ISLAND VIBES - KEY COVID-19 UPDATES ON THE USVI, BVI, & OTHER DESTINATIONS

In Uncertain times or Anytime, Our Expertise is Priceless!

At Carefree Yacht Charters, watching out for our clients' best interests has always been our #1 priority. Throughout COVID-19, this has shifted some of our focus towards contract usage and particulars, evolving border updates and testing requirements, plus continued refinement of our key yacht & crew recommendations for a variety of reasons. Now more than ever, our clients can rely on our expertise and guidance.

TESTING REQUIREMENTS FOR INTERNATIONAL TRAVEL TO THE UNITED STATES

December 6, 2021 Testing Requirement for International Travel to the United States: All air passengers 2 years or older with a flight departing to the US from a foreign country at or after 12:01am EST (5:01am GMT) on December 6, 2021, are required show a negative COVID-19 viral test result taken no more than 1 day before travel, or documentation of having recovered from COVID-19 in the past 90 days, before they board their flight.

  • Domestic Charter Destinations: The US Virgin Islands (USVI) and Puerto Rico are domestic travel destinations. As noted within FAQ's on the following CDC webpage, the requirement to present a negative result of a COVID-19 viral test or documentation recovery from COVID-19 does not apply to air passengers with flights from a US territory to a US state. U.S. territories include the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. This domestic section applies to travelers taking commercial or private flights from the USVI or Puerto Rico direct to the US mainland: CDC FAQ Regarding US Territories
  • International Charter Destinations: The British Virgin Islands (BVI), the Bahamas, plus all other Caribbean charter destinations include visits to foreign countries and are therefore considered international travel destinations. This international section applies to travelers taking commercial, charter or private flights from the BVI to Puerto Rico, travelers taking private flights direct from the BVI to the US mainland, and to travelers taking commercial, charter or private flights from the Bahamas or any other foreign country direct to the United States: CDC Testing Requirement for International Travel

DOMESTIC CHARTER DESTINATIONS

PUERTO RICO

Puerto Rico has developed its own set of travel guidelines and requirements for travelers entering any of the Island's three open airports, whether on commercial or private aircraft and whether arriving domestically (from the continental US or USVI) or arriving internationally (from the BVI or elsewhere).

Official Puerto Rico COVID-19 Protocols: The Puerto Travel Guidelines provide testing requirements plus further information for arrival into or for travel through Puerto Rico for both domestic and international travelers.

The USVI (US Virgin Islands)

Since the USVI's initial opening on June 1, 2020, we've had numerous client groups charter within the USVI with rave reviews and without issue, including numerous repeat clients whose itineraries previously included both the USVI & BVI. For a charter in the USVI, the recommended route is a direct flight from the continental US to the USVI and back.

All Travelers TO THE USVI

USVI TRAVEL ADVISORY & COVID-19 PROTOCOLS: All domestic travelers 5 years of age or older, and all international travelers 2 years of age or older, and persons in transit to or from another destination, who enter the U.S. Virgin Islands by air or sea are required to use the USVI Travel Screening Portal and get cleared to travel to the USVI. The USVI's Travel Advisory provides testing requirements and guidance for your arrival into the USVI including the required use of their online Travel Screening Portal each time you enter the USVI. It also provides guidance regarding a return to the continental United States from the USVI. Please be sure to review all information found on the initial pop-up screen as well as the actual web page carefully as this information is critical for all visitors entering the USVI: USVI Travel Advisory & COVID-19 Protocols

DOMESTIC TRAVELERS TO THE USVI

All Domestic Travelers 5 years of age or older (including travelers from the US mainland and other U.S. Territories) are required to use the USVI travel portal within 5 days of travel to the USVI and based on vaccination status as follows:

  • Fully Vaccinated Visitors: If fully vaccinated, then no negative test result is required for domestic travelers. However, use of the USVI travel portal, proof of valid vaccination status (such as valid vaccination card), and a 14-day window between the second vaccine dose and the first day of travel to USVI is required. Further details, including valid vaccines along with the number of required doses, may be found at the USVI Travel Advisory.
  • Partially or Unvaccinated Visitors: If partially vaccinated (less than the required doses as listed on USVI Travel Advisory) or unvaccinated, then use of the USVI travel portal is required and domestic travelers must submit a negative test result from an approved USVI source.

