BVI News

Visitor 4-day quarantine is the best option yet

Minister of Health & Social Development Carvin Malone.

Health Minister Carvin Malone said the government has been observing COVID-19 protocols of other countries but has not seen a better alternative than the four-day quarantine period being considered for overnight tourists who will visit the BVI.

Malone made the confession at a community meeting on Jost Van Dyke on October 22 after a resident explained that businesses on the island will not benefit if tourists are required to quarantine for four days.

The resident said most tourists’ vacations are for a maximum of 7 days and using 4 for quarantine doesn’t make much economical sense.

In response, Minister Malone reiterated that the four-day quarantine period is the best option the government has been presented with to date.

He said many persons have suggested testing visitors upon arrival and releasing them once they return negative results.

But the Minister said such practices have caused COVID-19 spikes in neighbouring countries like the Bahamas, St Lucia and Barbados.

Gov’t must insist on a four-day quarantine

He said it is prudent for the government to insist on a four-day quarantine period for the first few months after the territory’s reopening until the world finds better ways to control the COVID-19 virus.

“We’ve been looking at tourist destinations to see to those who have kept the protocols, those who have not kept the protocols and those who are suffering because they have gone too early in the release,” Malone explained.

Recently, Premier Andrew Fahie said the government was considering requesting pre-travel tests before visitors arrive.

Providing they are confirmed negative, persons will be allowed to travel to the BVI but will be re-tested by local health officials before undergoing “a short quarantine period”.

However, it is still not clear if the Cabinet has approved this suggestion. Premier Fahie is expected to give clarity on the subject in an address to the territory on October 26.

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  1. No nonsense says:

    We in the 1st district need a quarantine from the Fxxxx garbage area!!!

    Like 17
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    • And says:

      And how much is the Foy going to charge the tourists for “security” while they are in quarantine? This is ridiculous. Just stay shut. No one is coming No one is spending 4 out of 7 days of a vacation in quarantine. People renting a yacht have to stay on the boat for 4 days? Can’t get off? People rent a Villa are locked in? Can’t go food shopping? No restaurants? You people in the government are once again behind in your thinking and actions. The rest of the world has moved on from lockdowns. Technology has improved life. The BVI is once again backwards which is a direct result of the education of the people and its leaders.

      Like 59
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      • Hotelier says:

        No hotels can afford to open under these conditions. It costs a lot to staff a hotel ready for visitors. It’s cheaper to stay closed.
        And I suspect they will.

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  2. Look internally says:

    Quick tests are rapidly taking over Europe. If the European ministers of health believe in that method why don’t you?

    Like 45
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  3. BVI mike says:

    Why not invest in rapid testing on arrival? Results in minutes not days. No tourists are coming to be locked in for 4 days!
    The economy will continue to crumble.

    Like 69
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  4. I won’t be coming says:

    … if I have to spend the first 4 days of my 14 day vacation in quarantine – I doubt those booked for 7 days will be coming either. There are lots of other places In the Caribbean that I can rebook to go.

    Like 61
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  5. Enforcement is Key says:

    Best Option Not. The best option is for Gov’t to obtain the fast/Rapid Testing widely available now. This provides for instant 1 hour results which could be implemented upon entry at 1 entry point.

    Like 46
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  6. concerned says:

    There goes any season we could possibly have. Tourists will go elsewhere for sure. No one will spend over half their holiday locked up. Simple as that!

    Like 26
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    • I am Out says:

      No way am I going to sit locked up somewhere for 4 days on a 7 day vacation while paying thousands of dollars for a charter.

      They just killed the Christmas/Old year holidays.

