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Great News #229872
07/15/2020 11:19 AM
07/15/2020 11:19 AM
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Fun in the sun Offline OP
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A representative of Marine Max confirmed via a telephone conversation with me that BVI officials have given them the green light to begin charter operations 9-1-20.

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Re: Great News [Re: Fun in the sun] #229873
07/15/2020 11:27 AM
07/15/2020 11:27 AM
Joined: Aug 2000
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Central Florida!
Carol_Hill Offline
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Interesting. One would think there would be an official government announcement?


Carol Hill
Re: Great News [Re: Fun in the sun] #229875
07/15/2020 11:33 AM
07/15/2020 11:33 AM
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bailau Offline
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It would be good to know if any of the local businesses will be open during September (if this is true) or will wait as they have historically done until the 2nd week of October...if it is true AND businesses will be open would be tempted to go out a month early

And I would agree with Carol and still need to see what stipulations are put on passengers coming and going....

Re: Great News [Re: bailau] #229878
07/15/2020 11:53 AM
07/15/2020 11:53 AM
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Central Florida!
Carol_Hill Offline
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Yes, virtually all islands I think are now imposing some restrictions, depending on where the traveler is coming from and many are requiring negative PCR tests. And some that initially opened without restrictions are now imposing restrictions.


Carol Hill
Re: Great News [Re: bailau] #229880
07/15/2020 12:09 PM
07/15/2020 12:09 PM
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Virgin Gorda, BVI
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Originally Posted by bailau
It would be good to know if any of the local businesses will be open during September (if this is true) or will wait as they have historically done until the 2nd week of October...if it is true AND businesses will be open would be tempted to go out a month early

And I would agree with Carol and still need to see what stipulations are put on passengers coming and going....


Oil Nut Bay is still planning on an October 1st opening date. But we have still not heard any official word from the government...

Re: Great News [Re: Fun in the sun] #229881
07/15/2020 12:22 PM
07/15/2020 12:22 PM
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Memphis, BVI, CT
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RatmansWife Offline
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Never heard the charter companies were told they had to discontinue operations. As noted above, the question is who will be allowed in and under what conditions. Will they allow anyone in as before? Call me skeptical.

Re: Great News [Re: Fun in the sun] #229882
07/15/2020 12:26 PM
07/15/2020 12:26 PM
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 2,169
Cane Garden Bay, Tortola
JasonHelmbrecht Offline
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The current curfew order expires on Thursday so maybe when they announce the new curfew details, they will give an immigration update. Stay tuned...

Re: Great News [Re: RatmansWife] #229884
07/15/2020 12:47 PM
07/15/2020 12:47 PM
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Virgin Gorda, BVI
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Originally Posted by RatmansWife
Never heard the charter companies were told they had to discontinue operations. As noted above, the question is who will be allowed in and under what conditions. Will they allow anyone in as before? Call me skeptical.


This is a good point. MarineMax could probably already be performing charter operations? Lots of other charter companies are running "Staycaytion" deals right now for people in the BVI. The real question is will tourists be allowed to come in and if so what will the restrictions be.

Fingers crossed for more news on Thursday.

Re: Great News [Re: RatmansWife] #229888
07/15/2020 01:06 PM
07/15/2020 01:06 PM
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 2,169
Cane Garden Bay, Tortola
JasonHelmbrecht Offline
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Originally Posted by RatmansWife
Never heard the charter companies were told they had to discontinue operations. As noted above, the question is who will be allowed in and under what conditions. Will they allow anyone in as before? Call me skeptical.

I would assume they had to discontinue operations when boating was prohibited during the stricter curfew. I think boats have only been allowed to move since 4 June.

Re: Great News [Re: Fun in the sun] #229890
07/15/2020 01:20 PM
07/15/2020 01:20 PM
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Posts: 906
Memphis, BVI, CT
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RatmansWife Offline
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Jason, good point. We were exempt from that restriction, out of necessity. Charter companies located outside the exclusion zone could have reopened, but chose not to.