 

INTERNATIONAL TRAVELERS TO THE USVI (INCLUDING FROM THE BVI)

All International Travelers 2 years of age or older (including travelers from the BVI) are required to use the USVI travel portal and upload the following:

  • A Negative Test: All international travelers must submit a negative test result from an approved USVI source. Test requirements depend on vaccination, mode of travel, and age and are further detailed on the USVI Travel Advisory.
  • Proof of Vaccination: All travelers 18 and older must be fully vaccinated and provide appropriate proof of vaccination status on the USVI portal. Travelers aged 2-17 are exempt from the vaccine requirement but must submit a negative test result on the USVI portal.

 

Mode of Travel to the USVI: If traveling by air from an international destination (including the BVI), negative tests must be taken within 24 hours of travel to the USVI. If traveling by private water taxi, crewed charter yacht, or commercial ferry, then negative tests must be taken within 5 days of travel to the USVI.

REQUIRED USVI PORTAL & USVI TESTING WINDOW

  • USVI Online Portal: All domestic travelers 5 years of age or older, and all international travelers 2 years of age or older, and persons in transit to or from another destination, who enter the U.S. Virgin Islands by air or sea are required to use the USVI Travel Screening Portal and get cleared to travel to the USVI. Test requirements depend on vaccination, mode of travel, and age and are further detailed on the USVI Travel Screening Portal.
  • USVI 5 Day Testing Window: This visual aid is helpful in determining a 5 day testing window for your travel to the USVI. It can also be found at the bottom of the USVI Travel Advisory noted above. USVI 5 Day Testing Window

 

A family that we booked aboard 65' Catamaran Aeolus in the USVI in May 2021 said:

Hi Lynne, The experience was outstanding, everything was phenomenal; the catamaran, the team, service, food and of course the places we visited. We are already talking about our next trip!!!! Thank you for your help and guidance as well.
Jaime R., Florida

INTERNATIONAL CHARTER DESTINATIONS

The Bahamas

The Bahamas has developed travel and entry protocols to ensure that they can remain a safe and clean destination for all to enjoy. Their protocols provide further details regarding testing requirements, the required Bahamas Travel Health Visa Application, plus additional information for vaccinated as well as unvaccinated visitors. View the latest Bahamas press releases plus learn more about The Bahamas COVID-19 Protocols.

The BVI (British Virgin Islands)

For a charter in the BVI, please review all sections below, but more specifically based on your group's vaccination status. Please note that the BVI government tends to add to their requirements and protocols within each update and does not necessarily provide a single comprehensive update. The links below reference various BVI Government web pages and PDF Documents. These web pages and PDF's are provided here for general reference, but they should not be relied upon soley for travel to the BVI. Rather they should be used in tandem with information that Carefree Yacht Charters will provide to their clients with confirmed charters in the BVI.

FULLY VACCINATED GROUPS

Based on current protocols in the BVI, Carefree Yacht Charters does not recommend that any unvaccinated or partially vaccinated adult travelers or their associated charter groups consider a charter in the BVI. Please note in advance that if one adult member of your charter group is unvaccinated, that all members of the charter group will therefore be considered unvaccinated and will be required to follow unvaccinated protocols.

Latest BVI Protocols (Including Protocols for a Negative Test within 48 hours of Entry): Effective April 22, 2022, the BVI announced Updated Arrival Protocols. As further detailed on this BVI Government web page, fully vaccinated travelers are not required to retest upon arrival into the Territory once they present proof of vaccination plus a RT-PCR or approved rapid antigen SARS COV-2 negative test result taken no later than 48-hours before arrival. Failure to present the results for any reasons such as delays and overnight layovers will then mandate that those fully vaccinated travelers undertake a SARS COV-2 test on the day of arrival into the Territory. This Updated Arrival Protocols web page should be reviewed in full.

