Discouraging effect

Discouraging effect

Saba’s latest emergency ordinance raises questions. The territory is reopening to tourism from Bonaire and Curaçao, but not St. Maarten and Aruba because the latter two islands are again permitting visitors from their main source market North America, while the former two will only do so for relatively lower COVID-19 risk the Netherlands and a few other Western European countries.

Regarding Saba, that group was placed in the medium-risk category not expected to be admitted until October. Nevertheless, there is thus still a chance of indirectly importing infections from that area via Curaçao or Bonaire.

But the biggest issue is that all flights and ferries to Saba currently come from St. Maarten. How can Winair, which is based at Princess Juliana International Airport (PJIA), possibly service the route if passengers are not allowed to transfer there?

Although there are no doubt good medical, public safety and health care capacity reasons for it, certainly at first glance the announced entry policy seems impractical and unrealistic. Unless authorities in The Bottom already have another workable solution in mind, this is probably going to make travel to and from Saba so cumbersome that it has a discouraging effect.