Covid-19 Information for The Bahamas
At Paradise Connection Yacht Charters, our clients' best interests are always our top priority. An all-inclusive, crewed yacht charter is the ideal vacation for the "new world" of travel which we are all now facing.
The health and well-being of all who enter or reside in The Bahamas remains the number one priority, and diligent efforts are enforced to minimize the spread of COVID-19. The following travel and entry protocols have been put in place to ensure The Bahamas is a safe and clean destination for all to enjoy. View their Tourism Reopening FAQs
November 10, 2020 Update
The Islands of The Bahamas are currently open and looking forward to welcoming visitors from all countries. There are no restrictions on commercial international travel from any jurisdiction, nor are there restrictions on private planes or boats.
It is recommended that all travellers interested in visiting The Bahamas review requirements applicable to each member of their party at Bahamas.com/travelupdates before booking a trip to determine what steps need to be taken to be granted entry.
Travellers planning to visit The Bahamas should also be prepared to:
- Adhere to health and safety protocols as outlined on Bahamas.com/travelupdates.
- Monitor business websites (airlines, hotels, attractions, etc.) for changes in protocols.
- Avoid travelling when they feel ill.
- Follow The Bahamas’ “Healthy Traveller Campaign” which includes the ongoing practice of:
- Physical distancing measures
- Regularly washing hands
- Wearing PPE such as face masks when appropriate
ENTRY REQUIREMENTS: TESTING, INSURANCE AND HEALTH VISA
Is a COVID-19 RT-PCR Negative (Swab) Test required to enter The Bahamas?
Yes. All persons travelling to The Bahamas must first 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.
- Upon arrival, any person presenting a test older than five (5) days will not be allowed entry into The Bahamas.
- Children age ten (10) and under, as well as pilots and crew of commercial airlines who remain overnight in The Bahamas, are exempt from obtaining the RT-PCR test.
Can I use my Antigen or Antibody Test to enter the Country?
No, only a negative RT-PCR (swab) test from a referenced lab will be considered a VALID test to be granted entry into The Bahamas.
Covid Health Insurance
Does The Bahamas require separate COVID Health Insurance?
Beginning November 14, all visitors entering The Bahamas will be required to opt into the Health Insurance coverage when applying for their Bahamas Health Visa (More details on Bahamas Health Visa below).
- The COVID Health Insurance will cover visitors for the duration of their stay in the event they become ill with COVID-19 while in The Bahamas.
What is included as part of the COVID Health Insurance?
- Medical expenses incurred on-island due to COVID-19, up to $50,000 (USD)
- Trip interruption/delay for necessary quarantine or isolation due to COVID-19, up to $500 (USD) per day/$7,000 (USD) max
- Medical evacuation due to COVID-19, and subject to medical necessity, up to $50,000 (USD)
How much does the COVID Health Insurance cost?
The cost of the required COVID Health Insurance is included in the Bahamas Health Visa and paid in advance of travel.
Who needs to complete an electronic Bahamas Travel Health Visa?
All travellers, returning citizens and residents arriving via commercial flights, as well as by private planes, private boats, yachts or pleasure craft, are required to apply for a Bahamas Travel Health Visa at travel.gov.bs by selecting the International option and completing all required fields.
- It is mandatory that a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR test result be uploaded to complete the Health Visa application.
- Beginning November 14, visitors must also opt in for Health Insurance coverage.
- Name of applicant must exactly match name on applicant’s valid passport.
- Households are encouraged to use one email address per family/household to receive responses. Groups may opt to use the same method of collecting responses through one email facility.
Is a Health Visa required for domestic inter-island travellers?
Yes, all those travelling inter-island – both residents and visitors – will be required to complete an electronic Travel Health Visa, via the domestic or international sections, as appropriate.
Is there a fee for the Bahamas Travel Health Visa?
- Yes, there is a non-refundable fee for the Travel Health Visa, which will be dependent on length of stay.
