Jamaica lifts UK travel ban
by Jessica Pook
Jamaica has reopened its borders to visitors from the UK with immediate effect.
The travel ban on UK arrivals, which was instituted as part of the measures under Jamaica’s Disaster Risk Management Act, was lifted on May 1.
Arrivals from the UK are required to show proof of a negative COVID-19 PCR, Antigen or LAMP test within three days of the travel date.
The Minister of Tourism, Hon Edmund Bartlett, said that the improved vaccination programme in the UK and the fact that close to 50% of UK residents have received their second dose has enabled the country to ease restrictions.
Speaking on the significance of the lifting of the ban, Bartlett said: “Jamaica’s position at this time is critical in relation to the opening up of the summer tourist season, and in fact the importance of enabling the diaspora, particularly the strong British clientele that have always come to the island.”
He added: “The opening of the borders is important in the context of not just Jamaica’s tourism but Caribbean tourism, as so many of these countries benefit from transiting through Jamaica for British and European nationals.”
The minister is also backing recent calls by the Caribbean Tourism Organization urging a review of the categorisation of Caribbean countries by the UK on the basis that “Jamaica has the lowest death rates and highest recovery rates and exemplary COVID-19 management.”
Since reopening its borders last June, Jamaica has welcomed approximately 1.5 million visitors.