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US Travel Warnings, but it’s still better in the Bahamas

The list of countries the United States is adding to its “do not travel list” is growing. Since yesterday it also includes the Bahamas.
It’s still better and safer in the Bahamas when compared traveling to many US States like Florida or Louisiana.
Since such a domestic do not travel list is not in place, and domestic comparison is not part of an international travel warning, tourism dependent foreign destinations like Bahamas are now knocked out by the American system.

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  • The U.S. Centers For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Level 4 travel warning for American vacationers planning to visit the Bahamas.
  • This could impact Disney Cruise Line Guests who plan to visit the island nation on a Disney cruise ship in the near future.
  • While infections are at its highest in the United States, they are decreasing in Bahamas, questioning the Level 4 warnings issued by the US against neighboring Bahamas

CDC today added 6 countries to its Level 4 travel warning list.
The six countries added to the U.S. Do Not Travel list are:

  • Bahamas
  • Haiti
  • Kosovo
  • Lebanon
  • Morocco
  • Sint Maarten

Is it really better visiting the Bahamas?

It’s better in the Bahamas. This was the slogan for this country known for beautiful white sandy beaches, blue waters, and blue skies. The cruise business is also an important part of the tourism portfolio in this Caribbean country.

It’s actually still better in the Bahamas!

… but the U.S. government today left out the part on how much safer it is to visit the Bahamas compared to Florida or Hawaii. Instead, the US Government issued a do not travel Level 4 warning against its neighbor just 100 miles off the Florida coast.

The Bahamas economy depends on the travel and tourism industry. The U.S. issuing Level 4 travel warnings is a major disappointment and threat to the island nation and the 368,000 Bahama citizens. Many of them work and depend on the wellbeing of the travel and tourism industry, and Americans are the vast majority of their visitors.

The US travel warning against Bahamas reads:

Do not travel to The Bahamas due to COVID-19. Exercise caution in some areas of The Bahamas due to crime. Read the entire Travel Advisory.

Read the Department of State’s COVID-19 page before you plan any international travel.     

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Level 4 Travel Health Notice for the Bahamas due to COVID-19, indicating a very high level of COVID-19 in the country. Your risk of contracting COVID-19 and developing severe symptoms may be lower if you are fully vaccinated with an FDA authorized vaccine. Before planning any international travel, please review the CDC’s specific recommendations for vaccinated and unvaccinated travelers. Visit the Embassy’s COVID-19 page for more information on COVID-19 in The Bahamas.

Bahamas economy depends on tourism, on American tourists

Ironically the United States is breaking all records in the world with new infections and death, while the Bahamas numbers are on a downtrend. Infection numbers and death statistics in the Bahamas had been below numbers in the State of Florida or Hawaii when seen in proportion to population.

The key difference between the giant USA and the small Bahamas is vaccination.

While 33% of Americans say they would never get vaccinated, and most of the rest are vaccinated, while vaccination is readily available in the U.S., the small Bahamas has not had enough vaccine to administer it to its entire population. Only 15.3% of the population is vaccinated.

Welcoming vaccinated visitors is essential for the health of the Bahamas travel and tourism industry

The Bahamas reported 103 infections per 100,000 people in the last 7 days.
Such numbers represent 37% of the peak, while the United States reports 59% of the peak infections.

It’s understandable the US State Department is mandated to warn Americans of dangers abroad. However, if based on the numbers a stay in the Bahamas for a vaccinated American is obviously safer than staying at home in most cases, why would the State Department want to not include this fact in its foreign travel advisories?

Lack of global coordination in tourism

It’s another example where the lack of global leadership in tourism, or global leadership has no tourism representation.

Juergen Steinmetz, chairman of the World Tourism Network says: “The lack of coordination and leadership in the global travel and tourism industry is the biggest threat to economies and health.”

The Bahamas is a safe and clean destination for all to enjoy.

The Bahamas Tourism Board has updated its travel health page

The health and wellbeing of all who enter or reside in The Bahamas remain the number one priority, and diligent efforts are enforced to minimize the spread of COVID-19. The following travel and entry protocols have been put in place to ensure The Bahamas is a safe and clean destination for all to enjoy.

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About the author

Juergen T Steinmetz

Juergen Thomas Steinmetz has continuously worked in the travel and tourism industry since he was a teenager in Germany (1977).
He founded eTurboNews in 1999 as the first online newsletter for the global travel tourism industry.

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