Bahamas Ministry Of Tourism & Aviation Enters Phase 2 Reopening As Of July 1

It is recommended that all travellers interested in visiting The Bahamas review requirements applicable to each member of their party at Bahamas.com/travelupdates before booking a trip, to determine what steps need to be taken to be granted entry.

Policies and Procedures for all travellers visiting The Bahamas as of July 1 are as follows. Plans continue to evolve in response to COVID-19 trends, and so additional guidance will be communicated as details are available.

  • Due to the recent increase of COVID-19 cases in the U.S., and in an abundance of caution for the health and safety of both travellers and residents, all incoming visitors must show proof of a COVID-19 RT-PCR Negative (Swab) Test. Test must be taken no more than (10) days prior to the date of travel. Upon arrival, any person presenting a test older than ten (10) days will not be allowed entry into The Bahamas.
    • Children under the age of ten (10) are not required to take a test.
    • Nationals and residents of Bahamas without a negative Coronavirus (COVID-19) RT-PCR test result are subject to quarantine with monitoring for 14 days.
    • Nationals and residents of Antigua and Barbuda, Aruba, Barbados, Belize, Bermuda, Cayman Isl., Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, Montserrat, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago and Turks and Caicos Isl. without a medical certificate with a negative Coronavirus (COVID-19) RT-PCR test result are subject to quarantine with monitoring for 14 days.
  • All travellers will be required to complete an electronic Health Visa prior to departure at travel.gov.bs. Each traveller will need to upload their test results or select relevant exemption category and provide contact information that is crucial for contact tracing purposes. Health Visa applications take 24-48 hours to process, so should be completed with adequate lead time.
    • An approved Health Visa will receive a green code, and proof of confirmation should be presented at check-in and upon arrival in their destination.
      • If a Health Visa application is pending, visitor will receive a yellow code which means there is an issue with testing or missing information that needs further clarification before they can receive approval.
      • If Health Visa application is denied, visitor will receive a red color code and they will not be permitted entry to The Bahamas.
    • Airline crew staying in the Bahamas for a maximum of 24 hours must complete an electronic Health Visa application before departure. They must present the approved visa and employment identification upon arrival.
    • For all questions regarding the Health Visa process, or to check on status of your application, contact healthvisa@bahamas.com.
  • For those with approved visa entry to The Bahamas, no quarantine will be required upon arrival, however, travellers who show symptoms of COVID-19 may be transferred to an area away from other passengers for further testing and evaluation.
  • At airports and seaports, healthcare personnel will conduct temperature screenings for all incoming visitors. Travellers will be required to wear a face mask in any situation where it is necessary to enforce physical distancing guidelines, such as when entering and transiting air and sea terminals, while navigating security and customs screenings, and at baggage claim.
    • New fines and penalties for all persons, including Bahamian residents and visitors have been established for those not wearing face masks in areas where it is required.

As part of Phase 2, hotels and vacation rentals, including Airbnb and HomeAway will open to guests. Domestic and International airlines are permitted to resume service, and many have announced plans for their return to The Bahamas:

  • Southwest resumed daily service between Baltimore and Nassau on July 1
  • JetBlue resumed daily service between New York (JFK) and Nassau as well as Fort Lauderdale and Nassau on July 2
  • Delta Airlines resumed its twice daily Atlanta to Nassau service July 2
  • United Airlines resumed its daily Houston to Nassau and Newark to Nassau service will resume July 6 while Saturday-only Denver to Nassau service will resume July 11
  • American Airlines resumed daily flights between Charlotte and Nassau; Miami and Exuma; Miami and Eleuthera and twice daily flights between Miami and Nassau on July 7

Additional airlift resumptions are expected to be announced in the coming weeks. Travellers should check with airlines directly for details on recommencement of service and any protocols for travel.

This Phase 2 tourism re-entry builds on and supports existing government rules and regulations, which already allows for the resumption of travel for international boaters, yachters and those traveling on private aviation as well as inter-island domestic travel for Bahamian citizens and residents. Phase 3, beginning July 13, allows for the reopening of attractions, excursions and tours. Phase 4, beginning July 27, allows for vendors (including straw vendors) and jet ski operators to resume operations.

Once on island, travellers should expect to follow The Bahamas’ “Healthy Traveler Campaign” that encourages both visitors and residents to continue practicing social distancing measures, regularly wash hands or use hand sanitizers, and pack appropriate PPE such as face masks, just as they would their swimsuits and sunscreen.

A Certification Agency has been established - representing a collaboration between the Ministry of Tourism, Ministry of Health, and other regulatory agencies - to enforce a Clean & Pristine certification program across the islands. All tourism related, customer-facing entities in The Bahamas must verify they have in place and are adhering to the Government approved health and safety guidelines to receive Clean & Pristine certification. Adequate signage outlining policies will be clearly displayed at all locations helping to guide staff and visitors. Travellers are encouraged to visit direct business websites prior to booking or traveling to ensure they are aware and comfortable with the policies they will need to abide by. Additional details about on-island protocols can be found at www.bahamas.com/travelupdates.

Reopening of borders will continue to be monitored and guided by The Bahamas government and health officials. Reopening dates are subject to change based on COVID-19 trends, if there is a deterioration in improvement or if government and health organizations deem these phases unsafe for residents or visitors.

The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism & Aviation believes it is an absolute baseline requirement for consumers to have a comfort level that The Bahamas is a safe and healthy destination to visit, and the ultimate goal is for that to remain the case. For more information, or to view the Tourism Readiness and Recovery Plan, please visit: www.bahamas.com/travelupdates.

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PRESS INQUIRIES

Anita Johnson-Patty

General Manager, Global Communications

Bahamas Ministry of Tourism & Aviation

ajohnson@bahamas.com

 

Weber Shandwick

Public Relations

Bahamas@webershandwick.com

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