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Dinghy towing a surfboard in the British Virgin Islands off 65ft sailing catamaran LOLALITA

BVI COVID-19 Protocols to Enjoy a Charter Yacht Vacation as of Oct 19, 2021

From the Charter Yacht Society of the British Virgin Islands

 

WHAT YOUR CLIENTS NEED TO HAVE BEFORE TRAVELLING TO THE BVI?

Your guests are *FULLY vaccinated:

  • Negative RT-PCR Test or Negative Antigen Test (no self-tests) within 5 days of travel
  • Proof of **Travel / Medical Insurance
  • Vaccination cards (all WHO recognized vaccines are accepted by the BVI government)
  • Your clients are NOT required to obtain advance permission to enter the BVI
  • Your clients have ***minors with them? Minors between the ages of 5-17 are required to have a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR test or negative antigen test within 5 days of travel.
  • Documents should be printed in hard copy format

Your clients are PARTIALLY vaccinated or NOT vaccinated at all:

    • Negative COVID PCR Test within 5 days ahead of travel. NOTE: Antigen tests NOT acceptable
    • Medical Insurance
    • Vaccination cards (if partially vaccinated)
    • Travel Authorization permission issued through the BVI Gateway Application Portal: https://bvigateway.bviaa.com/ . Users must start the application process AT LEAST 48 hours in advance of departure and should be completed 24 hours prior to departure
    • A payment of $175 is processed which covers the Day 4 or Day 7 testing, and other admin fees
    • Your clients have *minors with them? Minors between the ages of 5-17 are required to have a negative COVID-19 PCR test within 5 days of travel.
    • Documents should be printed in hard copy format

    *Fully vaccinated means vaccinated at least 14 days prior to arrival

    ** Travel / Medical Insurance is required and should include at a minimum COVID-19 medical costs, hospitalization, repatriation and quarantine costs: Travel Guard – Get a Quote 

    ***Minors: are anyone under the age of 17. Only 5 years – 17 years are subject to testing

UPON ARRIVAL BY AIR OR COMMERCIAL CARRIER

(Plane / Ferry / Water Taxi)

Your clients are FULLY-vaccinated:

 

Your clients are PARTIALLY vaccinated or NOT vaccinated:

    • Prior to boarding their plane/ferry/water taxi your clients will be required to:
    • show their negative COVID test results
    • travel authorization letter from the Gateway Portal
    • vaccination cards (if partially vaccinated)
    • Your clients will proceed directly to the testing area.
    • Your clients will be given a COVID-19 RT-PCR test. This is considered the Day 0 test.
    • They will present proof of medical Insurance
    • Clients are issued a device and a wristband
    • Unvaccinated minors will also be tested.

 

ARRIVING IN THE BVI ON BOARD A CHARTER BOAT

Can your clients arrive in the BVI aboard a charter vessel? YES.

A recent change in legislation does permit entry aboard charter yachts, both locally based and foreign based.

BVI Based Yachts with Fully Vaccinated crews and Charter Guests:

Fully Vaccinated: Can enter BVI via Road Town or West End

Captain submits yacht arrival information through SAILCLEAR Portal. Guests complete information through HUMMINGBIRD PORTAL. All other Customs/Immigration clearance procedures apply.

For Partially or Unvaccinated: Gateway Travel Portal clearances are required. Road Town access only.

NOTE: BVI crews, in general, are not yet doing USVI pick-ups. Time constraints, testing fees and increased risk factor are among a few of the reasons.

Contact us for a list of BVI based boats chartering in the BVI 2021/2022.

Foreign Based Yachts with Fully Vaccinated crews and Charter Guests

Fully Vaccinated: The process is the same as for BVI based yachts.

For Partially or Unvaccinated: Gateway Travel Portal clearances are required. Road Town access only.

NOTE: When choosing a non-BVI based charter boat one should check first with the clearing agent to ensure the yacht meets the requirements for chartering in BVI waters.

 

YOUR GUESTS’ CHARTER YACHT IS MORE THAN 24 M IN LENGTH

Island Shipping: Alex 284-541-6297 

Shoreside Yacht Services: J’Kayla/Nia 284-541-8227 info@shoresideservices.com

 

WHAT TO EXPECT WHEN YOUR GUESTS ARE ON THEIR CREWED CHARTER BOAT

Your clients are FULLY vaccinated:

    • They are free to explore the Virgin Islands unrestricted.
    • COVID-19 protocols in the BVI include:
    • Mask wearing in all enclosed buildings and where social distancing is not possible.
    • Hand sanitizing upon entry to all enclosed spaces
    • Appropriate Social distancing

Your clients are PARTIALLY or NOT vaccinated:

    • They will be required to spend their first night in any of the Day 0 anchorages in the image below
    • Negative Day 0 test results (approx. 24 hours) will permit them to enjoy any of the other anchorages in the image
    • Q flag will be flown. Restricted movement from yacht should be respected.
    • Day 4 testing follows for Partially Vaccinated. Day 7 testing for unvaccinated.
    • When negative test results are produced and ALL in the party have received their Quarantine Release form clients are free to explore the Virgin Islands unrestricted.
    • Wristbands / tracking devices are to be removed at local Police Station

NOTE: Additional testing costs are covered in the Gateway Portal unless a concierge is used.

If your client group is a combination of FULLY vaccinated and PARTIALLY or NON vaccinated:

The group will be treated according to the restrictions of the least vaccinated person.

 

DEPARTING THE BVI

    • Your clients must have a negative RT-PCR test result or negative antigen test to get into the USVI or Puerto Rico.
    • The test must have been taken within 5 days of desired entry date for USVI and Puerto Rico
    • Results must be uploaded to one of the 2 travel portals:
    • USVI: https://www.usvitravelportal.com/
    • Puerto Rico: https://www.travelsafe.pr.gov/
    • Departure tests in the BVI cost anywhere from $70 to $125 depending on whether one goes to a government facility or uses a concierge service
    • BinaxNow tests sourced through eMed (https://www.emed.com/) are highly recommended by crews for guests returning to the US. Charter guests purchase them online (pak of 6) for $150. Download application prior to departure from USA. At appropriate time for testing, guests login for service and conduct proctored self- administered test.

 

REMEMBER

    • COVID-19 protocols get reviewed and adjusted regularly, not just in the BVI, but around the world
    • It is not chartering as it used to be and it will take time to get back there
    • It is always wise to double check
    • This information is, to the best of my knowledge, accurate however it does cover some areas in which I am not regularly involved.

 

Please stay tuned for further updates on travel in the British Virgin Islands as they become available.

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