April 11th 2021
A little good news on the situation in Barbados! Last night the Prime Minister announced further relaxation on restrictions in Barbados that will come into effect 11 April 2021 through April 26. The beach is back! We have yet to receive the final directive but a summary of the changes are as follows:
1. No curfew from Monday to Wednesday.
2. Curfew from 11pm to 5am Thursday to Sunday.
3. Beaches and parks will now be open 5am to 7pm for recreation, with the provision that no picnics, parties or large gatherings will be permitted.
4. Small pleasure craft may resume operation at 50% capacity, but no larger party boats may operate.
5. Watersports operators may resume operations.
6. Bars can open at half capacity, but cinemas and night clubs must remain closed.
7. Gyms are permitted to reopen.
8. Fast food restaurants can resume inside dining with social distancing and strict protocols.
9. Church capacity is now limited to the number that allows for 6-foot distance being maintained between worshippers.
10. Funerals and weddings may now have 100 persons in attendance, however any receptions may only be in the form of meals and no parties at this time.
11. Retail stores and supermarkets will remain closed on Sundays.
With the lifting of restrictions it means your guests can resume the enjoyment of the majority of what the island has to offer, provided that protocols are adhered to. Mask wearing in public remains in force.
New Protocol for Entry to Barbados for Vaccinated Persons
While the entry protocol for unvaccinated persons remains as it has been since 3 February 2021, effective 8 May 2021 a new protocol will for vaccinated persons to enter Barbados will be in place. A vaccinated person is defined as a person who in a two-dose regime has received both doses plus 14 days (meaning their second or final dose has to have been given no less than 14 days prior to arrival in Barbados). Such persons will still require a negative PCR test within 72 hours of arrival, and will be retested on arrival in Barbados. This retest will either be a classic PCR test or a rapid PCR test. Once that test is negative, persons will be free to move around Barbados freely. This means only a 24 to 48 hour quarantine period or even less depending on turnaround time of results.
While it was not announced in detail last night, we participated in a meeting with the Barbados Hotel and Tourism Association and it was clarified and recognized that since children under 18 are not presently being vaccinated in most countries, that the protocol that applies to the parents accompanying their children will also apply to their children.
The Ministry of Health will continue to monitor and make adjustments based on the circumstances and the level of vaccination reached in the Barbadian population. For full details as released please check the Barbados Travel Protocols website where we expect the protocol to be released shortly.
COVID-19 Case Update:
This week, for the first time since 31 Dec 2020, the active case count in Barbados has dipped below 100 persons. New cases have mostly been in the single digits for the past week, or largely below 2% positivity rate, which is a significant improvement.
Dear Travellers, Please note that we are currently working through a backlog of COVID-19 PCR tests at our testing facilities which may impact how soon you receive your results. We will post an update on when we have resumed to our standard 24-48 hours turnaround time. Please plan your travel accordingly.
Change to Travel Protocol Effective Feb. 3 2021
While the requirement to have a PCR test 3 days prior to arrival in Barbados remains in place, the following updates have been announced:
1. All arriving passengers will be subject to a Rapid Antigen test for COVID-19 on arrival.
2. The waiting period to take the required second PCR test in Barbados has been extended from 48 hours after arrival to 5 nights after arrival. Test results are expected to be received in 24-48 hours. This effectively extends the quarantine period from the estimated 3-4 days to 6-7 days. Security costs may apply for each day of quarantine.
Our guest services team will be happy to assist arranging tests for your guests and it will be critical during this time to ensure you work with our team ASAP to ensure all grocery items are stocked in advance of arrival and transfers arranged from the airport.
We will update you as soon as the official Travel Protocol is released and we are expecting it to be made public on the Barbados Travel Protocols website by tomorrow.
Barbados Restrictions effective Feb. 3 through Feb. 17 2021
1. Curfew from 7pm – 6am. We expect that it is likely that Villas will be deemed essential services and emergency passes will be granted to ensure staff service can continue for you during this period as much as possible, within reason.
2. Mandatory wearing of masks in all public places: Street, Buildings, etc. (Exemptions: medical reasons)
3. Supermarkets open 8am – 3pm on weekdays and closed on weekends. Our guest services team will ensure they are in touch with you to make sure your groceries are well stocked for this period, so no need to worry.
4. Pharmacies will remain open
5. Gas stations will remain open for the purposes of fuel
6. Banks to be closed from Feb 3 – 9 and reopen on Feb. 10
7. Public markets and vendors will be closed
8. Public transport will operate with seating restricted to 60% of seating capacity
9. Restaurants, bars and gyms will be closed
Update on Testing
The testing backlog that was being experienced over Christmas with severe delays in test results appears to have regularized again and we have been seeing test results coming back anywhere between 24-36 hours after tests are taken. A new system of categorization has been in place for the past couple of weeks to ensure time sensitive tests are prioritized.
