Traveling to the British Virgin Islands during the COVID-19 pandemic has been quite confusing to say the least. After traveling to and from the British Virgin Islands around 5 times for the past year, I’ve decided to create a blog sharing tips and tricks on how to navigate the ever changing travel protocols! P.S. Be sure to use the table of contents to navigate this blog efficiently.

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The Nova Restaurant.

First Things First, What Is Your Vaccination Status?

Fully Vaccinated? What to Know Before You Go.

  • The vaccine must be approved by the World Health Organization.
  • Individual must have received the second COVID-19 vaccine dose no less than two (2) weeks before entry to the Virgin Islands.
  • Individual must provide results of a negative PCR test or antigen test no older than five (5) days upon entering the British Virgin Islands
  • Individual must provide proof of travel insurance (mandatory) that covers medical reparation, quarantine accommodation costs and COVID-19 medical costs including hospitalizations, doctor’s visits and prescriptions.
  • Fully Vaccinated travelers no longer need to apply to enter the British Virgin Islands through the BVI Gateway Portal.
  • As of November 16th 2021, “a person who is fully vaccinated and presents a RT-PCR or approved rapid antigen SARS CoV-2 negative test result taken no later than 48 hours before arrival into the Territory and his/her vaccination card in accordance with regulation 5 shall not be required to be tested for COVID-19 upon arrival into the Territory.” You will not be required to sign up for the Hummingbird Portal.
  • If a fully vaccinated traveler tested outside of the 48-hour window prior to arrival in the BVI, they must pre-register for the rapid antigen test via the Hummingbird Portal. This must be done in advance of your trip and can be completed via the links below. Select the link corresponding to your port of entry; Road Town Ferry Terminal, West End Ferry Terminal, Terrance B. Lettsome Airport. For example, if you took a test 3 days before arrival, you must pre-register to take the rapid antigen test on arrival in the BVI. Be prepared to a pay a fee for said testing.
  • If a Traveler tests positive during the Entry Test, they will need to remain in quarantine for up to seven (7) days or until a negative PCR test is obtained.

Fully Vaccinated with kids? What to Know Before You Go.

  •   Minors 17 years and under do not have to apply to enter on the BVI Gateway Portal.
  • Each minor must present a negative PCR test or antigen rapid test no older than five (5) days.
  • Once the results are negative, the minor accompanied by the vaccinated parent/guardian will be allowed to board the aircraft or vessel.
  • “Children under 5 years of age will not be required to receive a COVID-19 test. All children 5 years of age and older will need to be tested.”
  • “Unvaccinated children traveling with a fully-vaccinated adult will no longer be required to take a Day-4 test.”

Partially Vaccinated or Unvaccinated? What to Know Before You Go.

  • Register and provide the relevant information on the BVI Gateway; (Start 7 days before your arrival date)
  • Obtain the requisite approval from the Environmental Health Division http://bvimonitor.info/homequarantine if the expectation is to quarantine in a private residence, hotel or vessel;
  • Take a RT-PCR SARS COV-2 test taken 3 to 5 days prior to arrival;
  •  Submit the certified RT-PCR SARS COV-2 negative test result to the BVI Gateway Travel Application Portal https://bvigateway.bviaa.com/
  • Individual must provide proof of travel insurance (mandatory) that covers medical reparation, quarantine accommodation costs and COVID-19 medical costs including hospitalizations, doctor’s visits and prescriptions.
  • Partially or unvaccinated Travelers will receive an RT-PCR test on arrival.
  • “Persons who are only partially vaccinated, meaning that they have received one dose of a two-dose vaccine, or whose final vaccine dose was administered less than two weeks before arriving in the Territory will be required to quarantine within the confines of an approved property or vessel for a 4 day period. RT-PCR testing administered on arrival day and on day 4 to be released after receiving negative test results.”
  • “Persons who are unvaccinated will be required to quarantine within the confines of an approved property or vessel for a 7-day period. RT-PCR testing administered on arrival and on day 7 to be released after receiving negative test results.”
  • “A partially vaccinated or unvaccinated person who tests positive for COVID-19 upon arrival into the British Virgin Islands will be quarantined for a period of 14 days within the confines of an approved property or vessel or be allowed to leave the Territory if approved for medical repatriation.”
  • “A person quarantined for a period of 14 days will not be released from quarantine unless the person is tested by the relevant authorized officer for COVID-19 on day 14 of the quarantine period and receive negative results.”

Day Tripper? What to Know Before You Go.

  • Fully vaccinated day trippers visiting the Virgin Islands are to provide upon entry, a rapid antigen test or a RT-PCR negative test result completed between 24 to 48 hours before arrival in the Territory. In addition, day trippers are to furnish the results of the test, which must be negative, and provide valid proof of vaccination (card or otherwise).
Day tripper

Where are you coming from?

To devise the perfect covid-19 arrival plan, first you need to establish your port of departure. Obviously if you’re coming from Europe, your plan will be different than someone who is traveling from the US or the Caribbean.

For My Caribbean People

For my Caribbean people who would love to visit family or friends in the British Virgin Islands or just want to explore new terrtiory, this is for you. When coming from another Caribbean island, most people enter through the island of Tortola using the main Airport. Depending on the island you’re leaving from, you have a few airlines to choose from, mainly LIAT and interCaribbean. Be sure to check what YOUR country requires from you before you leave. If you booked a specific flight with stops in various islands, research what information is required from you in order to be able to transit through these stops. InterCaribbean has a great breakdown of COVID-19 travel requirements for each country they service here. LIAT also provides a breakdown on COVID-19 travel requirements for each country they service here.

