Turks and Caicos reopening for international visitors in July
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Editor’s note: This post has been updated with additional reopening information. This post was originally posted on June 4, 2020.
More good news on reopening from the Caribbean. Turks and Caicos, a group of 40 low-lying coral islands popular with tourists in the Caribbean, is reopening for international visitors beginning July 22.
This British Overseas Territory includes the island of Providenciales, also known as Provo. Details on the reopening include the following from the tourism board:
“From July 22, 2020, all travelers to the Turks and Caicos Islands will be required to visit the TCI Assured Travel Authorization Portal in order to obtain a travel authorization for arrival in the Turks and Caicos Islands. This means all visitors/tourists and residents alike.”
The travel authorization form will need to be presented at the time of check-in to the appropriate airline. The islands have seen 12 confirmed cases of COVID-19, according to Johns Hopkins University.
All international flights to the country were suspended until June 1, and cruise ships were banned through June 30, but a slow reopening is underway.
Real estate offices and retailers have begun reopening, and inter-island travel and church services have resumed. Beginning July 6, hotels and restaurants also began reopening. On July 22, the borders will reopen and flights will be permitted to land at Providenciales International Airport (PLS).
Related coverage: Why I love Turks and Caicos
Going to the beach, grocery stores, hardware stores, pharmacies and other open-air businesses is permitted.
Grace Bay Beach in Provo is home to luxury resorts, shops and restaurants. There is a 14-mile barrier reef on Provo’s north shore that’s great for scuba diving, plus another famous scuba spot on Grand Turk Island. In fact, we first learned about the reopening from the water adventure company Big Blue Collective. They wrote in a press release, “Time for all of us to get our island game on and for you to think about getting back down here. Our boats, kayaks, paddle boards and kites will be ready.”
If you’re looking to fly to PLS, here’s a rundown of how to get there:
- American Airlines: Daily flights resume on July 22 from Miami and Charlotte; Service begins in November from Dallas-Ft Worth (DFW)
- JetBlue: Flights will resume from New York-JFK on July 22; Limited service from Fort Lauderdale (FLL) begins July 24; Service from Boston starts twice weekly on October 10
- United: Daily service from Newark EWR begins July 22; There will also be service on Saturdays from Chicago (ORD) and Houston (IAH) the same day.
- Delta: Daily flights resume on July 23 from Atlanta (ATL); Service from JFK begins December 20
- Sun Country: On July 24, limited service begins from Ft. Lauderdale (FLL)
- Air Canada: Saturday service begins from Toronto’s airport (YYZ) July 25; There will also be Sunday service from Montreal (YUL) beginning July 26
- WestJet: Saturday service begins from Toronto’s airport (YYZ) July 25
To give you a sense of pricing, I found American Airlines flights from Miami on July 31 and returning August 7 for $284 round-trip or 30,000 miles. So, not a great use of miles.
JetBlue has flights in July from JFK for $459. Or, you could use 28,000 TrueBlue points plus $92.45. Delta flights from Atlanta in July and August were very expensive — $749 round-trip, but if your dates are flexible, there’s a better points option — 34,000 SkyMiles.
Where to Stay
Resorts and hotels have different opening dates and the government suggests reaching out to your specific property for specifics.
Hyatt has two hotels available in August, but they are pricey, starting at $500 or 40,000 World of Hyatt points per night.
I found at least 141 hotels available for booking July 31-August 7. Prices ranged from $223 to $770 a night, so there’s quite a range. Unfortunately, most of those are not points hotels.
Neither Marriott nor Hilton have hotels in the Turks and Caicos.
If you want to recreate Brian Kelly’s trip to the Shore Club, a four-night stay in a basic room from July 31 to August 4 would be $499 per night plus pretty hefty taxes and fees. Grand total? $2,504 for four nights. Brian paid about $1,799 a night back in 2018, but he secured a huge Suite with room for six and a study. Booking Brian’s room would run you a grand total of $6,223. The Shore Club reopens on July 22.
Brian also stayed at the incredible Amanyara in 2017. It’s an Aman resort that goes for more than $2,000 a night. Current rates for the entry-level rooms are $1,950 per night before taxes and fees (think an additional 25%).
You can find the full details on the requirements that need to be met prior to arrival here.
Featured photo of Grace Bay Beach in Providenciales, Turks and Caicos by waterotter/Getty Images.
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