Curaçao to Welcome American Tourists — but Only If They’re From These 3 States

Curaçao is welcoming the tri-state area back to their beaches.

The colorful island of Curaçao is reopening its borders to Americans — but only if they’re from New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut — the Curaçao Tourist Board shared with Travel + Leisure.

Starting the first week of November, tri-state area residents will be allowed to stick their toes in Dutch Caribbean island’s white, powdery sand and stroll among the picturesque multi-colored buildings.

Tourists will have to show proof of a negative COVID-19 PCR test from within 72 hours before traveling and fill out an online immigration card and Passenger Locator Card within 48 hours of their departure. Visitors will also have to show a state-issued ID to prove they live in one of the approved states.

Curaçao. Courtesy of Curacao Tourism Board

In order to get to the island (which happens to be one of the best places for a girls’ weekend), nonstop flights will resume on United Airlines from Newark Liberty International Airport on Nov. 7, according to the tourist board. And in December, JetBlue will fly there twice a week from John F. Kennedy International Airport.

The U.S. The Department of State categorizes Curaçao as a Level 3 country, recommending people “Reconsider Travel.” New Yorkers who return from a trip there will then have to quarantine at home for two weeks as part of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s executive order.

Courtesy of Curacao Tourism Board

Paul Pennicook, the CEO of the Curaçao Tourist Board, told T+L in a statement that while the island was only initially reopening for certain Americans, they would continue to monitor other states.

“After consulting with the scientific community and an esteemed panel of doctors both in The Netherlands and on the island, we made the decision to slowly reopen Curaçao's tourism industry to the US,” Pennicook said. “A multitude of factors were taken into account including current cases, airlift, and impact on the local economy, among others.”

Courtesy of Curacao Tourism Board

Currently, Curaçao allows travel from low- and medium-risk countries, including many Caribbean islands as well as China, Canada, and several European nations.

While on the island, people are asked to wear face masks if they cannot be at least 6 feet apart and to make reservations for restaurants, bars, and beach clubs in advance. The island has also introduced a “Dushi Stay” app — dushi meaning “sweet” in Papiamentu — which help visitors keep track of everything from entry requirements to island-wide protocols and even which restaurants, attractions, and beaches are open.

And to give tourists peace of mind, Curaçao has introduced a health and safety protocol, including implementing new social distancing practices and hygiene and sanitation guidelines.

In total, Curaçao has reported 619 confirmed cases of COVID-19, according to Johns Hopkins University. While New York was once the epicenter of the pandemic in the U.S., the state has since seen case numbers remain low. Recently, certain parts of the state have experienced an uptick in cases, but New York as a whole remains at a 1 percent positivity rate on a 7-day rolling average, according to the state.

Alison Fox is a contributing writer for Travel + Leisure. When she’s not in New York City, she likes to spend her time at the beach or exploring new destinations and hopes to visit every country in the world. Follow her adventures on Instagram.

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