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Cost of travel health visa ‘just worked out’

Bahamians and visitors, who are staying in The Bahamas for less than five days, will both pay $40 for their travel health visa because it “just worked out” to the same cost, according to Ministry of Tourism Director General Joy Jibrilu. 

“For a visitor who is coming for five days or less, the cost of their visa is $40,” Jibrilu said.

“What that includes is the mandatory cost for the travel health insurance, which the Bahamian government has demanded for every visitor coming into the country. So, the cost for that is the insurance and the administrative cost.

“They will not have to pay for a rapid antigen test. So, that’s what makes their cost to $40. If you look, then, for a Bahamian, because the Bahamian is coming home, they are not being asked to pay for health insurance.

“It doesn’t apply. The contract that has been negotiated with [CG Atlantic] only contemplates someone coming into the destination for up to 31 days. And so, for a Bahamian though, because they are staying beyond five days, there is a cost for them to take a rapid antigen test at day five.

“So, the cost for the rapid antigen test — and I can’t even say it because it just worked out — it worked out to the same cost as the cost for a visitor who is paying for the insurance and no antigen test. “

Minister of Tourism Dionisio D’Aguilar announced that individuals traveling to The Bahamas will have to pay for a travel health visa.

Included in the cost of the visa, which ranges from $40 to $60, is travel health insurance for visitors. The insurance, which is provided by CG Atlantic, is mandatory after November 14.

The insurance covers the cost of medical evacuation — up to $50,000 —for visitors who test positive for COVID-19 and display symptoms and visitors who test positive and display no symptoms but have comorbidities. 

It provides $500 per day — not exceeding $7,000 — for trip interruption or delay for necessary quarantine or isolation due to COVID-19. This applies to asymptomatic visitors who decide to quarantine in The Bahamas. 

Up to $50,000 is provided for medical expenses incurred as a result of COVID-19 while in The Bahamas. 

As has been the case for the last four months, it will only be granted after travelers secure their RT-PCR negative test results.

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Jasper Ward

Jasper Ward started at The Nassau Guardian in September 2018. Ward covers a wide range of national and social issues. Education: Goldsmiths, University of London, MA in Race, Media and Social Justice

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