Re: Great News [Re: Fun in the sun] #229902
07/15/2020 04:22 PM
07/15/2020 04:22 PM
Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 5,613
Massachusetts
maytrix Offline
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I know the BVI gets visitors from all over, but I wonder what percentage from the US? I imagine US residents will be prevented from flying in with the current state of things. I hope we'll be able to go, as we want to get down to our boat ASAP.


Matt
Re: Great News [Re: Fun in the sun] #229904
07/15/2020 05:10 PM
07/15/2020 05:10 PM
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 2,169
Cane Garden Bay, Tortola
JasonHelmbrecht Offline
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I suspect they will follow the lead of other islands and allow entry with a negative test result in-hand. But, only time will tell.

Re: Great News [Re: Fun in the sun] #229905
07/15/2020 05:12 PM
07/15/2020 05:12 PM
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Bradenton, FL
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They are probably placating nervous customers with what was originally stated - the 9/1 opening date has been talked about for a while now. I just got back from a USVI sailing trip yesterday - locals are predicting there is NO way we will be allowed back that early. Charter companies aren’t going to let you change without fees until 9/1 comes and goes and we are still not in. This is going to be a long hard road I’m afraid...not trying to be a Debbie Downer....we have 2 1/2 weeks planned with BVIYC in November - one scheduled for then and one moved from May until then. I have a bad feeling neither will happen.


[Linked Image]

Re: Great News [Re: Fun in the sun] #229909
07/15/2020 06:33 PM
07/15/2020 06:33 PM
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Nate C Offline
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We too are holding out hope to reschedule our May charter for November though I'm not overly optimistic. I would have no objections to providing a negative PCR, although the challenge with that may be timing. Back in March the Urgent care facilities in Manhattan were returning both PCR and antibody test results within 24-48 hours in most cases, 72 hours max, and now the quoted timeframe is 7 days.

Re: Great News [Re: Fun in the sun] #229911
07/15/2020 07:17 PM
07/15/2020 07:17 PM
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Posts: 685
Washington DC
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bailau Offline
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My son took a Covid test July 2nd under 3-5 business day turnaround and just got it today, 9 or 10 business days later...negative thankfully

Re: Great News [Re: Fun in the sun] #229927
07/16/2020 07:28 AM
07/16/2020 07:28 AM
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Fun in the sun Offline OP
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It is not unreasonable to assume the major charter companies like the Moorings and Marine Max have inside knowledge and direct contact with representatives of the BVI government. They will need some heads up so they can get their staff back and the boats ready to go. I would expect a soft re-opening of the charter business. Pray for no hurricane damage in the BVI or USVI this year. I stayed in my home on Panama City Beach through Hurricane Michael, the third strongest storm to make landfall in the US, and will NEVER forget it.

Re: Great News [Re: bailau] #229928
07/16/2020 07:30 AM
07/16/2020 07:30 AM
Joined: Aug 2000
Posts: 73,224
Central Florida!
Carol_Hill Offline
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Most are taking 7 days here in Florida. If there is a test requirement, it depends on whether the test AND result have to be within a certain period, or only the result received within a certain period. My understanding is that Aruba is requiring test AND result within 72 hours and the CURRENT rule for SXM (which could change, as they have changed things about 5 times already) is that only the RESULT has to be within 72 hours.


Carol Hill
Re: Great News [Re: Fun in the sun] #229930
07/16/2020 08:03 AM
07/16/2020 08:03 AM
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 4,497
Adagio Villa, Mahoe Bay,Virgin...
gordaguy2 Offline
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We're looking at a new cancellation policy for villa stays - full refund within 60 days of travel and within 60 days the ability to rebook for up to two years for the same season, subject to availability, if either the country of residence or BVI blocks travel due to Covid. What do you think?

Re: Great News [Re: Fun in the sun] #229932
07/16/2020 08:10 AM
07/16/2020 08:10 AM
Joined: Jan 2008
Posts: 367
Northern IL
bagsarepacked Offline
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Gorda Guy, I think that sounds reasonable!

Regarding testing and the ability to get results. I am hoping that by the time Oct / Nov rolls around the US has the ability to turn around test results faster. Considering 4 months ago it was hard to get tests, now its hard to get results. They have made progress in 4 months, I am hoping in another 4 even more can be made, especially as the demand rises for results for travel. Fingers crossed!

