The Caribbean island of St Lucia is easing COVID-19 restrictions for fully vaccinated travelers. Under the new guidelines, vaccinated travelers may book car rentals, dine at more restaurants and have increased access to iconic areas like Soufrière and Rodney Bay.
Fully vaccinated visitors can now also stay at a range of COVID-certified accommodations, including hotels, vacation rentals and villas. Previously travelers were restricted to one of two approved properties.
"For both visitors and our local residents, our commitment to safely and responsibly coexisting with COVID remains strong,” said St Lucia Prime Minister Allen Chastanet via a press release. "While all visitors to Saint Lucia can currently experience a wonderful vacation as well as approved tours and attractions, fully vaccinated travelers are now invited to explore the entire destination at their leisure, while following our protocols."
All travelers must continue to adhere to pre-trip protocols like a negative PCR test five days before arrival, regardless of vaccination status.
"We’ve successfully and safely managed tourism since reopening our borders in June 2020, with no need to close because of our protocols and the bubble we created for our visitors and frontline tourism workers," said Chastanet. "We are delighted to be able to expand the opportunities for vaccinated visitors and ease the restrictions for returning nationals. Vaccinated visitors can now truly vacation like a local."
Travelers must have had their second dose of a two-dose vaccine or a one-dose vaccine at least two weeks prior to arrival in St Lucia. Visitors must also travel with their vaccination card or another form of vaccination documentation and indicate their vaccination status on the pre-arrival Travel Authorization Form.
Fully vaccinated visitors can pre-register their negative PCR test prior to arrival. Registered visitors will be able to pass through an expedited Health Screening line and receive a non-electronic identification wristband. The wristband must be worn for the duration of their stay.
Unvaccinated minors over the age of five accompanying fully vaccinated adults must receive a PCR test at their hotel on the day after arrival at the travelers' expense. Once a test is returned negative (within 24-48 hours), those minors will receive the same privileges as their fully vaccinated parents. Children under four years old will be afforded the same access as their vaccinated parents.
Non-vaccinated travelers may still visit the country but will be required to stay at one of two certified COVID-19 properties for the first 14 days of arrival.
Since its reopening in July 2020, the country has mandated all travelers and local residents adhere to a set of safety protocols that include wearing masks and social distancing, and those protocols will remain in place.