As parts of the world slowly begin to reopen and loosen up on their lockdowns, it’s important to stay cautious and remain informed as the rules and regulations change. Governments and agencies are working to determine the best procedures to do so without further increasing the spread of COVID-19. We strive to keep you updated on the latest restrictions but do check with local authorities and the listed websites for the most up-to-date information. If there is any information or resources you’d like to share with us, email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
At a virtual meeting on May 20, The Minister of Health reported that beginning June 1, they will be opening up the tourism sector and the first flight lands on June 4. Cabinet members stated that requiring coronavirus test to be taken at the source would be unlikely and impractical. Instead, “the rapid testing is to be done in Antigua with a small cost imposed, to be borne by the visitor,” the meeting notes say. “The hotels are to act as enclaves (for the first month or two), which the tourists are likely to remain on compound for the duration of their stay; travel away from the hotel will be controlled.”
Everyone traveling to Antigua will likely be required to fill out an e-form, replacing the E/D cards filled out by everyone entering, and each disembarking passenger’s body temperature will be measured by a “technologically-advanced camera” and those whose temperature exceeds normal will be tested at the airport, not at their hotels. All the protocols are being studied and will be ready for implementation by June 4, the notes say. ab.gov.ag; antiguanice.com
While the Bahamian borders may not be open yet, there is currently a program in place established by the Association of Bahamas Marinas (ABM) to help boats remain moored or leave Bahamian water safely while minimizing the risk of spreading the virus. The program exists within the guidelines of the curfew order and service will not be offered on days where there’s a total shutdown (every weekend between Friday at 9 p.m. and Monday at 5 a.m. until May 30).
“Boaters will be granted safe passage through Bahamian waters provided they observe the requirements of the government protocols,” they shared. There are strategically placed participating marinas that are open to provide vessels with water, provisioning, and fuel, as long as arrangements have been made with the marina before arriving. “The program also applies to those crossing through Bahamian waters in order to get back to their country of origin (Right of Innocent Passage),” the ABM post says. Pre-approval from the DGC must be granted for this and any other exceptions to the protocols.”
To see the list of participating marinas: blog.bahamasmarinas.com.
Vessels longer than 24 meters can enter Croatia freely from international waters and moor in marinas, The Dubrovnik Times reports. However, upon entering Croatia, all Croatian and foreign citizens are to follow the Croatian Institute of Public Health’s restrictions. SOS Yachting shares that Croatian crew are no longer subject to self-isolation measures, and all foreign crewmembers are allowed to enter Croatia and embark on yachts currently berthed in Croatia and also won’t be subject to self-isolation. But all other crew are recommended to not leave the vessel except only when necessary for 14 days upon arrival, which also include days of sailing or at anchorage.
For private yachts, to cross the state border, “foreign nationals, will need to prove the ownership of the vessel or the entitlement to use the yacht (lease agreement),” SOS Yachting says. If the yacht is owned by a legal entity, proof of the ownership (or responsible person) of that legal entity must be submitted. A berthing contract or proof from a marina that the yacht is currently located there will also be required, along with a complete list of crew and passengers. sosyachting.com
A conference between EU Ministers will be held on May 25 to discuss the possibility of reopening the European and UK borders by June 8. Riviera Yacht Support mentions that while borders are closed, “seafarers can still join the yacht for ‘work reasons’ with the appropriate documentation.” Crew embarking and disembarking must be approved by the Health Port Authority through a self-declaration of good health. No quarantine is required to enter France from the EU, Schengen areas, or the UK, but a 14-day quarantine is required between France and Spain.
The European Committee for Professional Yachting shared on May 21 that when considering maritime regulation, yachts are considered merchant ships carrying a maximum of 12 passengers and regulations for merchant ships are the ones that apply. So the recent decrees and orders about pleasure boats are not applicable. But yachts stationed in France, regardless of flag or registration (private or commercial), can currently sail with or without a client on board in French and international waters from France, along with anchoring according to usual rules, ECPY clarifies. They still remain subject to the general rules and rules of COVID-19, including that arrival of passengers at ports are subject to the 100-kilometer rule (from their homes or home ports), authorizations to enter and leave ports with the health control certificate where appropriate if required, and are forbidden to go and return from foreign ports.
They also note to continue following the commitments of professional yachting associations to no longer anchor in protected areas, and ensure that onboard sanitary measures must take into account all preventative measures and protection of shared spaces among passengers and crew. en.ecpy.org
The Government of Saint Lucia announced on May 18 that they will be reopening the island’s tourism sector, beginning June 4, 2020. “Phase One of reopening includes welcoming international flights at Hewanorra International Airport (UVF) from the United States only,” the press release says. “In anticipation of these first visitors, some 1,500 hotel rooms in Saint Lucia are being prepared to open in early June, pending completion of a new COVID-19 certification process.” The phased approach continues through July 31, 2020.
Among the protocols that will be implemented include visitors being required to present certified proof of a negative COVID-19 test within 48 hours of boarding their flight, all travelers must continue to use face masks and physical distancing upon their arrival, and they will be subject to screening and temperature checks by port health authorities. Phase Two will begin on August 1, 2020, with details to be revealed at a later date. stlucia.org/en/covid-19
As of May 15, Spain has a mandatory 14-day quarantine for all arrivals from outside of Spain, including returning nationals and permanent residents, and arrivals must provide proof of address of where they will quarantine, Estela Shipping Agency shared. For crew, this quarantine can be served on board, as long as it’s confirmed by the captain or the vessel’s management, and time spent sailing/cruising non-stop before arrival in Mallorca counts toward quarantine time.
“Port police tell us they will assess each case in isolation, making it impossible to have any certainty about how crew will be treated when wishing to embark or disembark a yacht,” the post says. “The decision to quarantine lies with the port police.”
During quarantine, you must remain home or at your accommodation, limiting travel to shopping for food, pharmaceuticals, and basic necessities or visiting health centers, services, and establishments. A mask must be worn at all times when traveling outside of quarantine, and it is noted that all yacht crew may not come ashore except for emergencies and essentials, no matter how long they’ve been in Mallorca. Also, the exercise slots that were introduced on May 4 do not apply to crew. They say, “Police accept that this is unworkable in practice and that enforcement would be up to individual officers, but it is important to note that this restriction exists.” estelashipping.es