  7. My question says:

    When these visitors arrive and get tested with this rapid testing and say we have 8 9 10 people tested positive in a few days . Where are they going to be kept and at whose expense? Some of these visitors only have money for a few days and many have already paid in advance. So who is going to pay for their quarantine?? European countries have rapid testing but the whole of Europe is in chaos. Europeans countries are implementing strick measures right now. Do we want these people to come to the bvi to spread the virus?? I am here thinking about our frontline workers not only the law enforcement agencies but the bar workers the hotel workers the taxi operators. I think because this government has done a fantastic job at controlling this virus most of us take it for a joke or not so seriously. Another concern of mine is the health of the health workers around the bvi. When they start to get sick do we have a back up plan. This is not a matter of if but when the virus start coming with these visitors that many of us looking forward to welcoming back to these shores is only then we are going to know if our frontline workers can really handle the unfortunate situation that is going to come upon them. Who is going to pay the bill for quarantine??

    Like 18
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    • Original BVIslander says:

      The BVI already have protocols in place for positive tests. They ordered doctors and tests and quarantine stations. They did very well with precautions. Now they have to use the investments and open the borders.

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    • Worry says:

      Don’t worry. You have the Foy’s Cuban Doctors. Are they still around? They must have quite a suntan by now. With regards to Covid, it exists in the Territory. No testing equals no virus. The fact is that the government has made it a shame both socially and monetarily to show yourself to a healthcare professional in the BVI. If you are found to have Covid then you, your family’s dinner anyone you came in contact with are quarantined at their expense. Thus, no one is reporting illness. The reality is that infections have been light and people are recovering on their own. Opening the Territory is completely safe as a visitor with a negative test is a better risk than a local with no test.

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    • Concerned says:

      Everywhere People will need to bring a rest result not older then 72 hours and they also get tested when they board their planes, so the rapid test on arrival is the 3rd test.

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  8. Rubber Duck says:

    Totally clueless. No tourists are coming to spend 4 days in quarantine. Where will they stay? Who is paying? Is there security?

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  9. Dman says:

    In April the Government will announce that any visitors who visited the B.V.I in the previous 4 months will have to quarantine themselves in their homes in their country of origin.

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  10. Yet another Non-Starter says:

    This is a NON-STARTER.
    The best option would be for the Hon. Minister to invest in the rapid testing on arrival protocol.
    With a 4 day quarantine, all the Hon. Minister will be hearing is the great flushing sound as tourists bail out of coming to the BVI.

    QUESTION – Will the government’s cash cow – the cruise sheep – have to do a 4 day quarantine? If not, then the Hon. Minister’s plans are BS.

    Like 22
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  11. Observer says:

    Saint Martin has been allowing tourists in with a negative test, no quarantine. Why not look to their experience?

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  12. WEW says:

    Always exploring options. Too scared to make a decision as they might be held accountable.

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  13. LB says:

    Nonsense! Might as well you don’t open the borders. I got a 8 day vacation. 1 day travel, 4 days (or more depend when the tests come back), 2 days vacation (and have to get another test result to travel back home with) and then 1 day traveling back home to return to work).

    Who in the right mind coming here to spend 2 out of 8 days free? When other places, cheaper to get to and open with no quarantine.

    All he doing is searching for the worst case of increasing cases and posting them in these stupid charts he created. Using that to justify the BS decision he making. Why you don’t go look for positive reopening cases like Bermuda.

    Why are you and the D**+**or continuously spreading fear instead of confidence in your so called people? Your handling of this crisis has been deplorable!

    Like 13
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  14. Doug R says:

    So why is no one else doing it then Honourable Minister?

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  15. I Wonder says:

    If these people do not realize that both economic pillars – financial services and tourism – work hand-in-hand to a certain extent?

    They think the adverse damage to the tourism sector not going to have an effect on the financial services?

    Like 8
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  16. Common sense says:

    Unfortunately there is no good or perfect option, if we do not open we will continue to suffer financially, and, if we do open, we run the risk of importing infection, there is nothing in between. Suggest we take the hype out of this, cease playing the blame game, and consider how we will be viewed by visitors. Visitors will have their flights booked well in advance, and will have confirmed return flight dates. What happens if they arrive in Tortola, disembark the ferry and test positive, do we take care of them, or, refuse entry. If we refuse entry, will St Thomas take them back in knowing they are infected. Likewise, if they are allowed back into St Thomas, will the airline board them knowing they are infected. Alternatively, what happens if they get into the BVI and then test positive during the four day quarantine period, do we look after them for free, deport them, or, make them pay for treatment.
    These are just some of the questions visitors are going to be asking themselves before they come here, following which, they will probably decline to do so. It’s no ones fault, it’s just a fact we have to deal with.

