IN THE POST-COVID WORLD, the protocols and procedures for superyachts cruising the world will undoubtedly change and adapt to medical advice, political will and technological advancement.
GSR will keep speaking with government authorities, captains and shore agents to keep our collective finger on the pulse of what superyachts should expect when on the Great Southern Route.
We will bring the information as it comes to hand, however, we strongly recommend always checking with your preferred shore support agent as changes can be rapid and hard for us to verify.
“Officially we have reached ‘HERD IMMUNITY’ in the Galápagos Islands. Most of the population above 12 years old has been vaccinated. The only requirement to enter the Galápagos Islands is to get an RT- PCR test 72 hours before boarding the Galapagos flight or 72 hours before departing from the last port.”
Associated Ships Agent
“The guidelines will establish that travelers may submit any of the following requirements to enter continental Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands:
Ministerio de Turismo More detail
“Visitors from all countries are welcome to visit Panama, however, a negative COVID-19 test is required for entry for non-vaccinated travelers.
“Non-vaccinated travelers arriving from or that have transited through High Risk countries in the last 15 days will be required to quarantine for 72 hours in a hotel, and the cost of the stay must be fully covered by the traveler. However, travelers arriving from these countries that can present a complete vaccination scheme, equal to or greater than 14 days after the last dose, will be exempt from the 72-hour quarantine.
“Currently, mobility restrictions are in place as well as mandatory curfew at night time.”
Panama Tourism More Detail
“Although Fiji has recorded a small number of cases and initiated lockdowns in some areas, the Blue Lanes initiative has been unaffected and we are still welcoming cruising yachts and superyachts. The lockdown measures will be reviewed on May 10 2021 but it will not affect Blue Lanes as the Fijian Government is committed to marine tourism.”
Shore Support Agent David Jamieson, Yacht Help Fiji
“Fiji is now open for owners and charterers to cruise the islands, perform all water sports and visit uninhabited islands during the two-week quarantine period. Additionally, as a benefit to charterers, the government has reduced charter tax from 10 percent to just 5 percent.
“Since the launch of the innovative Blue Lane Initiative, the Fijian government has opened their shores for superyachts to enter Fiji, carry out crew changes and, most importantly, allow owners and charterers to enjoy cruising Fiji aboard their yachts.”
“Fiji has fared well with its response to COVID-19. The Blue Lanes program allows yachts and owners to access the islands of Fiji without compromising health.
“No more than 72 hours prior to departure for Fiji, all the crew need to complete a RT-PCR test and return a negative. With the paperwork in order, the yacht can depart for Fiji and count time at sea toward quarantine. Once 14 days of quarantine is complete and the crew has returned another negative test, the yacht is cleared into Fiji and can access the marina. Crew flying in to join the yacht must go through a similar procedure but complete 14 days quarantine in an approved hotel.
“Superyacht guests can cruise Fiji. Similarly, they must provide a negative result to a test no more than 72 hours before flying. The Fijian authorities must be provided with flight details and the guests will be met at the aircraft and transported to the yacht, who can then depart on a pre-approved cruising itinerary. Additionally, the yacht must hire a chase boat with Fijian navy personnel on board to ensure the yacht does not come into contact with any of the local population.
“Many yachts have taken advantage of the Blue Lanes initiative with great success.”
Shore Support Agent David Jamieson
“Palau is indeed open. We welcomed our first yacht on August 17, and our second yacht on August 24. We presently have four additional yachts confirmed to arrive in the next several weeks and are assisting numerous others with preparations. One change has occurred to the arrival procedures that now requires PCR testing upon arrival and again on day 5 following arrival. Previously testing was only required on Day 5.
Up until the two recent cases (imported), Palau remained COVID-free since the outset of the pandemic. In February the government embarked on a strategy to “Open With Care” to manage Palau’s transition from COVID-free to COVID-safe. To date, Palau has achieved a total vaccine rate of 87% of population and almost 100% vaccination levels for the adult population. Vaccination of 12 – 17 year olds is almost fully completed. Borders are now open to those who are fully vaccinated without the need for quarantine.”
Palau Super Yachts
“In accordance with the Palau Ministry of Health Directive #20-21 and Bureau of Transportation, Port Manager Directive #2021-001, yachts are now able to apply for entry to Palau. The two directives are intended to be read together however in the case of any discrepancies, the Ministry of Health’s directive takes precedence.
“Key entry guidelines include all of the yacht’s occupants having received the full (two doses) US FDA or WHO-approved COVID-19 vaccine 14 days prior to arrival; proof of a negative result from a PCR test within days of departing for Palau; all visitor must have a COVID-19 test on their fifth day in Palau; and all yachts must give notice 72 hours, 24 hours and 12 hours prior to arrival.”
