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


PRE-TRAVEL TESTING:

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.

Is this also true for domestic inter-island travellers?

  • Persons travelling inter-island from New Providence to other islands are required to undergo a RT-PCR test no more than five (5) days prior to travel and produce a negative result.

Can a Bahamas citizen or resident planning to travel abroad for five (5) days or less take an RT-PCR test in The Bahamas prior to travel and present that negative upon return?

  • If a Bahamas citizen or resident travels internationally, they must secure a test in the destination they visited before travelling back to The Bahamas. Any RT-PCR test taken in The Bahamas prior to travel will not be valid for re-entry.

Where can I get a COVID-19 RT-PCR (swab) test prior to travel?

  • Contact your health care professional to receive a COVID-19 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?

  • Coverage includes:
    • 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. 

For more information about COVID Health Insurance, please click here

HEALTH VISA

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
      • For U.S. travellers, an accredited lab can be found at https://www.cdc.gov/clia/LabSearch.html
      • For travellers from other countries, labs that have been accredited by the local medical health officials should be used.
  • 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 48 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 healthvisa@bahamas.com.

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.

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.

ARRIVAL PROCESS: TESTING PROCEDURES (AS OF NOVEMBER 1)

INSURANCE, CONTACT TRACING AND RAPID ANTIBODY TESTS (NOV 14 AND LATER)

Do I need to quarantine upon arrival in The Bahamas?

  • As of November 1, The Islands of The Bahamas has implemented streamlined entry protocols that eliminates the Vacation-in-Place requirement and enables visitors to better and more seamlessly enjoy The Bahamas vacation experience.
  • Quarantine is only required for persons travelling inter-island from New Providence to any other island. 
    • If transiting through Nassau for a period longer than 24  hours, they will be required to submit to mandatory quarantine upon arrival for a period of 14 days or the duration of their stay – whichever is shorter.
    • A person who has entered The Bahamas and is transiting through New Providence to an Out Island, within a period of less than 24 hours, is not required to submit to mandatory quarantine.

Can I travel to every island in The Bahamas?

  • All islands in The Bahamas are open to international and domestic arrivals, including commercial and private aircraft, as well as private yachts and pleasure crafts.
  • From time to time, the Government of The Bahamas may restrict travel into or out of certain islands.
    • At this time, while international arrivals and departures are permitted for Eleuthera and Exuma, domestic inter-island travel into or out of Eleuthera or Exuma is prohibited.
      • Anyone travelling from Exuma or Eleuthera to any other island in The Bahamas will be required to provide proof of a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR test.
    • Travellers should check the status of their island destination before travelling, by visiting Bahamas.com/travelupdates.

What are the updated travel and entry protocols?

  • Specifics of the new protocols, which go into effect on November 1, are as follows:
  • Prior to Travel:
    • COVID-19 RT-PCR Test: All persons travelling to The Bahamas must 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.
      • 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.
    • Travel Health Visa: Once in possession of a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR test, all travellers will then be required to apply for a Bahamas Travel Health Visa at travel.gov.bs (click on the International Tab) where the required test results must be uploaded.
      • Beginning November 14, all visitors will be required to opt in to the mandatory COVID-19 health insurance when applying for their Health Visa. The insurance will cover travellers for the duration of their stay in The Bahamas.
      • A fee for the Health Visa will be dependent on length of stay (ranging from $40-60 USD) and includes expenses for COVID Health Insurance and rapid antigen testing as appropriate.
      • Children age ten (10) and under will be covered at no extra charge and are exempt from taking a rapid antigen test.

 Upon Arrival

  • Rapid COVID-19 Antigen Testing (if applicable): all persons who are staying in The Bahamas longer than four (4) nights and five (5) days will be required to take a rapid COVID-19 antigen test. 
    • All visitors departing on or before five days will not be required to obtain this test.
    • The day of arrival is considered Day 1 of a person’s stay.
  • Daily Health Survey: All persons travelling into and throughout The Bahamas will be required to complete a short Health Survey each day for the first five days of their stay.
    • The survey must be completed upon arrival and each day thereafter.
    • Persons departing on the fifth day are still required to complete the survey.
  • Any visitor who exhibits COVID symptoms upon arrival or at any time during their stay will be required to take a rapid antigen test and receive a negative result before being permitted to continue with their vacation.
    • If a person tests positive they will be required to follow up with a COVID-19 RT-PCR swab test.

