Turks and Caicos is about to change its entry rules. Starting Sept. 1, the 40 small islands and cays that comprise this Caribbean territory will require all arrivals aged 16 and older to be fully vaccinated.
Visitors must submit proof of vaccination through the TCI Pre-travel portal in one of two ways. A document retrieved from an electronic vaccination database or a letter signed by a physician or a registered nurse. The latter must include their medical license number.
The government has warned they will only accept visitors immunized with Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer, Moderna and AstraZeneca vaccines.
Additionally, those who test positive for COVID-19 during their stay in the islands will need to stay in quarantine for 10 days.
They will be released from quarantine only when they can produce a negative COVID-19 result after day 10, all of this out of their own pocket.
This is a major change in Turks and Caicos’s current “flexible” entry requirements. On July 28, this British Overseas Territory started to accept either a negative antigen taken via nasopharyngeal swab and PCR by oropharyngeal or nasopharyngeal swab to enter the islands.
This is (used to be) less inflexible than the requirements other Caribbean islands demand from their visitors.
“These new protocols underscore the destination’s commitment to health and safety and expands on our already vigilant travel protocols, which have been in place for travelers since July 22, 2020 when we reopened our borders to tourists,” a Turks & Caicos Tourist Board statement reads.
The new proof of vaccination mandate is an addition to the negative PCR test that should be taken 3 days prior to arrival and the purchase of health insurance that covers COVID-19 medical costs, full hospitalization, doctor’s visits, prescriptions, and air ambulance.
This strict decision was taken after a “massive jump” in confirmed positive cases over the past few days linked to the fast-spreading Delta variant, which is already present in the territory.
In light of the current situation, the CDC has moved Turks and Caicos Islands from Level 1 alert to Level 2.