    Like 20
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  17. Anonymous says:

    No excuse. CARICOM TRAVEL BUBBLE allows for no testing and no quarantine for the regional countries of the Caribbean. Find out more.

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  18. Concerned says:

    My daughter flew to Grenada via Barbados, both places only needed a negative test and she was free to go. She is now sailing to St Maarten where again only a negative test is required. She is doing 3 weeks of charters as guests cant get to the BVI and any quarantine will keep them away!
    Think of all the money the guests are spending at other islands instead of here in the BVI!

    Like 28
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  19. Bla bla bla says:

    This is one that needs to leave the team. Wayyy to disrespectful. Get rid of him or else I you out!!!!!

    • Concerned says:

      They all need to go. Just feeding us BS like orders for Medical Marijuana, creating business for security firm buddies. Running on the platform they are looking out for the small man now killing the economy. The Top Snake-oil merchant going to JVD with Bla-bla-bla not answering any question about opening borders when all of JVD is depending on Tourism. They all fat and not starving. I would really like to see some accounting for the 300.000 they get a year. But the most important thing for them is getting independent that they have no oversight from anybody any longer.

      Like 7
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  20. Just cancelled ... says:

    I cancelled our plans for 3 bareboat BVI charters scheduled for December and January – 24 people not coming to your beautiful islands. So sad.

    Like 10
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  21. Prudent Decisions. says:

    Everyone understands the urgency to open up the economy.

    Such is well understood by the leaders and populace at large, but given the horrific and rising numbers of cases in America, Europe and South America, from whence a majority of tourist originate, the government better think, plan and execute their plans for opening very, very carefully and prudently.

    If not, the country will become infected and forced to shut down again.

    Hence, stringent precautionary protocols must be activated and enforced across the board, from air and seaports to people smuggling.

    Therefore, prudent, well thoughtout decisions must be paramount, or diaster will strike us. No doubt.

    Like 9
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    • Quarantine is needed. says:

      I will say we can do it in 3 days, Put things in place. It’s more stain on the medical staff. So, Charge on arrival testing fee for all arriving passengers of $30. 00 to assist with Medical expenses..

  22. Rapid Test says:

    Mr. Minister it is time to invest in the Rapid test system so that Tourists can know their status by the endo of the day.

    Like 7
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  23. tourist says:

    this is b.s, there are quick tests now so why should we have to waste 4 days in jail, i will be going elsewhere

    Like 10
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  24. 2cents says:

    Why not have evidence of a negative test within 72 hours of departure and then do rapid tests randomly on arrival. I realize that there is a risk that someone can contract Covid within the 72 hours but it seems to me that this is minimal and if guests know they will be tested on arrival with a rapid test and they understand the entry protocols they will carefully plan. Again if there is zero tolerance for risk then just keep the place locked down. Covid will not disappear but the economy will. Meanwhile these random announcements about opening on 12/1 without any details are pointless. You poured cold water all over the reopening campaign because no tourist is going to put up with all this nonsense. There are plenty of nice places to go and in while BVI is special so are a lot of other places. It’s not worth the aggravation

    Like 11
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    • Just out of Quarantine says:

      After 2 days of testing I got my results back and got the green light to leave…So Why four days.. At lease 3 days give and take..,The Premier and ministers need to think like a tourist and see how they would feel going to a country on a vacation and have to spend 4 days Lock down… Just a little too much..We can do this in 3 days..

