Caribbean destinations continue to ease their COVID-19 entry protocols. This time, Barbados has removed all entry requirements, which means anyone can now enter the country without needing a negative test result.
The move by the Barbadian government has already gone into effect and applies to all land and cruise ship visitors. The new protocols are expected to boost the local economy, with many small business owners wholly dependent on the many cruise ships that typically visit the island year-round.
Barbados Removes All Requirements
Following many different Caribbean cruise destinations, such as Grand Cayman and St. Kitts, the island of Barbados has now discontinued all COVID-19-related travel protocols. A few weeks ago, Barbados already relaxed several protocols for vaccinated visitors, now removing all measures.
This means that unvaccinated guests boarding a cruise ship in Barbados, or those visiting Barbados by ship, will no longer need to provide a negative test result. Previously, cruise lines would have done testing 48 hours before arrival to Barbados and sent those results to the local authorities.
In addition to relaxed testing and entry requirements, those visiting the island will no longer be required to wear masks. Masks will only be mandatory for persons working in and visiting healthcare facilities, nursing homes, hospitals, and senior citizen homes; persons traveling on public transportation; and for persons who are positive.
Minister of Tourism and International Transport, Sen. The Hon. Lisa Cummins said: “This is the last step for us which reflects our position as fully open for business following the COVID-19 pandemic. We look forward to continuing to welcome visitors to our shores to experience all of the new and returning events slated for the rest of the year and into early 2023,”
The procedures went into effect on September 22.
Barbados Returns to the Old Normal
Now Barbados has removed all COVID-19-related measures that have been in place since the start of the pandemic, the country is one of many Caribbean holiday destinations that are returning back to the old normal.
The island has always been one of the most popular cruise destinations in the southern Caribbean, offering guests a vast variety of activities. Barbados has some of the World’s most beautiful beaches, and it is the culinary capital of the Caribbean and home to the oldest distilled spirit in the world – rum.
Barbados is considered the birthplace of rum, and Mount Gay distillery – founded in 1703 – is believed to produce the oldest rum found anywhere in the world. The distillery is a popular stop for cruise ship passengers during their visit.
Most major cruise lines have regular calls scheduled to Barbados, and due to the distance from South Florida, it also acts as a vital homeport for cruise ships. Before the start of the pandemic, Barbados recorded the busiest year in history for cruise ship arrivals. 262 Cruise ships visited the island, bringing 511,000 visitors.
However, during the pandemic and through 2022, that number fell significantly to 4,100 in 2021, and only 175,000 so far this year. With the country’s re-opening, the hope is there that visitor numbers, and the economy will recover at an increased rate.