Longing for a getaway to the Caribbean this winter, but feel a little uneasy about a lack of health restrictions? Turks and Caicos is a destination that will put a weary traveler’s mind at ease.
Sunny destinations like Dominican Republic and Mexico are typically popular choices for U.S. and Canadian travelers. They’re a quick flight away and offer beachfront hotels. relaxation and beautiful, warm weather to unwind for a week (or more) during the cold winter months. But, a number of sun destinations don’t currently have any entry requirements in place. This can seem stressful when there’s big crowds combined with a lack of restrictions (and potentially increasing case numbers).
Turks and Caicos has entry requirements for fully vaccinated international arrivals in place (testing but no quarantine). It’s an easy flight away via direct flight or a quick layover from most North American cities, and the case numbers are very low on the islands.
Considering all of this, Turks and Caicos is a great option for any apprehensive travelers this winter who are looking for some level of safety and peace of mind, all while being able to enjoy their sunny winter vacation.
What Are The Current Case Numbers In Turks and Caicos?
Over the past year and a half, Turks and Caicos Islands have seen low case numbers for Covid. The latest daily report is 47 active cases in the country, with an average of 2-8 new cases daily.
What Are The Travel Restrictions For Turks and Caicos?
From September 1, travelers to Turks and Caicos ages 16 and over must be fully vaccinated in order to be granted entry. Prior to departure, all visitors must apply for TCI Travel Authorization by completing a form online. People are encouraged to apply three days before travel. Once your application is accepted, print or keep a digital copy of your travel authorization to show at the airport, along with your proof of vaccination.
A 3 day negative Covid test result (antigen and PCR accepted) is also required for entry. Vaccination cards, e-certificates and other forms are accepted as proof of vaccination. You can see more information about which vaccines are accepted for travel on the Turks and Caicos official tourism website here.
So if you’re flying for the first time since the pandemic and feeling anxious about being on a plane with strangers for an extended period of time, you can feel confident knowing that all travelers on the direct flight to Turks and Caicos with you have not only been fully vaccinated, but have all tested negative prior to boarding the flight.
No Testing Requirements Upon Landing
While some destinations have testing requirements upon landing (sometimes 4 tests in total), in Turks and Caicos you won’t have to worry about it and can peacefully travel to your hotel once you land and start enjoying your vacation.
Poll Shows That 61% Of Americans Favor Vaccine Requirements For Air Travel
According to a recent Gallup poll, a majority of Americans favor requiring people to show proof of vaccination to board an airplane, stay in a hotel, attend large events, dine at a restaurant and go to their work site/office. The highest number is 61%, where Americans approve of asking for proof of vaccination for air travel.
Direct Flights To Turks and Caicos
Lots of direct flights available from U.S. and Canadian cities make for an easy escape to Turks and Caicos. Many cities have non-stop services to Turks and Caicos, including New York, Chicago, Boston, Minneapolis, Philadelphia, Charlotte NC, Atlanta, Orlando, Miami, Montreal and Toronto. Miami is only a 2-hour flight away and Montreal is a 4-hour flight from the islands.
Turks and Caicos Only At Level 3 Warning
Earlier this month, the U.S. State Department issued a Level 4 “Do Not Travel” advisories for 15 countries in the Caribbean. Turks and Caicos is only at a Level 3 advisory from the State Department. According to the advisory, your likelihood of catching the virus and developing severe symptoms while traveling will be lower if you’re fully vaccinated. You can see more details on the department’s website here.
Unique Things To Do In Turks and Caicos
One of the most unforgettable things to do in Turks and Caicos is to go on a whale watching tour in Salt Cay. From January to March, visitors can witness the whale migration that happens as the humpback cross from the Atlantic into the Caribbean.
Chalk Sound National Park is a pristine and preserved section of Turks and Caicos Islands that’s a nature lovers dream. This picture perfect natural lagoon can be explored by kayak or paddle board, as motorized vehicles aren’t allowed due to preservation efforts to keep this sensitive ecosystem intact. While you’re there, check out the clean and calm Sapodilla Bay beach.
For something truly unique, take a trip to Iguana Island, an uninhabited island just off the coast of Providenciales. It’s home to the endangered Turks and Caicos Rock Iguana. You can get there on tour by boat or kayak.
The best stand up paddbleboarding tours in Turks and Caicos can be found on Turtle Cove with Turtle Eco Tour. Explore the impressive mangroves on a stand up paddle board, and maybe you’ll spot some of the local wildlife like sea turtles, pelicans and more.
And whenever you’re at a local bar, make sure to try a rum punch, as it’s the most famous cocktail in Turks and Caicos!
Where To Stay
Seven Stars Resort & Spa: Rated the best overall value hotel on the islands. Excellent beachfront location on Grace Bay Beach, with a choice from junior to 5-bedroom suites. High health and safety measures in place.
Windsong On The Reef: A best seller in Turks and Caicos, offering free breakfast, bike rentals, babysitting services and more. High health and safety measures in place.
Turks Head Inne: Located in Cockburn Town, this is a more budget-friendly accommodation option for those looking for a truly relaxing getaway. The hotel only has a few rooms, great hospitality and is also located right on the beach. Get a 2-person suite with balcony for $1,000/week.
Traveler Alert: Don’t Forget Travel Insurance For Your Next Trip!
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com