Puerto Rico to start reopening businesses and beaches this week

May 25 2020, 8:31 pm

As of May 21, public beaches, nature reserves, and golf courses have begun to gradually reopen in Puerto Rico, with limited admittance for individual sport and exercise purposes starting on May 26.

These policies are part of the island’s four-phased reopening plan.

Additionally, malls and restaurants are set to reopen, albeit with enforceable physical distancing policies as well as adjusted floor plans and limited capacity.

In terms of international arrivals, “the Puerto Rico National Guard will continue to assist with enhanced health screenings of all arriving passengers, including offering rapid COVID-19 testing,” a post on the island’s travel site, Discover Puerto Rico, explains.

Arriving passengers may also be required to self-quarantine for 14 days, even if they do not present any coronavirus-related symptoms.

Discover Puerto Rico provides a separate page for visitors to reference the latest travel advisories.

The island is also continuing to enforce a curfew between the hours of 7 pm and 5 am, except for emergencies.

As of May 26, restaurants will be able to operate in a limited capacity with a maximum occupancy of 25% in dining rooms. Guests will be required to comply with temperature checks that will be performed before they are granted entry. Those presenting temperatures of 100.3°F will not be permitted to enter.

Grocery stores, pharmacies, and gas stations are open until 8 pm, with grocery delivery services extended through midnight beginning May 26.

Malls and other retail establishments will be permitted to open Monday through Friday from 9 am to 5 pm starting May 26. However, leisure strolling will not be allowed and customers will be required to book appointments when possible.

Hair salons and barbershops will also be allowed to open Monday through Friday on an appointment-only basis from 9 am to 5 pm beginning May 26.

Non-essential businesses, such as movie theatres, gym facilities, playgrounds, and casinos, will remain closed until further notice.

A majority of hotels remain open with stringent distancing protocols and facial covering policies mandatory in all public areas. As well, amenities such as pools, spas, and recreational areas remain closed. The policies regarding restaurant capacity beginning May 26 will also apply to hotel restaurants.

Discover Puerto Rico has a list of hotels approved by the Puerto Rico Tourism Company that are currently open.

“Puerto Rico remains dedicated to providing a safe travel experience as responsible reopening phases continue,” the website explains.

It also urges that if you are ill, an older individual, or someone with pre-existing chronic medical conditions, health authorities recommend delaying or avoiding travel altogether.

“To protect your health and safety, travellers should note there are measures in place that are being strictly enforced, including social distancing and face coverings being required regardless of activity,” it continues. “Residents and tourists need to abide by these policies or they will be subject to repercussions, which consist of a fine of up to USD $5,000 and run the risk of being arrested.”

To find out more regarding crucial information surrounding Puerto Rico’s key travel operations, visit the Discover Puerto Rico website.

Note: As border closures and travel restrictions begin to lift, health authorities are reminding individuals to monitor themselves for any signs of COVID-19. If you are feeling unwell, it is recommended you stay at home. If you do decide to travel, follow the health and safety precautions and protocols outlined by the departure and arrival locations you will be travelling to/from.

Emily RumballEmily Rumball

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