COVID-19 has made travel insanely complicated this year, mostly due to various travel bans, quarantine requirements, and added safety precautions like temperature checks and mask mandates. Some experts even say that travel is not safe this year, and that most people would be better off staying home until a vaccine is on the market and caseloads start to trend downward.
The Caribbean nation of Antigua and Barbuda is now open to international travelers, including Americans. Currently, temperature checks are required upon arrival, and face coverings are required in the airport. Antigua is a popular tropical destination thanks to its 365 white sand beaches, its crystal-clear water, and its many popular hotels and resorts that cater to couples and families.
Americans can also travel to the Dutch island of Aruba, which sits close to South America in the Caribbean. Travelers from some states like California and Florida will be required to be tested for coronavirus and upload their results as part of the embarkation/disembarkation process before they depart from the U.S. Travelers in other states like Indiana and Montana can choose to be tested for the virus at their expense when they arrive at the airport in Aruba.
Barbados is also open to Americans as of July 12, 2020, although you will need to be tested for coronavirus within 72 hours of departure and bring a negative test result along. This island nation is also trying to lure remote workers to the island while the pandemic plays out. Thanks to new Visa requirements, you could be eligible to visit Barbados and work remotely for up to one year.
Belize is expected to open its borders to international travelers on August 15. Not all hotels and resorts will open right away, and the ones that do will be considered “full service” properties that can fully accommodate their guests with everything they need on-property. A negative COVID-19 test result from within the last 72 hours will also be required upon arrival.
As of July 1, Bermuda is also open to air travelers, including Americans. You will need to complete a pre-departure form online at least 48 hours from when you’re expected to depart, which requires a $75 fee for each traveler. You will also need to take a COVID-19 test within 72 hours of departure for your trip and bring your negative test results along.
Dreaming of visiting the famous walled city of Dubrovnik or Plitvice Lakes National Park? Croatia is open to Americans and many other international travelers, although you will have to fill out a travel form ahead of time and present a negative coronavirus test taken within the last 48 hours. You also must provide proof of the reason for your visit, which could be something as simple as a printed reservation receipt.
The Dominican Republic, which is home to popular tropical destinations like Punta Cana and La Romana, is also open to international travelers, including Americans. Not all hotels are open quite yet, so travelers are encouraged to confirm their plans before they get on a plane. Also watch for enhanced safety precautions, mask requirements, and temperature checks at the airport upon arrival.
Jamaica opened its borders to international tourists on June 15, although you can mostly only travel within a “coronavirus-resilient corridor” along the northern coast of the island. This includes destinations like Montego Bay and Ochos Rios. You can expect temperature checks upon arrival in the airport as well as masks required in public spaces. You will also need to fill out a travel authorization application prior to arrival.
While land crossings into Mexico are currently banned for instances where travel is not considered essential, leisure travelers can still arrive in some Mexican destinations (including Riviera Maya and Puerto Vallarta) by air. You can expect temperature checks and coronavirus screenings at the airport upon arrival, and you should follow social distancing requirements and wear a mask when outside of your accommodation and within six feet of others.
Puerto Rico is opening its borders to travelers as of July 15, although you will have to present a negative COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours upon arrival. Travelers will also need to fill out a travel declaration, wear a mask in the airport, and make peace with thermal temperature readings when in transit.
The island of St. Barthelemy began welcoming international tourists on June 22. Visitors are required to take a COVID-19 test within 72 hours of arrival and bring their negative test results with them. If unable to take a test and provide negative results upon arrival, travelers will need to be tested immediately in St. Barts and quarantine for 24 hours until their results are received. If you plan to stay for more than a week, you must also agree to be tested again on the seventh day of your trip.
The island nation of St. Lucia began the first phase of its reopening in June, and they’re already rolling out a new tourism marketing campaign aimed at luring back repeat visitors and finding new ones. You will need to present a negative COVID-19 test result from the last seven days upon arrival and complete a pre-travel registration form.
While the current roadmap for reopening is always subject to change, St. Maarten plans to welcome Americans back to its shores starting on August 1. You will need to bring a negative COVID-19 test taken in the previous 72 hours with you, and you should expect to have your temperature taken and undergo additional screening at the airport. Masks must also be worn at the airport at all times.
Turkey is currently open to tourists from a number of countries including the United States. You still need to apply for a Visa before you arrive, which you can take care of online. Masks are required for inbound flights to Turkey, and you’ll need to wear one in the airport and in many public spaces as well.
Turks and Caicos are currently set to reopen on July 22 with advanced security measures in place. For starters, masks will be required in all public places until December 21, 2020. You’ll also need to fill out a preauthorization to travel online before you arrive, although further details have not yet been released.
The U.S. Virgin Islands are also open to tourism as of June and of course, they are welcoming Americans from the mainland. Guidelines for tourism ask travelers to wear face coverings when in public spaces, wash hands frequently and maintain social distancing. You will also be subject to health screenings upon arrival.
The Bahamas are also open to international travelers, although those who arrive in this island nation are required to present a verified, negative coronavirus test that was taken within the last seven days. Also expect temperature screenings in airports, new rules in hotels and resorts, and enhanced cleaning protocols to be in place when you arrive.
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