Cabinet spokesman Melford Nicholas says there is a correlation between the new rules for travel for fully vaccinated people and encouraging residents to become vaccinated.
The government has been pushing its vaccination campaign since March 2021, hoping to achieve at least 70 per cent herd immunity in Antigua & Barbuda. They believe it is the only way to achieve the kind of normalcy that will drive economic activity.
On Wednesday, Cabinet took the decision that fully vaccinated nationals and residents returning to the country, would be allowed to go to their private homes upon departure.
They must however present to the airport authority, a negative PCR test no older than seven days prior to departure. They will not be tested on arrival in Antigua and will not be required to spend days in quarantine.
“The benefits of taking the two doses of the vaccine are paying off”, the Cabinet asserted.
On the other hand, those residents and nationals returning to the twin-island state who have not been fully vaccinated, will be required to quarantine at a government facility for 14 days and to take a PCR test on the 12th day before being released.
They will only be released if they test negative for covid-19.
The cost of quarantine at the current facility – the Jolly Beach Hotel – is $82 a day and persons will have to quarantine at their own expense.
Cabinet has still not decided whether returnees will be allowed to leave the airport on a private vehicle or a certified taxi.