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Industry Briefs
BAHAMAS MINISTRY OF TOURISM & AVIATION IMPLEMENTS FOR PHASE 1 REOPENING JUNE 15

The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism & Aviation has announced the destination began Phase 1 of the Tourism Readiness and Recovery Plan on Monday, June 15, which welcomed international boaters, yachters and private aviation back to Bahamian shores, across all The Islands Of The Bahamas.

During Phase 1, hotels will also reopen for staff to return to work and put in place all the measures required to ensure they are ready to welcome guests at the onset of Phase 2. Commercial airlines will also be allowed to bring in Bahamian citizens, legal residents, homeowners qualifying for economic permanent residency, or the immediate family members or significant others of any of these groups. It is anticipated that during this period of time there will be a reduced flight schedule as airlines begin adding The Bahamas to their schedules once again.

This is the first part of the strategic, phased reopening approach for the tourism sector that ensures critical health and safety protocols are being adhered to, and that the Health sector remains well equipped and ready to respond as necessary. The plan was constructed by The Bahamas Tourism Readiness and Recovery Committee, a group comprised of public and private sector partners. Allowing Phase 1 access to these smaller, special interest groups will allow a more controlled segment to test the country’s new measures. The second phase will commence on July 1 with the resumption of international commercial travel.

Guidelines, Policies and Procedures for International boaters, yachters and private aviation visiting The Bahamas through June 30 are, as follows:

• A COVID-19 RT-PCR Negative (Swab) Test is required and must be presented upon arrival. Results must be no more than ten (10) days old. Children under the age of two are not required to take a test.  Private pilots who do not deplane are not required to take a test.
• All travelers – both domestic and international – are required to complete an Electronic Health Declaration Form at travel.gov.bs prior to departure and for any inter-island travel within The Bahamas. An automated response will be provided upon completion, and it is essential that travellers present proof of confirmation upon arrival in their destination This is an important step for contact tracing purposes.
• No quarantine will be required upon arrival (if all steps are met).
• Failure to comply with the test requirements and heath form submission will result in denied entry.
• Boaters must inform marina at least 48 hours prior to vessel’s arrival.

This June 15 tourism re-entry builds on and supports existing government rules and regulations, which already allow for inter-island domestic travel for Bahamian citizens and residents.

Per the direction of the Bahamas Ministry of Health, Bahamian Citizens, Residents and Homeowners Returning from CARICOM countries are not required to present a COVID-19 RTPCR Negative (Swab) Test upon arrival. However, they remain subject to other public health measures.

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

All COVID-19 inquiries should be directed to the Ministry of Health. For questions or concerns, please call the COVID-19 hotline: 242-376-9350 (8 a.m. – 8 p.m. EDT) / 242-376-9387 (8 p.m. – 8 a.m. EDT).
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