The Bahamas have launched a Travel Health Card as one of their measures to contain the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19). This electronic certificate must be completed online by all international travelers arriving in the island country.
The Travel Health Card for the Bahamas is not the only regulation in place for visitors to the Caribbean region country. The islands reopened to tourism during the summer, but have since experienced a rise in cases, leading authorities to implement requirements such as quarantine and the obligation to wear a mask.
Nevertheless, it is still possible to enjoy a vacation in the sunny island nation by obtaining the Travel Health Certificate for the Bahamas and meeting the other entry requirements. As always, visas are required by nationals of certain countries. Before booking a holiday, travelers should check the visa requirements for their nationality.
What Is the Travel Health Card for the Bahamas
The Travel Health Card (also referred to as the “Travel Health Certificate”) is an online form that must be completed by all travelers heading to the Bahamas.
It must be filled out and submitted with adequate time before the intended trip, bearing in mind that the applications can take up to 72 hours to process.
If the Travel Health Card is approved, the visitor may board a flight to the Bahamas; if not, their entry will be denied.
When completing the online form for the Bahamas Travel Health Certificate, travelers must submit the following details:
- Full name
- Contact information, including email, phone number, and home address
- Emergency contact
- Travel details
- Health information, including possible contact with COVID-19
All travelers over the age of 10 must also upload a negative RT-PCR test result for coronavirus from a test taken within the last 5 days. Tests older than this will not be accepted. The name of the lab must be specified.
How Has Coronavirus Affected the Bahamas and Can I Still Visit
After a near-total travel ban and lockdown, the Bahamas reopened for tourism on July 1. Flights to the islands resumed operations and visitors were encouraged in an attempt to boost the country’s economy after the COVID-19 pandemic had brought the travel and tourism industries to a standstill.
However, since reopening its doors to international travel, the number of coronavirus cases in the Bahamas has risen, leading to a number of new safety measures, including the Travel Health Card.
Authorities in the Bahamas have said that visitors are still welcome, but must abide by the new regulations, which have been implemented for the safety and wellbeing of both residents and tourists alike.
Coronavirus Regulations for Traveling to the Bahamas
Besides the usual visa requirements, there are 3 essential requirements for all international visitors who are traveling to the Bahamas. Travelers must comply with the following:
- Obtain an approved Bahamas Health Travel Card before departing.
- Take an RT-PCR test for COVID-19 at most 5 days before departure and receive a negative result.
- “Vacation-in-Place” (VIP) for 14 days (or until returning home) — using the amenities available in the visitor’s accommodation, but not leaving the premises unless authorized.
- Wear a face mask when in public — this applies when traveling to the Bahamas and on the islands themselves.
It is important to stick to these regulations as Bahamian authorities are enforcing them.
Any traveler who arrives without a Bahamian Health Travel Card or a negative RT-PCR test will be denied entry to the Bahamas.
The result of the RT-PCR test must be uploaded when applying for the Health Travel Certificate and also presented at border control when arriving in the Bahamas.
There are also penalties for not wearing a mask in public for both residents and visitors, including fines or even one month imprisonment.