Entering the U.S. Virgin Islands During the Covid-19 Pandemic
In response to the global coronavirus pandemic, the U.S. Virgin Islands have established the following rules:
All incoming visitors must submit negative molecular or antigen test results, received no more than 5 days before travel. The full rules are available here, as is a portal for submitting test results. Upon arrival in the USVI, visitors must present their test result and travel certification from the portal. They will have your temperature checked at the airport. While on the islands, it is expected that both citizens and visitors wear a mask and practice social distancing in public areas.
If you're a U.S. citizen and you travel directly to the U.S.V.I. and do not visit the British Virgin Islands, you do not need a passport—but you are highly encouraged to carry one. If you return to the mainland U.S. from the U.S.V.I. through another country (Mexico or Bermuda, for example), you will need a passport to get back home. For non-U.S. citizens, visiting the U.S. Virgin Islands is just like visiting the mainland United States: You need a passport and visa.
A passport is necessary for all visitors to the British Virgin Islands (including citizens of the U.K.).
For information on how to get a passport, contact your passport office. Allow plenty of time before your trip to apply for a passport; processing normally takes 3 weeks but can take longer during busy periods. And keep in mind that if you need a passport in a hurry, you'll pay a higher processing fee. When traveling, safeguard your passport in an inconspicuous, inaccessible place like a money belt, and keep a copy of the critical pages with your passport number in a separate place. There are no foreign consulates in the Virgin Islands, so if you lose your passport, go to the local police station.
- Australia -- Australian Passport Information Service (tel. 131-232; www.passports.gov.au).
- Canada -- Passport Office (www.canada.ca, click on "Travel and Tourism").
- Ireland -- Passport Office (www.dfa.ie, click on "Passport Services").
- New Zealand -- Passports Office (tel. 0800/225-050 in New Zealand or 04/474-8100; www.passports.govt.nz).
- United Kingdom -- HM Passport Office (tel. 0300/222-0000; www.gov.uk, click on "HM Passport Office").
- United States -- To find your regional passport office, check the U.S. Department of State website (travel.state.gov/passport).
Non-U.S. visitors to the U.S. Virgin Islands should have a U.S. visa; those visitors may also be asked to produce an onward ticket. The exception is if they're from a country that is a member of the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) which allows certion nationalities to stay in the United States for up to 90 days without a visa (check website of the U.S. State Department for the VWP list). In the British Virgin Islands, visitors who stay for less than 6 months don't need a visa if they possess a return or onward ticket.
For information about U.S. visas, go to http://travel.state.gov and click on "U.S. Visas." Or go to one of the following websites:
Every visitor to the U.S.V.I. 21 years of age or older may bring in, free of duty, the following: (1) 1 liter of wine or hard liquor; (2) 200 cigarettes, 100 cigars, or 3 pounds of smoking tobacco; and (3) $800 worth of gifts. These exemptions are offered to travelers who spend at least 72 hours in the United States and who have not claimed them within the preceding 6 months. It is altogether forbidden to bring into the country certain foodstuffs (particularly fruit, cooked meats, and canned goods) and plants (vegetables, seeds, tropical plants, and the like). Foreign tourists may carry in or out up to $10,000 in U.S. or foreign currency with no formalities; larger sums must be declared to U.S. Customs on entering or leaving. For details regarding U.S. Customs and Border Protection, consult U.S. Customs (tel. 800/232-5378; www.cbp.gov).
Visitors to the B.V.I. can bring in food, with the exception of meat products that are not USDA-approved. Visitors can bring up to $10,000 in currency and 1 liter of alcohol per person.
Australian Citizens: The Australian government provides a detailed list of what can and cannot be brought home from abroad (www.abf.gov.au; click on "Entering and Leaving Australia").
Canadian Citizens: For a clear summary of Canadian rules, go to the Canada Border Services Agency (www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca, click on "Customs Tarriff").
New Zealand Citizens: Most questions are answered by the New Zealand Customs Service (www.customs.govt.nz, click on "Personal" to see the rules for individuals bringing goods back into the country).
U.K. Citizens: Full information can be found on the website of the HM Revenue & Customs at tel. 0845/010-9000 (www.gov.uk). Please note that there are different rules in place for UK citizens bringing back goods from the British Virgin Islands, versus the U.S. Virgin Islands. If you visit both and buy goods in both, be sure to keep careful track of your receipts.
U.S. Citizens & Residents: From the U.S.V.I., U.S. citizens can bring back $1600 worth of goods duty-free. That can include 5 liters of liquor, plus an extra liter of rum (including Cruzan rum) if one of the bottles is produced in the Virgin Islands.
Be sure to collect receipts for all purchases in the Virgin Islands, and beware of merchants offering to give you a false receipt -- he or she might be an informer to U.S. Customs. Also, keep in mind that any gifts received during your stay must be declared. For the most up-to-date specifics on what you can bring back from the B.V.I. and the corresponding fees, go to www.cbp.gov. (Click on "Travel").
Unless you're arriving from an area known to be suffering from an epidemic (particularly cholera or yellow fever, see top of page for Covid-19 information), inoculations or vaccinations are not required for entry into the U.S. Virgin Islands or the British Virgin Islands.
If you have a medical condition that requires syringe-administered medications, carry a valid signed prescription from your physician; syringes in carry-on baggage will be inspected. Insulin in any form should have the proper pharmaceutical documentation. If you have a disease that requires treatment with narcotics, you should also carry documented proof with you -- smuggling narcotics aboard a plane carries severe penalties in the U.S.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.