Davis Administrator Focuses Travel Health Visa For Inter-Island Travel, Removes Costs For Residents – Eye Witness News
Negative COVID tests still required; visa still in place to travel to the Bahamas
Testing on day 5 of travel is now only required for those entering the country
NASSAU, BAHAMAS – The new Minister of Health and Welfare, Dr Michael Darville, yesterday announced several changes to the health visa for travel to the Bahamas, including that it is no longer required for inter-island travel and that visa fees for all returning Bahamian citizens and residents have been waived.
A press release describing a series of changes to the existing emergency order reads: “Vaccinated persons traveling between the islands from New Providence or Grand Bahama will now be exempt from obtaining a travel health visa; they are only required to produce a negative rapid antigen test of the type approved by the Ministry of Health.
He also said unvaccinated travelers will only need to produce a negative RT-PCR test at the point of embarkation while traveling between islands.
For people traveling between the islands from any other island in the Bahamas except New Providence and Grand Bahama, only a negative rapid antigen test will need to be produced at the point of embarkation to travel.
Citizens, residents and visitors to the Bahamas are all required to obtain a travel health visa to enter the Bahamas. Payment of travel health visa fees is waived for returning Bahamian citizens and residents.
Prior to this latest amendment, travel health visa fees for unvaccinated Bahamian citizens and residents was $ 40 per traveler; and fees for vaccinated Bahamian citizens and residents was $ 10 per traveler.
The statement also noted changes to artsecondary test, which refers to the rapid antigen test that travelers must take on the fifth day of their stay in the Bahamas.
This is now only a requirement five days after entering the country.
This amendment is part of the first set of promises honored by the Davis administration, which during the election campaign denounced previous travel health visa requirements.
At the time, party leader and now Prime Minister Philip Brave Davis called the visa “a burden, useless tax on Bahamians at a time of widespread economic crisis ”.
He promised to end the visa at the time, however, the travel health visa is still in effect, only amended.
It was deployed in November 2020 under the Minnis administration.
Written by Gabrielle Sterling, Intern for Eyewitness News