Information on Coronavirus (COVID-19)

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INFORMATION UPDATED AS OF JULY 1, 2020:

 

Dominican Republic Announces Protocols for the Reactivation of Tourism

 

Dominican Republic – July 1, 2020 — The Dominican Republic Ministry of Tourism (MITUR) announced the safety protocols to be followed by all tourism operators and establishments to help ensure the health of tourists and locals alike. The documents, which can be downloaded from the Ministry’s website (www.GoDominicanRepublic.com) detail the precautions and additional security measures that will be put into practice starting July 1, the date on which tourism is reactivated.

“The measures contained in the protocols are the result of extensive work and coordination between government and private entities,” said Minister of Tourism Francisco Javier García. “All safety measures conform to the recommendations of the World Health Organization and aim to ensure the safety of all those who participate in tourism, from service providers to visitors. Our guiding principle is to generate a framework and tools to offer unforgettable tourist experiences in accordance with the most rigorous standards in the industry,” said Minister García.

In an effort to ensure safe and efficient air travel to the country, additional protocols will be implemented at airports. This begins with upon arrival, all passengers will have their temperature checked as they disembark the plane. If a passenger registers a temperature above 100.6 °F degrees (38 °Cor presents any other symptoms, airport authorities will administer a rapid COVID-19 test and initiate the protocols for isolation and treatment of the case. In addition, airport terminals have established guidelines requiring social distancing as well as the mandatory use of face masks for employees and passengers. As part of immigration and customs forms provided by the airline or by Dominican authorities, passengers will be required to fill out and submit a Traveler’s Health Affidavit. Through this form, passengers declare they have not felt any COVID-19 related symptoms in the last 72 hours and provide contact details for the next 30 days.

The measures and regulations include, but are not limited to:

HOTELS

  • Taking the temperature of each guest at check-in and having them sign a declaration of health
  • Providing guests with masks and disinfectant gel
  • Redistribution of hotel spaces to maintain distance in all common areas (reception, restaurants, swimming pools, )
  • Baggage disinfection
  • Elimination of self-serve food and beverage, so that utensils are handled only by establishment personnel
  • Special protocols for the care and isolation of guests with symptoms

 

BARS 

  • Cleaning and disinfecting all tables between one client and another
  • Biweekly COVID-19 tests for all work personnel
  • Capacity is limited to 35% to guarantee ample distance between customers
  • Customers must wear a mask to enter any premise, but they can elect to remove it once seated at their table
  • Antibacterial gel dispensers will be placed in all bars, in places easily accessible to customers

 

RESTAURANTS

  • Distance of at least two meters between tables and a limit of ten diners per table
  • Implementation of digital menus, disposable printed menus or other options that reduce physical contact
  • Use of food disinfectants for produce consumed raw
  • Frequent disinfection of all surfaces that employees or customers touch frequently

 

MARITIME TRANSPORT AND AQUATIC SPORTS

  • Taking the temperature of every passenger prior to boarding any excursion transportation
  • Thoroughly sanitizing all equipment used by customers (tanks, masks, paddles, etc.) before and after use
  • All boats will be sanitized before and after each use
  • Maintaining established safety distance throughout the activity

 

OTHER RECREATIONAL AND TOURISM ACTIVITIES

  • These guidelines apply to horseback riding, sightseeing, zip lines, theme parks and paintball
  • Reduction of vehicle occupancy to 50% to guarantee safe distances between clients
  • Use of masks inside all vehicles
  • Preparation of one-way routes to avoid crossing paths with other groups
  • Sanitization of all surfaces and equipment that customers come into contact with (reins, harnesses, helmets, vests, )

 

The entities in charge of supervising the compliance of these protocols are the Ministry of Tourism and the Ministry of Public Health. In addition, in the case of hotels, a certification program has been established through the creation of a Quality Council headed by the National Association of Hotels and Tourism (ASONAHORES) that will guarantee that establishments comply with the regulations, which will provide visitors with a sense of security and trust.

Previous updates

INFORMATION UPDATED AS OF MAY 18, 2020:

 

  • From the first week of February, Dominican Republic, with the support of the World Health Organization (WHO) & Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), implemented a prevention and contingency plan to address the potential risk of virus entering the country. On March 1, this plan went into its second phase and the government announced new preventive measures. Considering the global development of COVID-19, on Tuesday, March 17, the government of Dominican Republic established new measures for Phase 3 of the prevention and contingency plan, which were extended until May 17.