- All Travel Health Visas include standard administrative costs, such as the application fee for the Health Visa, as well as relative IT and distribution costs.
- The final price of an individual Health Visa for visitors, returning citizens and residents is dependent on length of stay and any applicable testing, healthcare related costs, or insurance requirements. (More details on rapid testing below)
- $40 (non-refundable) – 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 (non-refundable) – Citizens and returning residents: Includes cost of day five rapid antigen test; Travel Health Insurance is not required
- $60 (non-refundable) – 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)
How do I upload my COVID-19 RT-PCR test results to my electronic Travel Health Visa?
- Each applicant will be required to upload their individual negative test results. Please ensure each application is submitted with the corresponding test result.
- Travellers should upload ALL pages of the test results report, even if there are multiple pages
- Please ensure your test results state clearly the following information:
- Name of Applicant (must match the name used on the application form)
- Confirmation of a negative result
- Type of test – RT- PCR (not an antigen test nor an antibody test)
- Date the test was administered (collection date of swab), not to exceed five (5) days prior to the date of arrival
- Name and address of the accredited lab where test was performed
- Children age ten (10) and under are exempt from requiring a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR test; they will, however, be required to have their application submitted by a parent/guardian.
- Proof of age must be uploaded (applicable passport page, birth certificate and/or other government-issued ID).
When will I receive a response about my Bahamas Travel Health Visa?
- Health Visa applications take up to 72 hours to process so they should be completed with adequate lead time.
- Applicants will receive an automated response within 1 hour of submission indicating the application is being processed. Travellers should not apply again unless they do not receive the automated response within the hour.
- An approved Health Visa will receive a green code, and proof of confirmation should be presented at check-in and upon arrival in the destination.
- If a Health Visa application is pending, visitor will receive a yellow code which means it requires additional review.
- If a Health Visa application is denied, visitor will receive a red color code and will not be permitted entry to The Bahamas.
- Travellers should not submit more than one application per person travelling (per trip). Do NOT submit multiple applications.
- For all questions regarding the Travel Health Visa process, or to check on the status of your application, contact firstname.lastname@example.org via email.
Is a print version of my electronic Travel Health Visa required?
Yes, please ensure you print your Approved (Green) Bahamas Travel Health Visa response issued electronically by the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism and the Bahamas Ministry of Health.
What if I do not complete the electronic Travel Health Visa application form?
Travellers who fail to complete an electronic Travel Health Visa application form or provide a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR Negative (Swab) Test from an accredited lab will be denied entry to The Bahamas and are subject to fines and possible imprisonment.
How long are Health Visas valid for? Will visitors and residents be required to get a new Health Visa each time they travel?
Travel Health Visas are valid for the duration of each individual traveller’s trip. Because a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR test result is required to be uploaded to complete the Health Visa application with test date no more than five (5) days prior to the date of arrival, it is necessary for all travellers to apply for a new Health Visa with each trip.
Potential For Changes To Requirements
What is the plan for the tourism industry should The Bahamas see a dramatic rise in cases?
- Due to fluidity of the COVID-19 situation, both in The Bahamas and worldwide, protocols are subject to change.
- 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 and scroll down to the Interactive Island Guide map.
Will persons wishing to travel from an island with a higher number of cases be permitted to enter an island with a low number of cases?
- All travellers must follow appropriate testing, visa and insurance protocols to be granted entry to any island.
- Per the current Emergency Orders, there are restrictions for persons travelling from an island with mandatory lockdown orders in place.
- A person should not be permitted to travel from an island for which notice has been given of an impending lockdown order or for which additional measures and restrictions have been imposed.
- Travellers should check the status of their island destination before travelling, by visiting Bahamas.com/travelupdates.
View more info and keep current at Tourism Reopening FAQs
The Government of The Bahamas Introduces New Travel and Testing Protocols Designed to Eliminate the Need to Quarantine
October 2, 2020
NASSAU, Bahamas, 1st October 2020 – The Islands of The Bahamas remains committed to welcoming visitors to its shores and providing an exceptional tropical vacation coupled with our world famous warm and friendly hospitality, while, responsibly enforcing public health and safety measures to protect residents and visitors alike.
