Following the CDC’s announcement it will require incoming international travelers to present a negative COVID-19 test upon entry to the U.S., hotels and resorts have been working to accommodate the new requirements.
To create a stress-free experience, some hotels are bringing the testing directly to the guest so they can maximize their time on property without worrying about the logistics. As many properties struggle amid the pandemic, providing easy and convenient on-site testing will not deter travelers from visiting. Some brands have gone so far as to offer a free 14-day stay if a guest tests positive and can no longer return home.
"This is a critical step in the return to normal for the travel industry," said Andre Gerondeau, chief operating officer of Meliá Hotels International, whose properties will offer free antigen testing.
Starting Jan. 26 through at least March 31, Iberostar is offering guests at its hotels in Mexico, Jamaica, Dominican Republic, and Brazil free COVID-19 antigen tests. For those guests wanting a PCR test, Iberostar is also offering them at the same locations, though PCR tests will cost guests extra.
According to Iberostar, all tests are done by an "an accredited medical testing lab that complies with the requirements of the CDC."
The initiative is part of Iberostar's How We Care program that includes new health and safety protocols designed to keep its employees and its guests safe.
Meliá Hotels International
All ten hotels owned and operated in Mexico and the Dominican Republic will offer free, on-site COVID-19 antigen tests for all guests who are required to present documented results prior to entering their country of residence.
Offered on reservations of a minimum of three nights, guests will coordinate and schedule a COVID-19 test upon check-in to the hotel. Same-day results are available.
Launching Jan. 20, 2021, participating hotels include Paradisus Playa Del Carmen, Paradisus Cancun, Paradisus Los Cabos, ME Cabo, Meliá Cozumel, Meliá Puerto Vallarta The Grand Reserve at Paradisus Palma Real, Paradisus Palma Real, Meliá Caribe Beach Resort and Meliá Punta Cana Beach Resort.
Belmond Cap Juluca
After visiting the Anguillan property, a PCR test will be administered prior to departure and coordinated with the assistance of Belmond Cap Juluca's Host Desk. The test is administered on property (guests just need to give 72-hour advance notice). Test results are then given to travelers by the Anguilla Health Department, which they may present to authorities at their next destination. The cost of this test is included in the original Anguilla entry fee, which varies depending on group size and length of stay.
The collection of three luxury properties in the Costa Rican rainforest is collaborating with a private lab to offer on-site tests. Guests can make appointments with the Nayara team. The test will be administered to the guests and their social bubble in their room and will receive their results between 24-48 hours. The cost is $275 per person. This will be offered to guests on an ongoing basis as needed due to travel guidelines.
Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts
The all-inclusive resort operator with properties in the Caribbean and Spain is offering guests traveling to the United States the viral antigen test free of charge for guests who have booked a minimum of three nights.
The complimentary antigen testing will be available as of Jan. 23 until March 31, 2021 or until regulations regarding this new requirement change.
The procedure will be carried out by medical professionals, in partnership with local laboratories, in designated areas of the brand’s resorts. Test results will be received within 72 hours prior to departure as required by the CDC.
Additionally, should a guest test positive for COVID-19 while staying at a Bahia Principe property, they (and a plus one) will be able to extend their stay and quarantine on site for up to 10 nights at no additional cost.
Serenade Punta Cana Beach & Spa Resort
The all-inclusive Serenade Punta Cana Beach & Spa Resort by Best Hotels, located in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, is offering COVID-19 antigen for US$50 per person starting on Feb. 1, 2021.
New reservations that are a minimum of four nights will have the test included in their stay when travel advisors book their clients’ stay via the resort’s website www.serenadepuntacana.com.
Serenade Punta Cana has partnered with Hospiten Hospital to have medical professionals administering the tests in a private area at the resort. Guests must make an appointment for 72 hours prior to their departure from the Dominican Republic and will be given the antigen test results in 20-30 minutes.
AIC Hotel Group
The all-inclusive Hard Rock Hotels, UNICO 20º87º Hotel Riviera Maya and Nobu Hotel Los Cabos will be offering two onsite complimentary antigen tests per room for all existing and new U.S. reservations of three or more nights booked by Feb. 28, 2021 checking out between Jan. 26 and Dec. 31, 2021 or until this mandate is lifted. Additional on-sire antigen tests can be purchased for $50.
In the event that a guest tests positive for COVID-19 while at the hotel, they will be able to quarantine on site for up to 14 nights at no cost.
Mexico’s Velas Resorts now offers in-house COVID-19 antigen testing for guests, available onsite at the resort collection’s six properties in Los Cabos, Riviera Maya, Riviera Nayarit, and Puerto Vallarta. Certified medical workers from the local affiliated hospital will administer the tests. The COVID-19 antigen test is included in the nightly rate and results are sent by email within 24 hours.
If a traveler tests positive for COVID-19 and requests to extend a reservation at one of the hotels, Velas Resorts offers a 75% discount on its listed web rates. An extra suite is also offered for the person who received a positive result to safely and securely quarantine separate from their family or other traveling companions if they choose.
Montage Los Cabos
Montage Los Cabos will facilitate convenient, on-site rapid Antigen testing with a two hour turnaround period on complimentary for resort guests. Tests will be administered by medical personnel and guests can contact the concierge to schedule their appointment directly.
Situated in Mexico’s Riviera Nayarit, the hospital inside the Punta Mita complex, which also houses Four Seasons Resort Punta Mita and The St. Regis Resort Punta Mita, is offering PCR and Antigen tests. The test results are returned in 16 hours for PCR and 4 hours for Antigen. PCR Tests are available at $180 USD.
Punta Mita Rentals offers complimentary Antigen tests for their clients with a minimum stay of 5 nights, results are delivered via email within 2 hours. Results are delivered via email within 12 hours.
For more brands that have added free testing, read our story here.