 

  • Starting on May 20, the Dominican Republic will enter Phase 1 of the de-escalation process, with measures including:
    • Until June 2, the country’s borders will remain closed by land, sea and air, so all flights to and from Dominican Republic from said date and time will be suspended along with the arrival and departure of all cruises in all ports in the country. As of the date of this release, the official date of reopening of the country’s borders has not been confirmed. All Dominican passengers coming from abroad will be quarantined for two weeks.
    • Activities in bars and clubs remain suspended until June 2, while restaurants will only be allowed to operate for take-out and delivery orders. Likewise, national and international events and public, cultural, artistic and sports shows are suspended for the same period.
    • Starting on May 20, bus services (OMSA), subway and cable cars will open at 30% capacity from 6:00 am to 6:00 pm.
    • It is mandatory to keep social distancing and wear face masks in all public spaces, such as banks, supermarkets and offices, among others.

 

  • The national curfew will be extended until June 1 between 7:00 pm and 7:00 am from Monday to Saturday and from 5:00 pm to 5:00 am on Sunday, except for medical, sanitary and security personnel, accredited journalists and people and vehicles related to production and distribution of food and medications; water, telecommunications, ports, airports and other essential industries.

 

INFORMATION UPDATED AS OF APRIL 30, 2020:

 

  • From the first week of February, Dominican Republic, with the support of the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), has had in action a prevention and contingency plan to deal with the potential risk of virus entering the country. On March 1, this plan went into its second phase and the government announced new preventive measures. Similarly, and considering the development of the global situation of COVID-19, on Tuesday, March 17, the government of Dominican Republic established new measures as input to phase 3 of the prevention and contingency plan, which were extended until May 17.

 

  • Until May 17 the country’s borders will remain closed by land, sea and air, so all flights to and from Dominican Republic from said date and time will be suspended along with the arrival and departure of all cruises in all ports in the country. All passengers coming from abroad will be quarantined for two weeks.

 

  • Activities in bars and clubs remain suspended until May 17, while restaurants will only be allowed to operate for take-out and delivery orders. Likewise, national and international events and public, cultural, artistic and sports shows are suspended for the same period. 

 

  • The national curfew will continue until May 17 from 5:00 pm to 6:00 am, except for medical, sanitary and security personnel, accredited journalists and people and vehicles linked to the industry and trade of food, energy, water, telecommunications, ports, airports and others.

 

  • The circulation of public buses and the operation of OMSA Services, Subway and Cable cars remains suspended until further notice.

 

  • It is mandatory to wear face masks in all public spaces, such as banks and supermarkets, among others.

 

INFORMATION UPDATED AS OF APRIL 20, 2020:

 

  • From the first week of February, Dominican Republic, with the support of the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), has had in action a prevention and contingency plan to deal with the potential risk of virus entering the country. On March 1, this plan went into its second phase and the government announced new preventive measures. Similarly, and considering the development of the global situation of COVID-19, on Tuesday, March 17, the government of Dominican Republic established new measures as input to phase 3 of the prevention and contingency plan, which were extended until April 30.

 

  • Until April 30 the country’s borders will remain closed by land, sea and air, so all flights to and from Dominican Republic from said date and time will be suspended along with the arrival and departure of all cruises in all ports in the country. All passengers coming from abroad will be quarantined for two weeks.

 

  • Activities in bars and clubs remain suspended until April 30, while restaurants will only be allowed to operate for take-out and delivery orders. Likewise, national and international events and public, cultural, artistic and sports shows are suspended for the same period. 

 

  • The national curfew will continue until April 30 from 5:00 pm to 6:00 am, except for medical, sanitary and security personnel, accredited journalists and people and vehicles linked to the industry and trade of food, energy, water, telecommunications, ports, airports and others.

 

  • The circulation of public buses and the operation of OMSA Services, Subway and Cable cars remains suspended until further notice.

 

  • It is mandatory to wear face masks in all public spaces, such as banks and supermarkets, among others.

