While parts of Europe are seeing more restrictions, many of the traditional winter charter destinations are looking to ease COVID-19 lockdown regulations and prepare for their tourist season. Below is a guide of the most recent information regarding the lifting of restrictions on yachting and travel for popular winter resorts. While this page will be updated regularly as news develops, please note that this information is constantly changing, and all travelers should check with their local governments for further instructions.
CORONAVIRUS: LIVE YACHTING UPDATES
As of 18 September, CARICOM (Caribbean Community) member states and associate members have agreed to a travel bubble between countries. Only those countries with no cases or low risk status are able to participate in the bubble, with additional member states being added to the bubble when they meet this criteria.
Travelers who have been in any country within the bubble for at least 14 days prior to travel will be allowed entry to other member countries without being subjected to PCR testing prior to arrival and with no quarantine restrictions, although they may be subjected to screening on arrival.
As of 22 September, Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Dominica, Grenada, Montserrat, St. Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia and St. Vincent and the Grenadines have all met the criteria to join the bubble. However only St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Dominica, Antigua and Barbuda, and Barbados have the necessary arrangements in place and have therefore commenced operating the travel bubble.
All passengers arriving from outside of the CARICOM bubble by air must present a negative COVID-19 PCR test, taken within seven days of their flight’s departure. Travelers arriving by sea from outside the bubble are subject to quarantine according to guidelines issued by Port Health. All travelers are also subject to a health assessment by Port Health Authorities and must complete a health declaration form on arrival. Face masks are now mandatory in all public spaces throughout Antigua and Barbuda and social/physical distancing protocols must be adhered to.
As of 1 October, all passengers from designated medium and high-risk countries will be required to present a negative PCR test taken within 72 hours of arrival and will be retested two to three days after arrival. These travelers will be required to remain in pre-approved accommodation with restricted access for two days until the result of the second test comes back. Travelers from low-risk countries are also advised to complete a negative PCR test before arrival.
British Virgin Islands
The British Virgin Islands have announced that they will reopen to international travel on 1 December, however no protocols have been announced yet.
St Vincent and the Grenadines
All travelers coming from outside the CARICOM bubble must complete a pre-arrival questionnaire and travelers from many countries must present a negative PCR test on arrival, taken no more than five days previously. On arrival, travelers with be re-tested and must quarantine in an approved hotel for 48-72 hours while awaiting results. Travelers will continue to be monitored for 9-16 days in an approved hotel, villa or yacht at the discretion of the Port Health Authority.
St Barth's and St Maarten
St Maarten is currently open to all nationalities flying in from most countries, however all travelers must present a negative PCR test no more than 120 hours old at the time of arrival. The border between Dutch St Maarten and French St Martin is open as usual. St Barth’s, alternatively, requires negative PCR tests to be less than 72 hours old and this should be kept in mind if travelling from St Barth’s to St Maarten.
US Virgin Islands
From 19 September, the US Virgin Islands are once again open to international travel. All visitors must fill out a health declaration form and present a negative COVID-19 PCR test on arrival. Restaurants can return to limited in-house dining and service, however all bars, nightclubs, and cabarets remain closed.
While the Bahamas is currently open to private jets and yachts, as of 15 October the country will reopen to all travel and tourism. All incoming travelers must submit a Health Declaration Form online and present a negative PCR test less than seven days old on arrival. New protocols will require a rapid antigen test upon arrival, and then again four days (96 hours) after arrival. All visitors to the Bahamas are required to wear masks and respect social distancing procedures in all public areas.
The Maldives have reopened their borders to travelers of all nationalities. No quarantine is required for tourists, however a negative PCR test taken within 72 hours of the incoming flight must be presented on arrival.
Seychelles airport has re-opened to commercial passenger flights. Only travelers who have been in an approved country for a minimum of 14 days will be allowed to enter, and all travelers must present a negative PCR test taken no more than 72 hours before travel. Accommodation must be pre-approved and face masks are compulsory where social distancing measures cannot be maintained. Yachts allowed to enter Seychelles with prior approval.
Only foreign nationals holding a valid work permit or permission from a Thai agency to work in Thailand are currently permitted to enter the country.
For advice and further information on how these updates may affect your yachting plans, please contact us.
All details above are given in good faith and may change with no or little notice, so cannot be guaranteed. This information should not be relied upon for contractual purposes and is intended as a guide only. We always advise to independently check the latest COVID-19 news updates directly from official governmental or WHO sources.