Caribbean islands open for travel: Entry rules and protocols

2021-04-27

Most Caribbean islands have reopened to international tourism, with protocols in place to protect visitors and residents against Covid-19. Here are the latest developments for travel from the U.S. to each Caribbean country.

All international passengers flying into the U.S. from the Caribbean will need to provide proof of a negative Covid-19 test received no more than 72 hours prior to boarding the flight to the U.S. Airlines will deny boarding to those passengers who do not produce a test result. Since the rule was announced many hotels in the Caribbean region have stepped up to offer their guests pre-travel testing.

In addition, the CDC recommends that travelers get tested again three to five days after arrival and stay home for seven days after travel, unless they have been fully vaccinated.

Updated April 23.

•Anguilla: The island is on a two-week lockdown to visitor starting April 23. U.S. travelers must apply through the visitor portal. Vaccinated travelers who have had the final dose of vaccine administered at least 21 days before arrival must submit a negative Covid-19 test result three to five days before travel, be tested upon arrival and quarantine for seven days. Unvaccinated travelers must quarantine for 14 days and take a second test on day 14. Families or groups with a mix of vaccinated and unvaccinated travelers must quarantine for 10 days. The Entry Application fee for vaccinated travelers staying under 90 days in a villa, hotel or private home is $300 per individual and $200 for each additional person. Unvaccinated travelers staying in an approved accommodation is $600 per individual and $200 for each additional person. Starting July 1, all visitors must be vaccinated, although a negative Covid-19 test three to five days before entry will still be required. Updated April 22.

•Antigua and Barbuda: Open to U.S. travelers. U.S. travelers must submit proof of a negative PCR test taken seven days before boarding and complete the Traveler Accommodation form upon arrival in Antigua. Visitors who complete a successful screening (temperature check) by health officials are not required to quarantine once booked at a certified accommodations (at least 160 hotels and villa properties are certified) and can participate in certified tours/activities, including destination weddings, dining out and certain land and sea activities. More information: www.visitantiguabarbuda.com. Updated March 5.

• Aruba: Open to U.S. visitors. All travelers are required to fill out an Embarkation/Disembarkation card between 72 and four hours prior to travel. U.S. visitors have the option of taking the PCR test at their own expense upon arrival at the airport in Aruba ($75) or can upload a negative test result from a test taken at within 72 hours at least 12 hours prior to departure. If they opt for a test upon arrival they must quarantine at their hotel until the test results are received. All visitors must purchase and pay for the Aruba Travel Insurance within 72 hours prior to departure; they can use their existing medical insurance to supplement the Aruba policy, but it cannot replace the Aruba Travel Insurance, which is $30 per person for those 15 and older, and $10 for those under 15. More information: visitaruba.com.

• Bahamas: Open to U.S. visitors. All travelers must submit a negative PCR test taken five days prior to arrival, submit a Bahamas Health Travel Visa and take a Covid-19 rapid antigen test on day five of their visit. Visitors must also complete a daily health questionnaire during their stay. Beginning Nov. 14, travelers must opt in to the mandatory health insurance plan when applying for the health visa. Once the Covid test taken on Day 5 is returned with a negative result visitors can move beyond their accommodations. Visitors traveling to any of the 16 islands available to visitors must check the status of the island they want to visit, since conditions and instances of Covid can differ. More information: www.bahamas.com/travelupdates.

• Barbados: Open to U.S. visitors. All incoming U.S. travelers over the age of 5 years must complete the online Immigration and Customs form 24 hours prior to arrival in Barbados and submit proof of a negative PCR test taken within 72 hours of arrival. U.S. travelers also have the option of in-home Covid testing through Stage Zero Life Sciences; the company will send a healthcare professional to draw nasal swabs, ship the samples to a lab and provide results within 48 hours, for $265 per person or $166 per person for a family of four. Visitors will be required to take a rapid antigen test upon arrival, quarantine for five nights at an approved hotel, villa or guesthouse and take a second PCR test during that time.