The Terrance B. Lettsome Airport.

LIAT

Flies to Tortola’s Terrance B Lettsome International Airport from :

  1. Antigua
  2. Barbados
  3. Dominica
  4. Guadeloupe
  5. Guyana
  6. Martinique
  7. Puerto Rico
  8. St. Croix
  9. St. Lucia
  10. St. Thomas
  11. St. Vincent
  12. Trinidad

Some locations may require 1+ stops before you reach to your final destination, Tortola.

interCaribbean

Flies to Tortola’s Terrance B Lettsome International Airport from:

  1. Bahamas
  2. Cuba
  3. Jamaica
  4. Turks & Caicos
  5. Puerto Rico
  6. St. Thomas
  7. St. Croix
  8. St. Martin
  9. Antigua
  10. Dominica
  11. St. Lucia
  12. Santo Domingo

Some locations may require 1+ stops before you reach to your final destination, Tortola.

For my US people

If you’ve chosen the St. Thomas Route.

For my US people who would like to escape the extreme cold weather that is definitely coming your way, this is for you. Most Americans who are leaving from the USA fly to the island of St. Thomas in the USVI and take a ferry over to the island of Tortola. The Main Departure Ports include Miami, Florida, Atlanta, Georgia and New York, New York.

If you’ve chosen the St. Thomas route, Delta provides straight flights from JFK and ATL. American Airlines provides straight flights from Miami, Florida. Flights with 1+ stops are also available and are cheaper. Try to pick a flight that gets into St. Thomas at around 12:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. to allow yourself plenty of time to get to the ferry docks. If your flight is getting in at 3:30/4:00 p.m. or later, just contact the ferry company of your choice and let them know about your arrival time. Most times they are willing to work with you on a solution.

Important Information for travel through the USVI.
  • “Every Traveler aged five or older who enters the U.S. Virgin Islands, by air or sea, including anyone in transit to another destination, is required to use the USVI Travel Screening Portal and submit a COVID-19 test result prior to travel. Visit usviupdate.com.”
  • “All vaccinated travelers traveling home through St. Thomas will need to provide a negative Antigen or PCR test within 72-hours of arriving in St. Thomas from the BVI.”
Choosing A Ferry.

Ferry capacities have been reduced due to COVID-19 and there a few ferry trips ran per day between the USVI and BVI. You must pre-book your ferry tickets. The three main ferries servicing the BVI and USVI are Native Son, Smith’s Ferry and Road Town Fast Ferry. To figure out what ferry is running on a specific date at a specific time, visit the BVI Ports Authority website. After choosing the date and time you will like to arrive to the BVI, choose a ferry that corresponds with that and book your ferry tickets through that ferry’s website.

Choosing A Charter.

If ferries aren’t your style and you would like to travel comfortably and on your own time, chartering a water taxi might be the best bet for you. If you choose to charter, you would not have to worry about catching the ferry in time because they will be waiting for you no matter what happens. In addition to this, if you’re staying on another island in the BVI whether it be Virgin Gorda, Anegada or  Jost Van Dyke, they will drop you off on that island! Less headache for you. Here are some water taxi companies to charter with;

If You’ve Chosen the Puerto Rico Route.

On the contrary, some Americans fly into Puerto Rico and then fly directly to the island of Tortola. This is honestly the most convenient way but also the most expensive. It is up to you on choosing the convenient route or the inexpensive route, either way you will make it. Hit up Kayak and sky-scanner to help curate this specific route because I have not travelled this way enough to provide helpful tips. Your airline choices will include, interCaribbean, Cape Air and Seaborne Airways! They are very safe and pretty reliable for the most part. Be sure to allocate at least three hours worth of grace period when selecting a flight from Puerto Rico to Tortola. Delays are possible and you would not want to miss your final flight to paradise!

Important Information for travel through Puerto Rico.
  • “Passengers in transit for less than 48 hrs are not required to complete the Puerto Rico travel portal.”
  • “If you are flying to/from Tortola (EIS) and San Juan (SJU) and are staying in Puerto Rico for more than 48 hours, you must complete a traveler declaration form.”
  • “Print out copies of your Travel Documents.”
  • “It may be advisable to complete your COVID-19 test 4 days out rather than 5, so should a flight cancellation cause you to stay overnight in San Juan, your test result will not expire. If it does, testing is available at the airport.”

For My Europe People

For people who are coming in from Europe but are not traveling through the US, your best bet is to fly into the international airports located on the islands of Antigua, St. Marteen or Guadeloupe. You then fly on over to the international airport in Tortola, British Virgin Islands. You can fly from Paris to St. Marteen or Guadeloupe, Amsterdam to St. Marteen, take a straight flight from London Gatwick to Antigua and etc. As said before, hit up Kayak, sky-scanner or any of your favorite travel search engines to curate your travel. As I said before, please research the COVID-19 travel requirements for each country you will be using to transit to the British Virgin Islands.

Conclusion.

In conclusion, traveling to the British Virgin Islands might take some extra planning in comparison to other trips you have been on but it is all worth it. Remember to take into vaccination requirements, quarantine requirements, consideration grace periods, departure points and which island you plan to use as your final gateway to the British Virgin Islands. We hope to see you soon in Nature’s Little Secrets!

**Information is sourced from the Government of the Virgin Islands and The Moorings.**

Bvi travel covid protocols

*Check out my last blog about my stay at Oil Nut Bay here*