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Barbados opens up to all nations

Barbados is one of the most popular Caribbean islands for holidaymakers.

Barbados officially reopens to tourists on July 12 and all nations are welcome.

While there has been little-to-no movement on air corridors or loosening of quarantine restrictions in Asia, the Caribbean might make a sunny - albeit long-distance - break for residents of Asia Pacific residents looking to get away.

There are currently no active cases of coronavirus in Barbados and on July 1, all curfews were lifted.

Entry requirements to the Caribbean island depend on where travellers are coming from. Countries have been divided into high-, medium- and low-risk, depending on their current caseload.

High-risk countries are defined as those with more than 10,000 new cases in the prior seven days which are in the ‘community transmission’ category.

Low-risk are those countries and territories with less than 100 new cases in the last seven days and which also fall into the ‘community transmission’ classification.

All visitors are required to bring a negative-PCR test which will be checked on arrival. Residents of high-risk countries must obtain the test within 72 hours of departure, while those from low-risk countries will have a week to undergo the test.

If travellers don’t bring a negative test result with them, they must take a test on arrival and will be quarantined at their own expense until the result comes back. The wait-period is around 48 hours. If results return positive, travellers will be placed in isolation by the Ministry of Health and Wellness.

Travellers will be required to complete an online ED (Embarkation/Disembarkation) health card prior to departure. Once uploaded, travellers will receive a barcode which they will need to clear immigration. There will also be mandatory temperature checks on arrival.

To date, the Caribbean island has reported just 98 COVID-19 cases and seven deaths.

Life in Barbados since the curfew was raised is slowly returning to normal, albeit a socially-distanced normal. Shops, bars, restaurants and beaches are open and it’s possible to hire a car. Face masks are mandatory on public transport and social distancing requirements are set at just under one metre.

The hurricane season runs from June to November, but if by late autumn Asia has still made no progress on opening up, Barbados might make an attractive, sunny winter break (if you can bear the quarantine on your return home, not to mention the super long-haul journey).

British Airways will be resuming twice-weekly flights from Gatwick, London, this month and Virgin Atlantic will be starting a once-weekly service from Heathrow on August 1.


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