Countries around the world are beginning to plan for how they will safely bring tourists back after the coronavirus pandemic. The Caribbean countries are opening their airports and establishing new rules and social distancing regulations to ensure tourists and staff are safe.
While it is still not known whether Bris will be able to travel abroad this summer as the government advises against all but essential foreign travel for the foreseeable future.
Here is the latest travel advice for some Caribbean islands:
Antigua and Barbuda
The Antigua and Barbuda government has announced that it will re-open its international airport on June 1. British Airways is expected to resume flights to Antigua and Barbuda in July.
All hotels in the country will be inspected by a team of tourism and health officials before they are allowed to reopen for business.
Individuals entering the country will be subject to strict health protocols to avoid the spread of COVID-19 in the country. This includes a rapid COVID-test.
Persons will be quarantined for 14 days and hotels will serve as enclave properties for guests. Interaction with hotel employees and other locals will be limited and subject to established protocols.
The government will reduce curfew hours from 9:00 pm to 5:00 am (local time) daily.
Aruba will welcome back tourists at some point between 15 June and 1 July. The government has established an Aruba Health & Happiness Code certification that will be awarded to businesses who have taken all the necessary health and safety measures to protect staff and customers from coronavirus.
The Bahamas is hoping to reopen its borders for tourism on 1 July – although Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis has indicated that this date could change. The government is finalizing health and safety protocols to facilitate re-opening and guidelines will be designed to provide reasonable assurance of safety.
Barbados did not close its airport during the pandemic. British Airways will resume flights to Barbados on 1 July. Anyone arriving in the country must quarantine for 14 days, and the authorities are carrying out temperature checks upon arrival at the airport.
There is currently a curfew in Barbados from 8pm to 5am daily. This will be lifted on 31 May. Beaches were opened on 18 May, with limited hours of 6am to 9am and 4pm to 6:30pm.
The Cuban Ministry of Tourism has confirmed that borders will remain closed for now, but that hotels and other venues are making preparations for when tourists can return.
The Dominican Republic has slowly begun to ease its lockdown measures, but it could be a while before it reopens to tourists. The country’s borders are still closed with all flights suspended (except for flights to repatriate foreign nationals).
There is a 7pm to 7am curfew.
Grenada has not set a firm date for reopening but is aiming for June. The government is preparing adequate health and safety guidelines.
There are currently no flights between Jamaica and the UK, but the country is preparing for a phased reopening of the tourism sector. The country is preparing to have controlled corridors of entry and is working on how to move tourists safely from airports to hotels.
Anyone arriving in Jamaica currently must quarantine for 14 days, and there is no date for when this will end.
St Kitts and Nevis
St.Kitts and Nevis is open, except to anyone travelling from or transiting from China, Iran, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea, Japan, the EU, the UK, Switzerland, the USA or any Dutch or French territories in the Caribbean.
Any arrivals will be screened and must quarantine for 14 days.
Saint Lucia has announced that it will begin to open its borders to tourists from 4 June.
Strict protocols have been put in place to protect both visitors and the local population. Passengers will need a certified negative COVID-19 certificate to travel, and masks will be compulsory while on the plane and in the airports. Hotels guests will have their temperatures taken at mealtimes, while staff will have theirs tested at the beginning and end of every shift.
Social distancing and regular handwashing will be practiced. There is currently a curfew in the country from 9 pm to 5 am.