Barbados has launched a new way for travelers to complete their COVID-19 test before jetting off to the Caribbean.
In partnership with U.S.-based lab StageZero Life Sciences, travelers can schedule an appointment to have a healthcare professional come to their home to administer a COVID-19 test, ensuring they'll receive their results within Barbados' mandated testing time of 72 hours before arrival.
"We're very pleased that we're able to open up this transformational initiative in partnership with StageZero that allows persons to travel to Barbados with their test within the time frame," Sen. Lisa Cummins, Barbados Minister of Tourism and International Transport, announced at a recent press conference.
The partnership also eases a traveler's concern of not knowing where to test or having to spend time in a testing facility.
"A lot of people are fearful about going to a lab or having to stand in long lines, feeling as though they can be potentially exposed," Don Thomson, representative for StageZero, said. "We come to the individual and their family to test them, [and] secondly we turn the results in 24 to 48 hours."
The at-home testing is available to travelers from the U.S. and Canada by appointment.
A traveler looking to get tested with StageZero can visit the lab's website to schedule an appointment, which will be available every day but Sunday. On the website, travelers are required to input their passport information and photo to verify the identity of the person getting tested.
The FDA-approved PCR swab tests are $265 for one person, and the price is reduced for groups sharing an appointment. Those who get tested with StageZero can pay online with a credit card and will receive a statement to send to their insurance company for reimbursement.
The test will then be sent to the home address provided along with a prepaid shipping label to send back to the StageZero lab via FedEx or UPS. After a health care professional arrives to perform the test, results will arrive via encrypted email in a PDF format that can be uploaded to the Barbados government website. It's also recommended that the traveler prints their test results and brings a hard copy to the airport.
"The level of convenience and certainty that you will have your test results back in time is something that will make travel significantly easier in a time where people are anxious," Cummins said."This helps travelers to have that level of confidence about travel."
StageZero is not the only company that Barbados will accept tests from.
Christine Burroni is Travel + Leisure’s Digital News Editor. Find her keeping up with just about everything on Twitter or see what she’s up to in NYC or on her latest trip on Instagram.
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