New protocols take effect in Barbados May 8: Fully vaccinated travelers are required to provide a vaccination certificate upon arrival, provide proof of a negative PCR test result taken within three days of travel, have a standard Covid-19 test done at the airport in Barbados or at the approved accommodation, use designated transportation providers to approved accommodation while awaiting test result and quarantine for one to two days. Unvaccinated travelers from or who have transited through a country where certain variants of Covid-19 concern Barbados must provide a negative PCR test taken three days prior to arrival, use a designated transport provider, quarantine in rooms for five to seven days and take second test five days after arrival. Children under 18 traveling with vaccinated guardians are allowed to adhere to vaccinated traveler guidelines. More information: www.visitbarbados.org. Updated April 12.

• Bermuda: Open to U.S. visitors. Travelers are required to complete the Bermuda Travel Authorization process online within 48 hours of departure. The fee is $75, which includes the cost of all Covid testing in Bermuda. Children nine and younger do not have to be tested at any point, and their Travel Authorization fee is $30. Visitors ages 10 and up must submit proof of a negative Covid test taken no more than five days before departure. Visitors must take a Covid test upon arrival and quarantine in hotel room until results are obtained (usually six to eight hours). Visitors are required to wear a Traveler Wristband for the first 14 days of their stay; the wristbands will be distributed during testing at arrival. Tests also are required on day 4, on day 8 and on day 14 of their trip at pop-up testing centers, with immediate results. A stay-at-home order is in place as of April 13. More information: www.gotobermuda.com. Updated April 12.

• Bonaire: Open to U.S. visitors. As there are no direct flights, U.S. travelers must exit in Curacao and follow Curacao’s entry protocols before connecting to Bonaire. In addition, Bonaire travelers must fill out an online health declaration form no earlier than 72 hours nor later than 48 hours prior to departure and show proof of a PCR test taken within 72 hours of departure and an antigen test result within 24 hours of departure. All travelers must have health insurance that covers the costs of medical care while on Bonaire, including care related to Covid-19. More information: tourismbonaire.com. Updated April 1.

• British Virgin Islands: Open to U.S. travelers. Travelers are required to register on the BVI Gateway portal at least 48 hours prior to departure to obtain the Traveller Authorization Certificate and submit proof of a negative PCR test taken within three days of departure and medical insurance that includes coverage for Covid-19. At the Welcome Center at the Terrance Lettsome airport, visitors will have a health screening, take a PCR test and download a contact tracing app. Approved transportation will shuttle visitors to certified accommodations, where they will quarantine for four days, take another PCR test and, if negative, be allowed to visit designated locations. Visitors will pay $175 per person for two PCR tests, a contact-tracing bracelet and the Covid monitoring app. If visitors need a test to exit the BVI, the government will charge $70 per test. More information: bvitourism.com.

• Cayman Islands: Not currently open to U.S. visitors. The borders continue to reopen in phases. When U.S. visitors are allowed to enter they must apply via Travel Cayman Portal to receive pre-travel approval, produce proof of medical insurance that includes Covid-19 coverage, show proof of a negative PCR test taken within 72 hours of departure, wear a Stay Safe Cayman monitoring wristband while in quarantine for 14 days and on day 15 be retested.

• Cuba: Open to U.S. visitors. All arriving passengers must submit a health declaration, produce a Cuba Tourist Card (available from the airlines) and produce a negative PCR test result taken within 72 hours prior to arrival and take another PCR test upon arrival, with results available within 24 hours. The test upon arrival is free. All incoming travelers must have travel insurance that covers Covid-19 during their stay. Visitors must quarantine in accommodations until results arrive and be PCR tested at their own expense on Day 5. American visitors are barred from strictly tourist vacations to the all-inclusive resorts on the north coast but can travel to Cuba under 12 specific categories, the most popular of which is Support for the Cuban People. All regulations are detailed at https://cu.embassy.gov/covid-19-information.

• Curacao: Open to U.S. visitors. Visitors must complete a Digital Immigration Card, fill out and upload a Passenger Locator Card within 48 hours of departure (carry a printed copy as proof upon arrival) and upload proof of a negative PCR test taken within 72 hours of departure (carry a printed copy, as well). Guests who do not had Covid-19 in the past six months must also take a rapid antigen test at a local lab on the third day of a stay. If the test result is positive, the traveler has to quarantine per local guidelines. Appointments must be booked and paid for in advance. Travelers will receive a pre-confirmation email including a booking reference number, the local lab website and instructions after submitting their Passenger Locator Card. Children six and under are exempt from the test requirement. A surge of Covid cases prompted the new restrictions in Curacao, and visitors must abide by an islandwide curfew that began April 2, from 7 p.m. until 4:30 a.m. Updated April 22.