 

INFORMATION UPDATED AS OF APRIL 9, 2020:

 

  • From April 3 and for the following 15 days, the country’s borders will remain closed by land, sea and air, so all flights to and from Dominican Republic from said date and time will be suspended along with the arrival and departure of all cruises in all ports in the country.

 

  • Domestic traveling for individuals is also prohibited during this period until Monday April 13.

 

  • Activities in bars and clubs remain suspended for the 15 more days, while restaurants will only be allowed to operate for take-out and delivery orders. Likewise, national and international events and public, cultural, artistic and sports shows are suspended for the same period.

 

  • The national curfew will continue from April 3 from 5:00 pm to 6:00 am for 15 more days, except for medical, sanitary and security personnel, accredited journalists and people and vehicles linked to the industry and trade of food, energy, water, telecommunications, ports, airports and others.

 

  • 16 hotels in different destinations remain open, offering services to tourists affected by travel restrictions.

 

INFORMATION UPDATED AS OF MARCH 26, 2020 (2:00 P.M.):

 

  • A national curfew was decreed starting on Friday March 27 until Friday April 3 from 5:00 pm to 6:00 am, except for medical, sanitary and security personnel, accredited journalists and people and vehicles linked to the industry and trade of food, energy, water, telecommunications, ports, airports and others.

 

  • Quarantine has been established for passengers who, in the last two weeks, traveled to the countries mentioned above.

 

  • The sanitary review of aircraft and ships are being reinforced to continuously assess the risk and mitigate the potential spread of the virus. In addition, all airports of the Dominican Republic have been equipped with temperature screening equipment that allows travelers with fever to be identified.

 

INFORMATION UPDATED AS OF MARCH 23, 2020 (6:00 A.M.):

 

  • A national daily curfew has been issued, from 8:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. every day. This curfew will go into effect on Friday, March 20 and run through Friday, April 3. Only medical, sanitary, security personnel and accredited journalists will be exempt.

 

  • The circulation of public buses and the operation of OMSA services, subway, and cable cars will be suspended beginning Saturday, March 21 at 6:00 am, until further notice.

 

  • The Dominican Republic Ministry of Tourism has collaborated with travelers in destination to assure their safe return to their countries of origin, assessing case by case particularities imposed by local legislation.

 

INFORMATION UPDATED AS OF MARCH 19, 2020 (6:00 a.m.):

 

  • On March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the coronavirus (COVID-19) a pandemic.

 

  • From the first week of February, Dominican Republic, with the support of the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), has had in action a prevention and contingency plan to deal with the potential risk of virus entering the On March 1, this plan went into its second phase and the government announced new preventive measures. Similarly, and taking into account the development of the global situation of COVID- 19, on Tuesday, March 17, the government of Dominican Republic established new measures as input to phase 3 of the prevention and contingency plan.

 

  • From Thursday, March 19, 2020 at 6:00 am and for the following 15 days, the country’s borders will be closed by land, sea and air, so all flights to and from Dominican Republic from said date and time will be suspended along with the arrival and departure of all cruises in all ports in the country.

 

  • Ferry flights will be authorized only to return foreign citizens to their countries of origin, as well as the departure and arrival of planes, cargo ships and fuels to guarantee supplies for the country’s population.

 

  • Activities in bars and clubs are suspended for the next 15 days, while restaurants will only be allowed to operate for take-out and delivery Likewise, national and international events and public, cultural, artistic and sports shows are suspended for the same period.

 

  • Members of the Association of Hotels and Tourism of Dominican Republic (ASONAHORES) have implemented a pre-epidemic protocol to reinforce the sanitation of their facilities, following the recommendations of the Ministry of Public Health. They have implemented measures such as:
    • Ensuring that employees, contractors, and customers have access to the necessary hygiene services to prevent a spread of the virus;
    • Alcohol-based gel dispensers have been made available in easily accessible places for workers and tourists, while notices have been put up with information on handwashing;
    • Areas have been designated for isolating people who are sick until the public health authorities arrive, among other measures.

 

  • Dominican Republic has a robust health system that has been able to carry out an early identification of the cases in the country, as well as to maintain a map of these cases.

 

  • For more information about the coronavirus in Dominican Republic, please visit the Ministry of Public Health’s website (https://www.msp.gob.do/web/).