Required Hummingbird Portal, BVI Gateway Use & Required Entry Documents: As published in the October 1, 2021 Revised COVID-19 Protocols Update, BVI entry protocols and use of the BVI Gateway have been adjusted based on vaccination status. All visitors should take note of the required Hummingbird portal and fully vaccinated visitors should ensure they have the required entry documents.

Required Hummingbird Portal for BVI Entry Antigen Test: As noted in the updates above, all visitors should pre-register for a rapid antigen test via the Hummingbird portal, based on the location of your arrival into the BVI. All visitors should be prepared to pay $50 for any required entry tests and Carefree Yacht Charters recommends use of this portal even for those with negative tests within a 48 hour window:

Required BVI Entry Documents: As noted in the October 1, 2021 Update above, fully vaccinated travelers must provide the following documents in order to gain entry to the BVI. Carefree Yacht Charters recommends that you hand carry these documents per guest and have documented proof of the travel insurance per guest:

  • Results of a negative PCR test or antigen rapid test no older than five (5) days (Further to this Government bullet, please note that Carefree Yacht Charters recommends that all of our clients, including all adults and minors, have proof of a negative test no older than 48 hours.)
  • Proof of vaccination (card or otherwise)
  • Travel insurance (visitors only) which includes minimum approved coverage for:
    1. COVID-19 medical costs including hospitalization, doctor’s visit and prescriptions
    2. Medical repatriation
    3. Quarantine accommodation costs
       

UNVACCINATED OR PARTIALLY VACCINATED ADULT TRAVELERS & THEIR CHARTER GROUPS

Based on current protocols in the BVI, Carefree Yacht Charters does not recommend that any unvaccinated or partially vaccinated adult travelers or their associated charter groups consider a charter in the BVI. Please note in advance that if one adult member of your charter group is unvaccinated, that all members of the charter group will therefore be considered unvaccinated and will be required to follow unvaccinated protocols.

BVI Gateway: All unvaccinated or partially vaccinated adults (age 18 or older) OR unaccompanied and either unvaccinated or partially vaccinated minors will be required to apply for Travel Authorization through the BVI Gateway. Please note in advance that if you fall within these categories, you should not consider a charter in the BVI through Carefree Yacht Charters. Our clients will therefore not need to use the BVI Gateway and it is only included here for reference.

PREVIOUS BVI PROTOCOL UPDATES (INCLUDED FOR REFERENCE ONLY)

June 12, 2021 Adjusted Testing Requirements Update: As noted in a July 5, 2021 Statement by Honorable Carvin Malone, Minister for Health and Social Development, the "Cabinet further decided that, in addition to existing measures, all vaccinated persons be subject to a rapid test upon arrival, effective 12th July, 2021, at a fee of $50.00."

June 10, 2021 Adjusted Travel Requirements Update: Released May 10, 2021 and effective starting June 15, 2021, the following BVI Government update provides adjusted details based on vaccination status: June 10, 2021 Update.

May 7, 2021 Travel Requirements Update: Released May 7, 2021 and effective starting May 15, 2021, the following BVI Government update provides details based on vaccination status: May 7, 2021 Update.

Original BVI Protocols: Released December 9, 2020, the following BVI Government COVID-19 Protocols are the original version used exclusively through May 15, 2021. They should still be referenced for general details in tandem with both updates noted above and the BVI Gateway. December 9, 2020 Protocols

A family that we booked aboard 58' Catamaran Port to Vino with Chef Caitlin & Captain Jeff in the BVI in May 2021 said:

Lynne - thanks for all your help. Your services were especially helpful at this time and Caitlin/Jeff also commented on that. Thank you!!!!
Ken H., Minnesota