• Dominica: Open to U.S. visitors. Visitors must upload an online health questionnaire at least 24 hours prior to arrival; submit a negative PCR test result taken between 24 and 72 hours before arrival, and receive an email notification from Dominica of clearance to travel. Once on the ground in Dominica, visitors have a temperature check and undergo rapid test screening at no charge, with results available in 15 to 20 minutes. If test result is negative, guests go through immigration and customs and are transferred to a property that has been certified safe by the Environmental Health Department. and quarantine for five days. A PCR test ($40) will be administered on day five; if negative, the traveler is free to move about the island. Visitors who transit in the following islands (Antigua, Barbados, the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico and St. Lucia) must follow the entry regulations of that island as well as adhere to the entry requirements for Dominica. Visitors arriving from high-risk destinations can book the Safe In Nature managed experience, which enables them to experience island activities beyond their accommodations during the first five to seven days of their stay. Updated April 22.

• Dominican Republic: Open to U.S. visitors. The Dominican Republic eliminated the entry requirement for proof of a negative Covid-19 test result on Sept.15. All travelers are still required to fill out a Traveler’s Health Affidavit. Travelers will get a temperature check upon arrival. In place of the test result is a rapid Breathalyzer-style test that will be performed on randomly selected travelers upon arrival. The test takes five minutes and detects if a traveler was exposed or infected within the last four hours. If positive, the traveler quarantines in a designated area within his hotel and is regularly tested until symptoms are gone. The rapid test is part of the government’s initiative called The Plan for the Responsible Recovery of Tourism and includes free health and travel insurance coverage through March 31 that covers hospitalization for coronavirus in the DR, telemedicine services, costs for extended hotel stays and airline ticket changes. The insurance is paid for by the DR. More information: godominicanrepublic.com.

• Grenada: Open to U.S. visitors. Fully vaccinated travelers entering Grenada after May 1 only have to quarantine for 48 hours, pending a negative PCR test upon arrival. They must book approved accommodations for a minimum of two nights, apply for a travel authorization and provide proof of a negative PCR test done 72 hours prior to travel. Unvaccinated travelers must provide proof of a seven-day booking in approved accommodations, provide proof of negative PCR test done 72 hours prior to arrival (for anyone aged five and over). All information must be entered digitally no later than 48 hours prior to the date of travel. Unvaccinated travelers must quarantine at their approved hotel for the first five days of their visit; on day five, take a second PCR test. If negative, they can then move about the island. All travelers must prepay for the PCR tests in Grenada, which costs approximately $150 each. Updated April 23.

• Guadeloupe: The borders are not currently open to U.S. visitors.

• Haiti: Open to U.S. visitors. All visitors must produce a negative Covid-19 antigen or PCR test result taken no more than 72 hours prior to boarding a flight to Haiti. Passengers who have previously had Covid may present a positive test together with documentation from their attending physician as evidence of their recovery. For passengers traveling to the U.S., the departure terminal at Toussaint Louverture Airport offers the Covid-19 rapid test that meets CDC criteria for all airline passenger two years and older. Updated March 4.

• Jamaica: Open to U.S. visitors. Travelers from the U.S. must get a negative Covid-19 PCR or antigen test taken within three days of travel. Arriving passengers are required to complete and submit the online Travel Authorization between two and five days prior to their planned arrival in Jamaica. Once travelers are approved, they receive a certificate that must be submitted during the airline check-in process. Once on the island, visitors must remain in the Resilient Corridors on the north and south coasts and must stay at a Covid-19 Protocol Compliant Approved accommodation. Updated March 15.

• Martinique: Borders have not reopened to U.S. travelers.

• Monserrat: Borders have not reopened to U.S. travelers.

• Puerto Rico: Open to U.S. visitors. A negative Covid test, taken 72 hours prior to arriving, is required. Travelers are required to fill out a Travel Declaration Form through the Puerto Rico Health Department’s online portal and obtain an Airport Exit Confirmation number and QR code, which travelers will automatically receive when uploading proof of their negative Covid result to the portal. Passengers arriving without a negative test will be fined $300 and will be required to obtain a molecular PCR test on the island within 48 hours of arrival; if negative, the fine will be dismissed. Since Puerto Rico is a U.S. territory, a negative Covid test is not required for Americans on the return flight. Updated April 22.

