Bermuda Reveals Plans To Restart Tourism

Filed Under: Travel

Bermuda has become one of the latest countries to announce plans to reopen to tourists, including Americans.

Travel to Bermuda possible as of July 1

Bermuda intends to reopen to travelers arriving by air as of July 1, 2020. There are no special restrictions being placed on where travelers can come from, so even Americans are allowed. Personally Bermuda is a place I’ve been wanting to visit for a long time, so this is on my radar.

Bermuda has seen a total of 141 confirmed COVID-19 cases with nine deaths. The country hasn’t reported any new cases in the past week.

Bermuda will require coronavirus testing

The most significant restriction that Bermuda is putting in place is that visitors need to obtain a certified negative PCR COVID-19 test within 72 hours of departure. With testing now pretty readily available in most places, this shouldn’t prove too challenging for anyone who desires to visit.

Other precautions that Bermuda is taking

In addition to the need for a COVID-19 test, there are some other restrictions to be aware of (though many of these aren’t enforceable, though are simply good practices).

Prior to traveling to Bermuda, travelers should:

  • Ensure they have appropriate health insurance
  • Wear face masks when traveling to the departure airport
  • Wear face masks and practice physical distancing at the departure airport
  • Complete a traveller screening form and arrival card

Then during the flight to Bermuda, travelers should:

  • Wear a face mask while on the plane
  • practice social distancing to the extent possible

Next, upon arrival in Bermuda, travelers should:

  • Continue to wear their face mask and practice physical distancing

Bermuda is working on a detailed plan for anyone who tests positive during their visit, though that hasn’t yet been published.

What airlines are flying to Bermuda?

While Bermuda is welcoming tourists as of July 1, it doesn’t look like there are initially any flights scheduled from the US. We could see airlines add some last minute capacity in light of this announcement, but I wouldn’t count on it.

As of now:

  • Delta is resuming flights from Atlanta as of July 4
  • JetBlue is resuming flights from Boston and New York as of August 1
  • American is resuming flights from New York JFK as of August 18

Air Canada is offering service from Toronto to Bermuda, though keep in mind the border between the US and Canada is closed through late July as of now (and that could be extended further). This doesn’t actually prohibit transit passengers on international to international connections, but it does mean there are very limited transborder flights at the moment.

Bottom line

Tourism in Bermuda will restart as of July 1, 2020, with visitors from around the world allowed in. The major restriction here is that testing is required within 72 hours of departure. That’s becoming a pretty common restriction nowadays, and it’s a reasonable precaution. Ideally they’d also require (or offer) testing on arrival to be on the safe side, but…

While Bermuda is opening on July 1, flight capacity is initially very limited. Coming from the US, Delta is the only airline flying to Bermuda for all of July, which should greatly limit the number of visitors.

Anyone considering a trip to Bermuda?

Comments
  1. Hey Ben,
    The whole testing situation seems very risky/confusing and I am wondering how you and others will deal with that. You mention that testing is readily available which seems true. But the timeframe worries me. Every PCR testing site I can find in Southern California says “1-2 days”. But they don’t guarantee that (nor do they give a specific definition of when that time frame starts…when you leave the docs office? When the lab actually gets the sample?) LabCorps says 2-4 days. In addition…I can’t find any information about what kind of documentation countries are needing regarding results. Seems like anyone could print out anything that Looks like a lab test unless there are specific requirements or guidelines. I know some people have commented anecdotally that their results came back within a day but I can’t imagine putting money down for a big trip without the turnaround being faster and the necessary documentation being clearer.

  2. I live in Bermuda. The requirements that were told here are slightly different- testing on arrival too and quarantine until results (which the government here has gotten down pat – very efficient and well run). It will probably change too depending on what actually works in practice. There will likely be much confusion at first. I think it is going to a very soft opening until they sort it out. Many locals want to get off the island to see family, medical appointments, etc and the rules for locals haven’t been set out yet. Nor how things will work for returning family.

  3. How exactly do you certify a test? Will any test do? Consulates for example do certify some other types of documents.

  4. Lucky, is there any news on Puerto Rico opening? I read that they are “officially” welcoming tourism on July 15th, but I also read that the quarantine and most restrictions are lifted as of the 15th/16th. https://www.explica.co/government-of-puerto-rico-cancels-quarantine-and-allows-opening-of-movie-theaters-gyms-and-beaches/

    Do you know if it is okay to travel yet there? Most of the information is in Spanish, and the tourism sites are not very well updated. Thanks!!

  5. Is this a way for Americans to fly to Canada? Now Americans can’t but Canadians can fly from the US to Canada.

  6. Yea I dunno how this testing stuff will work. In some places results are backlogged by weeks. Don’t think we have the lab capacity to get results back fast enough for leisure travelers. I know in new york the medical staff in nursing homes cant get their results back. With the virus flaring up in like 19 states seems like quick turnarounds on non medically necessary tests will be quite slow. Insurance is another issue. An article talking about travel insurance policies and coverage specifically for covid when out of the country as well as coverage for medical evacuation would be quite useful as we move forward with travel.

  7. I am surprised that no internet entrepreneur is selling bogus covid tests on-line for a few bucks. Sounds like a business opportunity to me. They do it now for phoney flight itineraries for people who need proof of departure when entering certain countries.

  8. I live in Bermuda. The Premier explained the plan a bit more last night. Said they are working to identify places in the gateway cities that can do 72 hr tests. Will provide more information. All visitors and returning residents tested on arrival (saliva). Quarantine until results (hours). Our testing system is really doing a good job (they built a dedicated lab) and is emailing out results very quickly so I think this is going to work. They are trying to find the right balance of protection vs freedom to travel vs tourism economy. There will inevitably be hiccups at first though and not a lot of flights expected until the fall.

  9. Get travel insurance unless you can secure a test with timeframe

    We are the largest tester in my state.
    Turnaround time is 1 hour to 1-2 days from time of collection
    1 hour is only for ICU patients

    But we prioritize the tests
    SYMPTOMATIC
    #1: hospitalized/ICU patients
    #2: congregate living
    #3: medical workers
    #4: people with certain diseases (eg dialysis)
    #5: all other symptomatic people
    We just added
    #6: asymptomatic hospital patients
    #7: asymptomatic protestors

    Next will be
    #8: asymptomatic contact tracing

    Do you see “leisure travel” there? Nope
    Will you? Probably. But it will be ranked last

    Also, we will have a wave of infections this Fall. Which might leave us short of tests again.
    This will bump asymptomatic vacation off the list

  10. This is okay for enabling essential travel, but as a tourist who loves Bermuda and has been many times, I have no interest in going through all these steps considering the potential for hiccups along the way. I think tourism will be dead until there is a simplified and less intrusive method to allow it. Not to mention that fact that I live in a place that is pretty much COVID-free now but to get to Bermuda would have to transit some of the worst hotspots.

  11. PCR tests here in Northern California take an average of five days still? Where are they widely available? And are they guaranteed to have results in 72 hours? Also, do they give results on weekends?

    I am literally unable to travel until I can find PCR tests in my area. San Francisco has some, someone helpful pointed out, but they are for residents only when I called the Department of Health.

    It is a major sticking point for every person I know who wants to travel this summer.

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