The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the United States has downgraded Jamaica from a Level 3 to a Level 2 designation in its latest COVID-19 travel advisory to citizens released this week. This change effectively puts the destination at a lower risk designation than over 70 percent of countries throughout the globe listed by the CDC.
“This is a very positive sign for Jamaica as we continue making progress on our path to recovery,” said Hon. Edmund Bartlett, Minister of Tourism for Jamaica. “This reduced designation is a testament to the work of our government and the Jamaican people themselves to mitigate the impact of this pandemic.”
Minister Bartlett noted that visitors continue to feel confident in their ability to travel safely to Jamaica. “As a destination, we have been experiencing strong visitor arrivals and even posting record-setting numbers this winter. We expect this new lower designation by the CDC to help us grow those numbers even further, as it gives travelers even more reassurance that our island is among the safest choices in the world for their next trip.”
The health and safety of every visitor and citizen remains Jamaica’s top priority through its comprehensive Jamaica CARES protocols. These protocols were among the first to receive the World Travel & Tourism Council’s Safe Travels recognition that allowed the destination to safely reopen in June of 2020. These health and safety protocols continue to be proven effective, resulting in a recorded COVID-19 infection rate of under one percent within the island’s Resilient Corridors, which cover more than 85 percent of its tourism product and include less than one percent of its population.
Since reopening to travel, Jamaica has welcomed over one million visitors and is projected to return to pre-pandemic visitor arrivals numbers by the third quarter of 2023. Just this past weekend, the destination received over 9,000 air passenger arrivals from 62 flights into Sangster International Airport (MBJ) in just one day, the largest number on record since the airports reopened last year. This tops the previous one-day record of 7,000 arrivals from 52 flights into MBJ set just one week prior.
In addition, cruise ships have resumed port calls to Jamaica as of August and ninety percent of planned tourist investments remain on track. (PR)