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Bahamas abandons plans for tougher pre-arrival testing

Jan. 09, 2022
3 min read
Bahamas abandons plans for tougher pre-arrival testing
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The Bahamas is backing off its plans to implement tougher testing requirements for visitors. The island nation updated its entry protocols for tourists this week and announced it was walking back its planned mandate to only accept negative pre-departure PCR tests from vaccinated travelers.

"The Bahamas has suspended the mandatory RT-PCR testing requirement for vaccinated travelers, which was expected to take effect on January 7, 2022," tourism officials said in an official statement. "Vaccinated persons, as well as children ages 2-11, may continue to present either a negative rapid antigen test or negative RT-PCR test."

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(Photo by Henrik Landfors/Getty Images)

The decision comes at a time when positive COVID-19 cases related to the omicron variant are spiking across the country. Less than two weeks after it had lowered the risk warning for the Bahamas, the CDC raised it back to Level 3: High Level of COVID-19. Under Level 3, the agency advises tourists to be "fully vaccinated before traveling to the Bahamas," and warns those who are not vaccinated to avoid non-essential travel to the islands.

Related: CDC issues new COVID-19 warnings for several Caribbean nations

Bahamian officials also updated testing requirements after you enter the country. All visitors staying longer than 48 hours must take a rapid antigen test, regardless of vaccination status. Previously, only tourists staying longer than four nights and five days had to take another test. You can find a list of approved testing sites on the islands here.

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Other updates to the Bahamas' entry requirements include:

  • Everyone traveling to the islands, fully vaccinated or not, must obtain a negative COVID-19 test taken no more than three days (72 hours) prior to the date of arrival in The Bahamas. It used to be within five days. Travelers must upload the negative test results when applying for a Bahamas Travel Health Visa.
  • Vaccinated travelers and all children between the ages of 2-11, can present either a negative rapid antigen test or RT-PCR Test.
  • Unvaccinated travelers ages 12 and older must present a negative RT-PCR Test (acceptable tests include NAAT, PCR, RNA, RT-PCR and TMA).
  • All children younger than two years old are exempt from testing requirements.

Read about TPG reporter Zach Griff's trip to the Bahamas here including his stay at The Ocean Club, a Four Seasons resort on Paradise Island.

Featured image by Getty Images
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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Best card for premium perks while traveling
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards Rate

10XEarn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
5X5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel.
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  • Intro Offer
    Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel

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  • Annual Fee

    $395
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    740-850
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Why We Chose It

The Capital One Venture X card is one of the best all-round travel credit cards ever launched. Not only is it offering a tremendous welcome bonus, but cardholders can earn tons of miles on everyday spending and receive a 10,000-mile anniversary bonus to boot. Its annual fee is $395, but cardholders can count on up to $300 in statement credits toward travel booked through Capital One Travel each year and other valuable benefits like access to Priority Pass lounges and Capital One’s own growing family of airport lounges.

Pros

  • Excellent welcome offer worth 75,000 miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months.
  • Up to $300 in annual travel statement credits toward bookings make through Capital One Travel.
  • 10,000 bonus miles (worth $100 toward travel) each account anniversary.

Cons

  • The $395 annual fee might be expensive for some, but this card’s benefits provide much more value than that.
  • If you don’t travel frequently, this might not be the best card for you.
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases
  • Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,300+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and the Partner Lounge Network
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Named editors' choice for "Best New Credit Card of 2021" by The Points Guy
  • Earn 10 miles per dollar when you book on Turo, the world's largest car sharing marketplace, through May 16, 2023