Absolute blog: Travel info

Gaia, Rendezvous… And Updated Entry Requirements

11 August 21

Notes from the Directors

We are incredibly grateful to have welcomed so many guests to Belize as the country opened the international airport in late 2020. Guests have been able to access attractions with barely any other visitors in sight; spring and summer seeing the country build visitor numbers back substantially, which is why we are saying, “June is the new March!”

Most attractions and restaurants in Belize are outdoors, and accommodations are mostly distanced, including beach cabanas, jungle casitas, private villas and yachts, and remote islands, so guests can enjoy their holiday with as much isolation as they prefer.

Our Directors, Pat and Rach, have also been out and about enjoying “The Jewel.” Here are their recent experiences:

 


Rachael just returned from a quick sailing trip around the Central Cayes, including Tobacco Caye, South Water Caye, and Rendezvous Caye.

At Rendezvous (one of my absolute favorites!), we pulled into the dock at the tiny postcard-perfect island surrounded by azure waters and corals. Residents include the friendly caretaker, Pedro, the only person living on the island (except for a couple of passing fishermen who sold us some fresh lobster!), cormorants, ospreys, pelicans, sandpipers, and magnificent soaring frigates.

A snorkeling expedition around the island had us face to face with eagle rays, stingrays, and a green turtle, gliding through an endless school of blue tang and gazing at the technicolor of the rainbow parrotfish, spotted damselfish, and French angelfish. The formations at the island’s tip resemble an underwater “Grand Canyon,” with colossal corals including staghorn, pillar, elkhorn, and brain, dotted with colorful fans and massive drop-offs into the abyss.

A spearfishing mission was next on the agenda that yielded crab, lobster, lionfish, and a Spanish mackerel turned into a coconut seafood medley for dinner. We dined with Pedro aboard our very own yacht under a blanket of stars, feeling a million miles away from the rest of the world.

Next on the agenda? I’ll be heading inland to the Cayo District to scout a new collection of jungle villas, all with private plunge pools and spectacular views that we will be revealing soon!

 


Traveling fills us with so many emotions. And, if you’ve traveled in the past year, you know that traveling in a post-pandemic era is life-altering.

At Absolute Belize, we are grateful to be part of travelers’ journeys who have taken the leap, hopped on a flight, and landed in unfamiliar territory, willing to navigate through entry requirements, protocols, testing, and so many unknowns. Thank you to our valued clients who have entrusted us with making their travels safe and memorable.

Now more than ever, we know that our purpose is to help you fulfill your travel goals while taking the majority of the stress of planning away from you. Through our interactions with you, we know that travel is a feeling. Over the past few months, we have shared in

  • the feeling of taking your first family trip after being apart for so long,
  • the feeling of celebrating a honeymoon, birthday, or anniversary on a private island without another soul in sight, and
  • the feeling of being surrounded by nature and embracing all the new experiences that travel brings.

I, too, have taken a few trips to rediscover the authenticity of travel in Belize: From visiting a local home-grown coffee plantation to making birthday wishes at Gaia Riverlodge, enveloped by the enchanting Mountain Pine Ridge Forest Reserve, to indulging in beachfront luxury at Itz’ana Resort. In my eyes, Belize is still Mother Nature’s best-kept secret.

I am determined to grab life and make every memory count, and I’d love to help you rediscover your inner wanderlust.

 


Updated Entry Requirements

As of yesterday, August 9, 2021, all travelers entering Belize must present a negative COVID-19 test.

Visitors are required to present a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken within 96 hours of travel or a negative result from any approved Rapid Antigen Test taken within 48 hours of travel. Testing is available at the airport for a fee of US$50 per passenger. Children under the age of 5 can travel without a test.

Belize Awaits…

12 July 21

Belize Update: Vaccinated Travelers Exempt From COVID-19 Test

Belize is now allowing vaccinated travelers to enter the country without presenting a negative COVID-19 test. If you are fully vaccinated, you can present the COVID-19 Vaccination Record Card as proof that it was administered at least two weeks before arrival.

If you have yet to receive your vaccine, you are still required to provide a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken within 96 hours (four days) of travel or a negative rapid Antigen test within 48 hours.

2021 in Belize: A Year of Hope, Reminiscence, Optimism & Safe Travel

10 February 21

We hope you are all continuing to stay safe and well as we watch 2021 unfold. With a population just short of 400,000 in tiny Belize, tourism is a major lifeline. More than half of the people have had their standard of living gravely impacted and since the resumption of international flights on October 1st, many have benefited in some way from the extremely welcome return of visitors.

