The British Virgin Islands (BVI) have officially reopened to international travelers, but there are comprehensive entry protocols for visitors looking to return there.

The BVI is an archipelago comprising 60 islands and cays, and is is one of the world's sailing hot spots. Although the islands attract fancy boats and celebrity visitors, they have a quirky edge and remain relatively undeveloped. Sadly, many of the islands’ properties and charter company’s luxury vessels were destroyed after Hurricane Irma, and just as the islands were about to celebrate their relaunch, the COVID-19 pandemic hit.

Popular resorts like Rosewood Little Dix Bay, Oil Nut Bay and Necker Island have undergone millions of dollars in rebuilds and are ready to welcome guests again. To ensure safety for all, visitors must have a certified negative RT-PCR COVID-19 test result from within five days of arrival, as well as proof of travel insurance that includes comprehensive medical coverage. Travelers must apply for a “BVI Gateway Traveler Authorization Certificate” within five days of travel to the BVI, and they must complete the application at least 48 hours prior to arrival with the uploading of the test result.

Upon arrival at Terrance B. Lettsome International Airport, travelers will be directed to the BVI’s new “Welcome Center” for an additional test. They will be required to activate a contact tracing system on their phones and wear a government-issued wristband monitoring device, in addition to being given an appointment for their day four test. All arriving visitors are required to quarantine for four days at their hotel, resort, villa or docked vessel, with another test administered on the fourth day. If negative, they will be allowed to move around the BVI freely while still following the government’s current social distancing and safety measures.

An aerial view of Tortola in the British Virgin Islands
The islands have a quirky edge and remain relatively undeveloped © shalamov/Getty Images

Anyone who tests positive upon arrival must continue to quarantine at their respective location for a minimum of 14 days. Visitors must take approved transportation to and from their accommodations and testing sites, which are located throughout the BVI. The government will not allow visitors to depart if they test positive, and will require them to quarantine in an approved location for 14 days at their own expense. The two required RT-PCR tests, use of the mobile contact tracing app and monitoring bracelet will also be at the visitor’s expense.

Protocols and procedures for visitors arriving by sea are expected to be finalized in the coming weeks. For more information on BVI's COVID-19 safety protocols, please visit here.

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