Yes, the BVI are open as of 10/1/2021, and that's great news, however there are some very specific requirements for entry that are posing challenges for US based day charter boats and their guests. Here are the highlights:
- All travelers into the territory on a day charter MUST BE FULLY VACCINATED
- All travelers must show a negative PCR or Antigen test that is no older than 5 days
- All travelers must pre-register for a rapid test to be taken at West End Customs upon arrival into the territory using their online portal
- Travelers must purchase travel insurance which covers COVID 19 medical costs, doctor visits, prescriptions, medical repatriation, and quarantine accommodation costs.
- All travelers must, upon arrival at the West End Customs, take a rapid test, and if negative, will be free to enjoy their day in the territory. This test costs $50/person and is in addition to the normal customs fees.
- Minors under the age of 17 need to present a negative PCR or Antigen test that is no older than 5 days and be accompanied by vaccinated parents or guardians.
We are closely monitoring the situation with the BVI entry requirements and plan to do a practice run in the coming weeks to "see for ourselves" and to assess how easy or difficult this will be with guests on board. The other factor in all of this is the testing requirements this places on our captains. Depending on how many BVI trips we run each week, it is possible that our captains could be getting tested daily. Not only is this difficult from a logistical standpoint, it will also get very expensive. While there are free testing sites, it is unlikely that we will be able to count on using them all of the time.
The BVI's loosening of their entry requirements is great news and we look forward to running day trips to all of our favorite spots in the near term. However, with the information we have, we are not ready to start running day trips to the BVI at this point. The situation is pretty dynamic, to say the least, and as the situation evolves and more questions get answered, we plan to reevaluate this decision regularly. Stay tuned for more information in the coming weeks...