Archive for October, 2021

St. Kitts & Nevis Removes Restrictions on International Air Travelers from India and South Africa

Basseterre, St. Kitts, (October 20, 2021) – St. Kitts & Nevis welcomes fully vaccinated international air travelers from India and South Africa with the October 18, 2021, removal of the restriction on travelers from these two destinations.  The removal of the travel restrictions at this time for India and South Africa is consistent with the lifting of the restrictions on travelers from the UK on September 1, 2021, and aligns with the continued upward momentum of the vaccination rate in the Federation. The travel restriction remains in place for international travelers from Brazil.

Among the adult population, 77.4% have received one dose of the AstraZeneca/Oxford vaccine, with 70.3% of the adult population fully vaccinated; among children and teen agers between the ages of 12 – 17, 10.9% of have received their first dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine with 6.8% having received two doses. (Statistics as of October 19, 2021).

Effective October 7, 2021, “Vacation in Place” was reduced to 24 hours, with the required RT PCR arrivals test taken onsite at “Travel Approved” hotels and accommodations. Test results will be made available during the 24-hour “Vacation in Place.” Those travelers with a negative test result may fully integrate into the Federation after the 24-hour period has elapsed and enjoy the myriad experiences St. Kitts & Nevis offers including, dining in restaurants, experiencing the vibe at one of the local beach bars on “The Strip,” visiting our unique and one-of-kind attractions, sailing the clear waters, hiking the volcano, shopping our local craft markets or just chilling at one of our beaches.

As announced on May 29, 2021 only fully vaccinated travelers will be allowed entry to the Federation.

  • Exemptions are in place for Citizens and Residents of the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis and children under the age of 18 accompanying their fully vaccinated parents or guardians.
  • All Travel Protocols and Requirements remaining in place for the Federation of St. Kitts & Nevis, including the submission of negative test results from an RT PCR test 72 hours prior to arrival
  • Please see  https://www.stkittstourism.kn/travel-requirements.

A traveler is considered fully vaccinated when two weeks have passed since receiving their second dose of a two dose vaccine series (Pfizer/BioNTech, Moderna, AstraZeneca/Oxford, Sinopharm or Sinovac), or two weeks after they have received a single dose vaccine (Johnson & Johnson). Mixing of approved vaccines for St. Kitts and Nevis is accepted.

The previously announced travel requirements for non-vaccinated travelers are null and void.  Below are the travel requirements for fully vaccinated travelers:

(a)Proof of vaccination is a scanned copy of the traveler’s official COVID-19 Vaccination Record Card. Upon submission of their vaccination card and completion of their travel authorization form, once verified, international travelers will receive authorization of their vaccination card and a KN number.

(b)Traveler must complete the Travel Authorization Form on the national website (knatravelform.kn), including uploading your proof of vaccination and proof of booking at a Travel Approved hotel.

(c)Upon submission of a completed KNA travel form, the traveler must upload their official COVID-19 RT-PCR negative test result from a CLIA/CDC/UKAS approved lab accredited with ISO/IEC 17025 standard taken 72 hours prior to travel. There are no exceptions to the 72-hour timeframe. 

(d)Upon submission of the copy of their official vaccination card and copy of their COVID -19 RT-PCR test negative result, the traveler’s information will be reviewed and they will receive the approval letter to enter the Federation.

(e)For their trip, the traveler should bring a copy of their COVID-19 Vaccination Record Card and their negative COVID-19 RT-PCR test. Please note, acceptable COVID-19 RT-PCR tests must be taken by nasopharyngeal sample. Self-samples, rapid tests, or home tests will be considered invalid.

(f)International travelers will undergo a health screening at the airport which includes a temperature check and a health questionnaire. Upon arrival, if a fully vaccinated traveler is exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 during the health screening, they can be required to undergo a RT- PCR test at the airport at their own cost (150 USD).

(g)Fully vaccinated international travelers arriving by air will be asked to “Vacation in Place” at a “Travel Approved” hotel for 24 hours.

(h)During the “Vacation in Place” period, all fully vaccinated international travelers arriving by air are free to move throughout the “Travel Approved” hotel, interact with other guests and partake in all hotel activities.

(i)The required RT-PCR arrivals test will be taken onsite at “Travel Approved” hotels and accommodations and must be administered by a Ministry of Health approved health professional (traveler’s cost UDS 150).  Reservations are to be made solely through the hotel concierge. Tests conducted by independent local labs or health professionals offering RT – PCR testing services will not be accepted. Those travelers with a negative test result may fully integrate into the Federation after the 24-hour period has elapsed.

Effective May 1, 2021, fully vaccinated international travelers arriving by air are required to submit an exit RT-PCR test at traveler’s expense (150 USD).

