- The Bahamas has joined other countries in banning US travellers this summer.
- The popular tourist destination reopened its borders three weeks ago, but has seen a spike in coronavirus cases.
- While International flights from Canada, the UK, and the EU are allowed, Prime Minister Hubert Minnis closed the borders to US visitors on Sunday.
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Americans with plans to sunbathe on Bahamian beaches this summer can forget about it.
Prime Minister Hubert Minnis announced on Sunday that US tourists are among those banned from the islands due to coronavirus concerns.
Bahamasair ceased flights to the United States on Sunday. Commercial flights and vessels are banned from the country, with an exception for those coming from Canada, the United Kingdom, and the European Union, Minnis said.
“In neighbouring countries, hospitals are overwhelmed and deaths are increasing. For some places it is unclear when or how they will get this virus under control,” Minnis said. “While there are countries that continue to make progress, such progress can be reversed because of what is happening in neighbouring and other countries.
The tourism ban comes three weeks after the Bahamas reopened its borders to travel. Since then, the country has seen a spike in coronavirus cases.
To accommodate visitors scheduled to leave after July 22, outgoing commercial flights to the US will be permitted, Minnis said.
Private international flights and charters for Bahamians, residents, and visitors will also be allowed. Visitors on yachts are also welcome, Minnis said.
Anyone arriving in the country by air or sea, including residents, will have to provide a negative COVID-19 test result upon arrival. The test will have to been taken within 10 days before the date of the visit.
The Bahamas has identified 153 confirmed cases of coronavirus
Minnis blamed the rise in cases, at least in part, to the handling of cases in countries frequented by Bahamians.
“Progress can also be reversed because of how citizens and residents within countries are following or ignoring health guidelines,” he said.
The Bahamas has had 153 confirmed cases of the coronavirus, including 11 deaths, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.
The region is still recovering from the devastating damage caused by Hurricane Dorian last year.
The US is the largest tourism market for the Bahamas, especially people from Florida, according to USA Today. Florida has seen 350,047 confirmed cases of the coronavirus, with nearly 5,000 deaths, according to state data.
The Bahamas isn’t the only country to close their otherwise reopened borders to US tourists.
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