Severity: Warning Alert

Entry/Exit: Travel, business restrictions of varying degrees likely in Central America and Caribbean through at least the end of May due to COVID-19.

The locations affected by this alert are:

  • Anguilla
  • Antigua and Barbuda
  • Aruba
  • Bahamas
  • Barbados
  • British Virgin Islands
  • Cayman Islands
  • Cuba
  • Dominica
  • Dominican Republic
  • Grenada
  • Guadeloupe
  • Haiti
  • Jamaica
  • Martinique
  • Montserrat
  • Sint Maarten
  • Puerto Rico
  • Saint Kitts and Nevis
  • Saint Lucia
  • Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Turks and Caicos Islands
  • Belize
  • Costa Rica
  • El Salvador
  • Guatemala
  • Honduras
  • Nicaragua
  • Panama
  • Hamilton
  • Saint Martin
  • Curacao
  • Saint Barthelemy
  • Caribbean Netherlands

This alert began 22 May 2020 22:02 GMT and is scheduled to expire 29 May 2020 23:59 GMT.

  • Incident: COVID-19 restrictions
  • Location(s): Regional (map)
  • Time Frame: Through at least the end of May
  • Impact: Severe transport, travel, and business disruptions

Summary
Authorities in the Caribbean and Central America will maintain travel, business, and movement restrictions of varying degrees through at least the of May as part of their efforts to reduce the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19). The exact duration of the measures will almost certainly depend on disease activity and local authorities' preparedness to respond to the disease. The following measures are in place as of May 22:

  • Anguilla: All air and seaports are closed to passenger traffic until further notice.
  • Antigua and Barbuda: VC Bird International Airport (ANU) is closed to all incoming commercial passenger flights until at least June 1; thereafter, arriving passengers will be subject to a mandatory 14-day quarantine. A 2100-0500 curfew is in effect through June 12. Some restrictions on public movements have been eased as of May 14.
  • Aruba: Borders are tentatively set to reopen between June 15-July 1. All incoming passenger flights are suspended through May 31. A nationwide 2300-0500 curfew is in place until further notice. Restrictions on nonessential businesses have been gradually relaxed since May 4.
  • Bahamas: All air and seaports are closed to passenger traffic until further notice. A state of emergency is in place through May 30. A daily 24-hour curfew on weekdays and total lockdown on weekends are in effect until further notice; Bimini is under a total lockdown through May 30. Varied business restrictions are in place across the islands.
  • Barbados: Commercial international passenger flights are suspended, with some airlines negotiating to provide limited services. All persons arriving on the island will be subject to a 14-day quarantine. An 2000-0500 curfew is in effect until May 31. Internal movement restrictions are also in force.
  • Belize: Borders remain closed to all foreign nationals. Air traffic is mostly limited to cargo, emergency, and some domestic passenger flights. A 2000-0459 curfew is in effect through June 1; the public is urged to limit nonessential daytime movements. Some movement and business restrictions have been relaxed since early May.
  • Bermuda: LF Wade International Airport (BDA) is closed to all international passenger flights. A 2200-0600 curfew remains in force until further notice. Some restrictions have been gradually relaxed since early May. Internal movement restrictions are also in force.
  • British Virgin Islands: All air and seaports are closed to all inbound passengers until further notice. A daily 1900-0600 curfew is in effect through June 7. A gradual easing of business restrictions began April 27.
  • Caribbean Netherlands: Nonresidents are temporarily banned from traveling to Bonaire, Saba, and Sint Eustatius; passenger flights are suspended. A gradual easing of business and movement restrictions began May 11.
  • Cayman Islands: All international passenger flights are suspended until at least the end of August. Cruise ships and private vessels have also been banned from docking. Various movement restrictions are in place on Grand Cayman, Cayman Brac, and Little Cayman. Internal movement restrictions are in effect on Grand Cayman only. A gradual easing of business and movement restrictions began May 4.
  • Costa Rica: All ground, air, and maritime borders have been closed to nonresident foreign nationals through June 15. Only Costa Rican citizens and residents allowed to enter the country, followed by a 14-day quarantine. Various vehicular transit bans are in place. Phase 1 of the country's COVID-19 recovery plan is slated to remain in effect until May 31.
  • Cuba: All commercial and charter international passenger flights are suspended and foreign maritime vessels have been asked to depart. No nonresident foreigners are allowed to enter Cuba. All tourists in the country must remain quarantined until their departure. All interprovincial transport is suspended. Restrictions have been imposed on nonessential commercial activities, public transport, and schools. Localized quarantines and curfews have been imposed.
  • Curacao: Officials canceled most passenger flights and suspended most maritime passenger traffic until further notice. Arriving residents must self-quarantine for 14 days. A 0000-0600 curfew is in effect as of May 22 until further notice; however, some movement and business restrictions were relaxed starting May 8.
  • Dominica: All passenger flights are suspended. Most nonessential commercial activities have been suspended. A 1900-0500 curfew is in effect on weekdays, with a 24-hour total curfew on weekends, through May 26.
  • Dominican Republic: Land, sea, and air borders are closed to passenger traffic until further notice. As of May 18, a curfew is in effect 1900-0500 Monday to Saturday, and 1700-0500 on Sundays. Most nonessential businesses remain closed, despite some restrictions being relaxed.
  • El Salvador: All international passenger flights and operations at El Salvador International Airport (SAL) remain suspended. An entry ban for all nonresident foreign nationals is in effect until further notice. Mandatory quarantine is in place, as well as the nationwide closure of nonessential business through at least June 6. Internal movement restrictions have been imposed.
  • Grenada: All airports are closed to commercial passenger traffic until further notice. Ports are closed to all cruise ships and pleasure craft. A 1900-0500 curfew is in effect until at least May 26. A gradual easing of business and movement restrictions began May 11.
  • Guadeloupe: A temporary entry ban for nonresident foreign nationals is in place. Limited flights are available between Guadeloupe and metropolitan France. All persons arriving at the Guadeloupe islands will be subject to strict confinement measures. The first phase of Guadeloupe's recovery plan is slated to continue through June 1.
  • Guatemala: Officials have canceled all passenger flights in and out of the country and banned the entry of all nonresident foreign nationals. Tightened business and movement restrictions are in place through May 25. All interdepartmental travel is prohibited.
  • Haiti: Emergency measures have been extended through July 19. All land, air, and seaports are closed to passenger traffic; all commercial flights remain suspended. A 2000-0500 curfew is in effect until further notice.
  • Honduras: Land, sea, and air borders are closed to passenger traffic until further notice; all international flights are suspended. Internal movement is restricted to purchasing food or medications, or for banking purposes, until May 24.
  • Jamaica: All air and seaports are closed to inbound international passenger traffic until May 31. Various curfew measures will remain in effect nationwide through May 31.
  • Martinique: A temporary entry ban for nonresident foreign nationals is in place. Limited flights between Martinique and metropolitan France are available. All persons arriving in Martinique are subject to strict confinement measures. An initial phase of gradual reopening is in effect through June 1.
  • Montserrat: Most nonresidents are banned from entry. A mandatory 14-day quarantine period is in place for all persons arriving in Montserrat. A 2000-0500 curfew is in effect as of May 22 until further notice. A gradual easing of business and movement restrictions began May 7.
  • Nicaragua: All international commercial passenger flights have been suspended through at least early June. The border with Costa Rica is closed for cargo transport until further notice. There are no significant internal restrictions as of May 22.
  • Panama: All commercial international passenger flights are suspended. A mandatory 24-hour quarantine is in effect nationwide until further notice, with some business restrictions relaxed as of May 13. Residents may only move outside their homes on certain days based on the last digit of their identity card or passport number.
  • Puerto Rico: A 1900-0500 curfew is in effect through June 15. Some movement and business restrictions have been gradually relaxed since May 4, though most nonessential commercial activity remains suspended.
  • Saint Barthelemy: A temporary entry ban is in place for nonresident foreign nationals. Limited flights between Saint Barthelemy and metropolitan France are available. All persons arriving in Saint Barthelemy are subject to strict confinement measures. An initial phase of gradual reopening is in effect through June 1.
  • Saint Kitts and Nevis: All air and seaports are closed to passenger traffic until further notice. A varied schedule of curfew hours is in effect until May 23. Other movement and business restrictions are in place indefinitely.
  • Saint Lucia: All air and seaports are closed to incoming passenger travel. A 2100-0500 curfew is in effect through May 31. Full business operations resumed May 20.
  • Saint Martin: A temporary entry ban for nonresident foreign nationals is in effect. Limited flights are available between Saint Martin and metropolitan France. Ground travel between Saint Martin and Sint Maarten is restricted. An initial phase of gradual reopening is in effect through June 1.
  • Saint Vincent and the Grenadines: All international passenger flights at Argyle International Airport (AIA) remain suspended until further notice. Bequia, Canouan, and Union Island ports of entry are closed to yachts and pleasure craft. Most persons arriving are subject to a mandatory quarantine. Restrictions on certain businesses are in place.
  • Sint Maarten: All inbound commercial passenger flights are suspended. A phased economic recovery plan will continue through mid-June, with a 2000-0500 nightly curfew.
  • Trinidad and Tobago: All airports and seaports are closed to passenger aircraft and vessels. A stay-at-home order is in effect until further notice. A phased reopening of the economy began May 11, though most nonessential businesses and facilities remain closed.
  • Turks and Caicos: All air and seaports remain closed to passenger traffic until further notice. Returning citizens and legal residents are subject to quarantine protocols. A 2000-0500 curfew is in place until at least May 25. Restrictions on public gatherings and nonessential commercial activity are in effect, though some business restrictions were relaxed on May 4.
  • US Virgin Islands: All arriving international travelers are subject to health screenings and a 14-day quarantine. A safer-at-home order is in effect until further notice. A gradual easing of business and movement restrictions began May 4, though most nonessential businesses and facilities remain closed.


Most ports of entry are still closed across the region and repatriation options are limited. Most flight bans, where they are in effect, do not apply to cargo, humanitarian, or medical flights. Nicaragua, with the closure of its border with Costa Rica to cargo transport, is a notable exception. Restrictions may be relaxed, reimposed, or otherwise amended based on disease activity.

Background and Analysis
The measures taken by these governments are similar to those taken by other governments globally in response to the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), a viral respiratory disease caused by infection with the SARS-CoV-2 virus (previously known as 2019-nCoV). On March 11, the WHO declared the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic. Some governments around the world have gradually started relaxing some internal measures to allow economic recovery. However, should the number of COVID-19 cases significantly increase, the relaxed restrictions may be reapplied. Likewise, a continued low number of cases may result in further relaxation of restrictions.

Advice
Confirm all travel arrangements and entry requirements before departing. Follow all official instructions. Abide by national health and safety measures. Liaise with trusted contacts for further updates and guidance. Ensure contingency plans account for further disruptive measures or extensions of current restrictions. Allow additional time for immigration and health screenings. Consider delaying travel if experiencing symptoms associated with COVID-19, as they may prompt increased scrutiny, delays, and potential quarantine.

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.


Back to the COVID-19 Risk Intelligence & Resource Center