Who has to take a rapid antigen test?

  • All persons who are staying in The Bahamas longer than four (4) nights and five (5) days will be required to take a rapid COVID-19 antigen test. 
  • Children age ten (10) and under are exempt from taking rapid antigen tests. 

Do I need to take a rapid antigen test if I’m travelling domestically inter-island?

  • All persons travelling domestically from New Providence to another island for longer than five days will be required to take a rapid antigen test on the fifth day of their stay.

Can boaters take their day five rapid antigen test at a different Port of Entry in The Bahamas?

  • Yes. Boaters can take their day five rapid antigen test at a different island or Port of Entry than where they entered The Bahamas.

Do boaters need to take a day five rapid antigen test if they remain on board and do not come on land?

  • Boaters who are simply cruising throughout The Bahamas and are not coming on land are exempt from taking a rapid antigen test on the fifth day of their stay. Once boaters do arrive on land, they will be required to immediately take the day five rapid antigen test.

What happens if I don’t take a rapid antigen test on the fifth day of my stay?

  • A person who fails to undergo a rapid antigen test on the fifth day of their stay is liable to a fine of $1,000 (USD) or possible imprisonment.

Where can I take a rapid antigen test if I’m staying longer than four (4) nights and five (5) days? 

  • All visitors and returning citizens and residents staying longer than four nights and five days will receive a reminder 24 hours prior to the required test with information on where and how to obtain a test.
  • An approved list of testing sites is available at Bahamas.com/travelupdates.
    • Tests in New Providence will be conducted at Doctors Hospital or at an approved medical clinic.
    • Tests in Grand Bahama Island and the Family Islands will be conducted at an approved medical clinic.

Are there any documents I need to bring when getting my rapid antigen test?

  • All persons taking a rapid antigen test on the fifth day of their stay are required to bring and present their Health Visa with QR code. Tests cannot be properly recorded without the QR code that corresponds to each person’s individual Health Visa.

How much does the rapid test cost?

  • The cost of the rapid antigen test is included in the Bahamas Health Visa and paid in advance of travel.

How long until rapid test results are ready?

  • The rapid tests are easy, quick and will yield results in 60 minutes or less with results being provided electronically by SMS text message and email.

What if I have a positive result on my rapid antigen test?

  • All positive test results are reported to the Ministry of Health’s Surveillance Unit who will conduct additional clinical screening per their own mandates.
  • If an on-island rapid test returns positive, that person will be required to follow up with a COVID-19 RT-PCR swab test. They will be required to self-isolate until the result of the test is known.
  • With a positive result, the traveller may either:
    • Leave the destination via approved medical transportation (using either insurance or personal resources)
    • Quarantine at their booked place of stay
      • There is no mandatory government facility where visitors will be sent.

How will the Ministry combat the risk of asymptomatic persons?

  • The Ministry is implementing these new protocols to mitigate the risk by ensuring multiple testing touch points which include testing prior to arrival, as well as tracking, monitoring and an additional test 5 days after arrival.

ON ISLAND EXPERIENCE: TOURISM PROTOCOLS


Restaurants, Businesses and Attractions

Are on-island businesses, restaurants and attractions operating normally?

  • Notwithstanding any public health restrictions that may be implemented from time to time, all travellers abiding by these new protocols will be permitted to move about and explore the beauty and vibrant culture of The Bahamas beyond the confines of their hotel or other accommodations.
  • Conditions and instances of the virus can be different on each of the 16 islands available to welcome visitors, which may lead to increased restrictions for businesses, restaurants, beaches and attractions.
    • The current situation in Grand Bahama Island, Nassau & Paradise Island, Abaco, Exuma and Eleuthera require increased restrictions.
    • Travellers should check the status of their island destination before travelling by visiting Bahamas.com/travelupdates.

What are the requirements for travellers who are staying on an island that has curfew or lockdown measures in place?

