind Pass will be closed, but you can still access the beach there by parking on the Sanibel side and walking over the bridge. The project is expected to extend to the Northern section of Bowmans beach.

Just making sure you know, the $6 toll is only when getting onto the Island. There is no toll for going back to the mainland. Make sure you have a valid parking stamp, they do patrol the lots and you will get a ticket! Also, there are many restaurants on the Island where casual attire is fine, shorts and T shirts are perfectly acceptable if you want to grab some dinner after the beach and before heading back over to the mainland.

Plymouth, Michigan
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8. Re: Any public trans. from Sanibel Gateway to Sanibel Island?

Double D is a car service I have used several times and have always been pleased.

Plymouth, Michigan
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9. Re: Any public trans. from Sanibel Gateway to Sanibel Island?

I have used Double D car service several times and have been very pleased.

Bloomsburg
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10. Re: Any public trans. from Sanibel Gateway to Sanibel Island?

Hi Bean3; sorry I didn't get a notification that you had responded again. TY again for your advice and recommendations. We will definitely go check out Lover's Key if it is that nice. So, this is what I decided to do....... This is a last minute trip (for me, anyway as I usually spend months planning vacation trips), was possible due to an excellent airfare sale, and so we are kind of doing this on the cheap. I did not want to deal with going back and forth over the Sanibel bridge everyday and pay the $6 toll possibly several times a day. So, I decided we will stay @ the LaQuinta Gateway for the first 4 nights (lost my $69/night though!) and I secured a cottage at Beachview Cottages for our last 3 nights. The reviews of Beachview here on TA sound good, and I do not mind that this is not a polished resort; most reviews say the cottages are clean and they are VERY conveniently located on the beach. So, we will stay 4 nights @ the LaQuinta, maybe check out some other places like Lover's Key, and then spend 3 & 1/2 days @ Beachview and not have to run back and forth every night, miss the amazing sunsets, etc. We actually will get close to 4 full days on island; we will travel back to MCO region in the late afternoon of our second to last day and our flight leaves the next morning.

I am thinking of pre-ordering a Sun Pass mini, but I am confused. Don't most rental cars already have a SunPass transponder in them? If so, how do the charges go on MY Sun Pass and not on the rental vehicle's Sun Pass? (I know I have to call them and give them the rental vehicle's tag, etc.). Maybe the rental cars do not use the transponders and merely use the "toll by plate" method? That would make the most sense .......