There could be trouble in island-paradise for passengers travelling to Puerto Rico without proof of a negative COVID-19 test.
Travelers will face a $300 fine beginning April 28 if they touch down in Puerto Rico without a negative PCR test done within 72 hours of arriving, according to Puerto Rico’s tourism website, Discover Puerto Rico.
Rapid tests will not be permitted as proof of a negative COVID-19 tests and the new mandate will be required to all travelers, even those who have been fully vaccinated against the virus, according to the new guidelines. Travelers visiting the Island of Enchantment must upload the negative PCR test result to the “Travel Safe” platform online. Anyone with a positive test result must quarantine and get medical attention.
The new regulation comes after Puerto Rico put a curfew in place daily between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m. to curb the spread of the virus. All businesses shut down promptly at 10 p.m. and getting into Old San Juan is guarded by law enforcement at a checkpoint where tourists and residents are only permitted past the curfew. Travelers looking for late-night food and drinks are also out of luck – restaurants and common areas inside hotels are closed.
During normal operating hours, businesses such as restaurants, hotels, pools and casinos are open at 30% capacity.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ranks Puerto Rico as a “Level 4: Very High” for COVID-19, advising travelers to avoid the island or get fully vaccinated before travel.