For months, countries’ border openings and quarantine requirements have been in flux around the world because of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, but now Virgin Atlantic Holidays is guaranteeing its British guests a winter escape to the Caribbean without a quarantine when they return home.
The package, called Escape Pass, lets travelers spend up to 14 days on a mystery island that isn’t revealed to them until two weeks before departure. Visitors select only the length of their stay (one week or two), the hotel rating and flight class. Destinations include Barbados, Antigua, Grenada and Tobago. Jamaica and other Caribbean islands are expected to be added to the offering when the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office adds it to the travel corridor list.
More than half of Brits said they would be more likely to book a holiday if they knew there was a 100% guarantee that they wouldn’t have to self-isolate upon return.
‘We know customers are keen to get away on their next adventure after a difficult year,’ said Juha Jarvinen, chief commercial officer at Virgin Atlantic. ‘Top of the list is an idyllic holiday to the Caribbean, where the COVID-19 pandemic has been managed extremely well, allowing holidaymakers to enjoy sun, sea and beaches safely.’
Virgin Atlantic announced in August that it would provide all passengers with free coronavirus insurance cover until March. The insurance covers COVID-19-releated medical expenses, including repatriation, denied booking and quarantine costs, including personal accommodation, transport charges, refreshments, booking amendment fees and other expenses.
Many Caribbean countries have been suffering from a lack of tourism, leading some to welcome long-term remote workers with new visas to live and work in paradise. Applications have opened for remote workers who want to move to Barbados for a year, and Antigua and Barbuda is offering a new two-year residency program.