Barbados 12 Month Visa – Work Remotely for a Year in Paradise!
UPDATED INFORMATION CAN BE FOUND BELOW UNDER HEADING – UPDATE ON BARBADOS ‘WELCOME STAMP’
Are you tired and frustrated from too much quarantining and you’re able to work remotely from a Caribbean island? This may be the deal for you. Barbados is offering the chance to move and work from the island for a year thanks to a new Barbados 12 month visa incentive. Barbados actually has one of the fastest internet services in the Caribbean.
Much of the world is adapting and have learned to work remotely from home. Once burdened by long and expensive commutes, employees are now seeing themselves freed from traditional workplaces. Barbados is betting that given your new flexibility, you may be interested in working next to their palm trees and warm ocean breezes.
Barbados 12 Month Visa
Barbados Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley announced last week that the Caribbean island nation is planning to introduce a “12-month Barbados Welcome Stamp” that allows international visitors to stay for up to a year and work remotely.
Mottley explained the special visa stamp would permit “persons to come and work from here overseas, digitally so that persons don’t need to remain in the countries in which they are.” It is much easier to contain COVID-19 in an island setting.
The Prime Minister stated that the visa “allows people from the United States, Europe, and Latin America to come and do their jobs digitally for a couple of months and then go back home, if they feel they can work better in a more relaxed atmosphere such as next to a beach.” British passport holders are allowed to visit Barbados without a visa. UK passport holders are allotted a fixed period of time for which they may remain in the country.
Barbados covers 167 square miles and has a population of about 290,000. Barbados’ Crane Beach in St. Philip was rated as one of the ‘world’s sexiest beaches’ in 2008 by Concierge.com Visitors will find that the western shores of the island are most favorable. They provide calmer waters and protection from oncoming winds off the Atlantic.
Short-Term Travel is Difficult
The idea has a lot of merit. We know that short-term travel is currently very difficult.
Prime Minister Mottley “You don’t need to work in Europe, or the US or Latin America if you can come here and work for a couple months at a time; go back and come back. But in order for those things to truly resonate, what does it mean? It means that what we offer has to be world-class and what we continue to offer is world-class.”
Mottley said on June 26 that Barbados is scheduled to reopen to international visitors on July 12. International air travel is is resuming on that date. American Airlines and JetBlue are resuming commercial passenger flights from the USA starting July 25 and August 5, respectively.
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Barbados – Still Committed to Island Protection
“We will continue to take a risk-based approach to the protection of our country, our people and our visitors,” added Mottley. A press release from Barbados Tourism Marketing said visitors from high-risk countries were “strongly encouraged” to take a COVID-19 test within 72 hours of their departure. In contrast, travelers from low-risk nations (fewer than 100 cases reported in previous week) could take a test up to a week before departure.
Travelers who do not take a COVID-19 test before arrival in Barbados must take one upon arrival. Following, quarantine will be at their expense while waiting upon test results – which could take 48 hours. A test result that is positive requires isolation and medical care.
All visitors to the island must also complete and submit an embarkation/disembarkation form online related to their health and temperature checks at the airport.
According to data from Johns Hopkins University, Barbados reported just 98 confirmed COVID-19 cases (with 7 deaths.) This makes it one of the lowest impacted nations in the Caribbean.
How to Get Your Barbados 12 Month Visa & Welcome Stamp
UPDATE ON BARBADOS ‘WELCOME STAMP’
The Barbados Welcome Stamp Application has gone LIVE!
There are some specific requirements which come with the Welcome Stamp visa initiative. We are just learning details as they come out.
- Individuals seeking to take advantage of the new visa initiative must be earning a minimum of US$50,000
- Applicants must pass a character background check
- There are standard pre-requisite requirements for documentation (to be submitted with an application
- Persons interested in staying for up to 12 months will be required to have necessary insurance arrangements in place.
- While not exclusive, the Barbados Government has also indicated that it is targeting applicants who are between the ages of 22 and 55.
- You can take a spouse as well as family members.
- A cohabitant ‘partner’ can qualify if you are “not married to each other and have cohabited continuously for a period of 5 years or more and have so cohabited within the period of 12 months immediately preceding the submission of the application”
- Fees will be as follows:
- Individual – Fee of US $2,000.00
- Family Bundle- Fee US $3,000.00 (Allows more than one member of the family to work remotely)
- Once you have you have been approved for the 12 Month Barbados Welcome Stamp, you will be able to re-apply at least two more times to extend your visa!
Recent statements made by the Barbados International Business Association’s (BIBA) president Derrick Cummins, emphasized that the BIBA welcomes the Government’s proposed 12-month Barbados Welcome Stamp initiative.
The application process begins within 72 hours the Barbados Government receiving your completed application. Afterwards, the Barbados 12 Month Visa Welcome Stamp will be processed. Approval or denial comes in 30 days or less.
UPDATED Barbados 12 Month Visa Welcome Stamp Site
The Barbados Government just updated their own site and now have an extensive Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) section and some additional information.
Some great new takeaways I gleaned from the site:
- You do not need to provide proof of income to apply for the Barbados 12 Month Visa
- Companies are encouraged to make applications for all their eligible employees (Any US-based businesses considering relocated their workforce?)
- Applicants are not subject to any Barbados income tax
- Applicants must maintain medical insurance while in Barbados. You may be asked to present evidence that you’re insured when you arrive in Barbados. Where applicable, you will be able to obtain medical insurance in Barbados if you qualify.
- If you have school-aged children, Barbados advises non-nationals may enroll in private schools for the 12 months. It is not clear on if public education is available, but I would suspect it is not as remote workers under this program are not paying income taxes.
I have lots of acquaintances and colleagues that work remotely. During the recent COVID-19 pandemic we’ve seen a lot more employees working from their homes, or wherever. This may be the perfect time for the world to make advances towards digital work. Before you head out anywhere, you should check out Six Things To Do Before Traveling Internationally.
With that prospect in mind, the Barbados 12 month Welcome Stamp visa program sounds like an awesome idea, if you can make it work (pun intended.) I’m already looking into AirbnB long-term accommodations!(Using that AirbnB link you’ll get $35 off your first purchase!) Also, I’ve discovered Amazon has Global Shipping to Barbados.
So if the prospect of hanging out and working remotely on an island is appealing, maybe you’ll consider this an opportunity knocking. With the Atlantic on one side and the Caribbean on the other you’d have some great office ambiance. If you had the chance to live in Barbados and work from an island surrounded by beaches, would you?
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