Re: Great News [Re: gordaguy2] #229933
07/16/2020 08:22 AM
07/16/2020 08:22 AM
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 2,169
Cane Garden Bay, Tortola
JasonHelmbrecht Offline
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Originally Posted by gordaguy2
We're looking at a new cancellation policy for villa stays - full refund within 60 days of travel and within 60 days the ability to rebook for up to two years for the same season, subject to availability, if either the country of residence or BVI blocks travel due to Covid. What do you think?

Seems good but how will you define blocked? If there is a 72 hour negative test requirement to enter and a guest doesn't get it in time will you let them reschedule 2 days before their planned arrival?

There is a women on the STT facebook forum who wants to reschedule her trip that starts on Sunday because 1 person out of 8 has tested positive. Technically, someone in the group is blocked from travel because they are positive but is it fair for the captain, charter company, and boat owner to lose revenue 4 days from the reservation start? They certainly won't fill the boat with such short notice. How do you handle that?

I'd like to do something similar but am struggling with the verbiage.

Re: Great News [Re: gordaguy2] #229941
07/16/2020 09:09 AM
07/16/2020 09:09 AM
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Memphis, BVI, CT
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RatmansWife Offline
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Sounds fair. Instead of rebook for the same season, maybe a full credit toward a future stay. That way you don't end up in a big discussion over whether a month later is the same season or not.

Re: Great News [Re: JasonHelmbrecht] #229945
07/16/2020 09:17 AM
07/16/2020 09:17 AM
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Memphis, BVI, CT
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RatmansWife Offline
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Jason, was the person who tested positive named on the reservation? If not, how would one even know if the claim is true?

I would say if either the origin country or the BVI blocks travel, or the person named on the reservation tests positive. Reason being, what if they book a ticket through SXM or somewhere that blocks entry, that shouldn't be your problem, anymore than the guest's relative gets Covid. That's what trip insurance is for.

Re: Great News [Re: RatmansWife] #229947
07/16/2020 09:22 AM
07/16/2020 09:22 AM
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 2,169
Cane Garden Bay, Tortola
JasonHelmbrecht Offline
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Originally Posted by RatmansWife
Jason, was the person who tested positive named on the reservation? If not, how would one even know if the claim is true?

I would say if either the origin country or the BVI blocks travel, or the person named on the reservation tests positive. Reason being, what if they book a ticket through SXM or somewhere that blocks entry, that shouldn't be your problem, anymore than the guest's relative gets Covid. That's what trip insurance is for.

It was a child so I doubt they would have been named. Interestingly, the poster had insurance that would have refunded 75% but she was beating up the charter company because she wanted a full credit to rebook later. I have an issue with the timing of only 4 days notice. They were planning to not bring the infected person but she thought the other guests being exposed (but negative) should be reason enough to rebook.

Re: Great News [Re: JasonHelmbrecht] #229949
07/16/2020 09:32 AM
07/16/2020 09:32 AM
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Memphis, BVI, CT
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RatmansWife Offline
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Probably a child as in a 25-year-old daughter! Some people are not reasonable. However, with a positive Covid test, they are all likely to be within 48 hours, as that is often the testing window.

Re: Great News [Re: Fun in the sun] #229950
07/16/2020 09:57 AM
07/16/2020 09:57 AM
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bailau Offline
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Maybe there can be an extra charge to clients if they want flexibility...Moorings seems to be doing that but that would certainly be overridden by BVI mandated negative testing within a period (e.g. 72 hours) since their policy gives you flexibility > 14 days if you pay the fee....

https://www.moorings.com/book-with-confidence

Gorda Guy, do you mean "full refund OUTSIDE 60 days of travel and within 60 days....."?

Would it make sense to offer a choice > 60 days and try and entice the guests to take the credit instead of refund. As an example Stubhub originally offered full refund or a 120% credit. Maybe an extra night free or a coupon for free dinner or something else? So outside of 60 days you could get refund or credit for stay +1 day as an example?

I am just trying to think through what might help with the "stickiness" of the guests and preserve cash in your coffers....