      Like 1
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  25. Home Boy says:

    Whatever we do at this stage as it relates to opening the border now or later is a risk. Everyone has their opinion on this, there is no full proof in anything we do. Just got to do what we have to do and pray for the best. We can not stay shut down forever.

    Like 5
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  26. Caution says:

    State of emergency to be extended to Nov. 30

    Like 2
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  27. Get the Lab working...Soft leadershipship.. says:

    This is soft leadership….Get the Lab working, get workers have the lab operating on a 24 hr shift, get the testing and the results done in 2 days..Charge Visitors $25 dollar for arrival test to defray medical cost…im certain that they will prefer pay that $25 dollars that the 2 xtray days in lock down.. Come on..Time to start leading..

    Like 5
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  28. No problem says:

    One question who are being consulted in these economic declining decisions?

    I am not expert be it dont take much to see that it take 14 days for symptoms to show some people plan vacation months in advance at time let them be required to take a test 14day in advance of travel and a rapid test at the various ports of entry and should they test postive then you quarantine them just a thought.

    I strongly believe that the leaders need to look at both the safety and impacts of the procedures they choose to implement base on the current situation.
    I will tell you dont listen to the Commissioner on his speech about crime didnt spike as a result of Covid. Yes is existed but it increase happen when no job means no stability which turns into desperation which lead to people doing the unthinkable so. These are major concern we face and sitting around and pretending that your choices as person in power or a position of influence is both reckless and unethical.

    We have to many unemployed persons without a clear assurance as to when work will resume for them so its about time the leader perent a plan stick to it and fix when and if it needs to be fix.

    Like 6
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  29. Just out of Quarantine says:

    After 2 days of testing I got my results back and got the green light to leave…So Why four days.. At lease 3 days give and take..,The Premier and ministers need to think like a tourist and see how they would feel going to a country on a vacation and have to spend 4 days Lock down… Just a little too much..We can do this in 3 days..

  30. Mark says:

    We have a charter booked. We don’t mind getting a covid test before leaving home and bringing a negative result in order to be admitted.

    But we can’t come if you want a 4-day quarantine. No one can! We’ve got 7 days booked on a boat beginning Dec 1. and it makes no sense to waste 4 of our 7 days in quarantine.

    The reservations are made and paid and we’d love to support the BVI once again. If you want to go back on your promise to open then that’s OK. BUt if we have to cancel at this late hour, we won’t be returning.

    Like 1
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  31. Charter no more says:

    We have been traveling to BVI for over 40 years and we had a boat set up for Nov 28 that was not going to work but was able to push to Dec 5 but with no assurance of open access to all the BVI offers, IE can I get off the boat, are beach’s and restaurants open, can we get food, etc.. we are not coming. We need certainty and no surprises. Any quarantine is a non starter for us. Simply unrealistic. Producing a negative test on arrival is fair and appropriate. What no one talks about is that with proper mask wearing, social distance and proper cleaning in all restaurants and gathering places, life can be normal with minimal Covid impacts. Stop believing and watching all the overblown negative news and fear mongering about COVID. To assume BVI will never have cases and that it can survive with no tourism is misguided. We urge the elected officials to look at neighboring territories who have been successful on re engaging tourists and to open it’s border before the damage to tourism is beyond recovery.

  32. CW says:

    Look at all these strupe comments valuing $$$ over their neighbors safety. (Eye roll) I’m so surprised. LOTS of countries require a negative covid test and a quarantine. GET OVER YOURSELVES.

  33. BVI-bound says:

    I have a $10k boat rented for the week after Christmas and 5 people I was bringing with me to spend a whole year of vacation money saved up. Hoped to do all the usual things: Willy Ts, Cane Garden Bay, Soggy Dollar Bar. I’ll give this a week to see if things change — if it doesn’t I’ll cancel my vacation. It’s reasonable to have a COVID test result upon arrival. And to get tested upon arrival. But there is no way to prevent COVID. COVID can live on cardboard for 24 hours. Is anyone quarantining imported items for 24 hours? Spending 50% of my vacation quarantined is a non starter.

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