Palau Super Yachts
“The conditions of entry and stay in The Islands of Tahiti have been updated with the integration of the United States in the orange zone.”
Tahiti Tourisme More detail
“Here is the situation on the ground: Full lockdown in the Society Islands. For yachts, this means that they need to be at anchor or in a marina. All land and water activities are prohibited and the yachts cannot move around. The boats are free to move around as usual in all the other archipelagoes except during lockdown on the weekends. A boat located, for the time being, in the Society Islands will not be allowed to move to another archipelago.”
Tahiti Private Expeditions
“The lockdown of the Society Island remains in place until 20th September 2021.”
Tahiti Tourisme (more detail)
“As of Monday August 23 until Monday September 6 2021, travel will be restricted to the Society Islands to compelling reasons only (work, family, health and essential goods purchase). These measures may be renewed depending on the evolution of the sanitary situation.
Visitors are allowed to
These reinforced travel restrictions do not apply to the other Islands.”
“Vaccinated travelers are not required to quarantine. Children under the age of 18 can travel freely with a vaccinated parent or legal guardian.
Important: registration on www.etis.pf must be filed between 30 to 6 days the latest, prior to departure.
For unvaccinated travelers and travelers who have not been in one of the approved countries* (Green Zones) for a minimum of 15 days prior to departure, a boarding authorization must also be granted from the High Commissioner. A compelling reason for travel still applicable: Health, Family, Work. Tourism is not a compelling reason for travel.
“Travelers under 6 years old are not subject to quarantine. Children aged 6 years old or over who are not vaccinated and not immunized will be subject to quarantine in Tahiti with an adult.
“Four days after their arrival in The Islands of Tahiti, all travelers will have to carry out a self-test. A Self-Test kit will be provided to them upon their arrival at the Airport of Tahiti.”
“The new entry and stay protocols are now available. These protocols take into account vaccinated travelers and those who are immunized in order to continue managing the health situation in The Islands of Tahiti and to protect its population as well as its visitors.
“Upon arrival, non-vaccinated and non-immunized travelers will all have to quarantine for 10 days in Tahiti, whatever the results of their test is. Whilst those vaccinated or with proven immunity will not need to quarantine subject to a negative test result.
“Travelers departing to The Islands of Tahiti in May will be able to register on here from Saturday April 24th only.”
“High Commissioner of the Republic in French Polynesia, Mr Dominique Sorin, confirmed the reopening of The Islands of Tahiti to tourism on May 1st .
“This reopening will be first extended to the countries identified with “limited epidemic risk” and for the time being, only the United States is concerned.
Travel from “countries with high epidemic risk” will remain restricted to the three compelling reasons (health, family, work) for the time being. . The health situation in France and in Europe does not allow an opening at this stage; it will be necessary to verify the effects of their confinement that needs to be lifted by the national authorities before allowing the access to these markets.”
“The Islands of Tahiti will reopen to tourism as of May 1! We are going to put in place a protocol at the entry of our borders using virological testing, serological testing, vaccine and ETIS (Electronic Travel Information System). We will explain this protocol in detail with the High Commissioner in the coming days”.
The President of French Polynesia, Mr. Edouard Fritch
More details to follow.
“We also wish to inform you that the Islands of Tahiti will be expanding their closure through the month of April with the objective to open in May. Although the number of new cases remains extremely low, the government wants to take the time to be proactive with both the population and the travellers who are vacationing, so that French Polynesia remains the dream destination for everyone who visits.
“In the meantime, the vaccination campaign is continuing among the population including the actors of the tourism sector. In this context, the entry formalities are also being adjusted to take into account the evolution of the global health situation and vaccination. More information will be communicated shortly.”
CEO Jean-Marc Mocellin, Tahiti Tourisme
“Faced with the resurgence of COVID-19 cases around the world and in order to preserve French Polynesia, which has for its part shown significant improvement for several consecutive weeks, the authorities have decided to temporarily suspend travel to the Islands of Tahiti, including for tourists from all origins until further notice.
“As of Wednesday 3 February, travel will be authorised only for travellers who can justify one of the compelling reasons (health, professional, family, return home) as described on the website of the High Commission. The duration of this measure will be specified in the coming days.”
“Vanuatu’s borders remain closed. There is no clear timeline as to when the borders will reopen.
“I’m expecting this situation to continue at least until the middle or end of 2021 while Vanuatu monitors the progress of the global vaccine roll-out and whether or not the vaccine(s) will allow travel to resume this year.”
Shore Support Agent Justin Jenkins, Seal Superyachts Vanuatu