Existing international travel restrictions in Saint Lucia will likely remain in effect through at least late October, as part of the island country's efforts to curb the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
Prior to arrival, foreign nationals traveling by air or sea must provide a negative polymerase chain reaction (PCR) COVID-19 test result within seven days, a travel approval forml, and proof of an accommodation reservation in a government approved facility for a mandatory 14 day self quarantine period. Foreign travelers must stay at separate accommodations depending on their country of origin; those from countries outside the Caribbean are required to stay at hotels that have received a special government certification, and those from countries within the "Caribbean Bubble," a list of approved nations and territories for travel to Saint Lucia, are prohibited from using such hotels.
As of Oct. 12, authorities are maintaining the designated "Caribbean Bubble" travel advisory, which includes the following countries:
- Antigua and Barbuda, Anguilla, Barbados, Dominica, Grenada, Montserrat, Saint Kitts and Nevis, and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
Travelers from "Caribbean Bubble" countries who arrive in Saint Lucia via connecting flights from an external country are subject to restrictions and entry requirements. Travelers arriving from nations outside of the Caribbean, including those who merely boarded connecting flights, may enter, but must provide a negative PCR test result taken no more than seven days before their arrival.
Nationals and residents of Saint Lucia arriving from outside the designated "Caribbean Bubble" by sea or air, must also self quarantine for 14 days at a government approved facility.
Travelers arriving by air from any "Caribbean Bubble" locations are exempt from COVID-19 test entry requirements. Regardless, all travelers must submit a Pre-Arrival Travel Registration Form providing all contact and travel history information. Travelers entering Saint Lucia by sea, who have solely traveled within the Caribbean Bubble in the past 21 days, are exempt from quarantine but must provide a negative PCR test result no more than seven days prior to date of travel.
The government requires that individuals use protective face coverings in public places.
Authorities could reimpose, extend, ease, or otherwise amend restrictions with little-to-no notice, depending on disease activity over the coming weeks.
Background and Analysis
The restrictions adopted by Saint Lucia are similar to actions taken by governments globally in response to the spread of COVID-19. On March 11, the WHO declared the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic. Should the number of COVID-19 cases increase, restrictions may be reapplied. Conversely, a continued low number of cases may result in a 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.