Barbados opened its borders again on Sunday, and the island has a travel corridor agreement with the UK. This means you could jet off to Barbados for a holiday without needing to quarantine when you get there or on return, and do so with adequate travel insurance. A new scheme by the island’s Prime Minister means you could be in with a chance to live there for a year. Here’s how to apply.
Barbados’ Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley has introduced a scheme to allow visitors to work remotely from Barbados for 12 months.
Ms Mottley said the stamp would allow travellers to “come and work from here overseas, digitally, so that persons don’t need to remain in the countries in which they are.”
The scheme will boost the island’s loss of tourism spending, which normally accounts for 40 percent of its GDP.
More than 2.4 million people travel to the country every year, spending around £872 million.
Since the pandemic started, cruises and flights have been unable to take tourists to the Caribbean, leaving Barbados in a difficult financial position.
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Ms Mottley explained: “The Government is committed to working with you on the promotion of new concepts like the 12-month Barbados Welcome Stamp, being able to open our borders to persons travelling and making it as hospitable as ever for all of us, and making it available for Barbadians from every walk of life to believe that for special occasions, or just for so, that they can come out and be a part of this wonderful exercise.”
She added: “You don’t need to work in Europe, or the US or Latin America if you can come here and work for a couple months at a time; go back and come back.
“But in order for those things to truly resonate, what does it mean?
“It means that what we offer has to be world class and what we continue to offer is world class.”
Don’t worry about WiFi, the island has two major telecommunication companies and is looking to boost its media services.
You can put your feet up in a villa, condo, hotel, or rental property on the island, Ms Mottley confirmed.
She also said that work spaces have been designed in preparation for those who will spend time there.
It doesn’t matter where your employer is based, so you can work for a London-based company and then head to the gorgeous beach after you finish work.
You can come and go from the country during the twelve months, meaning you can soak in the Barbados sun in the winter and come back for Christmas.
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Hotels, bars, restaurants and shops have reopened on the island and there is no curfew on citizens or tourists.
There will still be restrictions in Barbados, with citizens and tourists required to wear face masks when entering many public spaces.
In some premises, you will be subject to temperature checks.
Commercial flights to Barbados resumed on Sunday, July 12 from Canada.
You could hop on a British Airways flight from Gatwick this weekend and go to the island via Canada.
If you are willing to wait until August, you could go directly to the island on a flight from Heathrow with Virgin Atlantic.
Both of these flights run once a week, so you will need to get booked on if you want to take the plunge.
If you have been told you are working from home for the foreseeable, why not relocate to Barbados?
It’s tricky to experience Bajan culture in its entirety from a two week trip, so this scheme is the perfect chance to get to know the island.
The Caribbean country has a total of 103 cases of the virus, 90 of these have recovered and seven have died.
The Government is eager to boost the economy by tourism, but they are taking precautions.
When you arrive in Barbados without being tested for COVID-19, you will be subjected to a mandatory test.
Until the results are provided– which takes 48 hours maximum– you will need to isolate.
If you test positive, you will be placed in isolation until you have recovered.
How to apply
It is not clear when the Welcome Stamp scheme will be introduced, so you can’t apply just yet.
However, those who wish to take up the offer will need to meet a set of criteria.
The country hasn’t announced how to apply just yet, but the borders are open to visitors at present.
You won’t need a visa to visit when the scheme starts, you will be granted a specific period of time to stay instead.
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