The U.S Virgin Islands is enacting new tourism restrictions and will close their doors to all visitors for 30 days from March 25, 2020 until April 25, 2020.
These new restrictions will not allow any cruise ships to visit ports in the U.S.V.I. for the first two weeks when the first cruise lines are scheduled to resume cruises on April 11. Cruise ports that will be closed to cruise ships and all visitors will be St. Thomas and St. Croix.
With 17 positive cases of COVID-19 and more expected from pending tests, Governor Albert Bryan Jr. said safeguarding the health of residents and visitors remains the highest priority.
Governor Bryan stated that although the decisions to close the Territory’s ports fall under the jurisdiction of the federal government, the Administration’s move to prohibit visitor arrivals will help minimize the potential impact of the novel coronavirus on vulnerable members of the Virgin Islands community.
Governor Bryan is ordering non-essential businesses to close and residents to stay at home as the Administration ramps up its response to COVID-19 in the Territory. All bars across the Territory are to be closed, and in-house dining is not allowed at restaurants; take-out services are permissible.
Commissioner of Tourism Joseph Boschulte added that while mitigation strategies were of paramount importance at this time, discussions were ongoing with air and cruise partners as the Territory prepares for its post-pandemic recovery.