• St. Barts: Closed to most U.S. visitors as per an order from the French government. Updated Feb. 2.

• St. Kitts and Nevis: Open to U.S. travelers. Visitors must complete the entry form at and submit a negative PCR test taken within 72 hours of arrival. They must undergo a health screening at the airport on arrival, which includes a temperature check and a health questionnaire, and download the SKN Covid-19 contract tracing app (to be used for the first 14 days of travel). Visitors staying less than seven days must take a PCR test 72 hours before leaving the island ($150). Visitors must stay in one of the islands’ approved hotels for the first seven days, where they are free to move about the property, interact with other guests and take part in hotel activities. On Day 7 travelers are required to take a PCR test ($150); if negative, travelers can book select excursions and access select destination sites booked through the hotel’s tour desk. On Day 14, travelers must take another PCR test ($150); if negative, they can move freely around St. Kitts and Nevis. More information: www.stkittstourism.kn/travel-advisory-update and www.nevisisland.com.

• St. Lucia: Open to U.S. visitors. Travelers must provide proof of a negative Covid test done within five days of travel and must complete a pre-arrival registration form. They must also indicate which Covid-19-certified hotel they will be staying in. All travelers must quarantine at a Covid-19 certified and approved property for 14 days. All passengers will be screened at the airport; symptomatic passengers will be tested and then quarantined at their hotel until the result is received. If positive, they will be in isolation at one of two hospitals. More information: www.stlucia.org/covid-19. Updated April 22.

• St. Maarten/St. Martin: The Dutch side of the island is open to U.S. visitors; the French side is closed per a mandate from the French government. For visitors: A completed health declaration must be uploaded before departing; U.S. visitors must submit proof of a negative Covid test result taken within five days before arrival or an FDA-approved rapid test taken within 48 hours of departure. The St. Maarten SXM Protection Plan is mandatory health coverage for visitors. The plan covers hospital costs, ICU costs, doctor consultations, Covid-19 tests and, if necessary, medical evacuation. For those 15 and up, the cost is $30 for visits up to 180 days; it’s $10 for those under 15 years of age.

• Saba: Saba will welcome travelers from high-risk countries, including the U.S., on May 1. Travelers need to obtain approval before arriving in Saba. Fully vaccinated adults must provide proof of a negative PCR test taken 72 hours before arrival and are not required to quarantine. Nonvaccinated travelers must quarantine for five days and take a rapid antigen test on day five. Transit travelers connecting through St. Maarten prior to visiting Saba must follow St. Maarten’s entry requirements in addition to those for Saba. Updated: April 22.

• St. Vincent and the Grenadines: Argyle airport in St. Vincent and the Grenadines plans to reopen to full operations on April 24, following closure due to eruptions of La Soufriere volcano. “The public is asked to appreciate that cleaning will be ongoing will be ongoing, as ash persists in the atmosphere and is continuously redeposited in the compound,” according to Corsel Robertson, CEO. In the Grenadines, Mitchell airport in Bequia remains open under special conditions, due to terminal building repair work in progress. The Canouan, Union Island and Mustique airports remain operational from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Updated April 23.

• Turks and Caicos: Open to U.S. visitors. International travelers will be required to obtain certification using TCI Assured, an online portal. The portal will require travelers to submit the following information: a negative Covid-19 PCR test result taken within five days of travel; proof of medical/travel insurance that covers medical evacuation, costs related to quarantine, ambulance care or care at a local hospital; and a completed online health screening questionnaire. Once uploaded, the documents will be verified and a TCI Assured certification issued. The TCI Assured travel authorization must be presented at time of check-in.

• U.S. Virgin Islands: Open to U.S. visitors. Every U.S. traveler 5 and older is required to use the USVI travel portal and submit a negative Covid-19 test result received within five days of travel. Upon arrival travelers must submit the original test result and travel certification received from the portal. Travelers unable to produce the required test result are subject to a 14-day self-quarantine in their booked accommodations or until they a receive negative test result. Since the USVI is a U.S. territory, Americans returning from the islands do not have to produce proof of a Covid test as per the new CDC guidelines.

Courtesy of Travel Weekly

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