Bahamas State of Emergency Ends, New Rules Issued Extending the Cruise Ship Vaccine Requirement – CDC Reduces Travel Advisory to Level 3

Overnight, The Bahamas State of Emergency expired and a new set of rules went into effect ushering in new general rules and rules for the prevention and management of community spread with similar protocols including the vaccine mandate for cruise ships.

The general rules defines a number of measures and fines such as a $250 fine for not wearing a mask incurs, limits taxi and bus service to 50% normal seating capacity, and mandates physical distancing of six feet.

The prevention and management of community spread rules incudes specific language for cruise ships which extends The Bahamas cruise ship passenger (12 and older) vaccine requirement originally issued back in August with a September 3 effective date.

Bahamas Health Services Covid-19 Prevention and Management of Community Spread Rules for cruise ships is as follows.

Bahamas Health Services Covid 19 Prevention Community Spread Rules 20211112

A cruise ship which is on a passenger voyage shall not be permitted to enter a port in The Bahamas (including a private stop) unless:

  • the captain or master of the cruise ship transmits a crew and passenger manifest to the medical officer of health present at that port, which discloses the vaccination status of all persons prior to arriving at the port;
  • all passengers who are twelve years and older were fully vaccinated prior to embarking on the cruise ship at the start of the voyage; and
  • the health protocols, previously submitted by its cruise line to the Minister and approved by the Minister, has been complied with.

The following are exclusions for the vaccine requirement for all passengers who are twelve years and older:

  • the crew, contractors and any non-revenue passenger of that cruise ship and whatever protocols that were previously agreed to between the Government of The Bahamas and each cruise line in relation to its crew, contractors and non-revenue passenger shall remain in effect;
  • a cruise ship attempting to call at a port in an emergency, or in other exigent circumstances approved by the Government of The Bahamas;
  •  an unvaccinated passenger who is ineligible for the COVID 19 vaccination due to medical contraindications.

Notwithstanding rule 14, a person entering The Bahamas on a cruise ship, will be subjected to the testing requirements mandated by the cruise line and approved by the Minister.

The new rules were published in the Press Room of the Prime Minister, Philip Davis.

CDC Lowers Bahamas Travel Advisory

According to Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Pearl McMillan, the CDC lowered The Bahamas Travel Advisory to Level 3. However, this is not currently reflected on the CDC or State Department’s websites.

22 Replies to “Bahamas State of Emergency Ends, New Rules Issued Extending the Cruise Ship Vaccine Requirement – CDC Reduces Travel Advisory to Level 3”

  1. S

    I don’t see how this changes anything from current state. To me, this takes the temporary requirement of vaccination until year-end and makes it permanent beyond 12/31/2021. We don’t know what DCL and the Bahamian govt agreed to in terms of passenger testing or crew testing in order to embark a ship. I suspect that going forward into 2022, we will see the same vaccine requirement and testing requirements at the port. The only change I can see going forward is the Bahamian govt deciding to eventually lower the age of full vaccination to 5 years of age given the recent approval of the Pfizer vaccine but they didn’t address that in this document from what I can see.

    I guess from prior comments on other articles, this will prompt some people to book cruises and others to cancel.

  2. Blanca montano

    Don’t cruise. not even worth it, even if they would give me a free cruise this year or next they take the whole experience away from all. So disappointing

  3. Ryan

    The last set of “rules” had a date they ceased to be in effect. From what I read these set of rules have a start date of 11/13/21 but no ending date. That is concerning. Can anyone else find an ending date or is this just how it’s going to be from 11/13/21 till forever?

  4. E

    The Bahamian gov’t, just like our gov’t, are science deniers. I guess they don’t want/need tourist money. We’re done with cruising until this nonsense ends.

  5. dragynally

    It seems like the Bahamas is looking for long term rules for a long term problem. They were hit really hard by all of this. They’re probably going to stay guarded.

  6. Budsmud

    We can go to Disney World without the vax but not cruise! Totally done with all of this BS! After 5 glorious DCL cruises, we will never be back. Shameful of DCL, to throw away half of their loyal customers!

    1. Phil

      These are not DCL’s rules. It is coming from the Bahamas. DCL basically has no choice but to require vaccinations because the ports they are going to are requiring them. If you don’t want to cruise, that’s fine, it is your choice and nothing wrong with that. Just don’t blame DCL for all of this.

      1. Brett

        DCL and every other cruise line absolutely has something to do with this Phil. Because, if you fly to the Bahamas you aren’t required to be vaccinated. This is a cruise line mandate only. The cruise industry is so important to the Bahamian Government that they had no choice but to comply with whatever the cruise industry asked them to do. If it was truly a Bahamian rule then it would be across the board.

        1. Phil

          You make a good point there, Do you have any sources or is this just speculation on your part? Not attacking you, just curious.

          1. Brett

            No not all, great question. After the mandate we looked at the possibilities of just traveling to the islands directly in the Bahamas as we really enjoy the people and the weather along with the proximity. We also checked for clarification and you can say travel to Atlantis for a week and the only requirement is a negative Covid test. (which we are totally fine with btw) and their travel Visa. If you stay for 5 plus days then you have to do the Rapid Antigen test. There are no vaccine requirements to enter the country this way. Some places like Turks and Caicos require vaccine no matter how you travel but not the Bahamas. I also noticed during a recent trip to Port Canaveral what the ship registry’s are for Disney, Royal Caribbean, and Norwegian are registered in…. the Bahamas. ( A quick google search also reveals all Virgin Cruises and some Carnival are registered there)
            I say this to say that is more than likely where the pressure is coming from. Just a fact guy whose experience in business says follow the money. I get it, they have to provide for their people but more than likely the reason… in my opinion.

            1. Phil

              Most cruise ships are registered in the Bahamas because it is cheaper with fewer regulations. It is a major “industry” there. But I could definitely see the vaccine requirements coming from pressure from the cruise industry. It would also be their way of getting around Florida’s law against vaccine mandates. But who knows… it is what it is.

      1. R

        @Scott: I’m more than happy to follow the necessary rules. I don’t think I’m entitled or have some right to not follow rules. If a bit of cloth on a luxury vacation is your biggest problem, you’re leading an extremely blessed life.

  7. Scott Weinfeld

    @R stop acting like a communist, to pay $10,000 to wear a face covering indoors is ridiculous. Any company that supports indoor mask mandates, I boycott and hope they go out of business


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.