Re: Great News [Re: gordaguy2] #229986
07/17/2020 07:05 AM
07/17/2020 07:05 AM
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Posts: 4,082
South Sound Villa Virgin Gorda
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I have been doing that informally but I would not want to have a formal rule. Too easy to misinterpret or bend the rule


tpcook
Re: Great News [Re: Fun in the sun] #229993
07/17/2020 08:22 AM
07/17/2020 08:22 AM
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patterson,ny
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IMO There is a difference between reservations booked pre-Covid and those booked after the say May 1. Anyone who booked after that date should assume the risk that travel may be prohibited.

Re: Great News [Re: bagsarepacked] #229996
07/17/2020 09:07 AM
07/17/2020 09:07 AM
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Adagio Villa, Mahoe Bay,Virgin...
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Thanks - trying to find a way to alay people's fear of booking in advance - the islands need guests to come in so important for us to facilitate travel.

Re: Great News [Re: wizoc] #230009
07/17/2020 10:16 AM
07/17/2020 10:16 AM
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ScottW Offline
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If the renter has to assume the risk, will the renter be willing to rent the villa well in advance? I've rented a villa in Mahoe Bay on Virgin Gorda twice. They are not inexpensive. I'm not sure I would be willing to take the risk now. I understand the landlord's side as well. One person in a party gets sick and the landlord is supposed to make a full refund? I don't think that is fair either.

Re: Great News [Re: ScottW] #230033
07/17/2020 01:59 PM
07/17/2020 01:59 PM
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Adagio Villa, Mahoe Bay,Virgin...
gordaguy2 Offline
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Agree - maybe well just have to wait out Covid 19 though I am sure some people want to get out of their countries.

Re: Great News [Re: bailau] #230034
07/17/2020 02:00 PM
07/17/2020 02:00 PM
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Adagio Villa, Mahoe Bay,Virgin...
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Thanks - greater than 60 days full refund (that's how we normally do it) less than 60 days the ability to rebook for the future up to two years same season.

Re: Great News [Re: Fun in the sun] #230035
07/17/2020 02:02 PM
07/17/2020 02:02 PM
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road town
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Just spoke with a Minister today looking like Sept 1st will be when people on work permits willbe admitted, no way they are allowing tourists in from the US till the situation is under control in the US, this is directly from a Goverment Minister

Re: Great News [Re: RatmansWife] #230036
07/17/2020 02:03 PM
07/17/2020 02:03 PM
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Adagio Villa, Mahoe Bay,Virgin...
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Sounds fair. Instead of rebook for the same season, maybe a full credit toward a future stay. That way you don't end up in a big discussion over whether a month later is the same season or not." Good point

Re: Great News [Re: sleepychef] #230085
07/18/2020 11:39 AM
07/18/2020 11:39 AM
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Originally Posted by sleepychef
Just spoke with a Minister today looking like Sept 1st will be when people on work permits willbe admitted, no way they are allowing tourists in from the US till the situation is under control in the US, this is directly from a Goverment Minister


Tourists come from elsewhere in the world other than the United States. Did your minister friend have a view about tourists from the EU and UK, by any chance?
grin We had three trips out to the BVI booked this year. (Top Tip- don't put all your vacation eggs in one basket....)

I would think that arrival with a negative test, and selective opening to the yachting sector where social distancing is are possible and probable, and requirements to wear masks ashore would be a safe middle ground...
However, if the BVI can economically sustain the current position, tourists may not be back until after the 'second-spike' phase that most countries are going through has passed. See you next year, maybe.... groovin

Re: Great News [Re: sleepychef] #230183
07/20/2020 11:00 AM
07/20/2020 11:00 AM
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Virgin Gorda, BVI
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Originally Posted by sleepychef
Just spoke with a Minister today looking like Sept 1st will be when people on work permits willbe admitted, no way they are allowing tourists in from the US till the situation is under control in the US, this is directly from a Goverment Minister


Interesting. I assume Work Permit holders will need to undergo the 2-week government quarantine still. Did you hear anything regarding that?

Re: Great News [Re: Fun in the sun] #230185
07/20/2020 11:05 AM
07/20/2020 11:05 AM
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Bahamas just backtracked on US visitors....unless private jet or boat

https://thepointsguy.com/news/americans-banned-bahamas-coronavirus/


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