Severity: Warning Alert
Entry/Exit: Various restrictions likely to continue in Central America and the Caribbean through late May due to COVID-19 activity. Disruptions ongoing.
The locations affected by this alert are:
- Antigua and Barbuda
- British Virgin Islands
- Cayman Islands
- Dominican Republic
- Sint Maarten
- Puerto Rico
- Saint Kitts and Nevis
- Saint Lucia
- Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
- Trinidad and Tobago
- Turks and Caicos Islands
- Costa Rica
- El Salvador
- Saint Martin
- Saint Barthelemy
- Caribbean Netherlands
This alert began 07 May 2020 16:11 GMT and is scheduled to expire 14 May 2020 23:59 GMT.
- Incident: COVID-19 restrictions
- Location(s): Regional (map)
- Time Frame: Through at least late May
- Impact: Flight cancellations, disruptions to travel, transport, and business, increased security
Authorities in the Caribbean and Central America will maintain travel, business, and movement restrictions of varying degrees through at least late 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. The following measures are in place as of May 7:
- Anguilla: Closure of all air and seaports to all passenger movements until further notice. Internal restrictions on gatherings and business lifted on April 29.
- Antigua and Barbuda: VC Bird International Airport (ANU) closed to all incoming commercial passenger flights. Entry ban for nonresidents. Nationwide 24-hour curfew through May 13.
- Aruba: Entry ban for all nonresident foreigners, as well as returning citizens and legal residents. All incoming passenger flights suspended through May 31. Nationwide shelter-in-place order issued with an accompanying 2200-0800 curfew in place until further notice.
- Bahamas: All air and seaports closed to passenger movements until further notice. State of emergency in place through May 30. A daily 24-hour curfew on weekdays and weekend total lockdown is in effect until further notice. Internal movement regulated by surnames.
- Barbados: Suspension of commercial international passenger flights, with negotiations for some airlines to provide limited services. All persons arriving on the island will be subject to a 14-day quarantine. An 0800-1700 curfew imposed May 4-17, except for essential purchases and services. Internal movement regulated by surnames.
- Belize: Closure of all ports of entry to passenger movements, including Philip Goldson International Airport (BZE). 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 as of May 1.
- Bermuda: Closure of LF Wade International Airport (BDA) for all international passenger flights since March 20, until further notice. A 2200-0600 curfew and relaxed movement, business restrictions will be in place from May 3 until further notice. Internal movement regulated by surnames.
- British Virgin Islands: All air and seaports closed to all inbound passengers from March 22 until further notice. A daily 1300-0600 curfew is enforced through May 11.
- Caribbean Netherlands: Temporary entry ban for nonresidents traveling to Bonaire, Saba, and Sint Eustatius, and suspension of passenger flights until further notice. All education facilities are closed, and sporting events, festivals, and large gatherings are banned until further notice. Nonessential business is limited.
- Cayman Islands: All international passenger flights suspended since March 22 until further notice. Cruises and private vessels have also been banned. Varied movement restrictions and curfew measures are in effect until further notice. Internal movement is regulated by surnames. Some business restrictions relaxed as of May 4.
- Costa Rica: All ground, air, and maritime borders have been closed to nonresident foreign nationals through May 15, with only Costa Rican citizens and residents allowed to enter the country, followed by a 14-day quarantine. Varied vehicular transit bans in place through May 15. Restrictions on some nonessential commercial activities have been relaxed May 1-15.
- Cuba: All commercial and charter international passenger flights suspended, and foreign sea vessels asked to withdraw, as of April 2. Entry ban for all nonresident foreigners since March 24. All tourists in the country to remain quarantined until their departure. All interprovincial transport is suspended. Restrictive measures implemented for nonessential commercial activities, public transport, and schools. Localized quarantines and curfew measures imposed in certain areas.
- Curacao: Officials canceled most passenger flights coming into the country and banned residents from leaving the island. Maritime passenger traffic has been suspended. Arriving residents must self-quarantine for 14 days. A 2100-0600 curfew and other movement and vehicular restrictions are in effect through May 10.
- Dominica: All passenger flights suspended as of March 30. Nonessential commercial activities have been suspended. An 1800-0600 curfew will be imposed on weekdays, with a 24-hour total curfew on weekends, through May 11.
- Dominican Republic: Closure of land, sea, and air borders to passenger movement since March 19 until further notice. Suspension of nonessential commercial activities and a 1700-0600 curfew has been imposed through May 17. All travel between municipalities is banned.
- El Salvador: Suspension of all international passenger flights and operations at El Salvador International Airport (SAL). Entry ban for all nonresident foreign nationals until further notice. Mandatory quarantine in place and nationwide closure of nonessential business through at least May 16. Internal movement regulated by Identity Document (ID) number until May 21.
- Grenada: All airports closed to commercial passenger traffic until further notice. Ports are closed for disembarkation for all cruise ships and pleasure craft. Internal movement restrictions in place through May 12, except on designated business days.
