The Islands of The Bahamas Announces Updated Travel & Entry Protocols

NASSAU, Bahamas, December 8, 2020 – In preparation for the holidays, the Government of The Bahamas has issued updated public health measures, effective as of Monday, December 7, as well as relaxed on-island measures for the Christmas and New Year’s holidays.  

Updated details are, as follows:

Inter-island Travel

  • Effective Monday, December 7, residents and visitors travelling from New Providence or Grand Bahama Island to any of the Out Islands will no longer be required to quarantine, however, the requirement to present a negative RT-PCR test, taken within five (5) days of the date of travel, will remain in place.
  • Those travelling from Exuma to any other island will no longer have to provide a negative RT-PCR test.
  • All travellers are required to follow all protocols for inter-island travel, which include obtaining a Bahamas Travel Health Visa at travel.gov.bs, completing a daily health survey and taking a COVID-19 Rapid Antigen Test on day 5 of their stay (if applicable).

Holiday Measures for New Providence, Abaco, Grand Bahama, Exuma and Eleuthera

  • For the Christmas season, effective from Thursday, December 24 through Sunday, January 3, 2021, church and religious services on these islands may be held during curfew hours, after 10 p.m. to accommodate midnight mass, Watch Night services and other liturgical services.
  • Social gatherings may take place with a maximum of 10 people.

All travellers to The Bahamas are required to abide by current entry and inter-island travel protocols that help keep the country safe for all to enjoy. An overview of current entry requirements is, as follows:

Prior to Travel:

COVID-19 RT-PCR Test

All persons travelling to The Bahamas must obtain a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR (swab) test taken no more than five (5) days prior to the date of arrival. 

  • The name and address of the lab, where the test was performed, must be clearly displayed on the test result.
  • A Bahamas citizen or resident planning to travel abroad for five (5) days or less must secure a test in the destination they visited before travelling back to The Bahamas. Any RT-PCR test taken in The Bahamas prior to travel will not be valid for re-entry. 
    • Exemptions:
      • Children age ten (10) and under
      • Pilots and crew of commercial airlines who remain overnight in The Bahamas.

Bahamas Travel Health Visa

  • Once in possession of a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR test result, apply for a Bahamas Travel Health Visa at travel.gov.bs.  During peak processing times, the Travel Health Visa can take up to 48 hours.
  • For international travellers or Bahamians returning to The Bahamas from abroad, click on the International tab and upload test results and other required documents.
  • Those travelling inter-island, originating from a destination within The Bahamas, should select the domestic tab and upload test results (if applicable) and other required documents.
    • There is a non-refundable fee for the Bahamas Travel Health Visa, inclusive of an application fee, administrative and distribution costs. The final price is dependent on length of stay, as well as applicable testing, insurance and healthcare related costs:
      • $40 – Visitors staying up to four (4) nights and five (5) days
        • Includes cost of Travel Health Insurance; a day five rapid antigen test is not required
      • $40 – Citizens and returning residents
        • Includes cost of day five rapid antigen test; Travel Health Insurance is not required
      • $60 – Visitors staying longer than four (4) nights and five (5) days
        • Includes costs of Travel Health Insurance and rapid antigen test on Day 5
      • Free – Children ten (10) years and under
        • Insurance coverage included

Upon Arrival

Comply with Monitoring Protocols:

  • All persons travelling to The Bahamas will be required to complete daily, for the duration of their stay, an online questionnaire concerning the health and symptoms of each traveller.Any visitor who exhibits COVID symptoms at any time during their stay will be required to take a Rapid Antigen Test and receive a negative result before being permitted to continue with their vacation.
  • If a person tests positive they will be required to follow up with a COVID-19 RT-PCR (swab) test.

 Rapid COVID-19 Antigen Testing (if applicable):

  • All persons travelling in The Bahamas longer than four nights/five days will be required to take a rapid COVID-19 antigen test.
  • All visitors departing on or before five days will not be required to obtain this test.
  • The rapid tests are easy, quick and will yield results in 60 minutes or less, with results being provided electronically via SMS text message and email.
  • Travellers will receive a reminder 24 hours prior to the required test with information on where and how to obtain a test. All persons taking a rapid antigen test are required to bring and present their Health Visa with QR code. Tests cannot be properly recorded without the QR code that corresponds to each person’s individual Health Visa.
  • An approved list of testing sites is available at Bahamas.com/travelupdates.

Due to the fluidity of COVID-19, the Government of The Bahamas will continue to monitor cases across the islands and loosen or tighten restrictions as needed. The Bahamas is an archipelago with more than 700 islands and cays, spread over 100,000 square miles, which means conditions and instances of the virus can be different on each of the 16 islands available to welcome visitors. Travellers should check the status of their island destination before travelling, by visiting Bahamas.com/travelupdates.

For full details on the latest updates, protocols and regulations, please visit opm.gov.bs.

 

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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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