Amidst the current dialogue surrounding ethics and travel, here in Belize, visitors who are comfortable traveling are firmly welcomed. With “Gold Standard” certified accommodations, tour operators and transfer services operating in accordance with stringent procedures, laws surrounding mask-wearing, social distancing and operating protocols for outdoor restaurants and bars, we are open for business, safely.

Down Under, Tailor Made by Absolute Belize

Traveling Safely

We know that health and safety are now at the forefront of the decision-making process regarding travel and where to go in 2021. We’ve traveled around Belize to experience firsthand the safety measures that hotels and businesses have put in place. The resorts we recommend—such as Matachica on Ambergris Caye, the Lodge at Chaa Creek in San Ignacio, and Turtle Inn in Placencia—have standalone casitas, cabanas, or villas and have obtained Belize’s Gold Standard certification.

On our yacht charters, the captain and first mate are tested prior to your arrival; while aboard the boat, they do daily temperature checks, wear masks, and sanitize regularly. Our private guides and drivers wear masks and have daily temperature checks, and vehicles are sanitized before and after use. Most restaurants are open-air and have been set up for easy social distancing. In light of the fluid situation with COVID-19, we have adapted our cancellation policies depending on the hotel a traveler chooses: The Lodge at Chaa Creek, for example, will give a full refund up to 15 days before arrival and a full credit if your trip is less than two weeks out.

We remain committed to ensuring your travels are safe and as flexible as possible based on these changing dynamics.

Optimism, Celebrating Our 10th at AB
Our 10th Anniversary at Absolute Belize wasn’t quite as expected, but we counted our blessings, put hope into the universe and delayed our celebrations until we can safely do so.

We will be sharing our top 10 things that we love the most about our ‘garden of Eden’ Belize. We’ll cover everything from remote atolls, cultural experiences, divine dishes, our most exhilarating escapades and some insider tips from our expert knowledge bank.

Keep an eye out for our Instagram stories as Rachael and Patricia take you along on-site visits, weekend getaways and personal travel trips with all the insider info on what’s happening in Belize. The first story is coming shortly!

Latest: Covid Testing Update

27 January 21
Latest Travel Update: Testing options before your departure in Belize
In light of the new entry requirements to the USA requiring all visitors, residents and US citizens to show proof of a negative Covid19 test (PCR or Antigen test) within 72 hours of their departure from Belize, we wanted to provide an update and further information.

In response to this new requirement, testing sites are available at medical facilities countrywide and we will work with the Concierge at your Gold Standard Hotel to arrange testing. The Belize Diagnostic Centre offers a CDC compliant testing concierge service authorised by the Belize Ministry of Health and Wellness in the following locations:
 – Belize City
 – San Pedro
 – Caye Caulker
 – San Ignacio
 – Placencia
 – Hopkins
Testing can take place wherever you are staying by making a prearranged house call. The cost is US$75 per person based on 4 people, or $100 per person for a party less than 4. Test results are available onsite within 30 minutes.

We know that health and safety are at the forefront of the decision-making process on whether to travel and where to go in 2021. Belize is committed to making this new process as seamless as possible causing little disruption to your vacation plans. We are here to assist on the ground with any special arrangements needed.

Latest Travel Update: New US testing requirements for entry into the US

15 January 21
In light of the new entry requirements to the USA requiring all visitors, residents and US citizens to show proof of a negative Covid19 test (PCR and Antigen test) within 72 hours of their departure from Belize, we wanted to provide an update. The regulation will take effect on January 26th requiring paper or electronic proof. Those who have tested positive within the past 3 months before travel needs to bring proof that they have recovered from the virus and are cleared to travel by a licensed healthcare provider.

In response to this new requirement, the Belize Tourism Board (BTB), after consultation with the Belize Ministry of Health and Wellness has confirmed that testing will be expanded and made available to all passengers departing Belize for the U.S. Further details including cost and testing locations across the country are being determined and we will provide a further update as these elements are clarified.

In the event that a guest tests positive and is unable to travel home, we will work closely with guests to organize the best possible services and care on a case by case basis. Guests may remain in their Gold Standard certified hotel (in isolation) with in-room comforts and room service available.

During these challenging times for travelers and tourism businesses, we are extremely grateful for our visitors and our commitment is to ensure the best travel experience possible. We hope to see you soon!

Hit list

Whether you want an action packed agenda in the water and the jungle, or simply spend some quality time in a hammock, Belize has something for all tastes and tempos.

Map of Belize, showing our 4 main regions
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