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Leaving or arriving during the Reggae Marathon
#116943 10/17/2012 01:37 PM
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We happen to be leaving Hedo on the morning of the Reggae Marathon on Saturday December 1st, 2012, and are worried about how the ground transfers scheduling and pick-up location might be affected by the race.

The course is a round-trip run along Norman Manley Boulevard which starts and ends at Long Bay Beach Park on 7 mile beach and has a turn-around at Salt Creek, north of Hedo, and another turn-around at the Negril Roundabout, south of Hedo.

From the information on the Reggae Marathon website at http://www.reggaemarathon.com/, it seems Norman Manley Boulevard will be closed from 4 am to 12 noon to all vehicles but the free shuttle buses the race organers will be providing.

Since this is the 12th running of the marathon, we're hoping someone has either left or arrived at Hedo during the Reggae Marathon and can give us some idea as to what to expect in terms of arriving or leaving Hedo with the road closure in place.

Ie: can transfer company vehicles actually GET to Hedo during the race or do departing guests have to take the free shuttle to Orange Bay and transfer to the transfer company's vehicle there?

And even if the transfer company vehicles can get to Hedo, do they pick you up way earlier than the normal 3 hours ahead of your flight time to allow for the extra time it must take to get off the race course? And if so, how much earlier?? We would normally leave Hedo about 9:30 am for our flight, but we're worried the transfer company might want to pick us up before the road closes at 4 am, and that would seriously affect our final evening/night at Hedo!

Anything you can tell us would be appreciated.

Re: Leaving or arriving during the Reggae Marathon
ottawa_cuple #116945 10/17/2012 06:52 PM
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This answer is unlikely to be very helpful. I submit it for it's entertainment value only. Certain WWW members ran into a similar problem getting to H2 during the run of the Reggae Marathon. No auto traffic allowed? No problem! Hire a Jamaican and a boat! They arrived like Ponce de Leon - but naked! Or, was that butt naked? Though, their problem was simpler as they only needed to get from a resort down the beach.

Re: Leaving or arriving during the Reggae Marathon
ottawa_cuple #116954 10/18/2012 06:07 PM
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Your departure time is over 4 hours into the race; it should be thinned out by that time.
Every year I run there seems to be some traffic allowed through, especially shuttle buses from resorts. Ask your transfer company for details about your return trip at time of arrival.
Good luck!

Re: Leaving or arriving during the Reggae Marathon
Tom C #116971 10/19/2012 03:41 PM
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I departed one year right during the early part of the event and it was only a very minor inconvenience. It added a little time to the transit to MoBay, but it was handled very effectively and professionally. I've participated in or attended a variety of similar fairly large events here in the USA, and the course security and how they managed the thing in Jamaica was as professional as anything I've ever seen here.

Re: Leaving or arriving during the Reggae Marathon
ottawa_cuple #116999 10/22/2012 08:28 AM
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Thanks, everyone, for your replies.

Tom, you're right, our departure time is about 4 hours into the race, but the route to and from Hedo is on the second half of the course (km 20 to 25 of the course), and given that last year the average (ie: the centre of the bell curve and therefore the highest number of people) time for completion of the Reggae Marathon was 4:55:53 (http://www.marathonguide.com/results/browse.cfm?MIDD=1577111203), between the 4 hour and 5 hour mark, the MAJORITY of the runners will be on the section of the course our bus will be travelling on.

Lyle, thanks for your assurances. We felt there must be plans in place to handle resort arrivals and departures given that the marathon's been run the first Saturday in December for 11 years now and given that Saturday is probably the busiest arrival and departure day of the week for all the resorts.

In our search for answers, we wrote the Reggae Marathon organization itself and received the following reply:

"The Negril hotels via the JHTA (Jamaica Hotel & Tourist Association) Negril arrange for Tour buses to be escorted along Norman Manley Blvd during the event, when the road is officially closed. On arrival and check in at Hedo 11, kindly remind the front desk to alert the relevant persons so arrangements can be made."

Hearing that from the marathon organization itself is very reassuring. Not quite so reassuring is that the company that will be providing our transfer (Sunholiday Travel & Tours) has not replied to my email asking how they handle transfers during the marathon.

We'll keep our fingers crossed that all goes well :-).

Re: Leaving or arriving during the Reggae Marathon
ottawa_cuple #117000 10/22/2012 09:02 AM
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Originally Posted by ottawa_cuple
Thanks, everyone, for your replies.

Tom, you're right, our departure time is about 4 hours into the race, but the route to and from Hedo is on the second half of the course (km 20 to 25 of the course), and given that last year the average (ie: the centre of the bell curve and therefore the highest number of people) time for completion of the Reggae Marathon was 4:55:53 (http://www.marathonguide.com/results/browse.cfm?MIDD=1577111203), between the 4 hour and 5 hour mark, the MAJORITY of the runners will be on the section of the course our bus will be travelling on.

Lyle, thanks for your assurances. We felt there must be plans in place to handle resort arrivals and departures given that the marathon's been run the first Saturday in December for 11 years now and given that Saturday is probably the busiest arrival and departure day of the week for all the resorts.

In our search for answers, we wrote the Reggae Marathon organization itself and received the following reply:

"The Negril hotels via the JHTA (Jamaica Hotel & Tourist Association) Negril arrange for Tour buses to be escorted along Norman Manley Blvd during the event, when the road is officially closed. On arrival and check in at Hedo 11, kindly remind the front desk to alert the relevant persons so arrangements can be made."

Hearing that from the marathon organization itself is very reassuring. Not quite so reassuring is that the company that will be providing our transfer (Sunholiday Travel & Tours) has not replied to my email asking how they handle transfers during the marathon.

We'll keep our fingers crossed that all goes well :-).


Every bus or other vehicle using the road during the race is provided a motorcycle police escort and they were right on top of things. The officer that escorted us looked like he could have been right out of special forces someplace, and was very effective and efficient in how everything happened.

I hope your experience is as good as mine was with this event........



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