  • Visitors will be required to adhere to all island restrictions, including curfew and lockdown measures, applicable to the island where they are staying.
  • Hotel guests must stay within hotel grounds for the duration of the lockdown or curfew period, however, are permitted to move about the property and access all available amenities.
  • Current curfews are as follows:
    • Nassau & Paradise Island and Abaco:
      • Monday through Friday: 9 p.m. – 5 a.m.
      • Saturday and Sunday: 6 p.m. – 5 a.m.
    • Grand Bahama Island:
      • Daily: 9 p.m. – 5 a.m.
    • Eleuthera (excluding Harbour Island and Spanish Wells) and Exuma (excluding Exuma Cays):
      • Monday through Friday: 6 p.m. – 5 a.m.
      • Saturday and Sunday: 24-hour curfew from 6 p.m. on Friday through 5 a.m. on Monday
      • In addition to lockdown measures, inter-island domestic travel to and from Eleuthera or Exuma is not permitted except for emergencies.
      • Anyone travelling from Exuma or Eleuthera to any other island in The Bahamas will be required to provide proof of a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR test.

What is the status of beaches?

When do I have to wear a face mask?

  • All travellers must wear a face mask in any situation where it is necessary to enforce physical distancing guidelines, such as:
    • When entering and transiting air and sea terminals
    • During security and customs screenings
    • At baggage claim
    • When checking in and boarding aircraft, vessel or other form of transportation
    • When travelling in a taxi
    • When standing in lines
    • When entering any establishment
    • While checking into a hotel

Do I have to wear a face mask at the beach?

  • Face masks are not mandatory on the beach but must be worn in all other public spaces that surround the beach and while entering and exiting the beach.
    • Social distancing is mandatory on the beach

What if I don’t wear a face mask?

  • All persons, including Bahamian residents and visitors, are subject to a new fine of $200 or a penalty of one month imprisonment, or both if they are found not wearing face masks in areas where it is required.

What is the “Clean & Pristine” Certification?

  • A Certification Agency has been established - representing a collaboration between the Ministry of Tourism & Aviation, Ministry of Health, and other regulatory agencies - to enforce a “Clean & Pristine” Certification Program.
  • All tourism related, customer-facing entities in The Bahamas must verify they have in place and are adhering to the Government approved health and safety guidelines to receive Clean & Pristine certification. Adequate signage outlining policies will be clearly displayed at all locations, helping to guide staff and visitors.

What are the safety measures in place for front line staff and those that work in the tourism industry at all points of entry?

  • All tourism related, customer-facing entities in The Bahamas must verify they have in place and are adhering to the Government approved health and safety guidelines outlined by the Clean & Pristine certification (more on Clean & Pristine certification below).
  • All visitors, staff and residents are required to practice social distancing and adhere to mandatory mask wearing in public places.

What does this mean for Taxis and Independent Cars?

  • Passengers to wear masks at all times throughout journey
  • Passengers should not ride in front seat
  • Vehicles to reduce the maximum number of people by 50%:
    • Sedans = 2 persons or a family travelling together
    • SUVs = 4 persons

What does this mean for Hotels, Resorts and Vacation Rentals?

  • Extensive health and safety protocols enforced; details will be clearly stated by specific institutions
  • Enhanced cleaning for guest rooms
  • Hand sanitizer and disinfectant readily available
  • Employee health monitoring
  • Limiting guests in elevators

What does this mean for Restaurants, Food & Beverage Services?

  • Buffets discontinued until further notice
  • All meals must be served at individual tables where social distance is adhered to, or meals must be prepackaged
  • Disposable menus offered or displayed on monitors or chalkboards
  • Seating to accommodate for physical distancing of guests; limiting number of guests

What does this mean for Excursions, Tours, Local Attractions and Shopping?

  • Maximum number of guests and duration of guest visit limited
  • Guests to use personal gear (such as snorkeling gear) as appropriate
  • Guests will not be allowed to touch products unless purchasing
  • Cashless sales encouraged
  • Beach chairs to allow 6ft. physical distancing between family units; gatherings limited to 5 persons
  • Cleaning timetable/checklist to be maintained

What does this mean for Vessel and Water Taxi Operations?

  • Maximum passengers onboard reduced by 50%
  • Passenger seating assigned to ensure proper distancing
  • Vessel sanitizing:
    • Before any passenger embarks
    • Between all passenger exchanges
    • On high touch surfaces consistently during passage
    • At end of each day