Chaunci Cline, one of the leaders of the BVI Chamber of Commerce & Hotel Association’s (BVICCHA) said the long wait for COVID-19 test results has frustrated some travellers and poses threat to the BVI’s reputation as a premier tourism destination.
According to the BVI’s COVID-19 protocol, incoming travellers are required to take a COVID test when they land and the result is expected to be returned in 24-36 hours.
Another COVID test is administered after four days but in an interview with 284 Media, Cline said some travellers are not leaving the BVI “in ease” because wait times for COVID tests are not always adhered to.
“Some travellers are not getting their test results in an adequate amount of time and that in turn creates frustration and that message goes beyond our borders. We have to be very careful … If the economy is going to turn the tide then we have to do everything in our power to make sure people come in ease and leave in ease, not to leave in frustration. That’s a lasting impression and we don’t want the world to get the impression that we’re not prepared and we can’t manage our processes,” Cline explained.
She added that the BVICCHA still has many questions about the April 15 reopening of the seaports such as whether a certain number of visitors will be allowed into the territory daily.
The BVICCHA has been advocating for a bigger role in the government’s plan to revive the economy.
“Will there be a daily allowance? If so, how many through the various seaports? How will people traverse from coming into Road Town to Jost Van Dyke, Virgin Gorda and other points on the outer islands which are key to the economy,” Cline stated.
The reopening of the territory’s seaports has been extended twice. Thus the business community and the general community are anxious to see whether the April 15 reopening date will be realized.
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