Severity: Critical Alert
Exit/Entry: Aruba permits conditional entry for US travelers as of July 10. Some travelers from elsewhere in the region remain banned due to COVID-19.
- Alert Begins: 10 Jul 2020 12:37 PM UTC
- Alert Expires: 24 Jul 2020 11:59 PM UTC
- Incident: COVID-19 restrictions
- Location(s): Islandwide (map)
- Time Frame: Indefinite
- Impact: Transport and commercial disruptions
As of July 10, authorities are permitting travelers from the US to enter Aruba as part of the phased reopening of its air and sea ports, which were previously closed to all travelers in response to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak. Borders were previously reopened for travel between Aruba, Bonaire, and Curacao, June 15, and for travelers from Europe, Canada, and the Caribbean (excluding Haiti and the Dominican Republic) July 1. Travelers from Mexico, Central America, and South America will remain banned from entering Aruba until further notice. Cargo, emergency, and limited repatriation flights at Queen Beatrix International Airport (AUA) have been exempt from the edict.
Officials are enforcing enhanced health screenings and requirements for all arriving passengers. Stricter requirements are being enforced for travelers from US states with a high incidence of COVID-19 cases. Travelers from these states have to provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test prior to traveling to Aruba via the digital Embarkation-Disembarkation Card (ED card); they will not be able to use testing facilities at the airport upon arrival. These states are:
- Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Nevada, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Wisconsin, and Wyoming
Travelers from the remaining states and permitted countries are not required to submit proof of a valid negative COVID-19 test prior to arrival; however, if they choose not to do a test prior to travel they will be subject to obligatory testing at the airport at the travelers’ expense. The traveler will then be subject to a mandatory 24-hour quarantine at the traveler’s accommodation while awaiting test results. Passengers who decline to take the test and those who test positive for COVID-19 will be quarantined at an approved location.
Internally, most business and movement restrictions have been lifted, and most nonessential business operations have resumed and entertainment establishments have reopened. All businesses and establishments must continue to ensure that employees and customers maintain at least 1.5 meters (5 feet) between each other, that sick workers stay home, and that enhanced sanitation and hygiene protocols are enforced. Some industries may be required to adhere to additional sector-specific requirements. Lingering business disruptions are likely to persist even as commercial activities resume, due to operating requirements. All restrictions are subject to amendment at short notice.
Background and Analysis
The measures taken by officials in Aruba correspond with similar actions taken by other governments globally in response to the COVID-19 outbreak, which was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO) March 11. Several governments have begun relaxing the restrictive measures in response to indications that the spread of the disease has been adequately contained locally, and due to the need to allow some economic recovery. Should the number of COVID-19 cases significantly increase, relaxed restrictions may be reapplied. Likewise, a continued low number of cases may result in further relaxation of restrictions.
Follow all official instructions. Abide by national health and safety measures. Reconfirm all travel arrangements. Consider delaying traveling if experiencing symptoms associated with COVID-19, as they may prompt increased scrutiny and delays. Liaise with trusted contacts for further updates and guidance.
Emphasize basic health precautions, especially frequent handwashing with soap and water, or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are unavailable. Practice good coughing/sneezing etiquette (i.e., covering coughs and sneezes with a disposable tissue, maintaining distance from others, and washing hands). There is no evidence that the influenza vaccine, antibiotics, or antiviral medications will prevent this disease, highlighting the importance of diligent basic health precautions.