BAHAMAS MINISTRY OF TOURISM & AVIATION STATEMENT ON COVID-19
The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism & Aviation is following guidance from the Bahamas Ministry of Health and other government agencies pertaining to the country’s Preparedness and Response Plan for COVID-19. Please visit the Bahamas Ministry of Health’s website for the latest information on COVID-19 cases in The Bahamas. Current and future patients are to be isolated in quarantine following the guidelines outlined by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Further to the Emergency Order, “Emergency Powers (COVID 19) (NO. 2) Order, 2020,” announced by Prime Minister, The Most Hon. Dr. Hubert Minnis, the Nassau Airport Development Company (NAD) has closed the Lynden Pindling International Airport to all flights, as of Friday, March 27. The public is further advised that, effective March 27, all airports throughout the entire Bahamas shall be closed to all air traffic.
The Emergency Order remains in effect until 9 a.m. on Tuesday, March 31, unless otherwise stated. Preventative restrictions are being enforced to prevent further spread of COVID-19, including:
· No visitor shall be permitted to enter and disembark for any reason including transiting through The Bahamas.
· All airports throughout the entire Bahamas, including private airports and fixed-base operations (FBOs), shall be closed to all flights.
· All sea ports shall be closed to regional and international seafaring and private boating.
· Air and sea restrictions do not apply to: cargo flights or cargo ships, commercial courier flights, emergency medical flights or emergency flights approved by the Civil Aviation Authority.
· All international visitors currently in The Bahamas should be prepared to stay for an indefinite period of time.
· No person shall offer for hire or seek to travel on any mail boat, sailing inter island, except for transport of freight; or inter island private commercial sea transport.
· All residents will be placed on a 24-hour curfew and are to remain at home to avoid contact outside of their family, except for those who have been deemed essential workers, or have special permission from the Commissioner of Police.
· Residents can leave their homes for essential travel to the doctor, grocery store, bank, pharmacy or to refuel; as well as for outside exercise, not exceeding an hour and a half per day between the hours of 5 a.m. to 9 p.m., provided that the exercise is conducted in one’s yard or one’s immediate neighborhood and no person shall drive to any place to exercise.
· Proper social distancing guidelines of at least six feet (6ft.) must be followed at all times while outside the home.
· All public beaches, markets and docks will be closed, and no vehicles are permitted on any public or private roads for any purpose other than stated above.
Full details of this order and the previous Emergency Order may be found at opmbahamas.com.
The Bahamas is conducting COVID-19 testing and has been actively employing several measures used globally to screen visitors and residents and to manage the response to individuals of concern, in line with international health best practices. Traveller health questionnaires and a screening protocol have been used at ports, hotels and rental properties to identify guests who may require surveillance or treatment. In addition, all Bahamian nationals and residents returning to The Bahamas through any point of entry from any of the restricted countries or an area where community infection and spread is present, have been quarantined or placed under self-isolation upon arrival and are expected to follow the protocols of the Ministry of Health.
A destination-wide education campaign continues to remind the public of the basic hygiene practices that can be used to prevent the spread of the virus including frequent, proper hand washing, use of hand sanitizers, frequent disinfection of surfaces and avoiding close contact with those exhibiting signs of respiratory illness.
All COVID-19 inquiries should be directed to the Ministry of Health. For questions, or concerns, please call the COVID-19 hotline: 242-376-9350 (8 a.m. – 8 p.m. EDT) / 242-376-9387 (8 p.m. – 8 a.m. EDT).