(j)Travel Approved hotels for international travelers are:

  • Four Seasons
  • Golden Rock Inn
  • Marriott Beach Club
  • Montpelier Plantation & Beach
  • Paradise Beach
  • Park Hyatt
  • Royal St. Kitts Hotel

International travelers who would like to stay at private rental home or condo must stay at a property that has been pre-approved as a quarantine housing at their own cost, including security. Please submit request to info@stkittstourism.kn

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Jamaica Wins Major Destination Accolades At 28th Annual World Travel Awards

LONDON, OCTOBER 21, 2021:  Jamaica has received international recognition at the 2021 World Travel Awards Caribbean & North America programme, winning five awards at the ceremony held in Dubai. Amongst the coveted awards bestowed were the Caribbean Leading Adventure Tourism Destination 2021Caribbean Leading Destination 2021Caribbean Leading Nature Destination 2021Caribbean’s Leading Cruise Destination 2021, and Caribbean Leading Tourist Board 2021.

A win at the annual World Travel Awards is the ultimate travel and tourist industry accolade. Voted by travel and tourism professionals and consumers worldwide, the awards recognise each winner’s demonstrated commitment to excellence.

Honourable Edmund Bartlett, Jamaica’s Minister of Tourism, commented on the achievement, “We are extremely delighted and honoured to earn these awards. Winning five categories of the prestigious World Travel Awards is a remarkable achievement for our beautiful destination, especially in light of the current climate. As a destination we have been working diligently on enhancing our offerings to attract millions of tourists to our shores. We are tremendously pleased that our hard work has paid off; we don’t take this win for granted. On behalf of all my colleagues at Jamaica Tourist Board, I would like to thank all those professionals from the travel and tourism, and the consumer-travel buyer sectors who have voted and contributed to our success.”

Known as the ‘land of wood and water’, Jamaica is renowned for its stunning beaches, crystal blue sea, tropical greenery and unforgettable people. Thrill-seekers can enjoy these beautiful landscapes in a variety of adrenaline raising experiences, from river rafting down the Rio Grande, to hiking in the Blue Mountains, to zip lining through the treetops.

Jamaica has been welcoming the return of visitors to her beautiful shores since borders reopened in June 2020. The island’s extensive health and safety protocols, developed in conjunction with authorities across health and tourism sectors, were among the first to receive the World Travel & Tourism Council’s Safe Travels recognition.

Instead of the traditional gathering of the Caribbean & North America Gala, the winners, showcasing the best of the region’s travel and tourism sector, were announced virtually today.

The World Travel Awards were established in 1993 to acknowledge, reward and celebrate excellence across all key sectors of the travel, tourism and hospitality industries. The brand is recognised globally as the ultimate hallmark of quality in those industries.

For further information on the World Travel Awards, visit www.worldtravelawards.com

For further information on Jamaica, visit www.visitjamaica.com

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Jamaica Sees Increased Demand From U.S. Travelers

KINGSTON, JAMAICA, October 20, 2021 – Further signaling the continued rebound of tourism to Jamaica, both American Airlines and Southwest Airlines along with Expedia are noting an increase in demand for the destination by travelers in the coming weeks and months.

“American, Southwest and Expedia are all critical partners for Jamaica’s tourism sector, and we look forward to welcoming many more visitors in the near future,” said Minister of Tourism for Jamaica, the Hon. Edmund Bartlett. “Confidence in growth for Jamaica’s tourism remains strong and we will maintain our world-class Jamaica CARES health and safety protocols, including our Resilient Corridors, to ensure a robust winter.”

To meet the higher demand for Jamaica, American Airlines will be up gauging the aircraft utilized on flights to Montego Bay (MBJ) from their major city hubs of Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW), Miami (MIA), and Philadelphia (PHL). As of November, they will be utilizing their new wide-bodied Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner for these operations. The Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner is one of the carrier’s newest planes, offering a more comfortable flight experience with additional conveniences for both business and economy class passengers.

American Airlines is the largest air passenger carrier serving Jamaica. It operates multiple daily non-stop flights to the destination from several U.S. cities including Miami (MIA), New York (JFK), Philadelphia (PHL), Chicago (ORD), Boston (BOS), Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW, and Charlotte (CLT). The airline also recently announced that they will be operating non-stop flights 3 times weekly Sun/Mon/Thu from Philadelphia (PHL) to Kingston (KIN) starting November 4.

Meanwhile, Southwest Airlines has informed Minister Bartlett that their flight operations into Montego Bay (MBJ) near-term are very close to pre-pandemic record year levels. This demand growth indicated by American and Southwest is further supported by Expedia, which has data showing room night and passenger growth metrics surpassing a comparable period in 2019.

These updates were provided during meetings with the airlines and Expedia that were among a series of meetings held with travel industry leaders across Jamaica’s largest source markets of the United States and Canada. The meetings aimed to drive increased tourist arrivals in the near term and to cement further investment in the island’s tourism sector. Joining Minister Bartlett at these meetings was the Chairman of the Jamaica Tourist Board, John Lynch; Director of Tourism, Donovan White; Senior Strategist in the Tourism Ministry, Delano Seiveright and Deputy Director of Tourism for the Americas, Donnie Dawson.

