Visitors will have to take a COVID-19 test ahead of departure and stay at an approved hotel.

beach chairs in Belize
Credit: Jorge Fernández/Getty

The lush landscapes and wondrous caves of Belize will reopen for tourists to explore once again on Oct. 1, the Belize Tourism Board announced on Monday.

Previously, the island announced they would reopen in August however the opening had been delayed, "in an overabundance of caution for visitors and residents alike," according to the tourism board's press release.

Come October, visitors will need to book with a hotel that complies with their 9-point initiative entitled, the Tourism Gold Standard Recognition Program, in which the approved hotels — listed on their tourism site — have implemented health and safety standards including online check-in and check-out and mandatory mask-wearing in public spaces. Both guests and employees will have to undergo daily health checks and the hotels have set aside “isolation/quarantine rooms” for anyone who may have contracted the virus.

Restaurants and tour operators must comply with protocols of the initiative as well.

Visitors will need to have downloaded the Belize Health App at least three days before boarding a fight, which can be used for contact tracing and reporting health symptoms. Travelers have the option to take a COVID-19 test 72 hours ahead of departure and will have to verify their negative results when they arrive in Belize or will be tested upon arrival.

If the results are positive, travelers will have to be quarantined at their own expense.

Touching down in Belize, passengers will walk through thermal scanners where they must have a temperature under 100 degrees Fahrenheit and verify their information on the app.  Masks are required to be worn at all times through Belize's Philip Goldson International Airport.

All foreign tourists will be transported to their hotel via an approved form of transportation. Business travelers or those will second residences in Belize will have to abide by a separate set of policies.

Additionally, tour groups are limited to smaller groups and national parks will require appointments for tours to limit the total number of people at one time.