Barbados has also begun using the Rapid Antigen test more regularly to assist with quick detection. During this time of lockdown, the Government also plans to attempt to test all citizens using rapid test kits in an aggressive and unprecedented effort to keep everyone safe.
During this period, we appreciate your support in helping ensure your guests are informed and comply with the directives, and following safe practices of mask wearing and hand sanitizing.
We thank you for your continued cooperation and understanding as we seek to keep your guests, our staff and community as safe as possible. We appreciate that you continue to trust in Barbados and are helping to encourage your guests to still visit our island! Please continue to follow updates on the Barbados Government Information Service and we will keep you updated as well.
Barbados is a very special place to visit, there’s no doubt about that. When you think about Barbados you dream its beautiful beaches, crystal clear blue waters, glorious year-round sunshine and wonderfully warm people.
Barbados has everything you have ever imagined to experience on a Caribbean island getaway from the idyllic beaches to the swaying palm trees, and the luxury accommodations that this island has to offer. It is considered “the most British” of the Caribbean islands, Barbados has a rich history, and so much nature to explore. Here the afternoon tea is also a ritual, cricket is the national pastime as well as dressing for dinner.
Barbados is not welcoming travelers from July 12th 2020, to date this island has had just 151 cases of Covid-19 and only seven deaths. But the import of tourism here cannot be denied, and fear of closure is overcoming fear of the virus, the economy is based mainly from tourism.
Best time to visit
Barbados, in general, boasts a year round temperate climate that rarely goes below 70 degrees (21 degrees Celsius), the summer months are usually rainy and occasionally is also the hurricane season, that rarely make landfall.
The best time to visit is from November to June when the sky is clear with sunny days when the majority of travelers arrive to the island. Christmas and New Year see a peak in occupancy. July and August are ok months also if you would like to take part in some of the island’s famed festivals.
We believe May is also a good month to visit if you want to experience the island without the winter crowds.
Where to stay on Barbados
Barbados includes 11 parishes, but to make it easy we divide this island in 3 areas that you can consider when you book your accommodation.
Elegant Luxury on the West Coast of Barbados
The West Coast is also know as Barbados’Platinum Coast, where you will enjoy manicured beaches, mill-pond calm ocean, and luxury villas and resorts. Here you will experience the very best of the island.
Wild and more natural on the East Coast
Crane Beach to Pie Corner
The East Coast is tranquil and unspoilt, ideal for travellers looking for a true life experience on Barbados. This coast is battered by Atlantic breaks, the beaches are sculpted into undulating dunes and the palm trees grow crooked due to the constant strain of onshore winds. Very few places where to stay here in this part.
Popular with all inclusive holidays the South Coast of Barbados
This part of the island is heavily developed and home to the country’s capital Bridgetown. This is the epicentre of the tourist trade. Perfect beaches for families and couples looking to sun soaking. This is also the part of the island where there are more parties especially around St. Lawrence Gap. Here you can find all inclusive resorts or more affordable options.
What you should know about Barbados
On Barbados your will find anything you need from transport, communication etc.
Here you can find the major supermarket chains, almost all food and beverage products are imported and so will likely be more expensive that in the UK and major US cities. Barbados also offers travellers with dietary requirements all the options they need.
No crime problems on Barbados, tourists feel safe when walking through the capital and along the coastline, however we always recommend to be vigilant and diligent with personal safety and valuables.
Laws and Local Customs
Tipping is welcomed but not expected.
Topless and nude sunbathing is illegal on Barbados.
It’s an offence for anyone, including children, to dress in camouflage clothing. The recognisable print is reserved for the island’s military.
Since you are a tourist on Barbados, you will need to apply to obtain a local permit to drive. The car rental agencies will assist you with this procedure or you can also visit the Barbados Licensing Authority – offices located in Christchurch, St. Michael, St. Peter, and St. James.
No drink-drive limit, however you should always be careful when you drive.
Barbados also recently announced its Welcome Stamp visa for sun-seeking digital nomads. Valid for 12 months, it allows anyone earning over a certain salary to live and work remotely temporarily. If you are not ready to commit to a year, Barbados is still a great destination where to enjoy a nice vacation even for a couple of weeks. Book an oceanfront villa like Bonavista . It is set on a quiet stretch of white, sand beach on the stunning West Coast of Barbados.
During your stay on Barbados you should not miss a visit at the Mount Gay Rum HQ in 1703. At the visitor center you will learn more of the history of the rum. You will also have a sample of great dark and white blends. Compare its product with those from Foursquare in Saint Philip Parish, and Mount Gilboa, a 100 percent pot still rum made by the Mount Gay distillery.