 

  • For MITUR, the well-being and safety of visitors remains a priority, so it will continue to work in coordination with the other relevant authorities to further strengthen the country’s preventive measures against coronavirus.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Are there any travel restrictions for tourists considering travel to Dominican Republic?

Effective Thursday, March 19, 2020, at 6:00 a.m., and effective through July 1, 2020, the country’s borders will be closed by land, sea and air, so all flights to and from Dominican Republic will be suspended along with the arrival and departure of all cruises in all ports in the country. 

 

Are there any travel restrictions for locals considering travel outside of Dominican Republic?

Effective Thursday, March 19, 2020, at 6:00 a.m., and effective through July 1, 2020, the country’s borders will be closed by land, sea and air, so all flights to and from Dominican Republic will be suspended along with the arrival and departure of all cruises in all ports in the country. 

 

I have a trip planned prior to July 1, 2020; how should I go about revising my travel plans?

We encourage you to contact your airline, travel agent or insurance company to discuss your travel plans and options for canceling or postponing current bookings. We understand these unprecedented times have caused many challenges, but the well-being and safety of our citizens and visitors remain our top priority. We will continue to work in coordination with the other relevant global and local authorities to further strengthen the country’s preventive measures against Covid-19.

 

I’m currently in-country at a resort, do these measures imply that I cannot leave until July 1, 2020?

No, ferry flights will be authorized only to return foreign citizens to their countries of origin, as well as the departure and arrival of planes, cargo ships and fuels to guarantee supplies for the country’s population. To discuss the next steps regarding your accommodations and travel plans, we encourage you to contact your airline, travel agent or insurance company to discuss your travel plans and options.

 

I’m currently in-country at a resort, what measures are being taken to ensure our safety? 

Members of the Association of Hotels and Tourism of Dominican Republic (ASONAHORES) have implemented a protocol to reinforce the sanitation of their facilities, following the recommendations of the Ministry of Public Health. They have implemented measures such as:

  • Ensuring that employees, contractors, and customers have access to the necessary hygiene services to prevent a spread of the virus; 
  • Alcohol-based gel dispensers have been made available in easily accessible places for workers and tourists, while notices have been put up with information on handwashing;
  • Areas have been designated for isolating people who are sick until the public health authorities arrive, among other measures.

 

I have a trip to Dominican Republic planned post-July 1, 2020; will I be able to go? 

As of now, the current measures prohibiting outbound and inbound travel are in effect March 19 through July 1, 2020. However, with the ever-changing nature of the situation, we are unable to speak to the travel environment following July 1, 2020 but will continue to provide proactive updates via our GoDominicanRepublic.com website, as well as our social channels The well-being and safety of our citizens and visitors remain our top priority. That being said, we will continue to work in coordination with the other relevant global and local authorities to further strengthen the country’s preventive measures against COVID-19 as needed, if additional measures are announced we will share as they are available.

 

How can I reduce my chances of contracting COVID-19?

General measures to protect against respiratory diseases include:

  • Frequently clean your hands (wash them with soap and water or alcohol solutions), especially after direct contact with sick people or their environment.
  • Avoid contact with people with signs of a respiratory illness, such as coughing or sneezing.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with disposable tissues when you cough or sneeze, and then wash your hands.

These measures also help protect you against frequent illnesses like the flu.

 

What should I do if I suspect I have COVID-19?

If you suspect that you have symptoms of COVID-19, the United States Center for Disease Control advises you to take the following steps:

  • Stay in your home or hotel room and call the doctor before going for a medical visit.
  • Avoid contact with other people and animals.
  • Wear a mask.
  • Cover your mouth or nose with a disposable tissue when you cough or sneeze.
  • Wash your hands regularly and for at least 20 seconds.
  • Avoid sharing personal items with others.
  • Clean all high-contact surfaces every day.
  • Monitor your symptoms.

 

What are the symptoms of the coronavirus?

The most common symptoms are fever, cough, and feeling short of breath. In some cases, there may also be digestive symptoms like diarrhea and abdominal pain. Symptoms can be aggravated in vulnerable individuals such as the elderly or people with compromised immune systems, among others.

 

Where can I get information about the coronavirus?

Information on COVID-19 can be found on the websites of different official organizations. Our recommendations are as follows:

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