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Jamaica To Launch Mandatory Travel Insurance For Visitors

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Jamaica has been a world leader at effectively reopening its nation for tourism during the pandemic, but the nation is taking it one step further with the implementation of their new “Jamaica Cares” program, which is a mandatory travel insurance for all visitors into the country.

Jamaica mandatory travel insurance

However, visitors to Jamaica might have to adjust their budgets to include the new fee for the compulsory program, expected to be around $50 per person.

The program is set to launch mid-November and will require all travelers, no matter if they are already covered with their own travel insurance, to purchase a package, which will give them a bundle of coverages.

Jamaica new insurance for visitors

But, will having additional insurance encourage timid travelers to get on a plane and leave their country during a pandemic? The Jamaican tourism board sincerely hopes so, as they work tirelessly to lift the nations tourism industry towards pre-pandemic levels.

Although Jamaica has proven one of the most successful tourism reopening’s by welcoming over 150,000 visitors since June – incident free – they want to instill a total trust factor to coax more travellers to visit this winter.

Montego Bay, Jamaica

Eager travelers with cabin fever want to be totally assured they will be taken care of, in the event that they are diagnosed with Covid-19 abroad.

Edmund Bartlett, the Minister of Tourism for Jamaica agrees that “Destination Assurance is becoming a critical pre-condition of travel today. As thought leaders, Jamaica is taking a proactive vital role in recovering a rebuilding the spirit of travel, by restoring the trust and confidence of travellers in our destination.”

Jamaica Edmund bartlett
Edmund Bartlett announcing Jamaica Cares

The tourism board of Jamaica, along with the Global Tourism Resilience & Crisis Management Centre (GTRCMC), Global Travel and Tourism Resilience Council, and Global Rescue, have come together to create “Jamaica Cares”, an innovative traveller protection and emergency services program. 

Bartlett says that Jamaica is leading the way, “being the first to offer this end-to-end health logistics coverage.”

While the exact price for the coverage has not yet been established, it is expected to be around $40 to $50 USD per person visiting the island.

The official language in Jamaica is English

The coverages and inclusions provided in the Jamaica Cares program are not just limited to Covid, and cover other things travellers are concerned with, including:

  • Case management
  • Transport logistics
  • Field rescue
  • Evacuation and repatriation for medical emergencies (including COVID-19)
  • Other crises up to and including natural disasters 
  • International health coverage up to $100,000 for tourists traveling on their way to and from Jamaica 
  • On island health coverage up to $50,000
Gift and craft shops on Bourbon beach in Negral, Jamaica

 “Jamaica Cares has been designed very specifically and very deliberately. The program protocol will ensure our ability to welcome travelers to Jamaica safely, knowing that in the worst-case scenario they will be treated to the gold standards of care and service.”  Says Bartlett

Mandatory payment for the insurance will be included in the application process every passenger already has to complete online before visiting, at

Currently travelers from ALL countries are permitted to visit Jamaica under regular visa requirements but they must first obtain a travel authorization.

Tourists from high-risk countries, like the USA, Brazil, Mexico, Panama or the Dominican Republic also have to bring proof of a negative PCR test, taken within 10 days of departure into the country.  

Ocho Rios Jamaica

Travelers staying in the tourism corridor (an area of approved hotels and touristic activities) will not have to quarantine, but must stay on hotel grounds unless participating in an approved tour or to visit an approved corridor attraction.

Edmund Bartlett says with the testing requirements for passengers from high-risk countries paired together with the resilient tourism corridor rules, they have had no spread of the virus caused by tourists.

We've included Jamaica as one of the Top 10 places to travel during the pandemic, due to its forward-thinking approach of how to balance the virus and tourism in tandem.


Would the ~$50 Jamaica Cares insurance be a deciding factor to encourage or discourage you to book a trip to Jamaica?

Read More: See the TOP 10 destinations to travel to this winter, read more about Jamaica's covid entry requirements, and a full list of where Canadians and Americans can travel right now

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Disclaimer: Current travel rules and restrictions can change without notice. The decision to travel is ultimately your responsibility. Contact your consulate and/or local authorities to confirm your nationality’s entry and/or any changes to travel requirements before traveling.  Travel Off Path does not endorse traveling against government advisories


Tuesday 17th of November 2020

I am a travel agent and my clients are not interested in paying for additional insurance when they already paid for insurance at the time of their booking their resort package. It will deter travelers from vacationing at Jamaica. They are telling me that had they know they would be forced to purchase more insurance, they would not have purchased insurance when they booked. A smart thing to do to stop the hard feelings is to allow those travelers that already have insurance to be excluded from this mandate. Many of them booked a year or two in advance and never dreamed this insurance mandate by Jamaica would have ever been put in place. Maybe Jamaica should re-think this.


Friday 30th of October 2020

its sad that my own country suddenly after buying my family tickets that cost us so much not including car , hotel and our food , now this ? so wrong mr parliments ,ill goahead and cancel !!

Passport Princess

Wednesday 28th of October 2020

Shakedown. It will turn tourists away. I allready have chosen a non Jamaican destination because other travellers said they ram a swap way up your nose that hurts for several days and tracks you with your phone wherevy you check in everyday - meaning you have to buy international phone service in addition to paying for a COVID test and now a 2nd insurance policy. Godd luck with all that. I will be choosing a different island in the area.


Wednesday 28th of October 2020

Terrible idea as lots of travel insurance plans DO cover for medical expenses including covid related. This will DETER people from travelling to Jamaica


Tuesday 27th of October 2020

Incredibly stupid.

Isn't Dominican Republic offering free Health Insurance for their visitors in case of contracting COVID on their island? THAT is how you treat tourists and show them that you really appreciate their business. This is a scam and this will blow up in Jamaica's face when neighboring countries like Mexico, DR and Brazil are already welcoming tourists with open arms and minimal headache. Following this, even places Colombia and Costa Rica going forward are less strict about entry requirements as well in comparison. Jamaica is going to get left in the dust.