Corona Virus Update for Latin America
VIP Journeys shares concerns of our partners regarding the Coronavirus. Latin America at this time could be considered the least effected region in case clients are seeking alternative options to regions closed to travel.
CORONAVIRUS HAS SPREAD to dozens of countries, with over 89,000 confirmed cases worldwide, and a death toll that just passed 3,000. The following map shows the magnitude of the virus, with the number of confirmed cases as circles, and the number of confirmed deaths as crosses. This is the updated information about Covid-19 in Latin America.
Information About Covid-19 in Brazil
We have received questions from all over the world about the implications of Covid-19 in Brazil. We understand clients are concerned about travelling anywhere due to the Media coverage throughout the globe, so here are some important facts:
Up to now, only 2 cases of Covid-19 have been detected and confirmed in Brazil. Both people infected have travelled to Italy recently and reside in Sao Paulo. Those patients have been released from hospital and are in recovery at home. All relatives and people who have been in contact with them recently have been tested negative for Covid-19. There has been about 400 suspected cases, none of which have been confirmed, and about 90 have been dismissed. There are no indications so far that Covid-19 has been transmitted within the country.
The health Minister together with local health authorities are monitoring up close every suspicious case. People were advised to seek hospitals to test for Covid-19 in the case they present any of the symptoms. No isolation/quarantine for any passengers arriving from abroad have been implemented. All flight arrivals have been disembarking normally at all airports.
Information About Covid-19 in Colombia
As of today. There are 0 cases of Coronavirus in Colombia and the government is taking all measures they can do to avoid it. Immigration Colombia just created a simple new form that must be filled in by any traveler before entering Colombia. (see details below). We still have availability in most properties for the coming months, including March, April and summer months. Please contact us if you need to re-route some of your clients. Colombia is actually a great alternative for now.
Immigration Colombia just announced they are asking every traveler (Colombians or foreigners) entering Colombia to fill in a form BEFORE their arrival (it is a very easy procedure and will avoid lines on arrival). It is one form per traveler. If you have clients traveling soon with us, your trip designer will keep in contact and walk you through these new policies. This is the link – https://www.migracioncolombia.gov.co/controlpreventivocontraelcoronavirus
Information About Covid-19 in Chile
At this time, there are two reported cases in Chile identified on March 3rd and 4th. We share with everyone the urgent need to prevent further transmission of the coronavirus as well as the need to clarify the situation regarding confirmed travel plans to Chile. Upon arrival to Chile, whether through the airport, cruise terminals or borders with Argentina, Bolivia or Perú, travelers will encounter additional screening measures. All travelers will complete a form regarding their travel during the previous 30 days. Travelers who have visited countries on the World Health Organization risk list in the previous 30 days will be required to pass through additional screening. Additionally, any traveler with visible flu-like symptoms will also be required to pass through additional screening.
Information About Covid-19 in Ecuador & Galapagos
Ecuador has its first recorded case of Coronavirus – an elderly Ecuadorian female living in Spain who arrived in Guayaquil on Feb 14 for a visit. She is being treated in a hospital in Guayaquil designated for Coronavirus cases. The government is monitoring people who may have come into contact with the patient.
The Ecuador Ministry of Health (MOH) has six information and prevention points plus 18 health professionals in Quito’s international airport and is providing information in various areas and on screens in the passenger terminal. The epidemiological surveillance protocol in Ecuador includes active surveillance, early detection, isolation, case management, contact tracing and prevention of infection. A plan to disinfect areas frequented by passengers in the terminal has been implemented, while alcohol dispensers have been provided at all arrival and departure migration counters. Additionally, the MOH began controls on international arrivals with devices that take body temperature of all incoming passengers from a distance of 3 to 5 meters.
If any passenger on a flight that lands in the country has suspicious symptoms upon arrival at the airport, they will be transferred directly to a specially equipped health center to handle these types of cases. The health of all passengers from the following countries will be reviewed: China, Italy, Iran and South Korea. Additional detail on airport measures can be found here.
Regarding Cancellations: We are reviewing on a case by case basis and all cancellations penalties and refunds will be processed according to the policy of those suppliers involved with the travel plans in question. At this time, based on our direct communications with principal suppliers during the past 48 hours, we would like to inform you that the standard terms and conditions will be applied due to the limited presence of the virus in the region as well as the absence of any travel restrictions to/from the region at this time.
Please note that each airline has its own cancellation policy and that you or your clients must check directly with the airlines for any flights not booked by VIP Journeys. For internal flights booked by VIP Journeys, we are happy to assist with helping you understand the local airlines’ policies and what your client’s options may be. Any change fees or cancellations for airline tickets will be at the client’s expense.
We also encourage you to work with your clients to understand if they have any coverage via their travel insurance policies. Note – as this situation is fluid, any revised policies will be reviewed on a weekly basis and updated according to the current situation. Please check with your VIP Journeys consultant for the latest.
Should you have any other questions or concerns, or require assistance of any kind, please do not hesitate to contact us. For the very latest information about the Coronavirus, we recommend you visit the World Health Organization (WHO) website.
(770) 736-5909 x8000