Jamaica remains open for travel and continues to welcome visitors safely. Its health and safety protocols were among the first to receive the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) Safe Travels recognition that allowed the destination to safely reopen to travel in June 2020. The island has also recently announced new cruise developments and ninety percent of planned tourist investments remaining on track.

For more information on Jamaica, please go to www.visitjamaica.com.

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Virgin Voyages Marks Inaugural Sailing to Nassau and Bimini

NASSAU, Bahamas – With vaccinations increasing and travel restrictions lifting across the world, cruise lines are coming back in full swing to Caribbean shores. Virgin Voyages’ Scarlet Lady, a new luxury cruise, began its “inaugural” sailing season to the Caribbean, making its debut in The Bahamas with a four- night “Fire and Sunset Soireìes,” including a stop at The Beach Club at Bimini. This past week inaugural ceremonies were held in the capital and Bimini, where Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Tourism, Investments & Aviation the Honourable I. Chester Cooper and Director General Joy Jibrilu welcomed the cruise line to the shores of The Islands of The Bahamas.

During the inaugural ceremony in Bimini, Deputy Prime Minister Cooper expressed his optimism for economic growth considering this new partnership. “The weekly cruises will positively impact the local economy, and cruise guests will get to experience all the joys of a day on a small tropical island, from luxuriating on a gorgeous stretch of powder-soft, white sand beach, to expeditions that take them big game fishing, deep-sea diving, kayaking, and interacting with dolphins,” said Deputy Prime Minister Cooper.

Director General Joy Jibrilu echoed the sentiments of Deputy Prime Minister Cooper at the inaugural ceremony held in Nassau, “Virgin Voyages itineraries featuring a day in Nassau and a day in Bimini will allow for your over 2,700 guests to experience a taste of The Bahamas as they explore some of The Bahamas’ premier historical sites and attractions and interact with our warm, hospitable people.”

The adults-only cruise ship accommodates 2,770 passengers (inclusive of crew) and 24 food and beverage venues. The vessel also features numerous event venues, a smoke-free casino, an arcade, a dual-space fitness center and more.

The Lady Scarlet will make weekly voyages to Bimini and Nassau over the next seven months, beginning October 2021 through May 2022. In observance of Covid-19 protocols and to ensure safety, the cruise line requires full vaccinations for both guests and staff. Passengers will also be tested for Covid-19 prior to boarding, a cost covered by the cruise line. Health protocols onboard include sanitization, physical distancing, limited occupancy and enforcement of local government guidelines in each destination.

For more information on Virgin Voyages cruises, visit www.virginvoyages.com.

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New Tourism Experiences Open Up As Vaccination Rates Increase In Antigua And Barbuda

(ST. JOHN’S, ANTIGUA) October 19, 2021 – The twin-island paradise of Antigua and Barbuda continues to be the perfect place for visitors seeking a well-needed vacation. With increased vaccination rates for Covid-19 in the country, on-island restrictions have been eased. This means visitors can look forward to enjoying some newly re-opened tourism experiences.

Plan your perfect day, on one of Antigua and Barbuda’s gorgeous beaches. The warm and crystal-clear waters are therapeutic, and there is lots of room for social distancing. New opening hours for all 365 beaches are from 5 a.m. – 7 p.m. daily, providing lots of time to unwind under flowing palm trees.

Water excursions are also now officially open, for those eager to leave the sun-kissed shores behind and jet-off on the water for an exhilarating adventure. Sail to Antigua’s sister-island Barbuda, for a visit to the Magnificent Frigatebird Sanctuary or drop anchor within reach of a deserted beach.  Back in Antigua, enjoy relaxed kayaking, a circumnavigation cruise, snorkelling in clear, turquoise waters and the abundance of available water-based activities that stretch across the coastline. Land-based excursions continue to operate.

Following a short break, restaurant tables are now set for re-opened dine-in service.  Fully vaccinated food aficionados can completely immerse themselves in Antigua and Barbuda’s rich, culinary experience in picturesque settings with extraordinary service.

Keen to take in the beauty of Antigua and Barbuda at night? With shortened curfew hours, visitors are welcomed to spend more time under the stars as businesses open late into the night. Present curfew hours are from 11 p.m. – 5 a.m.

Visitors should observe all covid-19 protocols during their stay and are encouraged to book only Covid-19 certified businesses such as restaurants and excursions during their trip.

Before travelling to Antigua and Barbuda, visitors should ensure that they have reviewed the Government of Antigua and Barbuda’s latest travel advisory.

All travellers, 18 years and older are now required to have received at least one dose of a World Health Organization (WHO) or Antigua and Barbuda Ministry of Health, Wellness, and the Environment (MOHWE) approved 2-dose Covid-19 vaccine or a single dose vaccine to be permitted entry into Antigua and Barbuda.  All arriving passengers by air, ages 5 years and older, are also required to present a negative Covid- I9 RT-PCR taken within four (4) days of their flight.

For the full travel advisory, destination updates and details on covid-19 certified businesses, go to: www.visitantiguabarbuda.com

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