- Guadeloupe: International passenger flights to Pointe-a-Pitre suspended. Limited flights between Guadeloupe and metropolitan France. All persons arriving at the Guadeloupe islands will be subject to strict confinement measures. A 2000-0500 curfew and restrictions on nonessential business and movements in effect through May 11.
- Guatemala: Officials have canceled all passenger flights in and out of the country and banned the entry of all nonresident foreign nationals. Nationwide 1800-0400 curfew and closure of nonessential business enforced until further notice. Additional restrictions on Chimaltenango, El Progreso, Guatemala, and Sacatepequez departments.
- Haiti: Closure of all land, air, and seaports of entry and exit to passenger movements, as well as the suspension of all commercial flights. A 2000-0500 curfew has been imposed until May 19. Restrictions on education institutions and public gatherings in place. Some inter-municipal public transport suspended.
- Honduras: Closure of land, sea, and air borders to passenger movements until further notice. Suspension of all international flights. Restrictions on internal movement except to procure food and medicines, or for banking purposes, regulated by ID and passport numbers, until May 17. Localized special emergency measures in place in some areas.
- Jamaica: All air and seaports closed to inbound international passenger traffic until May 31. An 1800-0600 nationwide curfew will be imposed through May 13.
- Martinique: International passenger flights at Martinique Aime Cesaire International Airport (FDF) suspended until further notice. Limited flights between Martinique and metropolitan France. All maritime transportation and cruise calls suspended. Restrictions on nonessential business and movements in effect through May 11.
- Montserrat: Most nonresidents banned from entry. A mandatory 14-day quarantine period is in place for all who enter. Internal movements limited to Monday-Friday between 0500-1900 for all except emergency services and essential businesses May 7-22. Some business restrictions relaxed as of May 7.
- Nicaragua: All international commercial passenger flights have been suspended through at least early June. There are no significant internal restrictions as of May 7.
- Panama: Suspension of all commercial international passenger flights since March 22. Officials are enforcing a mandatory 24-hour quarantine nationwide until further notice. Movement outside homes is allowed on a limited basis determined by the last digit of a person's passport or residency card and their gender.
- Puerto Rico: A 2100-0500 curfew is in effect through May 25. Some movement and business restrictions to be relaxed from May 4, though most nonessential commercial activity remains suspended.
- Saint Barthelemy: International passenger flights suspended. Limited flights between Saint Barthelemy and metropolitan France. A general lockdown is being enforced by security personnel, which prohibits all nonessential movements through May 11.
- Saint Kitts and Nevis: All air and seaports closed to passenger movements since March 25, until further notice. Varied movement restrictions and curfew measures in effect through May 9.
- Saint Lucia: All air and seaports closed to incoming passenger travel since March 24. A 1900-0500 curfew is in effect through May 31. Daytime nonessential movements are restricted.
- Saint Martin: All international passenger flights at Princess Juliana International Airport (SXM) are suspended. Limited flights are available between Saint Martin and metropolitan France. Ground travel between Saint Martin and Sint Maarten is prohibited, with limited exceptions. A general lockdown is being enforced by security personnel, which prohibits all nonessential movements through May 11.
- Saint Vincent and the Grenadines: Suspension of all international passenger flights at Argyle International Airport (AIA) as of April 2, until further notice. Bequia, Canouan, and Union Island ports of entry closed to yachts and pleasure craft. Most persons arriving will be subject to mandatory quarantine orders. Restrictions on certain businesses in place.
- Sint Maarten: Suspension of all inbound commercial passenger flights. Ground travel between Saint Martin and Sint Maarten is limited. Essential businesses will only be allowed to open Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, through May 10.
- Trinidad and Tobago: All airports and seaports are closed to passenger aircraft and vessels through May 15. Stay-at-home order in effect through May 15. Restrictive measures on nonessential commercial activities, schools, and public gatherings.
- Turks and Caicos: Closure of all seaports and airports to passenger movements since March 24, until further notice. Returning citizens and legal residents will be subject to quarantine protocols. A 2000-0500 curfew is imposed May 4-25. Restrictions on public gatherings and nonessential commercial activity. Some business restrictions relaxed as of May 4.
- US Virgin Islands: All arriving international travelers will be subject to health screenings and a 14-day quarantine. Mandatory safer-at-home order in effect from May 4 until further notice. Some business restrictions relaxed as of May 4.
Most ports of entry have been closed across the region, and repatriation options are limited. However, in all countries and territories where ports of entry and exit have been closed, or where flights have been suspended, the restrictions have been placed on passenger movements and not on cargo, freight, or humanitarian transportation. All restrictions are subject to amend at short notice, and the relaxing of any restrictions is reversible.
Background and Analysis
The measures taken by these governments correspond with similar actions 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, in many countries, restrictions on international passenger movements are likely to remain protracted. 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.
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.