EDITOR, The Tribune.
Your Tourism Minister has cheerily declared that tourism will be back to normal very soon. As a travel agent who has sent visitors to The Bahamas for decades I am waiting for some evidence of those remarks. Lost in all his statements and those of other tourism “experts” is the fact that it remains difficult to enter your country. Your requirements are too cumbersome and now with the COVID-19 declining do not make much sense. Why has the Health Visa not been abolished? That is the greatest difficulty in securing bookings when visitors can go nearly everywhere else without such a requirement.
Why is a rapid antigen test no older than three days old still required for entry? Has the Minister and staff not realised that they are hard to come by here with massive shortages and where even available cost $200 or more and a written result often not for two days. How do they expect visitors to await that result, scan for the Visa and be on the ground by the third day? Whoever designed such unworkable rules? We understand the Visa has actually just become an expensive tax. What is wrong with visitors just presenting a double vaccination certificate at airport check in counters?
Your added problem is your low vaccination rates and our government’s rather high risk category for visitors making it difficult for visitors to purchase travel health insurance and feel safe in The Bahamas.
Unless you change things soon I cannot see any recovery in bookings. In my agencies,quite sadly, The Bahamas has gone from the most popular of our southern resort destinations to down at the bottom of interest. Certainly nothing for your Tourism Minister to show any cheer or optimism.
JOHN W ROBSON
New Jersey, USA
March 17, 2022.
Alan1 1 year ago
An excellent letter and right to the point. However will the Tourism Minister and his officials listen? They have brushed off all the criticism over the past two years of the complicated entry rules. We have lost so many visitors due to these poorly thought out policies.
sheeprunner12 1 year ago
All depends on who Chester's advisors are ..... Most of our ppl are afraid to speak truth to power in our country
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