While 15th October 2020 is still set for the reopening of the tourism sector, until 31st October all incoming visitors must "Vacation in Place" for 14 days or the duration of stay, whichever is shorter, which means limiting the vacation experience to the grounds and amenities of a traveler’s hotel or accommodations. Beginning 1st November 2020, The Bahamas will remove the mandatory “Vacation in Place” requirement for all visitors, returning citizens and residents thereby, enabling everyone to move about and explore the destination beyond the confines of their hotel or other accommodations.
The new protocols will require visitors, and returning citizens and residents to obtain a RT-PCR (swab) test no more than seven (7) days prior to their travel to The Bahamas.
In addition, and to ensure that travelers remain COVID free, a rapid antigen test will be conducted upon arrival, and then again four days (96 hours) after arrival in The Bahamas. Children ten (10) and under are exempt from taking a rapid antigen test.
Specifics are as follows:
Prior To Travel:
- COVID-19 RT-PCR Test: All persons traveling to The Bahamas must obtain a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR (swab) test taken no more than seven (7) 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.
- Children ten (10) and under and pilots and crew of commercial airlines, who remain overnight in The Bahamas, are exempt from obtaining the RT-PCR test.
- Bahamas Health Travel Visa: Once in possession of a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR test, all travelers will then be required to apply for a Bahamas Health Travel Visa at travel.gov.bs (click on the International Tab) where the required test must be uploaded. The cost of the visa will depend on the length of stay.
- Day of Arrival (Day One): Rapid Test – All persons entering The Bahamas, at an approved Port of Entry, will receive a Rapid COVID-19 antigen test.
If arriving by air, an approved Port of Entry will be: Nassau, Freeport, Marsh Harbour, North Eleuthera, Georgetown (Exuma), Bimini (and Cat Cay) and San Andros (Andros).
If arriving by sea, an approved Port of Entry will be: Nassau (Atlantis, Bay Street Marina, Lyford Cay, Albany and Nassau Yacht Haven); Grand Bahama (West End – Old Bahama Bay and Freeport – Lucaya); Abaco (Marsh Harbour Government Dock); Eleuthera (Spanish Wells Marina); Berry Islands (Chubb Cay Club); Bimini (Big Game Club and Cat Cay Club); Exuma (Georgetown Government Dock).
American Airlines has indicated that, beginning in late October, they wish to provide each passenger traveling to The Bahamas from Miami with a Rapid COVID-19 antigen test before boarding the plane. These passengers, along with the passengers of any other airlines wishing to provide a similar service, will not be required to complete the Rapid Test upon arrival in The Bahamas.
- Day Five (96 hours after arrival): Rapid Test – All persons who entered The Bahamas, and who are staying longer than four nights and five days, will be required to take a second Rapid COVID-19 antigen test. To be clear, all visitors departing on Day Five will not be required to obtain this test.
The cost of the rapid tests on and after arrival will be included in the cost of the visa.
The rapid tests are easy, quick and will yield results in 20 minutes or less with results being provided electronically.
Many hotel properties will provide relevant information on testing arrangements, while others will facilitate the required rapid test for their guests.
All persons on yachts and other pleasure craft will be able to make arrangements for their required rapid tests at the port of entry or via the relevant website.
All other visitors, returning residents and citizens will be able to make arrangements for their required rapid tests at the port of entry or via the relevant website.
The On Island Experience:
All islands in The Bahamas require the wearing of masks and appropriate social distancing in public places.
The Bahamas has remained diligent in its efforts to minimize the spread of COVID-19 throughout the islands, and these measures are imperative to ensure that remains the case. The health and wellbeing of both residents and visitors remain the number one priority of our public health officials. It is important to note, however, that due to fluidity of the COVID-19 situation, both in The Bahamas and worldwide, protocols are subject to change.