Bahamas Eliminates Travel Health Visa, But COVID Test Requirement Remainsby Daniel McCarthy /
The Government of The Bahamas on Tuesday announced a major change to its rules for inbound travelers.
Effective immediately, The Bahamas will no longer require travelers to apply for a Bahamas Travel health Visa prior to entering the country, something that has been a requirement since the destination’s tourism restart last year.
The deputy prime minister and minister of tourism, investments, and aviation for The Bahamas Honourable I. Chester Cooper, said the change was made in order to signal to the “international community that we are open for business.”
"Throughout the pandemic, we have remained committed to evaluating protocols and adjusting requirements to reflect the current environment. We acknowledge that the Travel Health Visa was a burden for travelers, and we are pleased to be able to eliminate it,” he said.
The change does lift a requirement from travelers’ checklists, but there are still some protocols in place that travelers will have to abide by in order to enter The Bahamas. Most notable is the COVID-19 negative test entry requirement, which remains for both vaccinated and unvaccinated travelers.
Vaccinated travelers, along with children aged 2 to 11, will still have to present a negative PCR or Antigen test taken no more than three days prior to travel. Unvaccinated travelers will only have the option to enter with a negative PCR test taken within three days of travel.
While there is no timeline right now for dropping the testing requirement, all updates can be found here.
The Bahamas is currently categorized as “high” risk for COVID-19 by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the same category as most other, major international destinations for North American travelers including Australia, Canada, France, Greece, Germany, Ireland, Israel, the United Kingdom, and more.
“Make sure you are up to date with your COVID-19 vaccines before traveling to the Bahamas,” the CDC’s advisory reads. “If you are not up to date with your COVID-19 vaccines, avoid travel to the Bahamas.”