Bahamas Ramps Up Already Robust Entry Requirements Due To COVID – CBS Miami
MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Are you thinking about going to the Bahamas? Better check out the islands’ latest COVID-19 protocols and vaccine requirements.
The islands have just changed their already robust entry requirements due to COVID issues.
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When Americans got the COVID vaccine and started traveling, the Bahamas saw a tourism boom amid the pandemic.
“We have seen a huge increase in visitor numbers. They are likely approaching the months of June, July, August. That’s 80% of our level in 2019, ”said Joy Jibrilu, director general of the Bahamas Department of Tourism and Aviation.
Ninety percent of US visitors, including many Florida folks flying to the islands or taking their boats to the islands, applied for 110,000 health visas in May.
“This summer was a record summer. Many travel destinations had numbers that could only be seen at Christmas time, ”said Alex Britell of the Caribbean Journal.
But with the good news, COVID is always a challenge for tourist economies, for the Bahamas and the Caribbean.
“We have seen a surge in cases in the Bahamas that almost mirrors what is happening in Florida, and with that surge and pressure on medical health systems, the government has revised early protocols,” added Jibrilu.
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Entry into the Bahamas offers additional protection for residents and tourists.
If you were vaccinated, the Bahamas Health Visa was safe for you. Well, even “if you were fully vaccinated, you would need to do either a rapid antigen test or a PCR test and apply for the health visa to enter,” Jibrilu said.
Other Caribbean nations are also making changes due to the rise in the COVID number.
“Destinations are starting to change protocols slightly to keep travel going for business but also to stay safe,” said Britell.
So the message to travelers and tourists traveling to the Bahamas or other island nations is to do your homework. Protocols are flowing, the island governments dance a delicate dance.
“How do you balance the economy with a health crisis?” Asks Jibrilu.
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All passengers returning to the US from Caribbean countries must have a negative COVID test result before boarding a return flight to the mainland.